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In many ways, Ducati’s MotoE project is the opposite of all the electric motorcycle projects which have gone before.

Up until very recently, conventional motorcycle manufacturers have mostly stayed well away from electric motorcycles, preferring to wait and see how the technology, and the political and legislative framework in which this all takes place, will play out.

Exceptions have been few and far between: beyond electric scooters, KTM have the Freeride, an electric enduro machine, and Honda worked with Mugen on their bike which dominated the TT Zero race on the Isle of Man.

That has left the field open for a host of new companies, which have operated with varying success. Silicon Valley produced a large swathe of start ups, mostly run by motorcycle enthusiasts from the area’s electric vehicle and technology industries, and funded with VC money.

A few others, such as Energica, are engineering start ups producing electric vehicles and based in areas with strong automotive industry links. Small companies with limited manufacturing and engineering facilities which relied on widely available components and techniques for a large part of their bikes.

So when Energica won the first contract to produce the MotoE racer, they were competing against other specialist electric motorcycle manufacturers, sometimes no bigger than a handful of people based in of small workshops.

But all had the same philosophy: to take their existing products and turn it into a race bike, by stripping unnecessary ballast and upgrading suspension, braking, and various chassis components.

Their race bikes, and the Energica Ego Corsa which became the MotoE bike when the series first started in 2019, are basically the electric bike version of Superstock spec machines: production bikes which have been turned into racing machines by upgrading existing components to racing spec.

At the technical presentation of their MotoE machine on Thursday, the contrast between what has gone before and Ducati’s approach couldn’t be greater.

The venerable Honda Gold Wing is getting a recall that affects only the manual transmission model of the long-distance tourer.

According to NHTSA documents, the recall affects 1,740 units from the 2020-2022 model years, and concerns the ignition timing programmed into the bikes’ ECUs.

This recall does not affect any Honda Gold Wings that have the company’s dual-clutch transmission (DCT) installed.

Episode 88 of the Brap Talk motorcycle podcast is out with another “weekly” episode, for your two-wheeled listening pleasure.

In this episode, we talk a bit about the media-side of the motorcycle industry, and some of the things Jensen has noticed in his 13-year career at Asphalt & Rubber, as Shahin conducts his “exit interview” from the space.

We talk a bit about life, motorcycles, and everything – and we think you will find the conversation not only entertaining but also informational…with plenty of rabbit holes along the way.

Episode 285 of the Paddock Pass Podcast is out, and this one sees us covering the Dutch TT at The Cathedral, in Assen.

On the mics, we have the full crew of Steve EnglishDavid Emmett, and Neil Morrison as they look at the events of the Dutch round, and the aftermath of Fabio Quartararo’s crash with Aleix Espargaro.

The guys get the conversation started by covering the plethora of rider-market news that happened at The Cathedral, especially the news concerning Alex Marquez and Alex Rins.

We of course have to give considerable time to Aleix Espargaro’s race, after he recouped disaster from Quartararo’s crash, and made his way to a heroic last-corner pass for fourth place. 

Espargaro is becoming a force to be reckoned with in the MotoGP paddock, and Aprilia had a strong showing in Holland with Maverick Viñales on the podium as well.Ada 


The guys then look at the fate of KTM at Assen, and we have an interview with Brad Binder, as he talks to our man,  Adam Wheeler.

The show’s last topic consists of a discussion on why the Ducati is so good, and what an incredible performance it was from Marco Bezzecchi to grab his first podium. Naturally, we finish off with our winners and losers.

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Source: SoundCloud

The bombshell racing news for 2023 has to be the fact that Ducati is taking over as the sole-manufacturer of the FIM MotoE World Cup, which runs at select MotoGP race rounds.

Before this news, Ducati was perhaps the last brand you would expect to embrace an electric powertrain, and since their MotoE announcement, the folks in Borgo Panigale have been working publicly on that goal with gusto.

Now today, we get our first proper glimpse at the Ducati “V21L” MotoE project, but also some of the performance specs we can expect in the MotoE series.

First off, the numbers you are dying to hear: 495 lbs (225 kg) ready-to-race, 150hp (110 kW) of peak power, 103 lbs•ft of torque (140 Nm), a 18 kWh battery pack (running at 800 volts) that can be charged to 80% in 45 minutes with the onboard 20 kW charger, and a top speed of over 170 mph (275 km/h) at the Mugello track.

Not to over-use an Italian cliché, but that’s a spicy meatball, and close to what Ducati achieves with its Panigale V4 superbike.

Supermotos have a special place in our Asphalt & Rubber loving hearts, so we celebrate every new model release we can, and today sees us looking at the 2023 Husqvarna FS 450 – the pointy end of production supermotos.

The Swedish brand claims that the 2023 is “all new” for the coming model year, though a careful look at the previous year’s machine shows that things are a close evolution of before.

That being said, the 2023 Husqvarna FS 450 does feature a new hydro-formed frame, as well as a new 450cc single-cylinder engine, and promises to be a class-leader on performance.

Is the 2022 Yamaha M1 a good MotoGP bike? It is a simple question with a simple answer: it depends. If Fabio Quartararo is riding it, it is good enough to have won two races, get on the podium in three others, and lead the 2022 MotoGP championship by 22 points.

But if anyone other than Fabio Quartararo is riding it, it is not quite so good. The best result by the trio of Franco Morbidelli, Andrea Dovizioso, and Darryn Binder is a seventh place, by Morbidelli at Mandalika. That seventh place is one of only two top tens for the other Yamahas, Darryn Binder being the other at the same race.

Together, Morbidelli, Dovizioso, and Binder have scored a grand total of 40 points. Fabio Quartararo has 147, over three times as many. And he has never finished behind any of the other Yamahas throughout the season.

In fact, the closest any other Yamaha rider has gotten to Quartararo is Franco Morbidelli’s eleventh place, two places behind his teammate, at the season opener at Qatar. Since then, Quartararo and the other Yamaha riders have been operating on different planets.

The next piece of the 2023 puzzle has fallen into place. Today, KTM and Ducati announced that Jack Miller would be leaving the factory Ducati squad at the end of 2022, and joining KTM for the 2023 and 2024 season to race in the Red Bull KTM Factory Racing squad.

Miller is no stranger to KTM. The Australian raced for KTM in his final year in Moto3, before making the move to MotoGP. He is managed by Aki Ajo, the veteran team manager of KTM’s Moto2 and Moto3 squads.

So a return to KTM is no surprise, and had been the subject of rumors for several weeks now.

After an eventful, in every possible meaning of that word, weekend at Montmelo, Adam Wheelerand David Emmett sit around Neil Morrison’s dinner table in his apartment in Barcelona to look back at a race which was full of surprises.

There was plenty to talk about. We discuss Fabio Quartararo’s win, and how he seems to be unbeatable at the moment, even when his rivals aren’t taken out.