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Zero wins first official electric off-road race in France

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. (October 29, 2009) – Zero Motorcycles today announced its win at the Electric Motorcycle Challenge, organized by the French Federation of Motorcycles in Gironville, France. Over 250 riders competed in the race, with one Zero MX and four other electric motorcycles participating. Thomas Aubry, riding on behalf of Zero Motorcycles, proved the Zero MX has what it takes to not only beat out the other electric motorcycles, but to compete against the best gas powered riders in the race. After Aubry and the Zero MX beat the other electric competitors, he went on to take first place against gas motorcycles in the last race of his series, placing him third overall in his class.

“This was quite an event! We didn’t even know about it until two weeks prior so we really pushed to get our team in order and race ready. This was our first appearance in a European competition like this and the Zero MX out-performed all other bikes in our category,” says Edwin Belonje, Director of European Sales & Marketing, Zero Motorcycles. “We are excited to capture this win and are looking forward to taking on even more competitors as the development of electric motorcycles continues to evolve.”

Zero Motorcycles designed the Zero MX specifically for track riding and motocross, using a high-performance suspension system. The Zero MX includes a beefy front-end and a newly developed custom rear shock that gives riders a fully adjustable spring preload and easily tuned damping. The Zero MX has also been fitted with an aggressive 19” front wheel and tire package that will accommodate any motocross tire. It is lightweight, low-maintenance and silent, which opens up local track riding possibilities by eliminating the loud noise associated with a traditional gas dirt bike.

The Zero MX is available for purchase exclusively through the Zero Motorcycles website and is priced at $8,250 (USD). For more information on the Zero MX check out their website HERE.


Ducati Multistrada - Countdown to launch site!

The new Ducati 1200 Multistrada is coming soon; November 9th, 2009 to be exact.

You can monitor the new website that Ducati has launched with a countdown timer and a teaser video that pretty clearly shows the nose portion of the new touring machine.

Check it out HERE.


Test ride a Zero electric motorcycle (dealers and media)

Zero Motorcycles is hosting a Demo Day in Mirabel, QC on Saturday Oct 31st at Xtown. Unfortunately for the general population this one is said to be for media types and dealers.

If you're among this group you should get in contact with Stephen Bieda (Director of Sales & Mktg - Canada for Zero Motorcycles) pronto to reserve a spot.

Send us some pictures if you go!

Press Release

The electric motorcycle age is upon us and here to stay. Come see for yourself if the claims that are running rampant on the blogs around the world about Zero Motorcycles is fact or fiction.

Are you interested in testing the Zero X and/or MX on one of the finest indoor motocross facilities in Canada (

Address: 16250 Rang St-Dominique, Mirabel, QC
Media & Dealer Demo Time: 9:15 am - 10:15 am

We will also have pair of the 455 MPG equivalent Zero S Supermoto pre-production bikes updated to near production specs to drive outdoors.

Please bring your riding gear.


New Gore-Tex zipper closure to revolutionize garmet closure

Leave it to the maker of Gore-Tex to come up with a new Gee-whiz closure system that seems will basically revolutionize garment closures and become a motorcyclist's best friend.

We'll be the first to admit that garment closures aren't the first thing that come to mind when dreaming about new motorcycle gear; but get ready to say so long zipper, hello Gore Lockout because you're going to want this on your next motorcycle jacket if you're not just a fair-weather rider.

No more multiple layers of overlapping velcro to get into pockets, venting openings, etc. that all inevitably create a weak point in the fabric where water, wind, and cold eventually seem to creep in. The Gore-Lockout system uses no teeth like a conventional zipper, is totally waterproof, windproof, won't open accidentally, and is even said to be easy to use with gloves on. It's been tested through 2,500 closure cycles and remains waterproof.

It looks like it'll be the perfect closure system for the motorcycle industry as well as any industry that requires wind and waterproofness; winter clothing for example.

Watch for this product in the future from many motorcycle garment makers such as Rukka, Alpinestars, Biker's Comfort in Action, Hein Gericke, Held, Klim, Motoport and Rev’it. The product is patented and allows a lot of flexibility in design and style.

Special thanks to WebBikeWorld for bringing this product to our attention.


Screaming fast motorcycles in slow motion.

Duke Video has put together a reel of slow motion action from the 2009 Isle of Man TT.

What is the Isle of Man TT you may ask? Only the most insane motorcycle racing on the planet. More about it HERE.

When the speeds are slowed down like this you can really see just how incredible the forces the riders and the bikes are put through in this high speed event where average speeds top 130 miles per hour; that's approximately 210 KM/Hr. Now if that doesn't seem really fast to you, well you should see the twisty, close course, public roads they're achieving these speeds on.

Bikes get airborne, tires compress, forks bottom out, and belly pans scrape - all in glorious slow motion eye candy.

Check out this little clip of the full video. Too bad there's the big Duke advertisement blocking some of the screen but it's still a great preview.


Don Hatton finishes stage 4 of the 2009 Morocco Rally !

Don Hatton is still going strong after stage four of the 2009 Morocco Rally.

“Don had a good ride today” Natalie Hatton, Don’s wife, commented.

The race has been grueling. “ Rocks, rocks and more rocks” Don says. Stage 4 of the race was treacherous enough for the organizers to issue a warning to the racers regarding unmarked holes in the course.

Attrition among the competitors is rising. Don’s team mate and fellow Canadian rider Rick Hatswell is out of the race with a broken leg suffered during stage 3 of the rally. Another of his team mates David Dickinson is reported injured in stage 4 with a broken sternum.

Stage three’s extremely high heat along with the extensive racing in sand dunes caused Don to have heat stroke. Although it did not require medical attentions it caused a delay as he sought relief from the heat by using his KTM 690 for shade from the hot Moroccan sun. Don’s comment is “it was fun and challenging”


Juha Salminen has taken the win at the "Rund um Zschopau" Enduro classic

Munich. Juha Salminen has taken the win at the "Rund um Zschopau" Enduro classic. The Finn held off fellow countryman Eero Remes to give BMW their first victory at the prestigious event. The race held on Saturday marked the final round of the German Enduro Championship. Salminen won the overall and the E2 class.

Zschopau used to be the center of the sport in former East Germany. The region has plenty of enthusiastic fans who showed up in thousands to witness brilliant motorsport and what Enduro racing is all about: man and machine fighting the elements.

World Championship runner-up Salminen came to Saxony to end the season with a win, fully aware that Remes was going to be his main contender. By taking the prologue on Friday night, Salminen fired an early warning, but the 33-year-old had to suffer through the following day like everyone else before finally stepping on top of the podium. The BMW factory rider won by 0.04 seconds over Remes, with Markus Kehr and Samuli Aro next on the list of results.

Juha Salminen: "What a perfect end to the season. Zschopau has always been a great event. The race and the special tests were among the best of the year, better than most of the World Championship rounds. It´s really special to win in front of this huge crowd. Eero gave me a hard time, guess I had that little bit of extra luck. The bike worked perfectly."

"Rund um Zschopau"
1. Juha Salminen (FIN), BMW Motorrad Motorsport, 48:55,25
2. Eero Remes (FIN), KTM, 48:55,29
3. Markus Kehr (GER), KTM, 49:36,11
4. Samuli Aro (FIN), KTM, 50:03,05
5. Marko Straubel (GER), KTM, 50:26,04


BMW Motorrad Motorsport happy with their first year and looking forward to 2010

Munich. Despite bad luck in Portimao, Team BMW Motorrad Motorsport are more than happy with their first year in the Superbike World Championship and are already looking forward to 2010. The team always knew that this year was going to be hard, but Troy, Ruben and the whole team have performed better than many expected in their first year of World Superbike competition, taking seventeen top finishes during the season.

The bad luck, once again befell Ruben Xaus. He was behind Carlos Checa (Honda) in race two, when Checa’s engine blew up and showered the front of Ruben’s bike with oil. Ruben saw the oil, but there was no time to take avoiding action and he was highsided between turns one and two, breaking his right leg in the process. Ruben had only recently come back from injury, so the accident was a hard blow for him and the team, but despite that he was soon back in the garage smiling and telling the team how much the bike has improved.

Troy also had some bad luck today in race one, when a severe case of chattering forced him to pull into the pits and change the rear tyre. He later returned to the pits and changed the front tyre, but the problem persisted and he was unable to get into the points.

American Ben Spies (Yamaha) won the first race and, with previous championship leader Noriyuki Haga (Ducati) crashing out, went into race two with a healthy 15-point series lead. Second was Jonathan Rea (Honda), with Max Biaggi (Aprilia) third. Race two was won by Michel Fabrizio (Ducati), and although Haga was second, Spies took fifth place and, with it, the 2009 World Superbike Championship title.

Troy - Race 1: DNF, Race 2: 9th
I had a big problem with chattering in the first race and pitted twice to change first the rear tyre and then again to change the front. However, the problem carried on, so I just had to keep going as best I could to give some info to the engineers. We’re not actually sure if it was a problem with the tyres or something else, but no doubt the guys will look at all the data and sort it out.

I used my number two bike for the second race and it had only done a handful of laps so I wasn’t as familiar with it as my number one bike. It felt OK up until about half race distance, but then the grip went and the bike started spinning quite a bit.

I couldn’t get enough forward push without it spinning and that prevented me from pushing any harder. There are some areas we need to work on, but it’s hard trying different things during a race weekend when you also have to qualify well. Some of the problems only happen after a tyre has done 12-15 laps and we don’t often do long runs in practice because we are trying to get a good bike set-up.

Today has been a bit frustrating because the bike is improving, but sometimes it improves and then we get a new problem to solve. We just need more time on the bike and more laps, but I really feel that the bike has the potential to be a contender and I am keen to work hard with the team and make that happen.

Ruben - Race 1: 8th, DNF
Just an unlucky day for me, or maybe it has been an unlucky season. Checa’s bike blew up and covered the front of my bike with oil and obviously some of it went on to the front tyre. That caused the crash, so I am happy that the crash wasn’t my fault, but I am unhappy with the result.

This season has been hard for us all, but we knew that before the start and it is thanks to all the hard work everybody has put in that we have had so many top ten finishes. Considering that this is our first season, I think we should be happy about what we have achieved so far - and there’s much more to come, I’m sure of it.

The bike has improved since the last time I rode it and that makes me eager to find out how much more I can push it. The team are fantastic and the team spirit has been superb right from the start. It’s not nice ending the season with a broken leg, but there was nothing I could do about the crash and I prefer to think about the potential of the bike and working with Troy and the rest of the team to put it on the podium.

Berti Hauser (BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director)
The season has been a long, hard one, but the time has gone very quickly and I am surprised that we have now come to the end. It has been a wonderful experience and one of the most exciting years of my life.

I'm sorry about the stupid crash that caused Ruben to break his leg, but these things happen in racing and it was good to see him back in our pits chatting away to the team about how the bike is right now, instead of talking about his injury.

We managed seventeen top ten finishes this year and I think you can say that is ‘mission accomplished’. We’ve had ups and downs and have not been far off the podium at times and that is a testament to the potential of the bike. We know we have to improve in some areas and I can assure you that this will happen before next season begins.

This is our ‘rookie’ year and I think the whole team can feel happy and proud about our first season. I would like to thank Troy, Ruben, all the mechanics, engineers, InFront, Pirelli, all the background staff, and all our sponsors for all their hard work and support in a great first season.

I would also like to congratulate Ben Spies and Yamaha for taking the world title this year. Spies has shown what a class act he is and his team have supported him well throughout the season and they deserve the title. Final thanks also, to all our competitors this year, for making our life difficult, but also for making us work harder and keep improving. See you all next year!

Race 1
1 Spies (USA-Yamaha) 38:15.390
2 Rea (GBR-Honda) 1.697
3 Biaggi (ITA-Aprilia) 2.113
4 Byrne (GBR-Ducati) 2.757
5 Fabrizio (ITA-Ducati) 14.753
6 Camier (GBR-Aprilia) 20.044
8 Xaus (ESP-BMW Motorrad Motorsport) 31.104
Troy Corser (AUS-BMW Motorrad Motorsport) DNF

Race 2
1 Fabrizio (ITA-Ducati) 38:19.654
2 Haga (JPN-Ducati) 1.195
3 Rea (GBR-Honda) 1.494
4 Byrne (GBR-Ducati) 5.553
5 Spies (USA-Yamaha) 5.842
9 Corser (AUS-BMW Motorrad Motorsport) 17.010
Ruben Xaus (ESP-BMW Motorrad Motorsport) DNF


Ducati Xerox Team moves forward, testing underway at Portimao for 2010

Portimao (Portugal) Tuesday 27th October 2009: Just two days after the final round of the World Superbike Championship 2009 and the Ducati Xerox Team begins testing in preparation for the new season. Noriyuki and Michel, second and third at the end of this year’s campaign, and both already confirmed with the Ducati Xerox Team for 2010, were back on track this morning with most of the other Superbike team for the first of two days of testing.

At ease on the Portuguese track after several days riding, both Ducati men were immediately fast and got a lot of work done throughout the day. Between 9am and 5pm, and with the continuation of the race weekend’s warm, sunny conditions (with a track temperature hovering around 30°C) the factory riders were able to test various new parts, including a new exhaust and modified clutch. The Öhlins technicians also brought a new fork for the riders to use and Michel tested it this afternoon, with very positive results.

Italian rider Michel, as is often the case during winter testing, was the most consistently fast rider on track today, making numerous laps in under 1m43, with an (unofficial) best time of 1m42.3s while Nitro-Nori recorded a fastest lap time of 1m43.0s

Noriyuki Haga
“Today I’ve tried a harder rear suspension setting and I had a really good feeling with that, then we modified the front setting too but I’m not 100% happy with that yet so we’ll continue to work on it tomorrow. Tomorrow we’ll also try the new front fork and see how we go. For now I’m fairly happy; times have improved from those recorded over the weekend and I’m confident we can make further improvement tomorrow.”

Michel Fabrizio

“We’re all very tired after the weekend but it’s been a positive day. There are several new things to try, and me and Nori are dividing the work up; there’s quite a lot to do. Today I tried the new fork with the new clutch and both seem a lot better, we’ve seen big improvement. For the tyres, we’ve continued with the only one that worked for us over the weekend. I’m very satisfied, tired but happy.”

): Michel Fabrizio (Ducati Xerox) 1m42.3s; Noriyuki Haga (Ducati Xerox) 1m43.0s


Canadian - Don Hatton - starts 5th in the 2009 Morocco Rally

Don Hatton will be starting fifth in the Enduro class out of approximately fifty plus motorcycle competitors on the second day of competition in the 2009 NPO Shamrock Rally de Maroc (Shamrock Rally of Morocco).

“Rocks, rocks and more rocks. And we are not talking pebbles here” Don says. Due to the rough terrain Don has re-injured his hand and twisted his knee. He has been cleared by officials to continue racing tomorrow.

Don is being challenged by both the terrain, and some teething problems on his KTM 690 Enduro race bike. His bike has had some recurring electrical gremlins associated with the installation of the navigation equipment and with the suspension set up during day one. But the team mechanics are working hard to correct the problems.

As Don is competing in the Enduro class his bike must remain as close to factory stock condition as allowed under the NPO rules. That poses some limitations on components such as the suspension and engine as compared to a Don’s race prepared Dakar KTM

“This is the right bike for this race” Don says of the KTM."

UPDATE - According to the Rally Raid report on DestinationDakar Don's not so happy with his basically stock KTM 690 for this race now that he's had some time on it. He feels that it's not the right bike for the race. They made some suspension adjustments though and he's hoping it'll be better for the upcoming stages.


Zero Motorcycles Announces New Fleet Sales Program: Large Volume Sales Now Available

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. (October 26, 2009) –Zero Motorcycles announced today the launch of its fleet sales program. This program will provide the opportunity for corporate, non-profit, government and small business buyers to get professional sales support for multi-unit purchases to meet their motorcycle fleet requirements from Zero Motorcycles. Following its success in the consumer market, this program will mark the first time large volume purchases of Zero Motorcycles’ entire line of products will be available to businesses and organizations for fleet and rental purposes. The fleet program will begin November 2, 2009 and pricing will be based on volume and support requirements.

“The fleet sales program will not only expand the availability of Zero Motorcycles’ products beyond the consumer market, but it will also allow for groups to use Zero electric motorcycles for functions ranging from basic recreation to government security,” said John Lloyd, VP of Worldwide Sales of Zero Motorcycles. “People in all industries will be able to experience the versatility of electric motorcycles and the reduction of fleet maintenance costs while supporting green initiatives.”

Zero Motorcycles’ fleet program is designed to propel businesses and organizations into the next generation of transportation technology while recognizing the importance of environmentally friendly practices. While clearly different from standard motorcycle fleets, Zero’s all-electric motorcycles require less upkeep, reducing maintenance costs and allowing for more consistent operation. A Zero Motorcycles fleet also comes with powerful marketing and PR resources to help get coverage on the addition of green vehicles to the customer’s fleet.

(2009 Zero DS)

Already well-known within the motorcycle community for its innovative technology and high performance, the fleet sales program proves that there are far more uses for our Zero Motorcycles’ product line than just street, track and off-road riding. Law enforcement agencies will benefit from the low noise level to better facilitate communications while riding, and zero emissions allows safe patrolling in public gatherings. Government agencies like the US Forest Service can appreciate the environmentally responsible technology behind the bike and the little disturbance caused for both campers and animals alike. Track owners and tour operators can benefit from a fleet as another revenue generator by renting them out to amateur riders or tourists looking to explore local areas. The adaptability of each product to its respective environment and the reliability of its engineering and performance make it an advantageous addition to any fleet.


2010 Ducati lineup to be shown at EICMA in Milan

Ducati is going to be showing off a new bike in Milan Italy on the eve of the EICMA motorcycle show. No doubt they'll have their new Multistrada replacement.

It's said to be a 1200cc model and hopefully will allow the Italian company to compete with the likes of BMW and their 1200GS.

The email we received from Ducati suggests there 'might' be something else in the works too though...

"For 2010 Ducati will have a significant amount of new products, including several that have NOT been in the rumor mill as of late."

What could it be! We'll have to wait until 5.00 pm on Monday, 9th November. Ohhh, the suspense!


Yamaha Hybrid Motorcycle ICE+electric

Yamaha presented their new hybrid motorcycle prototype dubbed the HV-X at the 2009 Tokyo motor show. A feature that makes this hybrid unique when compared to say Piaggio's MP3 hybrid is the fact that it uses electric and gas powered motors in combination to improve acceleration.

The HV-X can be ridden in electric-only via a manual selection. Featuring a liquid cooled 250-cc single, the internal combustion engine shuts down automatically when the vehicle is at a standstill

The 15 kW electric motor is utilized at low speeds and the gas engine kicks in when a little extra torque and speed is needed. The HV-X's electric engine uses a large lithium ion battery.


Haga loses Wold Superbike title by 6 points; Fabrizio wins race 2

Portimao (Portugal), Sunday 25 October 2009: a bittersweet finale for Noriyuki Haga and the Ducati Xerox Team today when they lost the World Superbike riders title by just six points, after the Japanese rider crashed out of Race 1, to then finish on the podium, second, in Race 2. Already winners in the constructors championship, the Ducati factory team fought until the final lap of this last race but unfortunately they couldn’t do enough and it was Yamaha’s Spies who lifted the trophy. Michel Fabrizio, fifth in the first race, made a great recovery from eleventh position at the start of Race 2, to eventually win the race ahead of his team-mate, thus consolidating his third position in the final championship standings.

Race 1 did not go at all to plan for the Ducati Xerox Team. Japanese rider Noriyuki made up three positions with a strong start, progressing immediately up to seventh place, from where, in the space of four laps, he was able to catch up to both Haslam and Byrne. In the course of the fifth lap, Haga, followed by his team-mate Michel, was able to pass Haslam but unfortunately on the very next lap Haga unfortunately lost control of his Ducati 1198 and fell going into a corner, unable to restart his machine to continue the race. Michel, registered the fastest lap of the race before witnessing Nori’s accident from behind. He then maintained his fifth position for the remainder of the race, suffering from a lack of rear grip from the fourteenth lap onwards which meant he was unable to make up time to catch the leading pack.

In the second race, having changed both his bike and the tyres, Noriyuki made a better start and after two laps was positioned fifth. A couple of laps later Michel passed him, aiming to catch Byrne and Rea up ahead. Fighting the two British riders for several laps, the Italian finally got ahead of both of them during lap thirteen, only to lose the lead once more to Rea a few laps later. Haga in the meantime caught the leading group, passing both Biaggi and Byrne to move up to third position. An error by Rea during the very last lap allowed both Ducati Xerox riders through and Michel and Noriyuki thus closed in first and second, another double win for the team at this final event of 2009.

During the 2009 season, Noriyuki Haga has achieved an impressive collection of 8 race wins, including 2 double wins, in Valencia and Kyalami, and 19 podiums in all. Michel clocked up 15 podiums, 3 of which were race wins, and together the two riders have amassed a total of 838 points. Ducati has won the constructors title with an advantage of 67 points over second-placed Yamaha.

Noriyuki Haga (2nd in classification, 456 points)
“All weekend I have had problems with the set up of the bike, mainly with the tyres that didn’t give me total confidence. Usually we have a package that works well at every track and here too we didn’t change so much with regard to the setting, only really tyres. In Race 1 we mounted two hard tyres and they didn’t perform as we’d hoped, they didn’t give me the necessary grip so it was hard to brake and unfortunately I fell even though I wasn’t pushing so hard. We changed bikes for Race 2, just to be sure, as well as changing tyres of course. This time I had more grip and was able to make a good race. Unfortunately second in the race was not enough to take the title and it’s a real pity, but I must say that I have had a great first year with this fantastic team that always provides me with a good bike. I thank my whole technical team, Ducati, the sponsors and the Clinica Mobile who have taken good care of me throughout the season. My compliments go to Ben who has been such a strong rival this year and even though he is going to MotoGP next year, I am sure we will remain friends. This week we’ll start testing in preparation for next year. This year was a new adventure with Ducati and we’ll continue to give 100% in 2010."

Michel Fabrizio (3rd in classification, 382 points)
“The first race was very difficult. I didn’t make the best start but immediately started to push to make up time. Then, following behind Nori, I lost concentration for a minute when I saw him go down. I then tried to catch the leading group but I didn’t have great feeling with the front tyre and then, about eight laps from the end, the rear tyre started to drop off too. In Race 2 on the other hand I was able to fight hard against Rea. The last time we raced together, at Misano, he got past me so it was my turn to do the same to him today. It was only for the fact that Rea made a mistake on the last lap that I was able to pass him as he was very strong today. I am very sorry for Nori of course but we demonstrated that we are strong and, for me, both Ben and Nori are winners because they have given us a fantastic season’s racing, fighting until the very end for the title.

RESULTS: Race 1 – 1. Spies (Yamaha); 2. Rea (Honda); 3. Biaggi (Aprilia); Race 2 - 1. Fabrizio (Ducati Xerox); 2. Haga (Ducati Xerox); 3. Rea (Honda)
Riders– 1. Spies (Yamaha) 462; 2. Haga (Ducati Xerox) 456; 3. Fabrizio (Ducati Xerox) 382; 4. Biaggi (Aprilia) 319; 5. Rea (Honda) 315; 6. Haslam (Honda) 241….

Manufacturers – Ducati 572; Yamaha 505; Honda 431; Aprilia 329; Suzuki 173; BMW 141; Kawasaki 76


Zero Expands to Asian Market - Teams with AMPLE

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. (October 22, 2009) – Zero Motorcycles announced today its partnership with AMPLE World to expand the Zero Motorcycles brand throughout Asia. Following the popularity and sales success of Zero Motorcycles in North America and Europe, Zero Motorcycles will now be sold in Singapore and greater Asia with the addition of AMPLE as the official distributor for consumer and fleet sales.

“Zero Motorcycles and AMPLE share a common goal of expanding the electric vehicle movement globally,” says John Lloyd, VP of World Wide Sales of Zero Motorcycles. “With AMPLE’s marketing and distribution efforts, consumers in Asia will now have the opportunity to test ride and buy the high-performance Zero Motorcycles product line locally.”

Zero Motorcycles is powering into the world of electric vehicles with their fleet of fully electric, zero emissions motorcycles. Each motorcycle runs off of a Z-Force technology power pack consisting of high performance, light weight lithium ion cells. Zero Motorcycles is the leading manufacturer of all-electric motorcycles and is paving the way for energy independence in the personal transportation market.

AMPLE is a global marketing and distribution leader in providing a full suite of products and services geared towards the electric vehicle market. It is the only international company whose mission is to bring together the world’s best electric technology partners, institutions and governmental bodies with the goal of ensuring a global reduction in emissions. AMPLE accomplishes this by leveraging its industry knowledge of electric vehicles by partnering with companies that are firmly committed to developing a sustainable, electric vehicle market segment.

For more information on AMPLE, visit

For more information on Zero Motorcycles, visit


2009 Tokyo Motor Show opens Friday October 23rd

Organized by the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association, Inc.(JAMA), the 2009 Tokyo Motor show opens its doors to the public on Friday, October 23rd. There's going to be plenty to see there but perhaps most interesting will be the motorcycles of course!

Yamaha is going to be showing some interesting electric scooters dubbed the EC-F and EC-Fs:

The EC-F is an electric-powered vehicle designed to serve as a commuter bike for city dwellers. Constructed using lightweight aluminum, the scooter runs on a lithium-ion battery and can easily be plugged into a normal electrical socket for recharging. Strictly a concept at this point.

Honda will have some interesting bikes too; like the CB1100 Customize Concept, CB1300 Super Four, and CB1300 Super BOL D'OR.

The CB1100 Customize Concept is aimed at providing new value for the CB1100. Its specially striped Italian red tank coloring, compact bikini cowl solo seat all combine to project a more vivid race-winning image reminiscent of Honda's 1960s World Grand Prix Champion RC racers.

The CB1300 SUPER FOUR is Honda's flagship Naked road sports model. It debuted in 1988 based on the "Project Big-1" concept that set out to embody dramatic riding pleasure coupled with exhilarating riding performance. For 2010, the big CB features a more upright riding position and a newly redesigned rear cowl adorned with new left and right side split grab rails. A Combined-ABS version is also available.

Based on the CB1300 SUPER FOUR, the CB1300 SUPER BOL D'OR was released in 2005 with an attractive half cowl that offered excellent wind protection, improved comfort at highway speeds and convenient storage spaces. For 2010, the CB1300 BOL D'OR features a more upright riding position and a newly redesigned rear cowl adorned with new left and right side split grab rails. A Combined-ABS version is also available.

And a company I haven't heard of before, Adiva, is showing a scooter that looks to be very BMW C1 like. It's got a roof and a windshield wiper. In the picture, the white scooter looks to have two wheels in the rear, while the black unit behind it seems to be a standard two-wheeled version.


VRIDETV posts new HD Video of motorcycle ride in BC

Jeff over at VRIDETV has been out riding and doing some of his usual fine editing of Canadian motorcycle rides. He's lucky to live and ride in BC but he's recorded rides all across Canada. Check out his site to read the interesting story.

This time he's got a new high definition video of some riding (and captures some great footage of a black bear in the wild at the side of Duffey Lake Road (99 South)) and a beautiful sunset at Duffey Lake Provincial Park, British Columbia, Canada.

He started "The Duffey Loop" at 11:00am in Langley, riding up the Fraser Canyon to Cache Creek, then into the Marble Canyon, to Lillooette, Pemberton, Whistler, Squamish and Vancouver, returning to Langley at 10:15pm for a total of 703 kilometers.

Catch the new video below but also be sure to check out VRIDETV for tons of great Canadian motorcycling video's!


2010 YZ450F video test in Montreal

Blackfoot Yamaha rider Colton Facciotti and Dusty Flatt recetnly had a chance to take the all new YZ450F out for a little spin inside Olympic Stadium in Montreal, Quebec. This took place Friday night prior to the Montreal SX.

They're catching some SERIOUS air. The bike looks like it's goign to be a great performer.


BMW Motorrad Motorsport – Superbike World Championship – Portimao, Portugal – Preview


The final round of this year’s Superbike World Championship takes place at the Autodromo Algarve in Portugal and both Troy and Ruben are aiming to end the season on a high. This year’s championship has been the most competitive in its twenty-two year history, but Team BMW Motorrad Motorsport has acquitted itself very well in its first year of competition and is now looking to build on this year’s experiences and come back even stronger next year.

The Portimao track is relatively new to the calendar and is one of the most technically challenging circuits of the series, thanks to its changes of elevation and blind corners. Both Troy and Ruben raced there last year, albeit on different machines, so although they know which way round the track goes, the first day of practice and qualifying will be used to try and find a good set-up for their bikes.

It seems to have been quite a long year, but I am satisfied with the progress we have made throughout the season and I am especially pleased with the S 1000 RR in the past few races. The series is so competitive and hard this year and often less than half a second is the difference between a good grid place and something further down the order. And if you don’t get a good grid position, you are always playing catch-up. If we took our race times from this year and put them into last year’s results, our bike would’ve been on the podium quite a few times, so that shows how much faster everybody is going this year. I am looking forward to Portimao and finding out what our engineers have come up with since the last round. I am hoping that another step forward has been made and that Ruben and I can finish BMW’s debut season on a high.

I cannot wait for Portimao because I really want to see what the guys have done to the bike since Magny-Cours and see if I can push it and myself to our best result of the year. I am happy that I can race in Portugal because originally my doctors told me that I wouldn't race again this year after my crash in Brno. So, a big thank you to my physiotherapist and everybody at the clinic where I did a lot of rehabilitation and training. My body is not yet 100%, but I will be stronger than I was at Magny-Cours and you need to be fully fit to ride these kind of bikes hard.

Portimao is a very physical circuit, so I know that my body is going to get a pounding, but I am going to do my best and try and get my best finish of the year.

Berti Hauser (BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director)
This year has been a big adventure for us all and an exciting challenge. We knew that this year was not going to be easy, but I think we have done very well considering we are such a new team. Our bike (and our team) has a big potential and we know that we are going to make more and more progress. Already, we are looking forward to continuing our development over the winter and coming back even stronger next year.

I am very happy that we will have Troy and Ruben with us again in 2010. From the very first day, they have been part of the team and have helped create a super team atmosphere. Both are strong and are determined to win and hopefully we can give them the opportunity to do it next year.

2008 results
Race 1: 1 Bayliss (Aus-Ducati), 2 C Checa (ESP-Honda), 3 Troy Corser (AUS-Yamaha), 9 Ruben Xaus (ESP-Ducati),
Race 2: 1 Bayliss, 2 Fabrizio (ITA-Ducati), 3 Haslam (GBR-Honda), 6 Troy Corser, Ruben Xaus DNF


Honda VFR1200 Advertisement

Honda's got a new advertisement for their new VFR1200F. Does it feature a high revving, slicing up some twisty road, soundtrack? - Nope. It's got lots of music. The scenery is pretty decent - riding through ... the alps?

One nice feature though - it does show the bike sans hard bags and with.

Could have been better in my opinion but any video is good video at this point I guess. There's a second or two of the exhaust note too. Just a teaser amount though because it's definitely not being revved very hard - just about to 6,000 RPM.


Transport Canada - Latest Recalls

BMW R1200RTP (that's the police edition)
Year(s): 2007, 2008, 2009
Recall Date: 2009/09/17

Transport Canada Recall # 2009272
Units Affected: 51

Recall Details:

On certain motorcycles, vibrations that occur while riding could cause the front brake lines to develop leaks, allowing brake fluid to escape. Brake fluid leakage could eventually result in a loss of front braking capability, which could cause a vehicle crash with personal injury or death. Correction: Dealers will replace the front brake hoses with updated versions.


Year(S): 2007, 2008, 2009
Recall Date: 2009/09/17

Transport Canada Recall # 2009268
Units Affected: 469

Recall Details:

On certain motorcycles, the fuel pump control unit may be subject to water intrusion which, in time, will cause it to fail. Engine stalling would result in lost propulsion which, in conjunction with traffic and road conditions, and the rider's reactions, could increase the risk of a crash. Correction: Dealers will inspect and, if necessary, replace the fuel pump control unit.


Year(S): 2008
Recall Date: 2009/09/25

System: Other
Transport Canada Recall # 2009276
Units Affected: 29

Recall Details:

On certain motorcycles, the design of the seat tail guard may not allow enough clearance for the exhaust system. This could result in a vehicle fire causing property damage, personal injury or death. Correction: Dealers will replace the seat tail guard with an updated version.


Models: 2010 F1098S Streetfighter, 2009 1198S, 2009 1098R
Recall Date: 2009/09/25

System: Fuel Supply
Transport Canada Recall # 2009274
Units Affected: 84

Recall Details:

On certain motorcycles, a fuel hose may become disconnected from the fuel pump assembly. Any loss of fuel pressure would cause engine stalling which, in conjunction with traffic and road conditions, and the rider's reactions, could increase the risk of a crash. Correction: Dealers will inspect and, if required, replace and reposition the fuel hose retaining clamp.


Ducati F1098S Streetfighter
Year: 2010
Recall Date: 2009/09/25

System: Electrical
Transport Canada Recall # 2009275
Units Affected: 25

Recall Details:

On certain motorcycles, improper tightening of the Engine Control Unit (ECU) ground screw during vehicle assembly could cause intermittent erratic operation and engine stalling. Engine stalling would result in lost propulsion which, in conjunction with traffic and road conditions, and the rider's reactions, could increase the risk of a crash. Correction: Dealers will tighten the ECU ground screw.



BMW Motorrad Motorsport - 84th ISDE, Portugal.

Munich. Finland is one of the most successful teams in recent history of the International Six Days Enduro. This year´s six-man team was made half of BMW factory riders. Juha Salminen, Marko Tarkalla and Simo Kirssi were all representing their country and the Bavarian bike maker at what´s generally considered to be the Olympics of Enduro motorcycling.

After six days of brutal racing around the city of Figueira da Foz (Portugal), the Finnish team ended the prestigious event in third place overall. Tarkalla and Kirssi who, after an early crash, impressively rode through the pain barrier basically all week, contributed to the podium result.

With winning performances at the final two rounds of the 2009 World Enduro Championship, BMW Motorrad Motorsport rider Juha Salminen arrived in western Portugal with high hopes of a strong result at the 84th edition of the International Six Days Enduro. Starting well with a close third-place in the E2 class at day one, Juha disappointingly suffered mechanical problems the following day, which dropped him down the E2 class results. With all machines being worked extremely hard by the soft, power sapping sand, Juha ran into trouble on the fourth test when his bike unexpectedly stopped. Losing several minutes, Juha was able to finish the day once restarted and went on to win the seventh and final special test before service. The following morning Juha's event was brought to an end as further troubles ruled him out of the competition.

This was a bitter blow to the Finnish squad, as each team is only allowed to scrap one rider from the scoreboard. And there were still four days to go.

Competing in the ISDE for the first time, BMW's second E2 class team rider Simo Kirssi put in one of the bravest performances of any rider. Crashing heavily early on the opening day, Simo broke his left little finger and injured his wrist. Riding in considerable pain - and with a heavily strapped hand - Simo dug deep to not only finish the event but also to win his Motocross race on the final day. Determined not to let his Trophy team mates down, Kirssi placed an impressive 12th in the E2 class on day two before he started having severe problems simply holding on to his bike. Picking up time penalties on day four, due in part to having been given incorrect information by the Finnish team, Kirssi went on to finish 41st in the E2 class, still a truly heroic effort considering his injuries.

In comparison to his Finnish Trophy and BMW team mates, Marko Tarkkala enjoyed a relatively trouble free event in Portugal, claiming eighth in the Enduro 3 class. Consistently placing inside the top 10, Marko scored his best results on days one and six, where he finished seventh on both occasions and helped Finland finish third in the Trophy team competition.

Juha Salminen - Enduro 2 class: "I don't seem to have much luck with the six days, and this year was no different. I'm not sure exactly what the problem was but something happened to the engine, which forced me to retire. I was enjoying the event up until I had my problem. The sandy conditions were good for the Finnish team so who knows what our result could have been if I'd been able to finish the week. It's disappointing but as everyone knows anything can happen in the six days, and usually does to me."

Simo Kirssi - Enduro 2 class: "One things is certain the ISDE isn't like the World Enduro Championship. It's hard and gets harder with every day. Especially when you get injured. After my crash on the Enduro test on day one I struggled a lot. The whole event was so rough that I couldn't relax or take it easy anywhere. I broke my left little finger when I crashed, after that just holding on was difficult. Apart from my injury everything else went ok - my bike ran perfectly and I had a good final Motocross race."

Marko Tarkkala - Enduro 3 class: "It was a very hard race but I enjoyed it. My speed wasn't as good as I hoped it would be, but I didn't have too many problems during the week. Because of the heat and the soft sand it was hard on the bikes, but I didn't have any problems."

The overall win at the 84th International Six Days Enduro went to France ahead of Italy and Finland.


Haga prepares to fight for the 2009 World Superbike crown

Portimao (Portugal) Monday 19th October:

The final round of the 2009 Superbike World Championship, taking place this weekend at the Portuguese track of Portimao, will see an all out battle for the title between championship leader, Ducati Xerox rider Noriyuki Haga and Yamaha’s Ben Spies. Noriyuki, having led the championship for the best part of the season, and having finished five previous championships in either second or third position, now has a small, but significant, ten point advantage over Spies and is hungry for his first World Superbike Championship title, as is his squad, the Ducati Xerox Team, winners of the 2008 championship with Troy Bayliss.

The Ducati Xerox Team has already secured the 2009 World Superbike Manufacturers title, for the sixteenth time, after a stunning win and second place finish by Nitro-Nori at Magny-Cours two weeks ago. Over the season, Noriyuki and Michel have so far clocked up ten wins and thirty-two podium finishes between them and already hold a combined points total of 782 going into this final round.

The factory squad now looks to Portimao and, now that the Manufacturers title has already been brought home to Borgo-Panigale, concentration turns to the all-important Riders title, already won thirteen times in the past by the Ducati team, with riders of such calibre as Troy Bayliss and Carl Fogarty.

Last year at Portimao both Noriyuki and Michel had problems in the first race, with Nori suffering a technical setback and Michel crashing out on the opening lap. In Race 2 Michel had a much better time of it, running up front before crossing the line in second place, behind former team-mate Bayliss. Noriyuki was unfortunately penalised for a jump start in the second race and, once he’d made a ride through the pits, he was unable to make up the lost ground, closing in 14th position.

With everything to play for, Noriyuki, Michel and the Ducati Xerox Team are fighting fit and ready to fight for the ultimate prize, during a weekend that promises spectacular racing.

Noriyuki Haga (1st in championship, 436 points)

“Last year at Portimao didn’t go to plan; I had some bad luck. This year I am in a better position and now everything comes down to this last event. My strategy won’t be any different from normal; I always go out with the aim to win and I always give 100%. I’ve finished second or third in the last five editions of the Superbike championship and so all I am missing is the title win, a title I hope to be able to bring home to Ducati and to Japan this weekend.”

Haga’s Superbike form at Portimao:
2008: Race 1 – DNF, Race 2 – 14th

Michel Fabrizio
(3rd in championship, 346 points)

“I’ve very happy with how my season’s gone and I would like to finish the year with two more podiums. I’m feeling confident and am reassured that the third position that I hold in the standings can’t be taken from me as fourth place Max is too far behind to catch up now. I hope Noriyuki can take the title for Ducati and I’ll be backing him all the way this weekend.”

Fabrizio’s Superbike form at Portimao:
2008: Race 1 – DNF, Race 2 – 2nd


Country: Portugal
Name: Autódromo Internacional do Algarve
Circuit length: 4.658 km
Corners left: 6
Corners right: 9
Length of race: 22 laps= 101.024km

: Best lap – Bayliss (Ducati Xerox) 1'43.787 (2008). Superpole – Bayliss (Ducati Xerox) 1'58.548 (2008).

2008 RESULTS: Race 1 - 1. Bayliss (Ducati Xerox); 2. Checa (Honda); 3. Corser (Yamaha) Race 2 – 1. Bayliss (Ducati Xerox); 2. Fabrizio (Ducati Xerox); 3. Haslam (Honda)


Canadian - Don Hatton to ride the 2009 Morocco Rally!

Don Hatton, Cowichan Valleys own international motorcycle racer has entered the 2009 Morocco Rally set to start October 24, 2009.

“I’m glad to be racing again” Don says.

He was severely injured on stage 5 of the 2009 Dakar race held in Argentina in January 2009.

“I just recently got my medical clearance from the FIM – the governing body for motorcycle rally racing including the Dakar – and I am ready to get back racing”

Don competed in the 2008 Morocco Rally successfully completing the seven day endurance event in 127th place.

Don will be racing for England’s Patzy Quick race team about a KTM690. Patzy Quick is famous for being the first English women rider to complete the grueling 14 day Paris Dakar Rally and by being featured in the TV series Race to Dakar.

Don is planning to compete in this years Dakar race starting on January 1, 2010. He will be riding a specially prepared KTM motorcycle which will be built in the show room of Duncan Motorsports, a local motorcycle dealership which Don and his wife Natalie purchased earlier this year.

“We are inviting the public to come and see Bernie my mechanic build the bike to race specifications right in the show room. For anyone interested in motorsports, not just motorcycle racing, it should be very interesting and informative”

For more information check out


Ergonomics: Honda VFR1200 vs. VFR 800 vs. Concours 14.

Okay, these aren't extremely high tech photo photo comparisons but they're good enough photoshops that you'll get the idea of the ergonomic differences between Honda's new VFR1200 and the VFR 800.

The photo's have the handlebar, seat, to peg relationship drawn in with triangles so you can compare the ergonomics of each machine.

First up is the VFR800 in the front compared to the VFR1200 in the rear:

Now for the Kawasaki Concours 14 in front and the VFR 1200 in the rear:

The photo's were supplied by CoolHand over at Thanks CoolHand!


Ducati Hypermotard 796 - All the facts

We've gotten a package from Ducati with details on the Ducati Hypermotard 796. The newest model in the Ducati lineup. Springboarding from teh success of the 1100cc Hypermotard, the new smaller, lighter, and a little cheaper 796 promises to open the doors for more people to experience the joys of hooliganism.

Press Release:

The Hypermotard family expands for 2010 with the addition of the exciting new Hypermotard 796. Just as aggressively striking as the 1100, the new Hypermotard 796 features a lower seat height and brand new smooth and flexible engine to make it the perfect urban assault vehicle. Whether it's working the daily commute or attacking the open roads, the 796 rides the common ground between manners and madness by mixing Ducati’s unrivalled twin-cylinder power and sportbike heredity with the lightweight and minimalist supermotard concept.

Hours after its first showing at the 2005 Milan International Motorcycle show, the Hypermotard was awarded “Best of Show” and became an instant hit in Italy, where motorcycles are as much a lifestyle choice as they are transportation. Since then, its out-of-the-ordinary design went on to win converts around the world and the praise and admiration for this unique bike has never stopped – and neither has its development. The thrilling, street-wise Hypermotard range with L-Twin acceleration and pavement-attacking style is now extended with the hyper-agile 796 – the new way to go Hyper.

Urban upstart

The Hypermotard’s rigidly triangulated and now lighter than ever Trellis frame and track-tested chassis geometry is still stylised by a distinct high fender at the front and dual under-seat silencers at the rear, but the new 796’s overall profile says it all: Go Hyper!

At 825mm (32.5in), the seat height of the 796 is a sure-footed 20mm (0.8in) lower than the 1100 and, when combined with the new engine’s smooth power delivery, this Hypermotard inspires confidence however and wherever its ridden. The upright seating position offers a commanding view of the road ahead, while the wide handlebars make the bike effortlessly flickable through the urban maze.

The 796 weighs in at just 167kg (368lb), partly achieved by a lightweight engine, but also by continued chassis development that includes redesigned top and bottom fork clamps and an improved frame layout which eliminates almost all of the forged elements previously used with the 1100. The lightened frame retains its torsional strength to become even more agile and easier to handle than before, while 17” wheels by Enkei are produced in lightweight aluminium to keep the unsprung weight low and handling, braking and acceleration performances high. The same 3.50 front and 5.50 rear rim sizes as the 1100 are used with Bridgestone tyres.

Suspension duties up front are taken care of by a pair of very capable 43mm Marzocchi forks, while the rear is managed by a Sachs suspension unit featuring adjustable spring preload and return damping, allowing adjustments for riding style or load. The rear operates through a similar progressive link to the 1100 and uses the signature Hypermotard single-sided swingarm.

Twin 305mm semi-floating discs gripped by radially mounted 4-piston Brembo callipers provide powerful and progressive front-end braking with that all-important rider-friendly ‘feeling’, while the rear is equipped with a 245mm disc and 2-piston calliper, also by Brembo.

A brand new Ducati engine

The 796 engine isn't just a ‘stroked’ 696 – it's a completely brand new Desmodue power unit. A new crankshaft designed around lightweight 848-type flywheels, spin with a 66mm stroke instead of the 696’s 57.2mm, helping to maximise power to an impressive 81hp (59.6kW) @ 8000rpm and torque to 55.7lb-ft (75.5Nm) @ 6250rpm while maintaining the smooth and enjoyable character, famous of all Desmodromic L-Twins. To protect power delivery and maintain optimum efficiency, an oil cooler similar to the 1100 is used, adding even more family resemblance to its bigger brother.

Helping to increase the Hypermotard 796’s agility even further, the fully redesigned crankcases save an incredible 1.2kg (2.64lb) over the 696 castings, and are responsible for the major part of the impressive 1.9kg (4.2lb) total saving over the 696 power unit. The clutch and alternator outer casings of the new engine are finished in an 1100-style carbon grey.

Breathing through a newly-revised airbox intake duct and fed through 45mm throttle bodies, the 803cc swept volume is compressed to a ratio of 11:1 – compared to the 696’s 10.7:1 – before being injected and ignited with Siemens controlled electronics. The 2-1-2 catalytic exhaust system uses an efficient pre-silencer configuration with twin lambda probes providing finer fuel mapping and Euro 3 conformity. The system’s lightweight and compact design is achieved by using 1mm thick tubing and terminates in Ducati’s trademark twin under-seat, black exhaust mufflers, stylishly contrasted with great looking aluminium end caps.

An APTC ‘wet’ clutch gives a ‘slipper’ type action that prevents destabilizing of the rear-end under aggressive down-shifting and also gives the extra benefit of a super-light feel at the lever, a great benefit in stop-start city traffic or during longer journeys. The 21-plate oil-bath clutch (11 friction and 10 steel) represents a power-enhancing weight reduction over the ‘dry’ system as well as having a quieter operation and requiring less maintenance.

The new Hypermotard 796 engine combines all recent advances in Ducati’s ongoing design, manufacture and production quality campaigns to offer competitive service intervals of 12,000 kilometres (or 7,500 miles).

Controls and instrumentation

While its motard feeling is enhanced by wide bars and handguards, the 796’s minimalist image is further characterised with the orange back-lit Streetfighter-style digital instrumentation and switchgear.

The slim-line switch bodies house easy-to-use switches and buttons and feature a unique weapons-like 'trigger catch' that slides down to cover the starter button when the kill-switch is activated. Looking clean and purposeful, the display provides an extensive amount of data including: speed, revs, time, maintenance schedule, oil temperature, oil pressure warning light, battery voltage, fuel reserve warning light, reserve fuel trip, turn indicator light, neutral light, lap time memory storage, automatic light-off function after 60 seconds with the key on and immobiliser status. In addition, it can list lap times recorded by using the high-beam flash button as a stopwatch.

The instrument display also doubles as a control panel for the activation of the Ducati Data Analyser (DDA) system, which is available as an accessory from Ducati Performance. The 796 has been built ‘system-ready’ for the data acquisition kit, which consists of a special DDA software and memory key that slots into a plug under the seat. The same plug also doubles as the connection for a handy new battery charger available as an accessory from Ducati Performance.

Integral construction Brembo master cylinders are used for both the clutch and brake systems and maintain a clean handlebar arrangement for the rider. They are fitted with user-friendly 4-point adjustable levers that provide easy-to-reach control for all hand sizes and the APTC clutch offers a super-light lever action ideal for use in the city.

Hyper mirrors

Ducati pushed motorcycle design limits to find an innovative solution for the Hypermotard 1100 mirrors and this has been maintained on the new 796. The challenge of maintaining a clean, racing look around the handlebar area, motivated the design of the folding mirror concept which is based on the handguards typically found on off-road bikes. Flipped out for high visibility street mode and easily folded in for a quick change to ‘Hypermode’, the mirror handguard assemblies also integrate the LED directional indicators for an even cleaner front-end.

Lighting and indicators

The headlamp uses a highly compact lighting shape which blends with the single piece nose fairing and front fender moulding, while the rear light employs a specially designed strip of LEDs enhanced by a high diffusion lens shaped into the sleek lines of the tailpiece. The same LEDs are intensified under braking. The front directional indicators also employ the latest in LED technology for illumination, and are ingeniously integrated into the handguards which support the foldable rear view mirrors.


The high intensity LED rear light assembly is moulded into a unique tailpiece positioned high behind the seat. The supporting structure has been designed so that the under tray of the tailpiece is formed perfectly to offer a sturdy pair of pillion grab-handles. This ingenious solution not only helps to merge the rear light into the Hypermotard styling but also provides a safe grip for the passenger.

796 in three colours

The new 796 comes in an urban-style Dark finish with matte black tank and beak section, black frame and black wheels or, alternatively, matte white tank with contrasting matte black beak, black frame and black wheels. For the purists, an 1100 look-alike red tank with matching beak section, red frame and black wheels keeps the 796 in traditional livery.

The Hypermotard story

When the prototype Hypermotard was first shown at the Milan show it represented the creation of a new segment, one that bridged the gap between refined sportbikes and minimalist supermotards. But some at Ducati had reservations about the initial Hypermotard concept and were unsure whether or not the market was ready for such a motorcycle.

Despite those reservations, the project continued to be developed, driven by the belief in the upright and in-control riding position of a dirtbike, but not the harsh characteristics of its single cylinder engine. These confident few liked the feel of a skinny, taut and agile chassis, but not the fact that its original off-road design made it a compromise on the street. They set about creating a bike that combined the agility and lightweight precision of a supermotard, with the refined power characteristics of a charismatic L-Twin Ducati sportbike. They were designing the future.

As each day went past, more and more people in the factory got to hear about the completed bike and those who had the chance to catch sight of it all responded in the same way: "Wow! We’re going to produce it, right?" There was one way to gauge market response: show it at the 2005 Milan show as a prototype and conduct an online survey.

Ducati presented the prototype Hypermotard as its centrepiece that year and their confidence was rewarded with a global ‘yes!’ from the public, the ‘Best of Show’ award, and demands from riders all over the world to produce it immediately. In fact, a staggering 15,000 people completed the survey, with more than 50% asking for the Hypermotard to be built exactly as shown at the show. But Ducati were serious when they asked the public for their feed-back and took time to sift through thousands of additional suggestions and requests, such as twin front brake discs instead of the prototype’s single, and integrated many of them into the final production design.

The innovative Hypermotard spawned a new and exciting ‘cross-over’ category that had reinvented pure riding pleasure with a practical and versatile motorcycle that could be used every day. Riders hungry for excitement immediately understood the concept and have been enjoying it ever since.

Quick glance history

November 2005: Prototype Hypermotard 1100 shown at Milan International Motorcycle Show. Awarded 'Best of Show'.

November 2006: Production Hypermotard 1100 and 1100 S launched at Milan International Motorcycle show.

May 2007: Hypermotard 1100 and 1100 S were launched to the press and at the same time arrived in showrooms as an early release model year 2008.

November 2008: Model year 2009 Hypermotard 1100 updated with an additional colour option of pearl white. Hypermotard 1100 S with an additional colour option of black and DDA kit supplied as standard equipment. The Hypermotard 1100 S takes victory at Pike’s Peak International Hill Climb, Colorado (1200cc category).

October 2009: “Hypermotard” family expands with the release of new model year 2010 Hypermotard 796.


Canadians in Portugal - ISDE 2009

Ever heard of a little race called the ISDE? ISDE is, according to Wikipedia, "The International Six Days Enduro (ISDE) is the oldest 'off road' motorcycle event on the FIM Calendar. The ISDE was first held in 1913 at Carlisle, England." It's usually referred to as the 'Olympics of Motorcycling.' Did you catch the whole six days part? Yup, six days of gruelling, exhausting, flat out racing.

It's being held as you read this in Portugal and there's a few Canadian's on the roster, 6 of them if my counting is right. We sent a few Canucks to Greece for the ISDE event held there last year.

Looks like they're got a blog this year where you can monitor the action. Follow the 2009 ISDE Team Canada blog HERE. Check it out!

Go Canada!

Image courtesy ISDE Team Canada 2009


Buell ceasing to make motorcyles

Just in case you missed the shocking news announced by Harley Davidson on Thursday, Buell is ceasing to make motorcycles. Warranties will be honored by HD but that's the end of Buell as we know it. There's limited stock on hand so if you want one better get out there.

Harley has been faced with really tough economic times with a third-quarter profit slide of 84 percent on lower motorcycle shipments and recession-related difficulties in getting loans for its customers. It means that about 100 salaried workers and 80 hourly positions will be eliminated. Most of the cuts will come by Dec. 18th.

The latest cuts come on top of 2,400 to 2,500 jobs cuts announced earlier this year. As part of the announcement, Harley also indicated they're putting their recently acquired company MV Agusta up for sale.

If MV Agusta is up for sale then why not Buell? Perhaps they want to keep all the technologies Buell developed over the years. Time will tell. A couple items in the FAQ seem to indicate that HD don't plan to rebadge any Buell's as Harley's but that they will benefit from Buell knowledge going forward and it’s possible that some of this technology will find its way into a Harley-Davidson motorcycle.

The news is presented by Erik Buell himself in video on Buell's website HERE.

Erik delivers the message in what he says is an emotional time. No doubt, it's been 26 years of struggling for Buell but he proved that a small company could compete and introduce motorcycle innovation that's seen on many motorcycles today.

I for one sure hope that this isn't the end of Buell and that somehow it'll emerge from this at the other end. The new 1125 motor is a fantastic engine and the 1125 based machines are Buell's I've recently had the opportunity to ride. They're fantastic machines that just feel a bit different.


CMR Exclusive - Fischer MRX - Canadian Pricing

We've been granted an exclusive first glimpse at what the Fischer MRX is expected to cost when it comes to Canada.

The Canadian unveiling will be on December 11th, at the Toronto Motorcycle Show.

MSRP is targeted to be $9995.00 (as long as the USD -CDN$ stays) close to par. Just a hair under $10,000.

The US model are still using the carburetor version but here in Canada we'll be receiving the new fuel injected version in the spring.

MRX comes with some high spec components such as:

- 43 mm inverted front suspension,
inverted telescopic with compression and rebound adjustment
- Rear suspension is
Ohlins single shock with adjustable ride height, compression damping, and spring preload
- Front brake is
a dual semi-floating 310mm disc, Brembo master cylinder, Goodridge steel brake lines

It makes 80 horsepower at the crank @ 9,400 RPM and produces 52 ft/lbs of Torque @ 7500 RPM

- For more details check out our National Motorsports category HERE.
- For more information on National Motorsports you might want to check out their website HERE.
- If you want more details on the FIscher MRX you could also take a look at Fischer's website HERE.


BMW SIMPLE concept - blending motorcycles with cars

BMW has a new concept vehicle dubbed "SIMPLE" that combines some of the attributes of a motorcycle with some of the creature comforts of a car. Yet it is incredibly fuel efficient and judging from the video seems like it would be a lot of fun too.

There's no chance this vehicle will make it to production any time soon but it's an interesting concept nevertheless.

SIMPLE – light in weight, low on energy

Simple combines features and advantages from both automobiles and motorcycles. The concept owes its passenger cell to the car, providing protection from wind and weather as well as shielding the driver from exterior noise and offering occupants a high degree of safety in the event of an accident. The motorcycle inspired the slim design of the Simple (at just 110 centimetres wide) and its configuration for two people sitting one behind the other. Plus it boasts the dynamic driving style typical of a two-wheeler, allowing you to lean right into corners as desired. The designation “simple” is an acronym of the project name “A sustainable and innovative mobility product for low energy consumption”.

The BMW designers initially planned a small vehicle with low weight and minimal aerodynamic drag properties. Following a concept phase of several months, the pooled requirements and ideas gave rise in 2005 to a vehicle based on tilting technology. In contrast to other vehicle concepts in which only the passenger cell tilts during cornering, here all the driver has to do is determine a change in direction for the appropriate tilt to follow automatically. The stand-out feature of the Simple concept is that it activates the hydraulics only in exceptional situations, for example if the vehicle threatens to become unstable during extremely slow driving, when righting the vehicle during standstill or in extreme situations such as drifting. Otherwise, Simple rides like a motorcycle and, beyond natural gravity and gyroscopic forces, requires no energy whatsoever to lean into a corner. The passenger also benefits from this tilting technology as he feels no transverse forces and, particularly during rapid changes of direction, need not compensate for any lateral movements.

All that is needed to power this lightweight vehicle with a kerb weight of approx. 450 kg is a 36 kW combustion engine. Acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h is estimated at under ten seconds and the vehicle has an excellent drag coefficient of 0.18. Using the electric motor and the combustion engine, the Simple would need just 6 kWh (equivalent to 0.7 litres of petrol) or two litres over 100 km.


Fischer coming to Canada

Word on the street is that National Motorsports (the Canadian distributor of Hyosung motorcycles) is planning on bringing the American made, "Fischer MRX" to Canada in 2010.

The MRX uses a fuel injected Hyosung 90° 650cc v-twin engine so that does seem to make National Motorsports a natural company to partner with to bring the bike to Canada.

The MRX will probably make it's Canadian debut at the Toronto Motorcycle show this December 11th, 2009. The MSRP is expected to be between $10,000-$11,000 Canadian.

Why buy a MRX for $10-11 grand when you can get an SV650S for about $9,300? Well, the MRX comes with much higher spec components such as:

- 43 mm inverted front suspension,
inverted telescopic with compression and rebound adjustment
- Rear suspension is
Ohlins single shock with adjustable ride height, compression damping, and spring preload
- Front brake is
a dual semi-floating 310mm disc, Brembo master cylinder, Goodridge steel brake lines

It makes 80 horsepower at the crank @ 9,400 RPM and produces 52 ft/lbs of Torque @ 7500 RPM

For more details on Fischer check out their website HERE.


Basem Wasef tests the Ducati Hypermotard 796

Lucky man, Basem Wasef from was the lucky guy who got to trial run the new 2010 Ducati Hypermotard 796. What does he think?... well he likes it. He likes it better than the 1100.

Some quick facts:

- air-cooled L-twin Desmodromic 803 cc engine (three quarters the size of the 1078 cc powerplant) - compression ratio high (at 11.1:1)
- produces 81 horsepower (9 horsepower less than the 1100)
- Torque drops to 55.7 lb-ft
- 27 lbs lighter than the 1100 ( total mass to 368 lbs dry)

For more details check out Basem's review HERE.


Deeley Harley Davidson - a great place to work!

Some interesting news about Deeley Harley Davidson. Apparently it's a great place to work. The committee might have gotten a little ahead of themselves though - the award was for the top 100 Canadian employers for 2010.

Hmmm, unless my calendar is WAY off, it's not 2010 yet folks. All the same; it does sound like they've got some great benefits. Not to mention you get to work around motorcycles all day so it's gotta be pretty good right!

Deeley Harley-Davidson has been named one of Canada's top 100 companies.

Deeley Harley-Davidson Canada is the exclusive Canadian distributor of Harley-Davidson and Buell motorcycles, parts, accessories and apparel has been named one of Canada's Top 100 Employers for 2010.

It's the first time they've been selected as one of the top 100 employers in Canada and they're proud of this new achievement.

The 2010 selection committee gave the following overview of why the company was chosen:

It supports ongoing education with tuition subsidies for courses at outside institutions, with no annual maximum; encourages employees to volunteer in the community by providing paid time-off for volunteer activities and also helps employees save for retirement through an RSP plan with matching employer contributions (from 5% to 9% of salary). Deeley Harley-Davidson Canada is an industry leader, the committee claims, providing parental leave top payments (to 75% for 52 weeks) for new mothers, and depending on their position, it gives all employees three to four weeks paid vacation after only two years on the job. Finally, the company helps employees obtain their motorcycle license, lets employees borrow demo bikes and even provides discounts on new motorcycles.

Deeley's office and distribution warehouse facilities are centered in Richmond, British Columbia, and Concord, Ontario.


The Great Canadian KYMCO Winners!

The Great Canadian KYMCO Contest has given both KYMCO Canada and our local authorized KYMCO dealers an opportunity to give back to Canadians. This year we allocated five KYMCO vehicles to donate to individuals or organizations that stand out in our communities. We got some outstanding nominations, but there can only be 5 winners, and here they are!

The Cool Aid Society – Victoria, BC
The Cool Aid Society is a non-profit organization with over 300 volunteers that has been working to eliminate homelessness through community based solutions since 1968. Nominated by Scooter Underground, the Cool Aid Society will receive a donation of a KYMCO Vitality 50 2T scooter which will allow staff members to travel around their urban centre and reach marginalized members of their community. A scooter is particularly helpful in this effort as it is a friendly and non-threatening vehicle in the eyes of the community members to whom they are reaching out. Congratulations Cool Aid Society on winning the Great Canadian KYMCO Contest and on the support you provide your local community!

Municipal District of Bonnyville Public Safety Department – Bonnyville, AB
The Municipal District of Bonnyville Public Safety Department responds to the needs of their community by providing effective local law enforcement and related community based services, all in an accountable and cost effective manner. With a large ATV community, the department offers training for safe and lawful operation of ATVs to school age children through their School Resource Officers. They also patrol approximately 70km of the recreational trail system that spans the entire municipality. Nominated by X Power and Performance, the department will be
awarded an MXU 500 ATV which will provide them with a modern, reliable vehicle that will not only be used to patrol the recreational trail system, but will also be used for ATV safety courses with the youth of the community. Congratulations to all the staff in the Public Safety Department on winning the Great Canadian KYMCO Contest and on the support you provide to your Municipality!

Ontario Camp for the Deaf – Parry Sound, ON
Established in 1962, The Ontario Camp for the Deaf is run by the Bob Rumball Organization. The Camp aims to meet the social, recreational and spiritual needs of the deaf and special needs community (both children and adult) in a residential summer camp setting. The camp operates solely on donated funds, goods, and services while subsidizing over 60% of the children who attend. Nominated by Studio Cycle Group, the Ontario Camp for the Deaf has been awarded a UXV 500 UTV to help them not only maintain the 400 acre camp ground, but to also help transport visitors around the property. It is worth noting that the camp is also a CMRC sanctioned race venue which welcomes hundreds of riders and supporters to their site every summer. Congratulations to everyone at the Bob Rumball Organization and to all volunteers who work at the camp on winning the Great Canadian KYMCO Contest and on the support you provide to the deaf, special needs, and ATV communities in Ontario and beyond!

Zec Mars-Moulin – Laterrière, QC
Established in 1978, Zecs are territorial infrastructures that are run by non-profit organizations; they are responsible for the management and conservation of wildlife on their territories. The 15-20 volunteers at Zec Mars-Moulin educate local visitors and tourists alike about the wildlife in the area, responsible hunting and fishing, and the importance of environmental protection. Nominated by Bouchard Sports Loisirs, and the recipients of an MXU 500 ATV, Zec Mars-Moulin will be able to use the quad as both a surveillance vehicle and a work vehicle to transport equipment and people. Congratulations to all the volunteers at Zec Mars-Moulin on winning the Great Canadian KYMCO Contest and on the work you do in wildlife conservation and the protection of the environment in your area!

Springhill Fire Department – Springhill, NS

Established in 1890, the Springhill Fire Department with its 30 volunteers faces some very difficult terrain in its area. From large open fields surrounded by rural homes and businesses to forested acreage, the firefighters sometimes find it difficult, if not impossible, to reach some of these areas with conventional fire equipment. Nominated by Warren MacDonald & Son Garage Ltd., and the recipients of an MXU 500 ATV, the Springhill Fire Department has also offered to make the unit available to assist the efforts of the local Search and Rescue team. Congratulations
to all the brave volunteers at the Springhill Fire Department on winning the Great Canadian KYMCO Contest and for the services you provide to your local community!


Zero passes national EPA certification and meets Canadian safety standards

– Zero’s All-Electric Motorcycle Achieves Equivalent of 455 MPG –

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. (October 8, 2009) – Zero Motorcycles today announced that it is the first and only electric motorcycle company to achieve three major milestones. They have passed both the US and Canadian safety standards and attained a ‘Certificate of Conformity’ from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). As a result, buyers of the Zero S and Zero DS can now benefit from major government incentives. They can also feel confident in the motorcycles’ superior engineering and environmental benefits. Under the proposed EPA regulations issued on Sept 15, 2009, the Zero S and DS achieve an equivalent of 455 MPG and generate zero grams of CO2 per mile.

“We are extremely pleased to be the first electric motorcycle company to have completed these rigorous testing programs,” said Gene Banman, CEO of Zero Motorcycles. “Passing these tests allows our customers to save money while also giving them confidence in the design and safety of our motorcycles.”

The Zero S is a fully electric motorcycle that is built from the ground up around its revolutionary drivetrain technology. It is a street legal supermoto motorcycle that is designed for urban riding. The Zero DS is the dual sport version of the Zero S and can be ridden on anything from city streets to dirt trails. While performance usually comes at an environmental cost, the Zero S and DS are enticing to even the most environmentally conscious consumers. The motorcycles are not only zero emissions vehicles; they are also completely non-toxic and almost 100% recyclable. This unique combination of performance and low overall environmental impact sets a new high standard in the industry.

Completion of the US Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) along with the US EPA Certificate of Conformity means that the Zero S and DS meet all the requirements for newly created Federal tax credits on street legal electric motorcycles. It allows buyers to receive the 10% Federal tax credit and the state sales tax credit established by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

The fully homologated and government certified Zero S and DS are available for purchase exclusively through Zero Motorcycles’ website. They are priced at $9,950 and for US customers this means a post Federal tax credit price of $8,955.

Zero Motorcycles first entered the motorcycle industry in 2006 with the fully electric Drift. In 2008 it launched the Zero X, which exceeded all expectations by selling out before the year’s end. Its success blazed the path for the long awaited launch of the street legal Zero S in 2009. Earlier this summer Zero Motorcycles announced the Zero MX and the Zero DS. The Zero MX is made specifically for dirt track riding and motocross. The Zero DS, a dual sport, is their most recent model and can be ridden on any surface from a city street to a gravel road or dirt trail.

For more information about Zero check out their website HERE.


The wait is over - The VFR1200F has been released

Well, the rumors have finally come to fruition - Honda's new VFR1200 is here and it packs a 1237cc, 76-degree V-four. The new V-four claims 170 horsepower, with torque peaking at 95 lb-ft.

It's emphasis is 'sport touring' rather than flat out speed. You'll be able to start your sport touring on this machine sometime in December with the bike set for a Spring 2010 release. Honda has yet to release a price on the high-tech bike, but says that will also be decided by December.

Here's some of the key facts and figures you might be interested in:


- Honda MotoGP V-4 engine technology and architecture bring cutting-edge performance to the VFR1200F.
- Unique cylinder layout with rear two cylinders located innermost on the crankshaft and front cylinders located outboard narrows the rider interface aboard the VFR1200F.
- Throttle By Wire for next-generation throttle response.
- Optional Dual Clutch Automatic Transmission with manual mode and automatic mode with two D/S modes and paddle-style shifters offers unparalleled freedom through innovative technology.
- Next-generation shaft drive system with offset pivot point and sliding constant-velocity joint for a new level of shaft-drive performance and control.
- Transferable one-year, unlimited-mileage limited warranty; extended coverage available with a Honda Protection Plan.

Technical Specs:

Model: VFR1200F / VFR1200F with Dual Clutch Automatic Transmission
Engine Type: 1237cc liquid-cooled 76° V-4
Bore and Stroke: 81mm x 60mm
Compression Ratio: 12.0:1
Valve Train: SOHC; four valves per cylinder
Induction: PGM-FI with automatic enrichment circuit, 44mm throttle bodies and 12-hole injectors
Ignition: Digital transistorized with electronic advance
Transmission: Six-speed (VFR1200F) / Six-speed automatic with two modes and manual mode (VFR1200F with Dual Clutch Automatic Transmission)
Final Drive: Shaft
Front: 43mm cartridge fork with spring preload adjustability; 4.7 inches travel
Rear: Pro Arm single-side swingarm with Pro-Link® single gas-charged shock with remote spring preload adjustability and rebound damping adjustability; 5.1 inches travel
Front: Dual full-floating 320mm discs with CBS six-piston calipers with ABS
Rear: Single 276mm disc with CBS two-piston caliper with ABS
Front: 120/70 ZR17 radial
Rear: 190/55 ZR17 radial
Wheelbase: 60.8 inches (1545mm)
Rake (Caster angle): 25°30’
Trail: 101.0mm (4.0 inches)
Seat Height: 32.1 inches (815mm)
Fuel Capacity: 4.9 gallons
Color: Red, Silver Metallic, White
Curb Weight*: 591 pounds (VFR1200F) / 613 pounds (VFR1200F with Dual Clutch Automatic Transmission)

Price - To be determined; but we'll let you know as soon as you find out.


Honda US - Price Massacre announced. Amazing deals ensue.

Honda is clearing out some stock from previous years and they're doing it through invoice incentives that knock thousands off the original MSRP. Big BUT here though - this is in the US. There's no indication on the Canadian website these changes are effective here to (we'd expect some currency and market adjustments of course).

There's some smoking deals to be had!

- 2008 CRF450R, $7,999 Original MSRP - $2,000 Invoice Incentive = $5,999 Effective MSRP
- 2008 CBR1000RR, As low as 0.99% Fixed APR Financing, and up to $2,500 bonus bucks
- 2007 Interceptor, $10,599 Original MSRP - $2,660 Price Reduction = $7,939 New MSRP
- 2007 VTX1800, Total Incentive discount of $6,125 based on 2007 VTX18TT/L2 model after $5,125 Permanent Price Reduction off of original MSRP and $1,000 Bonus Bucks.

$1,500 factory-to-dealer Incentives available on new and unregistered 2008 VTX1800 T Spec 2 models. Factory-to-dealer Incentives subject to dealer participation.

$2,975 price reduction on base model 2007 VTX1800C L1 and $1,000 Bonus Bucks.

Total incentive discount of $3,975 based on 2007 VTX1800C L1 after $2,975 Permanent Price Reduction off of original MSRP and $1,000 Bonus Bucks.


BMW Motorrad Motorsport – Superbike World Championship – Magny-Cours, France – Race

07.10.2009 - Press Release - Munich.

A day of hard graft in Magny-Cours today, saw Team BMW Motorrad Motorsport rider Troy Corser grab a pair of top ten finishes. He finished ninth in race one and tenth in race two, and left the 4.411kilometre circuit satisfied, but not entirely happy. His team mate Ruben Xaus continued to fight his pain and was rewarded for his efforts by a strong 11th in race one and a 12th in race two. Today’s race wins were once again split between American Ben Spies (Yamaha) and Japanese rider Noriyuki Haga (Ducati). Spies won the opener, with Haga second and Max Biaggi (Aprilia) third. Behind Haga in race two was Biaggi, with Jonathan Rea (Honda) third.

Troy - Race 1: 9th, Race 2: 10th
The bike’s progress continues every time we go out - and that’s good news. The improvement is steady, but I guess both Ruben and I would like much more - but then we are racers! My results today are OK and I supposed it’s probably what was expected, but I am a little disappointed because we are so close to a great result and I’d like it to happen sooner, instead of later. This weekend the bike wanted to wheelspin and wheelie and we have to control these things if we want to progress more quickly. My crew chief told me that my race distance time today would have been good enough to win the race last year! That surprises me, but it shows just how competitive the series is this year and the strength of our rivals.

Ruben - Race 1: 11th, Race 2 :12th
Sometimes racing is a bit frustrating and today was a bit like that. Our bike has a big potential and we are working hard to realise that potential and challenge the leaders more often. It’s a bit frustrating because Troy and I realise that there’s so much more to come from the bike and we want it now. Clearly, I am not fully fit at the moment, so to finish 11th and 12th in my condition shows that the bike is a very good one. Today I had some small problem keeping the bike on the line that I wanted. This was my first four cylinder race at Magny and that, together with my physical condition, meant that I would always be playing catch-up today. Now I’m looking forward to going back to my physio and getting fitter and stronger for Portimao.

Berti Hauser (BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director)
It is good to have both our riders back together again and I am happy that our progress continues. Both riders did perfect jobs in this very competitive series. Our goal for the year was the Top 10 and I’m happy that we are on target and now we’re all looking forward to the next step which should be in Portimao.

Results Race 1:
1 Spies (USA-Yamaha) 37:57.110
2 Haga (JPN-Ducati) 0.181
3 Biaggi (ITA-Aprilia) 5.009
4 Fabrizio (ITA-Ducati) 16.347
5 Haslam (GBR-Honda) 22.622
9 Corser (AUS-BMW Motorrad Motorsport) 28.486
11 Xaus (ESP- BMW Motorrad Motorsport) 52.680
Race 2:
1 Haga (JPN-Ducati) 38:00.282
2 Biaggi (ITA-Aprilia) 1.480
3 Rea (GBR-Honda) 6.024
4 Spies (USA-Yamaha) 18.135
5 Haslam (GBR-Honda) 21.236
10 Corser (AUS-BMW Motorrad Motorsport) 32.507
12 Xaus (ESP- BMW Motorrad Motorsport) 44.727


Revamped 2010 Kawasaki Versys

The Kawasaki Versys has been given some cosmetic surgery for 2010. It's got some different lights (front and back) and a some new bodywork as well.

There's new front and rear lights and a modified radiator cowl. The front lights are stacked and given a bit more utilitarian look (dare I say it, somewhat reminiscent of the BMW F800GS which are admittedly side-by-side as opposed to the stacked lights on the Versys. But the BMW lights are most definitely utilitarian looking) and the rear light is a LED. The 62bhp 649cc parallel-twin motor remains sans changes, as do the chassis and suspension.

Given the practical, all-rounder nature of the bike, Kawasaki doesn't disappoint with the original equipment and available accessories. The Versys comes equipped with revised mirrors that are said to offer improved visibility. Revised footrests with hollow rubber inserts reduce vibration are also a nice touch.

There's also some new accessories such as the requisite handguards, heated grips, and a 12volt outlet which should mean that the Versys continues to be a popular bike with Canadians looking for adventure.

MSRP is $8,999 Canadian.

Check out Kawasaki's Canadian website HERE for more information.


New 2010 Kawasaki Z1000 revealed

The 2010 Kawasaki Z1000 is all-new! Well, mostly that is. Only a handful of components are shared with the old Z. That means that it's liquid cooled, 1,043cc inline 4 engine is built from scratch as well. Another big new feature of the Z1000; an aluminum chassis. Kawasaki is calling it a "Tailor-made super naked."

The bike features new styling that includes a lower seat and a horizontally-mounted rear shock. The rear shock placement creates some space under the engine for the new exhaust system.

The engine has a claimed 136bhp and 81ft lb of torque and has been tuned for low and mid-range grunt rather than top speed power.

MSRP is $13,1999 Canadian. Only one color is listed: Metallic Spark Black / Atomic Silver

Details and pictures are available on Kawasaki's Canadian website HERE.


BMW shows off revamped C1, the C1-E

BMW has shown pictures of a new electric scooter prototype – the C1-E. It's based on the discontinued C1 - with it's enclosed roof and roll-cage.

The concept is refreshed with a lighter rollover cage covered with clear plastic, whereas the original had a pretty hefty roof. The electric motor is powered by lithium ion batteries with technology developed by electric scooter manufacturer Vectrix.

Vetriix had declared bankruptcy a few months back but they're still working on a come-back plan, maybe as a supplier of electric engines? - pure speculation by us there.

BMW is saying there are no plans to put the scooter in to production in this format, but the ideas from the prototype would be seen in future production models.

Hints from BMW are that there's a chance you'll see a bike with a low-emission, fuel-efficient internal combustion engine from BMW at some point in the future.

Maybe BMW will even give the scooter with a roof another shot!


2010 Parry Sound Sportbike Rally a go!

The 2010 Parry Sound Sportbike Rally will be continuing on for 2010. At a September 22nd council meeting the town agreed to provide $10,000 for advertising and free usage of the Kinsmen Park for the July 8th to 11th event.

Because of some liability issues they're going to be dropping a couple of events off the roster; the radar run and the amateur stunt show.

Numbers were down slightly in 2009 from 2008. Registered participants in 2008 were 335 people, versus 473 in 2008. Middaugh said might have to do with headquarters being moved from the Bobby Orr Community Centre to Kinsmen Park. Additionally, she said, there was also a motorcycle reunion the same weekend.

“For the past two years, the Parry Sound Motorcycle Association (PSMA) has organized the annual Sportbike Rally,” said Middaugh in her report to council. “The 2009 headquarters were at Kinsmen Park. The event has, to some degree, become part of the Parry Sound culture and attracts hundreds of spectators/participants. The PSMA has significant event organizing experience among its members. By directly organizing and hosting the Sportbike Rally, PSMA has strengthened its organization and formalized their governance structure. This is a good example where, with the town’s support, non-profit and community groups’ capacity has been built.”


Ducati snatches the World Superbike Constuctors title for the 16th time!


Magny-Cours (France), Sunday 4th October 2009: this afternoon on the French track of Magny-Cours, Noriyuki Haga took a fantastic Race 2 win on board his Ducati 1198, coming straight after his second place finish in the first race. With these results, Noriyuki regains the championship lead with an advantage of ten points over Spies (Yamaha). At the end of this, the penultimate round, and thanks to today’s two podiums, Ducati celebrates winning its sixteenth Constructors title in the World Superbike Championship. This was not the only success of the day as this morning the Belgian rider Xavier Simeon and the Ducati Xerox Junior Team won both the riders and constructors titles in the Superstock 1000 championship.

A spectacular first race in which the two championship leaders Haga and Spies battled it out for the victory until the final corners of the last lap. For the first fifteen laps Noriyuki was hot on the heels of Biaggi but found it hard to get past him. Finally, during the sixteenth lap of twenty-three, he made his move and got ahead of Max to move into second position, immediately turning his attention to closing the gap of more than a second that had opened between himself and race leader Spies. On the very last lap Nori had caught the American and when the latter made a mistake entering a corner, Nori took the opportunity to get up alongside Ben but unfortunately he couldn’t hold the line into the next corner and so it was Spies on the Yamaha to cross the line first, just 0.181 of a second ahead of Haga. Fabrizio did not made a good start and then had to work to pass Haslam on the Honda. By the time he managed this, during the course of the fourth lap, the gap between himself and the leaders was already fairly large and it was impossible to catch up. Michel concluded the race in a solid fourth place, 5 seconds behind Biaggi and 11 seconds ahead of Haslam.

In Race 2 Noriyuki made a blazing start and after a few corners he got straight past Biaggi to take the race lead, closely followed by both Biaggi on the Aprilia and Rea on the Honda. Haga pushed hard from the start but was unable to shake the chasing pair. In this race however, it was the Japanese rider who was the stronger competitor and, aware of the importance of the points, he continued to push to ensure himself of the win, his eighth of the season. Fabrizio unfortunately fell on lap three, having erred while braking at the end of the straight. He managed to rejoin the race and subsequently made a good recovery, moving up from last position to thirteenth and thus gaining two points.

Noriyuki Haga (Race 1 – 2nd , Race 2 - winner)

In Race 1 I really enjoyed myself, it was a fantastic race. I didn’t make the best start and then it took a lot of laps before I was able to pass Max. Once I got past him I realized I didn’t have many laps left in which to catch Ben; if I’d had just one extra lap, I think I’d have won. On the last lap I was waiting for Ben to make a mistake and when he did so, I managed to get up alongside him but unfortunately the next corner worked in his favour and he got past me. Then, in the second race, we made some small changes to my bike and they worked, giving me more confidence. This victory is truly a great result as we have regained a small advantage. I am also extremely pleased that my results have awarded us the Constructors title. Thanks to Ducati and to my race engineer Ernesto Marinelli for giving me a great bike for Race 2; and to the whole Ducati Xerox team because my first year in Ducati is fantastic. Now we go to Portimao where Ben and I will fight for the 2009 title – I can’t wait.”

Michel Fabrizio (Race 1 – 4th , Race 2 – 13°)

“Obviously I’m very disappointed by my results today; I hoped to do a lot better. In Race 1 I wasn’t able to catch the leading group and finished in fourth which isn’t bad but I would have liked to be on the podium. My bad start in the second race conditioned the outcome, I tried to catch up quickly so as not to lose the leaders as I’d done in Race 1 but unfortunately I messed up my braking at the end of the straight and lost the front. I am very sorry because I think I could have got past Spies, giving Nori a couple more points. My compliments go to Nori because he was very strong today and deserved the win.”

Gabriele Del Torchio (President of Ducati)

“Today was a great sporting day for Ducati and the results demonstrate once again that technology, combined with the passion and determination of those who “never give up”, allow us to achieve important goals such as today’s victories. A big thank you to the entire factory and to everyone in Ducati Corse. Thanks to the Superbike team that gives us our sixteenth World title, and to the Junior Team that, for the third consecutive year, has won the Superstock 1000 Championship, confirming the technological supremacy of the Ducati 1198, a winner right from its debut. I would like to dedicate these victories to the entire family of Ducatisti, who, with their passion and enthusiasm, support us in our decisions and in our endeavours, whether the outcomes are good or bad. If we are World Champions, it is thanks to each and every one of them.”

RESULTS: Race 1 – 1. Spies (Yamaha); 2. Haga (Ducati Xerox); 3. Biaggi (Aprilia). Race 2 - 1. Haga (Ducati Xerox); 2. Biaggi (Aprilia); 3. Rea (Honda)

CLASSIFICATION: Riders – 1. Haga (Ducati Xerox) 410; 2. Spies (Yamaha) 325; 3. Fabrizio (Ducati Xerox) 203; 4. Rea (Honda) 316; 5. Biaggi (Aprilia); 6. Haslam (Honda) 284. Constructors – Ducati 520; Yamaha 461; Suzuki 384; Honda 379; Kawasaki 82


Xavier Simeon wins the Superstock 1000 FIM CUP 2009


Nevers Magny Cours Circuit (France), Sunday 4th October 2009 – a second place finish in today’s race was enough for Xavier Simeon to take the 2009 title on board his Ducati 1198. The Ducati Xerox Junior Team thus lifts the Superstock 1000 FIM CUP championship trophy for the third consecutive year, following on from those achieved by Niccolò Canepa in 2007 and by Brendan Roberts in 2008. Daniele Beretta, after a good recovery, closed the race in tenth place.

Xavier Simeon’s weekend finished in the best possible way for him and his team. Having made a good start from pole position, he left little room for Barrier to pass him during the second lap. He didn’t totally escape from the pack however as Berger, one of his strongest rivals in the championship, stuck with him throughout the race. For the new champion it was a only a small mistake in the penultimate lap that allowed French rider Berger to pass him. With the championship win only a breath away Xavier chose to close the race safely, in second position, in order to take the title.

– “It’s a very emotional moment for me, a fantastic day at the end of a fairy-tale weekend. My 1198 was just perfect and I kept the situation under control even though Berger was tough competition. On the last but one lap I lost the front on the downhill and risked falling; at that point I thought about the title and realized that second place was good enough. Thanks to Ducati, to the team and to my family as it’s thanks to them that I can today celebrate being champion.”

Daniele Beretta recovered from a difficult qualifying session with a fast race, which he concluded in tenth position.

DANIELE BERETTA – “We paid dearly for the crash yesterday as we lost a lot of time in which to prepare the bike. After making changes for the warm-up, the bike was greatly improved e allowed me to hold a good race pace. This track is not among my favourites, and tenth place is not great, but I at least hold fifth position in the overall standings.”

SERAFINO FOTI (Team Manager)
– “This is the third consecutive title for the team, with three different riders, an exceptional result for Ducati and for the team members who have always given their all in every single race. This year, up until this penultimate round, Xavier has achieved four race wins, five second place finishes, five pole positions and three fastest laps. This gives us great satisfaction and we share this with all of our partners, with our sponsors and of course with Ducati. Thanks everybody.”

Race result:
1.M.Berger (Honda) in 23’51’’110 in an average of 155,344 km/h; 2.Xavier Simeon (Ducati Xerox Junior Team) 1’’560; 3.S.Barrier (Yamaha) 3’’449; 4.C.Corti (Suzuki) 6’’677….10.Daniele Beretta (Ducati Xerox Junior Team) 27’’619…


1.Xavier Simeon 200 points (Campione 2009 Superstock 1000 FIM CUP); 2.C.Corti 148; 3.M.Berger 127; 4.J.Fores 116; 5.Daniele Beretta 85…


BMW sales down compared to same month last year

BMW Motorrad Canada sold 100 units in September, representing a 22.8 per cent decrease in sales over last year. Year-to-date sales are up 13.4 per cent compared to September 2008. So far this year, BMW Motorrad has retailed 1,645 motorcycles in Canada.

BMW Group Canada, based in Whitby, Ontario, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BMW AG and is responsible for the distribution of BMW luxury performance automobiles, Sports Activity Vehicles, Motorcycles, and MINI.

BMW Group Financial Services Canada is a division of BMW Group Canada and offers retail financing and leasing programs and protection products on new and pre-owned BMW and MINI automobiles, as well as retail financing for new and pre-owned BMW Motorcycles.

A total network of 40 BMW automobile retail centres, 19 BMW motorcycle retailers, and 25 MINI retailers represents the BMW Group across the country.


Famed Sex Pistols Rocker Takes Delivery of Ducati Hypermotard S

Ducati North America announced that avid motorcyclist, Sex Pistols guitarist, and host of LA radio’s beloved “Jonesey’s Jukebox” Steve Jones, has taken delivery of a new customized Hypermotard S at Ducati headquarters.

Known for his genre defining music and straight talk, Jones recently expanded his bike collection to include the rambunctious Ducati Hypermotard S due to its aggressive styling and exceptional fun factor. Steve had been eyeing the model since first riding one at Ducati North America headquarters earlier this Spring. He bought the motorcycle to celebrate his return to the Los Angeles airwaves this fall.

"I've always admired Ducati from a distance but never found something that suits me. That all changed after that first ride on the Hypermotard. I knew I had to have her. All my mates are jealous- and that suits me just fine!"


Run, bike, and swim - Ontario man completes triathlon to evade police

In an unusual story from Ontario, a man from Gravenhurst sent police on a chase that included a bit of a triathlon for the rider Denis Totten, 30. Brings new meaning to the run, bike, swim event!

On Sept. 22, Totten was riding his 2009 Kawasaki motorcycle and was apparently weaving in his lane a bit so police decided to pull him over and check it out. When the cruiser got close, Totten pulled a U-turn and took off at speeds up to 112 km/h in a 50-km/h zone. Police continued through multiple intersections until the motorcycle pulled onto Pineridge Gate. Totten then jumped from the bike and took off running.

The rider managed to evade the police and a K9 unit was called in to track him down. The K9 lost the scent on the shore of Gull Lake but found a motorcycle helmet and boot there.

Turns out Totten went for a swim across Gull Lake! He then spent the night in the bush. The next morning at 11:16 he appeared at the Bracebridge OPP detachment, scratched up and wearing wet cloths the court was told. He said he hadn't been drinking but just got frightened and took off.

Totten wasn't wanted, wasn’t breaching any probation orders; and in fact, despite multiple checks, police determined Totten has no criminal record at all.

Judge J.D. Evans accepted a joint sentencing submission for a $1,000 fine and a one-year driving ban.


BMW Motorrad Motorsport – Superbike World Championship – Imola, Italy – Races

Ruben on the way back. Frustration for Troy.

Munich. It was a day of mixed fortunes for BMW Motorrad Motorsport at Imola today, with Ruben posting superb top thirteen positions on his comeback after injury and Troy suffering brake problems which saw him in eleventh place in race one and a DNF in race two. The weekend had started badly for all teams, when the first practice was abandoned due to a very slippery track and everybody lost valuable track time. Ruben soon settled into a groove with the new spec engine in his S 1000 RR, but then had to learn about the new changes and how they affected the bike. Despite this, and having to start from the fifth row of the grid, he rode his heart out to finish 12th in race one and 13th in race two. Race two’s result would have been even better were it not for Ruben having to take to the dirt after having to avoid hitting Fonsi Nieto in one of the chicanes. He rejoined the track, but lost four or five seconds in the process.

In race one, Troy made a good start and was in fifth place after three laps, but then began to suffer with brake problems. He kept going as best he could, but dropped down the order and ended 11th. Brembo technicians changed the brake system for race two, but the problem was worse, not better, and Troy was forced to pull out after just four laps.

Ducati riders Noriyuki Haga and Michel Fabrizio dominated Imola (their home track) today, with Haga taking the win in race one, with Max Biaggi (Aprilia) second and Fabrizio third. Race two was won by Fabrizio, with Haga second and Marco Simoncelli (Aprilia) third.

Troy - Race 1: 11th, Race 2: DNF
Today was very frustrating for me and the team because we had all expected more. Practice had gone well and our times on race tyres would’ve meant top seven or eight finishes for sure. In race one, the brakes started giving problems after about six laps and I was going about 20 kms faster into the turns than I wanted to whilst using much, much more brake pressure. I tried to keep out of trouble and not cause any problems to the other riders and try and keep going as best I could. In the end, I was lucky to finish 11th. Brembo and the team changed the brake system for race two, but this time the problem was worse and maybe air had ingressed. After running off the track a few times and nearly crashing, I decided it would be safer to pull in. The last thing I wanted was to crash and take somebody else out, so withdrawing was the best, and only, option. Hopefully the problem will be sorted out and everything will be OK for Magny-Cours next weekend.

Ruben - Race 1: 12th, Race 2: 13th
I am so happy to be back with my team, because I have missed them all so much in the past few weeks. I couldn’t have raced here today if it had not been for all the tremendous work by BMW’s doctor Vicenzo and Dr Llobet and physio Ricard Huelamo in Spain. It’s a shame we lost time on Friday, because the new specification of my bike means that it is like learning a new machine for me, especially as I haven’t ridden for eight weeks. So, all in all, I am pretty happy with my performance today, but I think it could’ve been better if I hadn’t had to take to the dirt to avoid hitting Fonsi (Nieto) in the second race. At that point, I was chasing a top-ten place, but things like this happen in racing. Now, I am looking forward to Magny-Cours next weekend and getting to know my ‘new’ bike better.

Berti Hauser (BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director)
A day of mixed feelings for us, but we must be happy because Ruben is back and, although he is not 100%, he showed his eagerness and ability to fight. To finish 12th and 13th after starting from 19th on the grid is a very good achievement. What can I say about Troy? There will be an investigation by our brake suppliers and hopefully they will find out what went wrong. We all felt that Troy could’ve finished in the top seven or eight for sure, so to have this result is very disappointing. Sometimes racing is like this and we have to put aside the problems and concentrate on the positives. Our bike is improving and the next step is not far away, so I hope that there will be no problems in Magny-Cours and we can get the results we feel we deserve.

Race 1
1 Haga (JPN-Ducati) 38:32.199; 2 Biaggi (ITA-Aprilia) 2.074; 3 Fabrizio (ITA-Ducati) 2.190; 4 Spies (USA-Yamaha) 5.438 ; 5 Kiyonari (JPN-Honda) 14.470 ;
11 Corser (AUS - BMW Motorrad Motorsport) 35.286; 12 Xaus (ESP -
BMW Motorrad Motorsport) 36.442

Race 2
1 Fabrizio (ITA-Ducati) 38:23.143; 2 Haga (JPN-Ducati) 3.592; 3 Simoncelli (ITA-Aprilia) 6.510; 4 Biaggi (ITA-Aprilia) 7.445; 5 Spies (USA-Yamaha) 14.678 ;
13 Xaus (ESP) BMW Motorrad Motorsport 36.368


BMW Motorrad Motorsport – Superbike World Championship –Magny-Cours, France – Preview

Troy and Ruben ready for Magny-Cours.

Munich. After the mixed fortunes at Imola last weekend, both Team BMW Motorrad Motorrad Motorsport riders Troy Corser and Ruben Xaus are looking forward to the next round of the championship at Magny-Cours, this coming weekend. Brake woes beset Troy last weekend, but hopefully this problem will be sorted out in time for the first practice on Friday afternoon. The strength of Ruben’s return after injury was encouraging, to say the least, and the Spaniard is looking forward to continuing his work on the new ‘spec’ engine and see how it performs at the French circuit.

I am really looking forward to Magny-Cours, especially after last weekend’s frustrating raceday. I am confident that the team have found out what caused the brake problems so that I will be able to get to grips with the Magny-Cours circuit right from the start of practice on Friday. Our team has never been to Magny-Cours before, so we will have to put in a lot of hard work on day one and try and find a good bike set-up as soon as we can.

The recent improvement of our bike is making riding an enjoyable experience and as long as we don’t have any problems like last weekend, I think we can challenge for a top six or seven place for sure. But anything can happen in racing and we may get even better results if everything goes our way. We shall have to see.

I was so happy to get back on the bike last weekend and also to be working with my team again. My only concern about Magny-Cours, is that sometimes the weather can be quite cold and that means I will have to try and warm up my right leg properly. Getting on the S 1000 RR last weekend was like riding a new bike for me and I now have to spend some time understanding how it has developed before I can push as hard as I would like.

Berti Hauser (BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director)
With two races left this season, it is interesting to see how Troy and Ruben are finding the improvements the team have made recently. Both riders have commented favourably about the changes so far and so it was such a shame that brake problems deprived Troy of two good results. But we have to forget that and concentrate on this coming weekend and start over again. We have not been to this track before, so that’s some extra work for us to do, but this has happened many times this season and we are more used to it. There’s more to come from our bike, so let’s hope we our improvement continues and we get good results at Magny-Cours.

2008 results
Race 1: Haga (JPN-Yamaha), 2 Nieto (ESP-Suzuki), 3 Bayliss (AUS-Ducati), 6 Troy Corser (AUS-Yamaha), Ruben Xaus (ESP-Ducati) DNF
Race 2: Bayliss, 2 Haga, 3 Troy Corser, 5 Ruben Xaus