Archive for Motorbike

Rumormill: Audi hearts Ducati?

The rumours are circling Ducati right now, with the Italian motorcycle manufacturer picked as the latest possible conquest by Audi and The Volkswagen Group.

The car giant and its chairman Ferdinand Piech have been watching Ducati’s alliance with Mercedes/AMG with interest over the past year, and under the Audi satellite, the motorcycle business could be bought for a paltry 1.1 billion US bucks, absolving its current 1-billion plus global debt. So essentially, they would be actually purchasing the brand for a steal. Stay tuned.

Marco Simoncelli dies in horror MotoGP crash

In what has been a horror week in motorsport, Italian rider Marco Simoncelli, 24, has died this afternoon following a three-bike stack at the Malaysian MotoGP in Sepang.

On lap two, Simoncelli lost control of his bike after a right-hand bend (turn 11), and his bike veered across the track straight into the path of Colin Edwards and Valentino Rossi.

The 24-year-old had his helmet crushed and knocked off when Edwards and then Rossi rode into his stricken bike. There was no way to avoid him.

Edwards hit the front of his helmet on a wheel and was visibly hurt, while Rossi rode through the infield and rejoined the track, taking to the pits.

But it was the view of Simoncelli, without a helmet and laying still on the track, that brought the most concern.

The race was immediately red-flagged, but strangely the race control officials were looking to restart the race - perhaps not realising that Simoncelli had lost his helmet and was undoubtedly in a critical condition. Some of the fans at the track were also swept up in the confusion, throwing cans and rubbish onto the track at the announcement of the cancellation of the race.

BBC MotoGP presenter Matt Roberts said: “Marco lost his helmet in the crash. The officials said that, when the track medics got to him, he was in cardiac arrest. They tried to resuscitate him in the ambulance and the medical centre.”

Simoncelli was pronounced dead at 4.56pm at the hospital.

Simoncelli’s death comes just one week after the death of Dan Wheldon in another horror smash in Las Vegas, and is the first MotoGP fatality since Japan’s Daijiro Katoh in the 2003 Japanese GP.

The video is available on YouTube, but be warned, it is graphic.

Ultimate Car vs. Ultimate Bike: Veyron against BMW S 1000 RR

Following up on Motor Trend’s recent Ferrari vs. Ducati article, Inside Line just pitted the world’s fastest car against the world’s fastest bike…at least at the time of writing. So perhaps Bugatti’s own Veyron SS and a Japanese bike or two have grabbed these titles away from the contenders, but it’s still an awfully impressive pair. While on paper the big numbers aren’t really close, the article takes you on a journey that closes the real-world gap between them for you:

First a few numbers.

2010 Bugatti Veyron 16.4: 1,001 horsepower, 253 mph.

2010 BMW S 1000 RR: 190 hp, 191 mph.

Oh, and then there are the price tags: $1.3 million for the Bugatti, a mere $14,295 for the BMW.

But at this moment, we’re not worried about the numbers. All we can think about is the French supercar sitting behind us, buzzing like an impertinent bluebottle fly in the mirrors of the 2010 BMW S 1000 RR. And now it behooves us to unleash the BMW’s inner demon and show this, this insect of a 2010 Bugatti Veyron 16.4 the true, grand order of nature.

That bikes are faster than cars.

Check out the full article and more desktop wallpaper over here.

Race-Ready Mission R from Mission Motors

Mission Motors Mission R

Mission Motors Mission R

The Mission R cut a seductive silhouette in a teaser shot from Mission Motors that presaged its arrival. Now, with its public debut scheduled for later today at the Long Beach International Motorcycle Show, the lights have come up and the bike is rather awe-inspiring. As we take it in details, from its front Brembo brakes to its rear single-sided swingarm, we are indeed smitten.

Mission Motors Mission R motor closeupNewly developed MissionEVT components have been intelligently integrated into a compact James Parker-conceived chassis, then dressed in a design of grace and aggression by Tim Prentice of Motonium. The result is an electric race bike that’s smaller than a typical 600cc MotoGP machine, yet it holds a massive 14.4 kWh battery beneath its carbon fiber skin. You might not guess this creature weighs a significant 545 pounds (247.2 kg), and though we’ve yet to see it dance through the esses, we’re hoping its movements will conceal this fact as well.

To push the package along, the liquid-cooled AC motor pumps out 141 horses with 115 pound-feet of twist on tap from 0 to 6500 RPM. Top speed hasn’t been determined yet (it will only visit the track sometime after the calender flips to 2011), but the company expects it will easily see 160 miles per hour.

We will have the opportunity to see how the Mission R compares with its peers later in the new year when it competes in the TTXGP North American Championship. The factory team has a lot to prove after sitting out the 2010 season, but this certainly looks promising. The official press release and complete specifications await past the break.

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Cardo Scala Rider G4 reviewed at Engadget

As a motorcyclist I was interested to see that the chaps at Engadget have posted a review of the Cardo Scala Rider G4 headsets. I regularly use headsets on my daily commute and also listen to an iPod while I tear up boring motorway miles. I know that there will be those that state that doing so is dangerous however I’d argue that falling asleep due to boredom with only an engine tone to comfort you whilst on the open road is also dangerous. It’s all down to personal choice and personal risk assessments. Living your life involves an element of risk, often it’s not what you do but how you go about it that’s the important element. But enough of the anti “health and safety” monologue from me…

I have to say that seeing these new headsets from Scala in the press release shots I was instantly concerned that the speakers on these new headsets are hard wired so that you can’t use your own earpieces or moulded headsets; it seems that the reviewer spotted this in his review. I’ve avoided the previous Scala releases as overpriced bluetooth headsets in a large plastic box (the current units are around 500USD a set!), here’s what Engadget had to say about the latest version:

image We’ll get this out of the way up front: riding a motorcycle on the road is a generally dangerous and frequently challenging thing. Doing so while dialing into a concall or grooving to some chill tunes is, well, not something we would exactly encourage. So, when we were given the opportunity to test ride Cardo’s latest helmet-friendly Bluetooth headset, the Scala Rider G4, we were a little unsure of just how useful the thing would be for a conscientious, safety-minded rider. We took a pair of the headsets for a spin just the same and were left firmly convinced that that this is a product worth giving up our in-helmet singing careers for. Click on through to read why, and for a demonstration of some supremely impressive noise cancellation. (Engadget)

Continue reading this story at Engadget