2021 Harley-Davidson CVO Lineup Announced
The Harley-Davidson Custom Vehicle Operations lineup returns four models for 2021, offering the most exclusive components and styling the company has to offer. The four CVO models are the same as last year, consisting of the CVO Limited, CVO Street Glide, CVO Road Glide, and the CVO Tri Glide threewheeler.
For 2021, the CVO lineup receives a new audio system powered by Rockford Fosgate. Specific features vary depending on the model, but they all incorporate Harley-Davidson’s Boom! Box GTS infotainment system. Each CVO model also comes with a Boom! Audio 30K Bluetooth helmet set.
All four CVO models come equipped with the Milwaukee-Eight V-Twin engine, displacing 117 ci (1923cc) and claiming a peak output of 125 lb-ft. of torque.
All CVO models come standard with the RDRS Safety Enhancements electronics as standard equipment. This includes cornering linked braking, cornering ABS, cornering traction control, drag-torque slip control, vehicle hold control and a tire pressure monitoring system.
The CVO Limited and CVO Street Glide also come standard with the Daymaker adaptive LED headlight that provides additional lighting while leaning into corners.
KTM Introduces The 2021 890 Duke
Updated to clarify suspension specification.
Today, KTM has announced the release of the 2021 890 Duke – without an R at the end – completing the isolation and betrayal 790 Duke owners must be feeling right now after their bike was introduced at the end of 2017.
Being the new down-spec model, we’re a little surprised The Scalpel, as it’s referred to (not to be confused with the 890 Duke R’s Super Scalpel moniker), isn’t too far removed from the 890 Duke R. Though there’s a clear difference from the 790 Duke.
2021 Harley-Davidson Touring Lineup Confirmed
Harley-Davidson announced its returning touring lineup for 2021, with updated paint options and small updates to the three Special models. As we expected, all of the 2020 model are returning in the face of Harley-Davidson’s plans to streamline its product portfolio. That means the 2021 lineup consists of the Electra Glide Standard, Road Glide Limited, Road Glide Special, Road King, Road King Special, Street Glide, Street Glide Special, and Ultra Limited.
Which Harley-Davidson Models Are Getting Axed?
All 2021 Harley-Davidson touring models are powered by the Milwaukee-Eight 45° V-Twin engine. The Special and Limited models are powered by the 114ci (1868cc) version of the engine, with the Limited models getting the added benefit of liquid-cooled cylinder heads. The rest of the touring line makes use with the smaller 107ci (1746cc) air-cooled engine.
The touring chassis is unchanged for 2021, with dual bending valve forks, emulsion technology rear shocks and linked ABS as standard equipment. The RDRS electronics suite has been renamed as “RDRS Safety Enhancements” and will be offered as an option for all touring models. The RDRS package varies slightly from model to model, but for the the most part, it includes cornering ABS, cornering traction control, drag-torque slip control, vehicle hold control and a tire pressure monitoring system.
2021 Harley-Davidson Street Bob 114 and Restyled Fat Boy 114 Headline Softail Lineup
Harley-Davidson announced its 2021 Softail lineup, highlighted by a new Street Bob 114 and a slightly refreshed Fat Boy 114. Joining them for 2021 are the Softail Slim, Softail Standard, Fat Bob 114, Heritage Classic, Heritage Classic 114, Low Rider S and Sport Glide. Confirming our earlier reporting, the Softail models being dropped for 2021 include the Low Rider (non-S version), Deluxe and FXDR 114, while the Breakout 114 will only be offered in some markets (but not the U.S.). We also expected the Street Bob to be discontinued, but that turned out to be half-true, with the Street Bob 114 replacing it.
Which Harley-Davidson Models Are Getting Axed?
The Softail lineup is powered by the Milwaukee-Eight 45° V-Twin engine in 107ci or 114ci displacements (1746cc or 1868cc for the metrically inclined). The engine are mounted in Harley-Davidson’s Softail chassis which offers the appearance of a hardtail frame but with a single coil-over shock hidden below the seat.
Church of MO: 1996 Moto Guzzi California
Ask not why MO‘s review of an Italian bike called “California” comes from a correspondent in Barcelona, ask what you can do for MO. The first California, c. 1971, was designed with input from the Los Angeles PD, and sported a bulletproof windshield as part of its law enforcement equipment. We haven’t seen any California LEOs on Guzzis lately, but you never see the one with your number on it, do you? Let’s all behave out there, respect all traffic laws, always wear gloves, and honor the longitudinal 90-degree V-twin. Amen.
2021 Kawasaki KX250X Review
The 2021 Kawasaki KX250X is essentially the same motorcycle as the ‘21 KX250(F) with a few necessary changes to convert the motocrosser to an off-road racing machine. That’s not a bad thing by any means, particularly because the KX250F just received a major overhaul this year. Since this “new” model marks Kawasaki’s focus on off-road racing – a genre it has had major success in in the past – we couldn’t wait to get our hands on this latest model.
The Honda Gold Wing Didn't Get Radar-Based Adaptive Cruise… Yet
Last week, Honda announced updates for the 2021 Gold Wing, with the highlights being more powerful speakers and a larger trunk and passenger backrest for the Gold Wing Tour. But there was one new feature the Gold Wing did not receive: adaptive cruise control.
Not for lack of trying, however. Honda has filed multiple patents for including the radar-based technology on the Gold Wing. Designed for soaking up miles in comfort, the ’Wing is an obvious candidate to receive adaptive cruise control, and with the technology now starting to proliferate in motorcycles, it was somewhat of a surprise that the radar technology was not a part of the updates.
Harley-Davidson's Electric Future in Doubt
Harley-Davidson has removed its electric concept models from the Future Vehicles page on its official website, creating doubt about whether electric bikes – including the LiveWire – remain in the company’s future. (UPDATED with response from Harley-Davidson).
The Future Vehicles page is where Harley-Davidson showcases its upcoming products. The page varies depending on the market, but until recently, the U.S. page listed the Pan America, the Serial 1 electric-assist bicycles, the High Performance Custom model, and Harley-Davidson’s electric concept models. As we were first to report last summer, the Bronx streetfighter had been taken off of this page. At some point in the last month, the electric concepts were also removed.
Aprilia Announces Details For The 2021 Tuono 660
The worst-kept secret in the moto world for 2021 is finally here, as we now have official information about the upcoming 2021 Aprilia Tuono 660. I say it’s the worst-kept secret because Aprilia itself teased the bike back in November of 2019, and the official photos you’ll find all over this story don’t look too far removed from the ones back then.
Based on the RS660 platform, that second word provides all the foreshadowing needed as Aprilia basically told the world’s press during the presentation for the RS (without actually saying the words) that a Tuono 660 was coming. Other bikes based on this platform are in the pipeline too – the Tuareg 660 adventure bike being the next, we assume – but let’s get back to the Tuono 660. An even more street-focused sporty-bike than the RS660, the obvious comparison will be to consider this a miniature Tuono V4 which, in case you didn’t know, is one of our favorite motorcycles.
2021 Honda CRF300L and CRF300L Rally Announced for US
Just as our man in Toronto, Dennis Chung, surmised at the beginning of December when Honda Europe announced these, Honda’s new and improved small dual-sports will be coming to America. Matter of fact, Honda says the CRF is the motorcycle industry’s top-selling dual-sport.
2021 Honda Gold Wing and Gold Wing Tour First Look
Honda sprung news today about upgrades for its 2021 Gold Wing, the biggest of them being a capacity increase for the Tour version’s trunk. Shrinkage in luggage capacity was the chief complaint with the heavily downsized 2018 ’Wing: the new trunk holds 61 liters of storage, compared to the previous 50 liters, which Honda says will easily accept two XXL full-face helmets (even when equipped with headsets).
Farewell To A Category-Defining Sportbike: An R6 Retrospective
With news of the Yamaha R6 going the way of the dodo bird, we thought it fitting to take a look back through the Motorcycle.com archives to see all the things we’ve written about Yamaha’s mighty little sportbike. Like the R6, Motorcycle.com has gone through a few changes since its inception in 1994, but fortunately for us, we’ve (barely) been around just long enough to see the R6’s journey. What follows is a trip through time with all the R6 stories that haven’t been lost during various server changes in MO’s history.
Most Anticipated 2021 Motorcycles
In a typical year, your friendly Motorcycle.com staff would have already attended several new bike introductions with others under embargo and secretly waiting on our calendar deep within the bowels of the MO Tower’s security center. (Look to the east of the Nakatomi Plaza, and there we are.) Unfortunately, the end of 2020 is pretty dry, and the beginning of 2021 isn’t looking any better for travel to test out new machinery. What this means for you, our readers, is that you’ll likely learn about how the 2021 motorcycle models perform a little later than usual because we’ll have to wait for the production models to arrive Stateside. This is a huge bummer all around. Our staff of MOrons live for this time of year.
Nevertheless, there is an end-of-year tradition that continues – despite the gloomy introduction forecast. By now, we know, either by manufacturers’ announcements or Dennis’ sleuthing, many of the upcoming 2021 motorcycles. Sure, there will be a surprise or two, but we’re reasonably sure that we know what most of the new and/or improved models will be. So, the natural thing for us to do is tell you which motorcycles we’re most excited about throwing a leg over in the upcoming year. Additionally, we’d love to hear which bikes you’re most excited about in the comments below.
2021 Aprilia RS660 Track Review
Even before I first rode the Aprilia RS660, I feared this would finally be the bike that made my beloved Suzuki SV650 obsolete. Other bikes have tried – namely the Kawasaki Z/Ninja 650 and Yamaha’s MT-07 – but none have truly made me believe the ‘ol SV’s time in the spotlight was done.
2021 KTM 1290 Super Adventure R and S Details Leak
KTM hasn’t officially announced its 2021 1290 Super Adventure models yet, but it briefly published the pages for both the street-focused Super Adventure S and more off-road capable Super Adventure R on its website. The pages were quickly taken down, but we’ve managed to snag the details. Both models receive a number of updates, including a radar-based adaptive cruise control system for the S model.
2021 KTM 1290 Super Adventure Revealed in Patent Filings
We didn’t get a look at what the 2021 Super Adventure looks like, but we have a good idea, thanks to patent illustrations we uncovered in November. We can confirm that the Super Adventure will receive a low-slung saddle-shaped fuel tank described in the patent, with a similar design to the tanks used on the 790, 890 and 390 Adventure models. The fuel capacity will remain at 6.1 gallons, the same volume as the 2020 Super Adventure, but we can confirm the tank will have an electronically opened cap as well as a small storage compartment with a USB socket.
To meet Euro 5 standards, KTM gave the 2021 1290 Super Adventure models a completely reworked exhaust system. New header pipes connect to a collector chamber with two catalytic converters, while three lambda sensors will measure the emissions and help keep them within Euro 5 limits. The engine claims an output of 160 hp, the same as the 2020 model, but peak torque drops slightly to a 101.8 lb-ft. from 103.2 lb-ft.
The engine will be cooled by two separate radiators instead of the previous one-piece design. KTM also redesigned the airbox, making it easier to access the air filter. The transmission was also updated with a new Pankl gearbox, a change KTM first introduced on the 1290 Super Duke R.
The 2021 Super Adventure gets a new chrome-molybdenum steel trellis frame combining laser-cut tubes and forged elements. The engine is rotated forward within the frame by 2° compared to the 2020 model, which should help keep the front end down during hard acceleration. The steering head was moved back 0.6 inches for a shorter overall frame while the swingarm was lengthened by the same amount.
Both Super Adventure models receive a redesigned one-piece saddle with a shorter seat height than the 2020 model. The R model’s seat drops 0.4 inches to 34.6 inches while the S model is adjustable from 33.4 to 34.2 inches (previously 33.8 to 34.4 inches).
The R model will run on tubeless wire spoke wheels from Alpina. The wheels use O-ring seals on the nipples to help prevent air leakage. The S model will have cast wheels plus new bespoke MITAS Terra Force-R tires.
The Brembo four-piston brakes and semi-active suspension will be unchanged from the 2020 model. With the exception of the S model’s adaptive cruise control system, the electronics package will be similar to last year, with a tire pressure monitoring system, a Bosch 9M+ ABS, lean-sensitive traction control, and selectable ride modes including an off-road mode with its own traction control and ABS settings. The electronic settings will be dsiplayed on a new 7-inch TFT display (formerly 6.5 inches).
It’s unclear when KTM plans to officially announce the 2021 1290 Super Adventure R and S, but the work on its website suggests it will happen soon, likely after the holidays are over. We’ll have more information – including photos! – when it becomes available.
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2021 KTM 1290 Super Duke RR Confirmed in Emissions Documents
German vehicle emissions documentation confirms that a new KTM 1290 Super Duke RR is on the way, adding a higher-end variant to join the already-impressive Super Duke R. (UPDATE Feb. 1, 2021: the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has also certified the Super Duke RR, confirming the same state of tune as the Super Duke R.)
Rumors of a double-R version of the Super Duke have been circulating the last few months, with the fact that KTM has yet to announce the 2021 Super Duke R lending further credence that something was afoot. The German emissions data offers the first proof of its existence, and we can expect KTM will soon announce both 2021 Super Duke models shortly.
Church of MO: 2010 Yamaha YZ450F Review
Ahhhh the good old days. Ten years ago, all we had to deal with was the aftermath of the Great Recession and the Swine Flu pandemic, which the CDC estimates killed 12,469 of us. How quaint. More importantly, Yamaha turned heads, by turning the head around 180 degrees on its big YZ motocrosser – moving its intake to the front and the exhaust ports to the rear. Radical! Perhaps a little too radical, as Yamaha’s last AMA Supercross championships came in 2008 and 2009, under Chad Reed and James “Bubba” Stewart. Is there a lesson, brethren? None that I can see, except ask your doctor if you’re healthy enough to ride open-class MXers, and always wear a clean air filter just in case. A pretty fun read from the Book of Fonzie. Amen.
Which Harley-Davidson Models Are Getting Axed? UPDATE
Several months ago, Harley-Davidson announced plans to reduce its model lineup by 30% as part of its Rewire and Hardwire business strategies. More recently, the company revealed it will announce its 2021 models online in a “ virtual launch experience” on Jan. 19. The question, then, is what current models are on the chopping block, and which models will return?
We think we’ve got a good idea, courtesy of Harley-Davidson. Or at least, H-D’s international sites. Harley-Davidson’s European and Canadian sites use a different microsite design for its Genuine Motor Accessories and Genuine Motor Parts catalog than the U.S. online storefront. The international sites have a handy tool for filtering accessories by model and model year.
At some point recently, the filtering tool was updated to include model years 2021 and 2022. Ordinarily, we could excuse this as just mundane data entry work, getting things ready with placeholder information. What’s interesting about the update is that not every model was given an entry for 2021 or 2022. The touring models were marked for 2022, but several models were left with much earlier end dates.
UPDATE Dec. 18, 2020: After we published this article, Harley-Davidson has updated these pages so they no longer mention any model years beyond 2020. Though the evidence has been removed (take that to mean what you wish), we stand by our initial reporting.
Fact Check: No, the Custom 1250 Didn't Just Reappear on Harley-Davidson's Website
Motorcycle sites around the world have been buzzing the last few weeks about the Harley-Davidson Custom 1250, the Revolution Max-powered potential Sportster replacement, suddenly appearing on the Motor Company’s official website, signifying it’s impending launch.
The story appears to have started Nov. 24 with a report by Germany’s MotorradOnline.de claiming the Custom 1250 “suddenly appeared” on the Future Models section of Harley-Davidson’s site with a projected launch target of 2021. The story then got picked up by multiple motorcycle sites in India, and around the world, with new stories still popping up weeks later.
There’s just one problem: none of this is a new development.
Two Ways to Skin a Knee: 2021 Honda ADV150 Vs. 2021 Honda Trail 125
You don’t need big bucks or big bikes to have a swell adventure. But it helps. Or, you can have a perfectly fun adventure on either of these cute little Hondas, and still be one of the nicest people at the same time, as you’re getting nearly 100 mpg and treading lightly. These days, you take your adventures where you can get them. Instead of blasting off on a multi-day ride on big gas hogs, we poked around in our own Long Beach back yard.
2021 Honda PCX Lineup Announced for Japan Including New PCX 160
Honda has updated its lineup of PCX scooters with new frames, new engines and traction control. For the Japanese market, Honda will include a 124cc version (simply called the “PCX”) while the PCX 150 sees a displacement increase to 157cc to become the PCX 160. Honda will also offer the PCX e:HEV hybrid electric version which combines the 124cc engine with an electric motor in Japan.
2018 Honda PCX Scooter Goes Hybrid and Electric
At the moment, the updated PCX models have only been announced for Japan, but we expect American Honda to replace the PCX 150 in its lineup with the new 160 model. The 124cc model will likely continue to be offered in Europe, but the hybrid model will likely remain exclusive to Japan.
Visually, the new PCX is an evolution of the previous design, keeping a familiar profile but with some sharper edges. The seat height remains at the same 30.1-inch level as the 2020 PCX, while the foot boards have a new, longer shape. For the PCX and PCX 160, the underseat storage area now holds 7.9 gallons, compared to the previous model’s 7.3 gallons. On the PCX e:HEV, the lithium-ion battery takes up some of that storage space, reducing its capacity to 6.3 gallons.
2021 Polaris Slingshot First Ride Review
It was a dangerous, dirty assignment, but somebody had to do it: Go spend a night at the Surfrider Inn in Malibu, to be up early next morning to flog Polaris’ new Slingshot, with the new, new Autodrive Transmission the next day. The Slingshot has been around since 2015, but only with a 5-speed manual trans until 2020. You may recall Ryan Adams’ earlier test this past June of the new, Autodrive-equipped 2020 Slingshot, in which he was less than impressed with that transmission and said: “My hope is that the next iteration of Autodrive will come with paddle shifters (that actually shift when you press them).”
2021 Honda Trail 125 Review - First Ride
The re-introduction of the Honda Trail in the United States marks a homecoming of sorts for a model that was, and still is, very special to American Honda and many Americans that grew up riding it. While attending the introduction of the 2021 Honda Trail 125 in Julian, California a few weeks ago, I had the chance to see the new model sat next to a well-preserved, but used 1985 Trail 110. The resemblance is commendable. From the dimensions themselves, to small details like the large hub on the front wheel that looks reminiscent of a drum despite the new model’s disc brakes (front and rear), Honda has done a really great job making the 2021 model a spitting image of the Trails imported to the US in the ‘80s.
Church of MO: 2010 Aprilia RSV4 R Review
And after the world wailed and gnashed its teeth in vain for a decade or two, waiting for Honda to produce a kimono-lifting V-Four sportbike, Aprilia finally did the deed in 2009, and all the children did sing. In 2010, the Romans of Noale did the world an even bigger solid by making a $5000-cheaper version, the RSV4R, that anyone could afford. Unfortunately the actual MSRP is lost to history, as no one could be assed to provide a simple spec chart in those days. Besides, if you have to ask…
2021 Ducati Monster First Look
Ducati revealed a new Monster with a 937cc engine, modern electronics and, in a departure from the line’s history, replaced the traditional steel trellis frame with an aluminum alloy frame.
The new model will simply be called the “Monster” with no displacement numbering, and it replaces both the air-cooled Monster 797 and liquid-cooled Monster 821 in Ducati’s lineup. The Monster 1200 and 1200 S will return for 2021 as the only holdover from the previous generation. Like the 1200, the new Monster is liquid-cooled, meaning there will no longer be any air-cooled Monsters in Ducati’s lineup.
2021 Honda CRF300L and CRF300 Rally Announced for Europe
Honda Europe announced new CRF300L and CRF300 Rally dual sports for 2021, replacing the CRF250L and CRF250L Rally models. As of this writing, American Honda has yet to confirm whether it will import the new 300 models, but it’s likely we’ll receive news shortly.
The new CRF300 models are powered by a fuel-injected liquid-cooled DOHC Single enlarged from the previous 250cc to 286cc. This was achieved by increasing the stroke to 63 mm from 55 mm while keeping the bore at 76 mm and the compression ratio at 10.7:1. If these figures sound familiar, it’s because Honda did the same thing when it turned the CBR250R into the CBR300R. Honda also revised the intake cam timing to boost low- to mid-range response. Other changes include a new air filter design, a lighter exhaust downpipe, a new silencer and revised ignition timing.
Piaggio's "eSR1" Trademark Filing Hints at an Electric Aprilia Scooter
A new trademark filing for an “eSR1” logo may suggest an electric Aprilia scooter is on the way. The Aprilia eSR1 will likely share technology with another member of the Piaggio family, the Vespa Elettrica scooter.
Church of MO: 2010 Honda SH150i Review
Ten years ago, brethren, Honda broughteth forth to the US a scooter it claimed was the best-selling scooter in Italy. It was also designed by Honda Italy, so how bad could this sweet fuel-injected scooter be? By all accounts, the SH150i was a fine scoot, but what renders in Rome doesn’t always fly in the land of the free, and ah, I think this is the first exposure I’ve had to this particular vehicle. It’s difficult to tell in this MO Review, as all three photos of the bike are right front views, but the styling may have been just a bit too Karmann Ghia for the US, and the SH wasn’t around for long. But there is nothing new under the sun, and according to the specs (not that we bothered to publish any), that 57.3mm x 57.9mm liquid-cooled single lives on in the current PCX and ADV150s. Amen on the scooters. A reading from the book of Fonzie.
Chinese Aprilia Flat Tracker Revealed in Design Filings (UPDATE: It's an FB Mondial)
UPDATE: The mystery of the Chinese-Italian flat tracker has been solved. The bike already exists, but as neither a Piaggio or a Zongshen. Instead, it was released this summer under the storied FB Mondial brand as the Flat Tracker 125.
Kawasaki Shows Off Future Hybrid and A.I.-Equipped Motorcycle Technologies
Kawasaki typically tries to showcase some of the project it works on at motorcycle shows like EICMA. Last year, for example, Kawasaki presented an electric motorcycle concept and provided a look at its development. Obviously, there are no motorcycle shows this year due to COVID-19, but that hasn’t stopped Kawasaki from showcasing some of its ongoing projects, providing a peek at its hybrid motorcycle and artificial intelligence projects.
2021 Ducati Diavel 1260 Lamborghini First Look
In a cross-branding exercise with its Emilia-Romagna neighbor (and technically, it’s parent company), Ducati revealed a new Lamborghini edition version of the Diavel 1260. The limited edition Ducati Diavel 1260 Lamborghini is styled after the automaker’s Siàn FKP 37 supercar, sporting the same Gea Green and Electrum Gold color scheme, similar-looking wheels and lightweight carbon fiber elements.
2021 Honda Rebel 1100 First Look - Updated!
Well, we’ve already seen this lovely engine in the Africa Twin, but Honda’s 1084 cc parallel Twin is going to be just as cool and even more accessible, to more people, slotted into Honda’s latest cruiser. With a seat Honda says is just 27.5 inches from the dirty boulevard, and the option of the excellent DCT automatic transmission, this one’s going to be a motorcycle anyone can ride. And at $9,999 for the DCT version ($700 less for the 6-speed manual), it’s also a bike almost anybody can afford. And HELLO, those prices include ABS brakes, USB ports, ride modes and wait for it: cruise control.
2021 Kawasaki KLX 300 And KLX 300SM First Look
Fans of lightweight versatile motorcycles rejoice! Kawasaki has announced two new motorcycles for 2021 built around the 2021 KLX 300 platform. The first is the 2021 KLX 300 Dual-Sport, which Kawasaki says “comes ready with all the tools necessary to deliver an exciting riding experience, taking on paved streets, back roads, wooded trails and beyond.” The 2021 KLX 300SM takes the same platform and wraps it in more streetable components suitable for everything from commuter duty to unkinking the most serpentine roads to fun days on the supermoto track.
The heart of these two fun machines is a 292 cc liquid-cooled DOHC Single which has been tuned for a broad power spread. Cam profiles were sourced from the KLX300R, while each valve receives its own cam lobe for shim-under tappet clearance adjustment. Breathing through those valves is a flat piston in a pent-roof combustion chamber, featuring a 78.0 x 61.2 mm bore and stroke. Durability and friction are addressed with an electrofusion cylinder and ultra-hard coating in the aluminum cylinder. Finally, fuel injection makes sure the mixture is meted out for maximum power and efficiency. To make long rides comfortable, the engine vibrations are minimized by a chain-driven counterbalancer.
2021 Kawasaki Z H2 SE First Look
Last week, I decided the supercharged Kawasaki Ninja H2 Carbon is my favorite motorcycle of all time. This week, that could change with the introduction of Kawasaki’s new sit-up straight naked Special Edition Z H2. If this new Z SE doesn’t have quite the top end horsepower of the full-monte H2 (206 rear-wheel hp on the dyno), it still has plenty, and it also has many other tidbits going for it that might very well make up the difference, including the aforementioned upright naked-bike ergonomics. “A relaxed riding position has been created by a combination of an upright handlebar shape and a seat with an optimized base plate and cushion thickness,” says Kawasaki. “This design provides a high degree of freedom for riding posture and low vibration, allowing for a pleasant and comfortable ride.”
And while you’re sat up there all comfortable and pleasant, an all-new active suspension system and upgraded brakes with the latest in Stylema calipers provide further evidence Kawasaki loves you. Notable by its absence on the $33,000 H2 Carbon would be the cruise control button: That glorious labor-saving device is present on the Z H2 SE, along with all the latest electronic jamming devices and, last but not least, a price tag of just $19,700. We ride, you decide.
Kawasaki Press Release:November 23, 202
2021 KTM 1290 Super Adventure Revealed in Patent Filings
KTM has filed a patent application for a new low-slung saddle-shaped fuel tank, and the illustrations suggest it will be used on a new 1290 Super Adventure. KTM first introduced the rally-style tank design on the 790 Adventure R, and a similar design has since made it to the 890 and 390 Adventure models. It seems natural, then, that we would see the 1290 Super Adventure get a similar design.
The illustrations included in the patent, filed in May with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office following an earlier filing in Germany, show two depictions of the same motorcycle, with and without tank covers and a seat. As illustrated below, the engine appears to be the 1290 Adventure’s 75° V-Twin and a trellis frame and subframe that is similar in structure, but with a few changes. We used the engine and swingarm pivot as the common point of reference here, because that gave us the closest comparison.
2021 BMW G 310 R First Look
BMW’s littlest “Dynamic Roadster” is a hoot; now the 34-horsepower thumper is even hootier and Euro-5 compliant, along with a bunch of other upgrades including an electromotive throttle controller and automatic idle speed increase, a new slip/assist clutch, new LED headlight and LED flashing turn indicators, adjustable brake and clutch levers, and a “softly reimagined” design in two attractive base colors with graphics options.
BMW Press Release:
2021 Ducati SuperSport 950 First Look
Ducati has updated its SuperSport for 2021, giving it Panigale V4-inspired styling and a six-axis inertial measurement unit while bringing it in line with Euro 5 standards. Ducati also officially added “950” to the model’s name, which is interesting in that it suggests other displacements might be in the works, but at this point, the 2021 line-up will consist of the SuperSport 950 and the SuperSport 950 S.
BLOWHARDS! 1984 Kawasaki GPz750 Turbo Vs. 2020 Kawasaki H2 Carbon Vs. Ken Vreeke and JB
I thought I was picking up a new Z H2 naked at Kawasaki, but there was some miscommunication. I got this H2 Carbon instead, the full-zoot sport version barely removed from the track-only H2R instead of the slightly tamer naked I was expecting. Damn the luck! I’d really prefer to be sat a bit more upright. When I climbed on and reached for the clip-ons, the H2 Carbon hurt my lumbar and impinged upon my liver compartment. Then it cracked my knees when I picked my feet up onto the pegs. And the way the thing revved and the supercharger chirped in the parking lot frankly was a bit frightening. It seemed angry. This is ridiculous. Nobody needs a motorcycle like this outside of the Bonneville salt flats.
Kawasaki WSBK Team Tests New 2021 Ninja ZX-10RR Superbike
Kawasaki‘s World Superbike racing team has begun testing of the 2021 Ninja ZX-10RR, revealing the superbike’s new look. As KRT riders Jonathan Rea and Alex Lowes take the new Ninja out on the Jerez circuit, Kawasaki confirmed the production model ZX-10RR, and presumably the Ninja ZX-10R as well, will be revealed on Nov. 23. (Updated with high resolution photos).
SCOOP: 2021 BMW S1000R and G310R to Be Announced Nov. 19
BMW announced today it will unveil two new 2021 roadster models in an online presentation on Nov. 19. The announcement was accompanied by the teaser image above, but otherwise no clues as to which models will be revealed.
That hasn’t stopped us from doing a little snooping, and we can now confirm that the two models will be a new S1000R and G310R. The proof comes to us from BMW itself, specifically its Belgian and Canadian websites.
On a BMW Canada landing page listing the brand’s Roadster models, there are four 2020 models listed, the S1000R, G310R, R1250R and F900R. Clicking on the R1250R and F900R will take you to their respective pages. The links to the S1000R and G310R, however, have been disabled, and even if you search for their links on Google, you’ll find that their pages come up blank.
By itself, that is suspicious, but not conclusive proof of a new S1000R or G310R. Visiting BMW’s Belgian site provides even stronger evidence. The Belgian Roadster landing page still lists the S1000R and G310R, but their URLs have changed, with “-2020” added to them:
The URLs to the R1250R and F900R, however, do not have this addition:
Even more damning, if you go to the S1000R or G310R pages, this is what you will see:
2021 Yamaha Tracer 9 GT First Look
Yamaha has updated the Tracer 900 GT, renaming it the Tracer 9 GT and giving it similar updates to the new MT-09 including the larger 890cc three-cylinder engine, new frame and six-axis IMU.
Visually, the Tracer 9 GT looks a little less aggressive than the 900, with a flatter face and a longer fairing. The longer bodywork is matched with a longer, adjustable windscreen, which produces what Yamaha describes as an arrow-shaped silhouette with the reshaped fuel tank cover. The full LED headlights are smaller than on the previous model, and they are supplemented by new LED cornering lights that illuminate based on the IMU-measured lean angle.
Harley-Davidson Reveals Serial 1 Electric Bicycle Models
Harley-Davidson‘s electric bicycle sub-brand Serial 1 has revealed its initial line-up of four electric bicycles. The debut line-up of pedal-assist ebikes range in price from $3,399 to $4,999 and will initially launch in the U.S. and Germany. Serial 1 is accepting pre-orders now, with deliveries expected to begin in March 2021.
Church of MO: 1995 Triumph Trident 900
Lest we forget, chilluns, the new Trident on the way from Triumph is not the first time they’ve resurrected that famed monicker from the swingin’ Sixties. Here’s hoping Poseidon’s new weapon will be pointier than the last one 25 years ago, which left Brent – the rock upon which MO was built – pining for a Sportster. OMG.
2021 Aprilia RS660 First Ride Review - Video
Without a doubt, the 2021 Aprilia RS660 was the motorcycle I most anticipated riding this year, thanks in no small part because I first saw the bike in person over a year ago and salivated over the chance to ride it ever since.
BMW Reveals Definition CE 04 Electric Scooter Concept
BMW revealed a new electric scooter concept called the Definition CE 04. Debuting at #NEXTGen 2020, a BMW event showcasing the company’s ideas on the future of mobility, the Definition CE 04 offers a blend of electric drive and digital communication technologies. If any of this sounds familiar, it’s because BMW introduced a similar concept in 2017 called the Concept Link.
2021 Ducati Scrambler Nightshift
Ducati says the Nightshift, “whose name immediately evokes the atmosphere of the night, fits into the `Land of Joy’ as the ideal choice for all those looking for an essential and stylish bike at the same time, with a comfortable riding position, also in the company of a passenger and which allows its owner to experiment through customization.”Yours exclusively in Aviator Grey, the Nightshift gets a new flat seat in Cafè Racer style for two. A straight and narrow handlebar is added to the Cafè Racer mirrors, with number plates taken from the Full Throttle.
2021 Ducati XDiavel Range Gets Euro 5 Updates, But Not in North America
Ducati has updated its XDiavel range to meet Euro 5, adding two new variants for 2021: XDiavel Dark and XDiavel Black Star (pictured above). The good news: the Euro 5 update adds 8 hp to the XDiavel’s claimed power figures. The bad news: only countries where the emission standard is in place will get the update, meaning countries like the U.S. will not see a performance increase.
Further bad news: the XDiavel Black Star will not be offered in North America.
UPDATED Dec. 16, 2020: Ducati North America announced the XDiavel Black Star WILL be coming to the U.S. and Canada. Only 50 individually numbered units will be sold here. Pricing starts at US$25,995 in the U.S. and CA$28,995 in Canada.
The returning XDiavel S will be returning for all markets, while the Dark model will essentially replace the regular base line XDiavel model. For North America, that means the 2021 lineup will only include the XDiavel S and XDiavel Dark, both at last year’s performance levels.
Getting the XDiavel to satisfy Euro 5 standards proved to be relatively easy, as Ducati simply replaced the silencer with a new design derived from the Diavel 1260’s exhaust. Ducati then recalibrated the engine, so the 2021 XDiavel line’s Testastretta DVT engine now claims 160 hp at 9500 rpm and 93.7 lb-ft. at 5000 rpm. For customers in North America and other non-Euro 5 markets, the XDiavel’s engine will remain at the 2020 model’s claimed 152 hp and 92.9 lb-ft. (including the Black Star version).
2021 Honda NC750X First Look
Dang, it sounds like Honda has given one of my personal favorites a little more of everything that makes it a favorite: More power, more rpm, outstanding fuel efficiency (up to 66 mpg), 13 fewer pounds of weight, a bigger storage compartment, lower seat height, sharper styling, ride modes, a slipper clutch for the 6-speed version – and the automatic Dual Clutch Trans is still an option, which gives the NC really all the best features of a motorcycle and a scooter. Which makes it interesting that Honda categorizes it as an Adventure motorcycle (where the current NC’s price is $8,099 in the US).
2021 Yamaha MT-09 SP First Look
Yamaha announced a new SP version of the updated 2021 MT-09 revealed two weeks ago, featuring higher-end suspension and cruise control plus a black and blue color scheme. Joining the MT-09 SP are the MT-10 and MT-03 which return for 2021 with new color options.
The 2021 Yamaha MT-09 SP comes equipped with 41mm KYB with a diamond-like coating applied to the inner tubes, promising smoother, more responsive action. The fork is fully-adjustable, including low- and high-speed compression damping adjusters. The rear suspension has been upgraded to an Öhlins shock with a remote preload adjuster on top of rebound and compression adjustability.
2021 Honda CB1000R First Look
Honda has updated the CB1000R for 2021, giving its “Neo Sports Café” flagship a slightly new look, a color TFT display and Euro 5 compliance, as well as a Black Edition variant. As of this writing, the new 2021 Honda CB1000R has only been announced for Europe, but we expect a U.S. announcement to come soon.
2020 Honda Africa Twin Off-Road Test - Quick Take
When Troy was assigned the 2020 Africa Twin to review, I think we were both a bit perplexed. But I had a packed schedule and Troy is a professional. So, I didn’t spend too much time worrying about it. I did however, pry the AT out of Troy’s normally gauntlet-clad hands as soon as I was able. The V-Strom/Africa Twin comparison was the first time I had the chance to get out from behind the computer for an actual ride up into the mountains to get a little dust on the tires. Not long into that shoot, I knew I would want to get back out as soon as I could to spend some more time on the new AT. Simply put, it’s a lot of fun to explore with.
When I asked Honda to keep the bike a bit longer for more thorough off-road testing, they encouraged me to do so but only after I brought the bike back to Honda HQ to be retrofitted with some extra off-road protection and footpegs. Huh, not sure why, but okay.
2021 Ducati Multistrada V4 First Look
Ducati officially revealed its new Multistrada V4, which joins the two-cylinder Multistrada 1260 and Multistrada 950 in its adventure-touring lineup. The 2021 Ducati Multistrada V4 will be offered in three versions, the base model V4, the V4 S and the V4 S Sport.
Visually, the Multistrada V4 shares a lot of styling elements with the V-Twin models with a front-heavy profile and a small beak below the LED headlight. The side fairings have layered air vent slits that Ducati claims offers improved aerodynamics and thermal comfort.
The base model Multistrada V4 comes in Ducati Red with black wheels. The V4 S gets an additional Aviator Grey color option and comes with additional features including an up-and-down quick shift. The V4 S Sport comes only in a Sport livery and adds an Akrapovič carbon fiber and titanium silencer and a carbon fiber front fender.
2021 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R and ZX-10RR Revealed in Australian Certification Documents
An updated 2021 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R and ZX-10RR have been confirmed in vehicle certification data submitted in Australia. The certification documents reveal a new fairing for the Ninjas, plus some engine updates that were likely aimed to meet Euro 5 requirements.
Both models are expected to be part of a larger reveal event Kawasaki has planned for Nov. 23. Kawasaki submitted the data to Australia’s department of Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Regional Development in August, with a request for the information be embargoed until Nov. 1. Kawasaki likely hadn’t decided on the Nov. 23 date at the time, resulting in the certification data being released over the weekend.
The certification files include low-resolution images of each bike, and though they’re small, we can still get a good idea of what the 2021 ZX-10R models will look like.
From the photos, it’s clear the literbikes are getting a sharper H2-inspired nose with smaller, headlights (likely LEDs). The turn signals remain integrated into the mirrors. Behind the fairing, we spy a new display, likely a full-color TFT screen.
2021 Yamaha MT-07 First Look
Yamaha revealed an updated MT-07 that… well, let’s just say that if you aren’t a fan of the 2021 MT-09‘s new look, you likely won’t be a fan of this either. Chances are you won’t be a fan of the MT-10‘s next update either if it follows Yamaha’s smaller “Master of Torque” naked MT models.
The 2021 Yamaha MT-07 adopts a similar LED headlight to the MT-09, with a compact high/low beam projector lamp bracketed by two position lights. This new headlight is the most obvious and distinct design change for the new MT-07. There never really was much in the way of bodywork for the FZ/MT-07, but for this new redesign, the fuel tank shape is sculpted slightly differently with a higher shoulder line and reshaped fuel tank panels.
2021 Ducati Multistrada V4 Certified in Australia Ahead of Official Reveal
Ducati is set to announce its new Multistrada V4 tomorrow at 1 pm EST/10 am PST, but we’ve got an early glimpse of the new adventure-touring model and some initial details thanks to a vehicle certification document from Australia.
The certification document includes two color photos of the 2021 Ducati Multistrada V4, though they’re unfortunately in a small resolution. Nevertheless, it’s enough to confirm some details. The overall styling follows a similar look to the Multistrada 1260 and 950 models, but with some noticeable differences.
The headlight is perched on top of a small beak like the V-Twin models, but we can make out a small gap in the black beak just below where it meets the red bodywork. This is where Ducati has positioned the forward Bosch radar sensors that will enable the Multistrada V4’s adaptive cruise control system.
Church of MO: 2000 Kawasaki EX500
Twenty years ago, brethren, Kawasaki had already been stamping out EX500s for 13 years, a process it would continue right up until 2009 and the Ninja 650 replacement. For most of those years at the height of the superbike wars, a famed Editor-in-Chief of a Major Motorcycle Magazine, King Arthur of Friedman, was known to proclaim that the EX500 was all the motorcycle any sane street rider could ever need. Luckily for us all, sanity did not rule the day. King Art was crazy, but he may have been right. And he only ever wanted what was best for you kids. A reading from the MOrinthians, with the Apostles Mini and Clavin. Amen.
Everything You Want To Know About 2021 Triumph Trident (Except What It's Like To Ride)
“There is no such thing as a new idea. It is impossible. We simply take a lot of old ideas and put them into a sort of mental kaleidoscope. We give them a turn and they make new and curious combinations. We keep on turning and making new combinations indefinitely; but they are the same old pieces of colored glass that have been in use through all the ages.” – Mark Twain
Heritage and history are excellent attributes to replicate in motorcycling – assuming you have either in the first place. The 2021 Triumph Trident may be a new model, but it’s taking a page straight out of the Triumph history book. Let’s rewind to the 1960s and look at the motorcycle landscape of the time. The market was filled with single-cylinders and Twins from a variety of manufacturers, many of whom, unfortunately, aren’t around anymore.
Norton Trademark Filings Hint at Company's Future Under TVS
Norton Motorcycle has filed trademark applications for several names from its history that may portend the company’s future under the ownership of TVS Motor.
The trademark applications, filed this week with the European Union Intellectual Property Office, are the first potential model names registered by the British company since TVS acquired it this April for 16 million pounds (US$20.8 million). The applications are for “Norton Electra“, “Norton Fastback“, “Norton Navigator“, “Norton Nomad“, “Norton Ranger” and “Combat“.
The Electra, Fastback, Navigator, Nomad and Ranger names were all previously used by the company in the ’60s and ’70s. The Navigator was a 349cc Twin produced from 1960 to 1965. The Electra was an offshoot, with the same engine bored out to 383cc in 1963 (which means it predates the 1965 Harley-Davidson Electra Glide). The Fastback was a name applied to the Norton Commando 750 in the 1970s. In 1972, the Commando received a new engine named the “Combat”.
Norton produced the P11A Ranger from 1967 to 1969 while the Nomad was even earlier, dating back to the ’50s as a derivative of the Norton Dominator. More recently, the Nomad and Ranger names were used as variants of the Norton Atlas, a 650cc scrambler first announced in 2018 and currently listed on the company’s website as being available in 2021.
So, what do we make of these names? In each application, the names were filed for use with “vehicles; apparatus for locomotion by land; motorcycles; mopeds; scooters; mobility scooters / motor scooters; parts and fittings for motorcycles and vehicles,” suggesting TVS intends to use these names for new vehicles. This also rules out the theory these names will just be used on various merchandise celebrating the brand’s history, as that would also be listed in the application for intended use in goods and services.
Harley-Davidson Claims Best Third Quarter Since 2015 Despite Lower Sales
Harley-Davidson‘s much analyzed “ Rewire” plan may be starting to see some positive results, as the company reported its strongest third quarter since 2015 despite decreasing sales volume. It will take a while longer to see if the plan and its eventual follow-up, the Hardwire plan, will pay off in the long run, but for the short term, the Rewire has succeeded in reducing costs.
According to Harley-Davidson’s third quarter report, revenues declined by 8% to $1.166 billion, but net income increased 39% to $120 million from the $87 million reported in the same period of 2019. By this metric, this was Harley-Davidson’s best third quarter since it saw a net income of $140 million in 2015.
2021 Yamaha MT-09 First Look
Details for the 2021 Yamaha MT-09 have just been released. Notable takeaways for the 2021 model year are an all-new larger capacity engine at 890cc, updated chassis to match, and advanced electronics. While those are certainly the major changes for this new iteration of MT-09, styling has also been tweaked slightly throughout, with the cyclops-esque headlight undoubtedly being the most polarizing change.
As we previously reported in September, the MT-09 has received a displacement boost from 847cc to 890cc. This was achieved by increasing the stroke to 62.1mm from 59.1. The Triple’s bore remains the same at 78mm. Keeping in line with trends recently, the additional displacement will help Yamaha pass ever-tightening emissions standards while also providing a four horsepower boost, bringing it to 118 hp, according to emissions test data.