Jensen Beeler


If you’re in the market for a small-displacement grocery-getter, then we have good news for you, as American Honda has just confirmed that the Honda Trail 125 will be coming to the USA as a 2021 model year machine.

The pint-sized dual-sport(ish) machine has been on the radar for quite some time, ever since a concept of the bike debuted at the Tokyo Motor Show in 2019.

Looking production-ready, it seemed like only a matter of time before the CT125 (as it’s called in other parts of the world) showed up on dealer floors. Given the history of the Trail 125 in the United States, the bike was certain to come here as well.

Innovation comes in all sorts of shapes and sizes, so it is interesting today to see some progress made on an often overlooked item: the motorcycle chain.

BMW Motorrad is touting the first maintenance-free chain ever for a motorcycle, calling the product the BMW M Endurance chain. In reality, the product is made by Regina, with BMW claiming first rights to the product and rebranding it.

The BMW M Endurance chains is similar to other X-ring chains in that it has a permanent lubricant filling between the rollers and pins, enclosed by X-rings.

What is completely new however is  Regina’s design, in that it does not require additional external lubrication, nor does it require retensioning over time.

We have seen a few recalls from BMW Motorrad North America lately, and now we can add another to the tally. In this latest recall with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), we see 447 units from BMW’s R series of bikes involved in a recall.

As such, BMW is recalling the BMW R1250 RT, R1250R, R1250RS, R1250GS, and R1250 GS Adventure motorcycles from the 2021 model year for issues with its tire pressure labels.

Episode 160 of the Paddock Pass Podcast is out, and this one sees us back in the WorldSBK Championship paddock, with Steve English and Gordon Ritchie on the mics in what is the first of two back-to-back rounds at Motorland Aragon.

As usual, the guys talk a bit about the racing weekend thus far (editor’s note: they recorded this show on Saturday), and also take a look at the larger events that are taking place within the World Superbike sphere.

Two weeks ago, we caught glimpse of a track-prepped Aprilia Tuono V4 1100 with wings and camoflage, and wondered what was to come of the Italian streetfighter. Today, we get that answer.

Behold the Aprilia Tuono V4 X – a limited edition, track only, version of the Noale’s hyper-naked bike. Complete with MotoGP-inspired wings, this carbon fiber clad Tuono V4 posts some impressive figures: 218hp (crank), 366 lbs (dry), and €34,900 (+VAT).

Built by Aprilia Racing, the Tuono V4 X is similar to the RSV4 X that we saw last year – most notably that only 10 units will be made available to the public. This is a shame, because the Aprilia Tuono V4 X is dripping with awesome.

It has been a decade since the KTM RC8 debuted at the Austrian brand’s answer to the superbike question. Perhaps ahead of its time, the RC8 and its progeny were never strong sellers for KTM, though the bike had its highlights (and struggles).

Now, the “Ready to Race” brand is obviously missing a full-faired superbike in its lineup, despite offering the naked “Beast” that is the KTM 1290 Super Duke R, which is a direct descendent of that RC8 project.

Our point? It’s high time that KTM got back into the superbike game, and while the Austrians have made it clear that they are not interested in revisiting the RC8 thesis, KTM is on the forefront of the electric motorcycle movement.

That brings us to these concept creation by Indian designer Mohit Solanki, who envisions an electric superbike from KTM.

Tom Sykes will spend a third season with the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK racing team, signing a one-year deal with the German outfit this week.

He will be joined in the garage by Michael van der Mark, who will take his first season on the BMW S1000RR next year.

The re-signing of Sykes is no surprise, though the real news here might be the shifting of Michael van der Mark from the Yamaha squad to the BMW outfit.

Episode 159 of the Paddock Pass Podcast is out, and it sees us covering another amazing weekend at the Red Bull Ring, this time for the Styria GP.

On the mics, we have David Emmett and Neil Morrison, as they discuss this eventful weekend in Spielberg, Austria.

In the show, the guys dissect another win by KTM at the Red Bull Ring, and how the Austrian factory has made so much progress is such a short amount of time.

Race replicas are nothing new in the motorcycle industry. Take your street model, slap some paint and sponsor graphics on it, and call it good. Easy peasy. The folks at Yamaha Motor Europe didn’t get that memo, however.

Teaming up with the YART GTYR Pro Shop, these stalwarts of the tuning fork brand have created a unique YZF-R1 that pays homage to another of their sister outfits, the Petronas-backed Sepang Racing Team.