Hello from cold and rainy Southern California, where we will be swinging a leg over the Honda Super Cub in order to find out if you really do meet the nicest people on a Honda.
This iconic motorcycle changed the American motorcycle industry in the 1960s , offering a break from the 1%’er image that dominated the two-wheeled landscape at the time.
Though the model has evolved over the years, Honda has been churning out the Super Cub continuously since 1958, with production spiking in the late-1990s and hitting the 100 million unit mark in 2017.
This makes the Honda Super Cub the best all-time selling motorcycle in the world…and now it is coming back to the United States.
It would be nice if the Zero SR/F would just debut already, as this drawn out teaser campaign is getting a bit tired, and the electric motorcycle company runs the risk of putting-off would-be buyers before the bike even debuts.
That said, Zero Motorcycles has another teaser for us.
This time around, we get some tech specs…sorta. The teaser video shows the Zero SR/F in a 14.4 kWh battery pack configuration, and it shows a motor labelled “Z-Force 75-10” on its side.
What is one more press launch for today’s news cycle, am I right? A bit of a shakeup to the lineup, the Monster Energy Yamaha team debuted in Jakarta today, and as you would expect from the name, the energy drink company takes over as title sponsor from Movistar.
The names and faces are the same though, with Valentino Rossi and Maverick Viñales at the helm of the 2019 Yamaha YZR-M1 MotoGP race bike, which has a new livery on its side.
Like most of the MotoGP team debuts that we see ahead of the Qatar preseason test, what is offered as a first look at the 2019 racing platform is really more like the 2018 bike with next year’s livery.
That doesn’t make the sight any less fantastic though, as detailed photos of these apex predators is always a treat.
Next up on our list from the MotoGP paddock is the ECSTAR Suzuki squad (check out Ducati and Honda too), which includes Alex Rins and Joan Mir.
Not much changes for the livery in the 2019 season, though we do see Suzuki has updated the fairings a touch. The tail section has a more dramatic drop as it comes to a point, and the vents on the front fairing have slightly different shapes than what was shown to us in 2018.
“We’ll be working with only one aim in mind: to win.” Those are the words of Gigi Dall’Igna while talking about Ducati Corse’s WorldSBK program, which made its public debut today.
Officially the Aruba.it Racing – Ducati Superbike team, the rider duo of Chaz Davies and Alvaro Bautista have a lot of weight on their shoulders. After all, the Italian marque made an historic switch from a v-twin to a V4 all in the name of winning the World Superbike Championship title.
Usually though, the expectations for a team with a brand new bike are reserved, as it can take a season to extract the full potential of the machine on the race track, but with Ducati, it seems that the grading curve is a bit steeper.
While new-bike sales in the United States continue to plummet, the Motorcycle Industry Council is reporting that overall motorcycle ownership is up in the USA.
This is because the MIC has found that 8% of the US households in 2018 had a motorcycle, according to their polling data – the most ever recorded by the MIC in decades.
The results are a modest bump from the 6.94% recorded in 2014 (the last time that the MIC did a full survey of motorcycle ownership), with 2018 showing that 10,124,400 households in the USA having a bike.
With the United States Census Bureau estimating the number of US households at 126,224,000, the MIC’s numbers come out to be 8.02% of the households.
It was 12 years ago that Ruben Xaus became internet-famous for a photo that depicted him sliding a Ducati Hypermotard 1100 into a turn, thumb up in the air triumphantly…like a boss. It was an unbelievable sight, both figuratively and literally.
Back in the day, I would often see comments on the photo that speculated what the next shot looked like. Bike tumbling through the gravel, a yard sale of parts? The rider in a stretcher on the way to the hospital, after it all went horribly wrong?
The middleweight adventure-touring segment is hot right now, with a bevy of brands bringing new machines to market right now.
Leading that charge has been KTM, with the company finally releasing its two-pronged ADV attack with the KTM 790 Adventure and KTM 790 Adventure R motorcycles.
Packed with features, and touted to have high-performance, we knew the KTM was going to get aggressive on the pricing of its 790 models, and now we know how aggressive those price tags will be in the USA.
With pricing leaked on the KTM Twins forum, we can see that the KTM 790 Adventure will cost $12,499 MSRP, while the KTM 790 Adventure R will come in at $13,499 MSRP.
The Ducati Hypermotard 950 is the third generation of this street-sized supermoto, and in its design, Ducati borrowed heavily from the previous iterations.
As you can see, the mechanics of the 950 machine don’t wander far from the 939 that came before it, and the styling is a modern homage to the lines found on the original 1100 model.
As such, consider the 950 like a greatest hits album from the Hypermotard lineup.
One of the more intriguing story lines we are following in the coming WorldSBK season is the arrival of BMW Motorrad in the superbike paddock. For the 2019 season, BMW has partnered with the Shaun Muir Racing team, with riders Tom Sykes and Markus Reiterberger.
With an all new superbike platform to develop and work with, our attention is on what this machine can do, especially with such a high-level team and duo of riders.
With SMR officially unveiling the team at their preseason test in Portugal, we sent our man Steve English into the pit box to get some up-close photos of the WorldSBK-spec BMW S1000RR for the 2019 season.
As you would expect, the details on this bike are very interesting.
Harley-Davidson continues to push its new electric agenda, releasing this week two videos that show its electric scooter and electric moped models in action, just ahead of the X-Games in Aspen, Colorado.
The videos are interesting for two very important reasons. First, they show the two concepts running, just a few weeks after we saw the concepts in actual photos, not sketches.
Not exactly exciting two-wheeled video porn, nevertheless it shows that Harley-Davidson is hard at work bringing these bikes to market…though they do seem pretty rough and in the early stages of development.