The arrival date of the Bimota Tesi H2 is getting closer, so it doesn’t surprise us that today a Bothan spy dropped off these photos in our inbox, showing the supercharged sport bike in its final production form.
Not too much has changed since we first saw the Bimota Tesi H2 at the EICMA show in 2019, as the basic lines from the Italian boutique have remained throughout the machine.
The bike is still built around the Kawasaki Ninja H2 power plant, with the addition of an iconic and unique hub-center steering design chassis, which itself is clad with carbon fiber bodywork.
The Bothan Spies of Asphalt & Rubber have been hard at work during the recent months, and they bring us news from Austria: the KTM 200 Duke will be coming to the USA as a late 2020 model.
The KTM 200 Duke is not a new model in the Austrian brand’s lineup, as it is available in various markets world, and most notably in the Asian markets where tiered licensing and cost-of-ownership constraints make the 25hp motorcycle a great choice for street riders, but it is a new and curious model for the United States.
Our Bothan spy sources are telling us the the Ducati 1299 Superleggera recall from yesterday is just the tip of the iceberg of what is coming from Brembo, as the Italian brake supplier’s affected brake pads are in multiple makes and models throughout the USA and worldwide (editor’s note: we see Triumph now making the same recall today as Ducati).
For those keeping track, this is the second time that Brembo has seen a large recall for its brake pads because the friction material might become separated from the backing plate. And like the Brembo recall for its master cylinder piston failure, this is something that is going to affect a number of motorcycle brands, as Brembo is a large OEM supplier.
Our sources are telling us that thousands of bikes in the United States will be affected by this recall, though thankfully the fix for the brake pad failure is pretty easy – one only has to change out the brake pads for new ones.
Want some good news to start your weekend? Thank your favorite Austrian motorcycle brand, because the KTM 890 Duke R is not only coming to America, but it will be here (in limited numbers) very, very soon.
This is because KTM North America has been able to import a small number of KTM 890 Duke R motorcycles into the United States, which will be ready for purchase in Spring 2020, instead of Fall 2020 (as 2021 model year bikes) as was originally planned.
Official data on the US motorcycle industry for 2019 isn’t out yet, but Asphalt & Rubber has seen preliminary numbers, encompassing the first 11 months of the year on new motorcycle sales, and those numbers show that the USA continues to have essentially zero growth.
According to the documents supplied to us by our Bothan spies, from January to November of 2019, the US motorcycle industry grew a whooping 0.1%, with most of the major brands posting moderate single-digit losses for the year on new bike sales.
Polaris Industries has begun teasing the next iteration of its three-wheeled sporting machine, better known as the Slingshot.
First debuting for the 2015 model year, Polaris in 2020 is finally bringing an update/new edition to the Slingshot line, which will hopefully help spur sales for this autocar.
The American brand isn’t saying too much about their new Slingshot right now, but our Bothan spies have tipped us to an automatic transmission option for the reverse-trike car.
Is there a more iconic motorcycle brand from Italy than Bimota? I think you could make some arguments to the contrary, but you would be hard-pressed to deny that the brainchild of Valerio Bianchi, Giuseppe Morri, and Massimo Tamburini hasn’t produced some of the most impactful and drool-worthy motorcycles in the past 50 years.
Sadly, the story of Bimota is not always a happy one, and after a failed restart by Swiss investors Marco Chiancianesi and Daniele Longoni, the Italian brand seemed like it was finally set for the deadpool. But then, something interesting happened.
About six weeks ago, news started circulating that Bimota was to be reborn again…and that Kawasaki had purchased the now defunct Italian marque. Well, we have good news for Bimota fans and motorcyclists alike. Bimota is back!
And to get things started right, we have been leaked images of the company’s first new creation, the Bimota TesiH2, and it looks very, very good.
That there will be a new Honda CBR1000RR superbike for the 2020 model year is perhaps the worst-kept secret in the industry right now.
The news of this machine is so out in the open, that even the WorldSBK.com website is talking about it in terms of next year’s racing news.
Much has been said about this bike, and long has it been rumored, but now we are closing in on the new CBR1000RR’s actual unveiling deadline.
To help whet our appetite, our Bothan spies have sent us a handful of spy photos of the 2020 Honda CBR1000RR, along with a video of it on track. Booyah!
It’s currently the long WorldSBK summer break, which means that the superbike paddock has more than enough time to wheel and deal…and then of course gossip.
There are a number of rumors coming for 2020, but none of them are nearly as good as the talk about Alvaro Bautista jumping ship from Ducati, to the factory-backed Honda squad.
That news comes along with the rumor that Honda will have a new superbike for the 2020 model year, which is something we have seen speculated about for some time.
When spy shots of a creatively painted Ducati Panigale V4 came out, we didn’t know what to make of it. The photos didn’t reveal too much beyond a unique paint job, which is why we quickly moved on from them, but our Bothan Spies have made sure that we are in the loop on what is afoot.
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Ducati 916 Superbike, which is a milestone near and dear to the hearts of many Ducatisti. And thus, it doesn’t surprise us to see that the spy photos show a machine that gives homage to that era of Ducati’s history – the 916/996/998 are perhaps the most iconic motorcycles ever made.
Tie those pieces into the fact that we know that Ducati has a special event ahead of the Laguna Seca WorldSBK round, and things start to get interesting, which is where our headline comes into play.
Word on the street is that Ducati is about to release a Carl Fogarty edition of the Ducati Panigale V4.
I don’t think it is a coincidence that on the day that Ducati shows us its Streetfighter V4 prototype at Pikes Peak, that we see our first spy photos of the updated KTM 1290 Super Duke R (for bonus points, MV Agusta has gotten in on the action, releasing pricing on its Brutale 1000 sport bike as well).
Rumors of an updated Super Duke have been hitting our eardrums for a while now, though the details on the machine have been sparse. In fact, we were simply told “everything is better about it.”
That’s a little light on details for our tastes, but it does bode well for the street fighting machine, as the current KTM 1290 Super Duke R ranks as one of our favorite motorcycles right now.