Indian pulled no punches and left no doubt when it came to the bike it had in its crosshairs when developing its latest model. Usually at press intros, we all know what other model(s) could be considered competition, but it’s very rare to have the host manufacturer come out and say it. They usually resist the urge to talk about their competitors by name – and especially won’t mention a specific competitor model – when hyping up their new product.
It’s pretty simple. If I find a vintage Speed Triple story, I’m going to republish it. Now, 20 years later – 20 years! – we bring back to you MO’s First Ride aboard the 2002 Triumph Speed Triple. So many people have memories with this bike. A lot of them are good, but these early years of the Speed Triple also brought with it a few reliability problems. Let’s not focus too much on that for now and instead appreciate Triumph’s beloved three-cylinder naked bike that basically ushered in the category of naked sportbike.
With no US publications invited to the press launch of the BMW CE 04 more than a year ago, we had to enlist the help of our friend Bertrand Gahel to send us his thoughts in the form of his First Ride Review. Thirteen months later, we finally got our hands on the BMW scoot.
Harley-Davidson knows how to make a cruiser with attitude, and the 2013 FXSB Breakout is yet another example. Long, low, and powered by 103 cubic inches of American V-Twin muscle, it’s remarkable to think it’s 10 years old now. It’s also remarkable to think that Jon Langston’s writing hasn’t graced the digital pages of Motorcycle.com in a decade. Here, riding a Harley, Jonny is in his element. Enjoy going back in time with this review.
What I was looking for was a lighter-weight perforated leather jacket for use during the hotter parts of the year, when MO is most active, to share duties with my beautiful but aging Dainese Street Rider. When the Spidi box arrived, the light weight was there but not the perforations. Turns out there isn’t a perfed version, but maybe that’s only a personal problem for me, since my old unperforated Vanson AR-3 has been my go-to black leather jacket for most of a decade now.
The invention of the trackday tire is the single greatest thing to happen to trackday riders since, well, trackdays. Being able to leave the tire warmers at home (or not own any at all!) has a trickle-down effect for those lazy riders among us – myself included. No warmers means the stands can stay home, and so can the generator. Better still, leaving all those things behind doesn’t compromise anything out on track; modern trackday tires provide plenty of grip and more longevity than your average race slick. (But let’s make one thing clear: if you’re actually racing, a slick is still the way to go.)
Let the record show that, despite my best efforts, Yamaha’s MT-10 was not included in either the street or track portions of our mega seven-way open-class naked bike shootouts last year. I fought for its inclusion but was ultimately denied by the Bossman who wrote it off by saying our field was big enough and it wasn’t going to win anyway. That and we also knew a new one was already on the way.
The thing about any of the electric motorcycle companies actually taking product development seriously is that, more often than not, each new model they introduce is markedly better than any model before it. Considering the EV market is still in its early stages, you expect a marked advancement with each new model.
If there’s one thing KTM knows how to do, it’s how to get dirty. The company obviously has its long history of off-road competition, and victories, to its name, and that success has transferred nicely into the adventure bike market. You can even argue KTM’s adventure bikes (along with the BMW GS family) are responsible for this boom in the ADV market.
Let’s clear the air right off the bat with this one: This is *not* a crash-tested review, though I can understand why you would think so after I wrote about my recent experiences tumbling down the road in the Forcite MK1 helmet and Alpinestars’ own GP Force Chaser entry-level suit. While it’s never a great time to crash a motorcycle, the timing of those experiences brings a great deal of context to the latest in safety innovation by Alpinestars: the Tech-Air 10 airbag system.
Reviewing a crash-tested piece of gear is up there on our least favorite things to do on this job, and when said piece of gear is a helmet, we’re especially annoyed – and that’s putting it mildly. However, the fact I’m here and able to write a review about a crashed helmet at all is a good sign, especially when the helmet comes from an up-and-coming company in the smart helmet space.
A few years ago, I took a break from my lovely MO family and decided to get a real job, complete with an actual commute. Without the pick of the litter to choose from anymore, I had to actually buy a bike to get to work on. The pick? A Kawasaki Versys – anecdotally, the number one motorcycle actually owned by motorcycle journalists (or former ones, in this case). When asked, Brad Puetz (pronounced like the Fight Club actor but not nearly as famous), Kawi’s PR guy, spouted off a series of names of folks in this job who own the VERsatile SYStem.
Kawasaki’s November 2019 acquisition of a 49.9% shareholding in Bimota has brought the Italian boutique manufacturer back from oblivion, to the point that despite a slowdown caused by component supply issues, it’s now constructed all 250 examples of the its limited edition kickoff model unveiled at the 2020 EICMA Milan Show, the supercharged hub-centre Tesi H2 now being shipped to its dealers around the world – but mainly in Japan. As Bimota’s strapline for the bike succinctly puts it – “The Revolution Continues!”
This is going to be awkward. You see, you’re about to read a piece about Ducati’s most focused Streetfighter V4 yet. You’re going to expect it to be a highly refined and special machine, worthy of the Sport Production suffix. And you know what – you’re right. It’s good. It’s very good.