When you think of race bikes to use for battle on the race track, an old air-cooled BMW boxer twin is probably not the machine your mind immediately lands upon. Though, custom builder Scott Kolb is making a strong case to change that opinion.
This is because his latest creation is a 310 lbs purpose-built racing machine, with 82hp on tap for good measure.
Built around a 1976 BMW R90/6 boxer-twin engine, this blend of something new and something old would certainly be potent – and legal – in most lightweight club racing classes, and that tickles us in all the right places.
When Harley-Davidson showed its design concepts for its future electric motorcycles, we were struck by the Bar & Shield’s plans for a road-going flat track bike…for two reasons.
For starters, the design and vehicle format seemed promising. In fact, it was surprising that it took an electric powertrain to get Harley-Davidson hip to its flat track roots and then apply them to the company’s street-bike offerings.
The second reason our interests were piqued was because of the bike’s very obvious use of Alta’s EV powertrain components, which made sense at the time since Harley-Davidson was a major investor in the electric motorcycle startup.
If you were an American hoping to buy the new Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP, you better hold onto your butt because we just got pricing on this incredible new superbike, and it will cost $28,500 in the United States.
The US pricing is a considerable break from Honda’s normal pricing scheme (and our own predictions here at A&R), and is more in line with the currency costs found in other markets.
For example, the Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP will retail for £23,499 in the UK and €27,000 on mainland Europe – both of those prices equaling roughly $30,000 in US dollars.
In case you haven’t been following every day of the Dakar Rally – held this year for the first time in Saudi Arabia – you might want to keep your eyes on this iconic off-road racing tonight/tomorrow.
This is because American rider Ricky Brabec is on the verge of winning The Dakar, as he holds nearly a 14-minute lead over his next-closest competitor, Pablo Quintanilla.
A win from Brabec would be a huge disruption to the order of things, for several reasons.
What has four-cylinders, two sets of wings, and 234hp on tap? This bike, right here. Just leaking onto the internet a few hours ago (thanks for the tip, Dana!), here is what appears to be the first photo of the Ducati Superleggera V4.
The image seems to come from a leak at a private viewing event, which we can tell you is not the way to win the affections of Ducati CEO Claudio Domenicali, but with bikes arriving in May and production starting in April, a pre-production machine was surely going to end up on the internet before the Ducati Superleggera V4’s official debut.
We knew the time would come when Ducati would create a Superleggera version of its Panigale V4 superbike, and while it was premature to think that we would see that machine at EICMA last year, we are indeed closing in on that magical date.
The news starts with an email sent to very select Ducatisti, straight from Ducati CEO Claudio Domenicali, which teased the “Project 1708” superbike was coming soon.
Today, we get our first glimpse of the specs, which have been leaked onto the internet (shown at the end of this story). How does 234hp, 335 lbs dry (152kg), MotoGP-derived biplanes aerodynamic wings, and of course unobtanium at every detail, sound to you?.
We continue to wait to see what pricing will be on the 2021 Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP (whew! say that three times fast!), when it comes to the USA later this summer.
Our Bothan spy tipsters have pointed to the new Fireblade as being a pricey superbike (we have been expecting a roughly $25,000 price tag), and American Honda’s decision to import only the up-spec SP model adds further fuel to the fire that some price-point trickery is afoot.
With pricing already shown for the UK market, and seemingly confirming out suspicion, now we have another data point, as pricing on mainland Europe is finally out, and it seems to confirm the trend.
It is with a heavy heart that we report the death of Paulo Gonçalves, who died Sunday while racing Stage 7 of the Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia.
Always one of the riders to watch each year at The Dakar, Gonçalves was competing this year under the Hero Motorcycles factory team banner, making his 13th start at this iconic and grueling race.
2020 is supposed to be a big year for Aprilia. The reorganization instigated by Aprilia Racing CEO Massimo Rivola has helped free up lead engineer Romano Albesiano to design a brand new RS-GP from the ground up. The bike is expected to be much more competitive than the 75° V4 which has served them up until now.
But they enter 2020 with every chance of being without an important part of the MotoGP program. Andrea Iannone’s lawyer confirmed to Italian sports daily Gazzetta dello Sport that Iannone’s B sample from the drug test he failed in Sepang has also come back positive. The Italian now faces a four-year ban for use of the anabolic steroid drostanalone.
The quantities found in the sample were minute, Iannone’s lawyer Antonio De Rensis told Gazzetta. “The counter-analysis showed the presence of metabolites equal to 1.15 nanograms per milliliter,” De Rensis said.
Taking into consideration that the sample was extremely concentrated due to Iannone being dehydrated from the hot and humid MotoGP race in Malaysia, that would point to an even lower concentration, De Rensis claimed.
This would corroborate the theory of accidental contamination through food, according to Iannone’s lawyer.
Another debut seen at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, the eagerly awaited Alpinestars Tech-Air 5 airbag vest offers a new name in autonomous airbag safety for motorcyclists.
Boasting the ability to put an airbag in almost any motorcycle jacket, the Alpinestars Tech-Air 5 is a direct competitor with the Dainese Smart Jacket – as the two Italian brands continue to one-up each other in this budding space in motorcycle safety.
The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) isn’t known for its motorcycle debuts, but that has slowly changed over the years, especially as the motorcycle industry adopts more innovative approaches.
One of the largest trade shows in the United States, it is easy to see why motorcycle brands would want to get in front of the nearly 200,000 attendees that come each – and it helps that mainstream journalists there are fairly naive to the intricacies of the motorcycles industry, and will hype anything with a glossy veneer.
Case in point, the launch of the Damon Motorcycles Hypersport HS electric motorcycle, which just dropped at this year’s CES after much teasing.