superbike

superbike

When Ducati began using carbon fiber on their bikes, they predictably used it on a limited edition, single-seat Ducati 900 Super Sport . Built from 1992 to 1996 as the Ducati 900 Superlight, the bike used the aforementioned carbon fiber material on a number of its components, particularly the mudguards and the clutch cover.

Initially, the Italian bike maker wanted to build 500 models of the bike, but bumped that up to 900 pieces after incessant public demand. After the 900 Superlight enjoyed success in the market, Ducati built the Superlight II in 1993, replacing the composite wheels with Brembo units and adding a floating rear disc brakes setup. They also fitted in a powerful 904 cc V-twin SOHC Desmo engine that produced 73 horsepower and was mated to a six-speed transmission.

The Superlight II that was auctioned off at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco was model no. 34 of the 1993 series. It came in original condition, had good paint, and is considered one of the rare super bikes that would find a nice home in a motorcycle collector’s garage.

The bike sold for €4,095 ($5,260), below the estimated auction price of €4,500 - €6,000 ($5,800 - $7,700).

Exclusively sold in Italy to go with other Super Sport models , the Ducati 350 Super Sport was built as a smaller displacement model from 1989 to 1993 and traces its lineage to Ducati’s highly popular 900 cc Super Sport.

The 350 Super Sport was far from a slouch; it was powered by a 341 cc SOHC Desmo V-twin engine that was mated to a five-speed transmission, producing a stout 27 horsepower. Despite the svelte and sporty look, the 350 Super Sport was actually considered an economical bike, at least compared to the 400 cc Super Sport that was released in Japan and Germany until 1995 and the 600 cc Super Sport that was in production from 1993-1997.

The Ducati 350 Super Sport that was auctioned off at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco came in original condition, complete with a nice red paint finish. However, the bike was also noted as "needing some work," which probably explains why it only sold for €585 ($750), a number that’s far below its pre-auction estimated price of €2,800 - €3,800 ($3,600 - $4,900).

As the brainchild of designer Pierre Terblanche, the Ducati MHE900 was born to commemorate Mike Hailwood’s remarkable comeback win at the Isle of Man TT in 1978. Essentially, the MHE900 is Ducati’s first attempt at E-Commerce, building 1,000 models of the bike and putting it up for sale on the Internet. As expected, the MHE900 was an immediate success, prompting Ducati to build another 1,000 numbered units.

In terms of design, the MHE900 comes with a retro styling that harkens back to the design of the 70’s. From the complicated tank and fairing to the dingle-sided steel swing-arm, the MHE900 is truly a bike that stands on its own two wheels. More than just its classic looks, the bike is also powered by an impressive powertrain in the form of a 904-cc, two-valve, air-cooled Desmo Super Sport engine.

The bike auctioned off at the RM Auctions in Monaco - Model No.3 of 2,000 - was about as new condition as any of the other models in existence. It’s been on a number of motor shows as a display bike and was even exhibited at the Ducati factory. Rest assured, this MHE900 is a bike that Ducati collectors would trip over their bids just to own.

Expected pricing for this bike was about €10,000 - €12,000, which is around $13,000 - $15,500 based on current exchange rates. Actual auction price was €12,870, or about $16,528 at the current rates.

More photos of the Ducati MHE900 Model No. 3 of 2,000 after the jump.

It goes without saying that Ducati is in a class of its own as far as super bikes are concerned; this has been proven time and again.

Does it come as a surprise then that the new Ducati Superbike 1199 Panigale S is about as awesome a super bike as we’ve seen in a while? Not that it means a whole lot considering that we’re dealing with Ducati here, but man, this bike is gorgeous beyond reproach.

Credit the Italian bike maker for that. This bike comes with an assertive design that has been enhanced by full LED headlights and a front carbon fiber mudguard. The sleek, low-lying stance of the 1199 Panigale S also adds to the imposing profile of the bike, as do the Marchesini machine-finished wheels, the electronically-controlled suspension, and the adjustable Ohlins steering damper.

The evolution of the 1199 Panigale S came to be when Ducati wanted to create a bike that was not only powerful, but also lighter than its super bike brethren. So, they set out and fitted the bike with the most powerful twin-cylinder engine on the planet, the Superquadro. The 1.2-liter engine hits at an incredible 195 horsepower at 10,750 RPM with 13.5 kgm of torque at 9,000 rpm. The power from the engine courses through six-speed gearbox shafts.

Suffice to say, the Ducati Superbike 1199 Panigale S is, without question, a cut above the rest of its peers.

Find out more about the Ducati Superbike 1199 Panigale S Tricolore after the jump.

Power is a fabulous thing. If you have it, you can’t get enough of it. If you don’t, you want it that much more.

The Kawasaki Ninja 650 isn’t the most powerful bike on the market. But when you’re talking pound-for-pound, the bike’s improved performance, all-new chassis, and bodywork make it one of the best mid-sized sports bikes around.

The 2012 Ninja 650 is a sleeker and more aggressively styled motorcycle than ever before. The all-new bodywork is more sharply defined and more like our race-winning supersport machines, with flowing lines and a tapered brow that blends nicely with the rest of the bike. From an aerodynamic standpoint, the Ninja 650 is as good as it gets. Add an adjustable, 3-position windscreen, a 20mm wider handlebar than the previous version, and a 2-piece seat assembly topped with foam that’s thicker than before, and you have the makings of a comfortable ride in every sense of the word. Complimenting the ergonomic improvements done on the Ninja 650 is an analog tachometer located above an LCD info-center showing speed, trip meters, fuel consumption, remaining range, etc., with a swath of info-lights to the right.

At the heart of the Ninja 650 is a highly advanced, 649cc liquid-cooled vertical twin engine that comes with a digital fuel injection system featuring 38mm throttle bodies and sub-throttle assemblies for optimum response and precise fueling. You won’t need to worry about the Ninja 650 disappointing you on the road because it has an engine that can produce substantial power with plenty of character – especially down low and in the mid-range.

The Kawasaki Ninja 650 has always been known as an outstanding street bike that offers impressive top end performance, yet enough satisfying low- and mid-range oomph to allow novices to get acclimated with it. There’s no question as to how legit this bike is. The only question is whether you can handle owning one.

Find out more about the Kawasaki Ninja 650 after the jump.

Yamaha has been on quite a roll lately, hasn’t it? After scoring their second AMA Pro Racing American SuperBike Championship in many years, Yamaha wants to build on that momentum by introducing the new YZF-R1 .

The model already comes with plenty of MotoGP technology so it’s worth pointing out that with the 2012 model comes all sorts of new updates and innovations that are derived from the company’s rich racing heritage. All bets are off as to how awesome the bike is going to be.

Even better is that the YZF-R1 will also spawn a special World GP 50th Anniversary Edition that will celebrate the company’s aforementioned racing heritage. Only 2000 of these special edition models will be sold and they will come in the company’s race-winning Pearl White/Rapid Red livery with plenty of other unique additions reserved only for the special edition model.

There’s plenty to like about the Yamaha YZF-R1, and there’s no reason for anybody to turn their backs against it, especially when a special edition model is staring right at you at the dealerships.

Find out more about the 2012 Yamaha YZF-R1 after the jump.

It seems that every time there’s a discussion about a hot lap around the Nurbugring, we immediately assume that another edgy supercar is at it again. The list of manufacturers that have taken stabs at the ’Ring is as long as the course itself so excuse us for being a little excited watching a motorcycle take center stage around the track.

The lap comes courtesy of Bridgestone test driver, Tim Rothiq, and a Kawasaki ZX-10R . We won’t have to remind you about the face-morphing characteristics of the Kawasaki superbike because Rothiq was able to do it for us.

The ’Ring offers plenty of challenges even for the most astute of riders so watching Rothiq navigate around the track and blast through it in spectacular fashion is a sight to behold.

Don’t be fooled by the 7:50 time being way short of the record 7:14 lap time of the Lexus LF-A ; the latter is a supercar after all. It’s about as impressive a bike lap as you’ll find anywhere.

And a big kudos to Tim Rothiq for his incredible effort coercing the Kawasaki ZX-10R to behave during the lap time. Lord knows the slightest mistake can lead to a pretty nasty spill.

Check out the video and enjoy the ride, folks!

Source: You Tube

The Aprilia RSV4 has raced and been compared to a number of different things over the years so it’s a little refreshing that for a change, Aprilia USA is taking its competitive juices aside to pay tribute to the the of man’s greatest technological achievement: the space shuttle.

When the first shuttle mission launched back in 1981, it opened the gates for a golden age in technological advancements that coursed through various industries, including the automotive and motorcycle segments. The space shuttle program made so many things possible in this world and opened our eyes to a world full of never-before-though-of possibilities.

Now that the space shuttle is nearing its end, the folks over at Aprilia USA have released a pretty cool video paying tribute to the space shuttle program and all the men and women responsible for designing, building, and operating the very machine that made space travel possible.

As part of the video, Aprilia uses facts from both the space shuttle and their very own RSV4 superbike to note how the former set the precedent - in more ways than one - for the latter, and so many other machines, to become the technological marvels that they are in their own right.

It’s not so much a comparison video this time around for the RSV4, but more of Aprilia tipping their helmets off to one of mankind’s finest achievements as it makes its final voyage into the cosmos.

Source: Aprilia

Erick Buell was once a bigwig at Harley Davidson , having served the role of head engineer and designer of Buell Motorcycles . But when Harley decided to part ways with the sub-brand, Buell likewise left as well, opting to run his namesake brand on his own.

For those wondering how Buell would fare without the financial muscle of Harley Davidson behind him, those questions have been answered with the launch of the company’s new superbike, the unconscionably gorgeous 1190RS.

Defying all the naysayers that said that it couldn’t be done, the 1190RS is a living testament not only to Buell’s fortitude, but also the fact that the company could produce a stunning and technologically advanced superbike on their own. The 1190RS was designed while drawing inspiration from their other previous work - the 1125R - except that the former clearly stands on its own as a superbike serving notice. The frame casting of the bike is all-new while the airbox on the bike is twice the size of the previous version. Other important elements of the bike, including the wheels, suspension, brakes, body, structural components, and controls are all new and stand-alone from anything else Buell Racing has produced in the past.

More details on the Buell Racing 1190RS SUperbike after the jump.

Honda Racing Corporation has decided to unveil their long-awaited NSF250R 4-stroke bike at the Catalunya race circuit in Barcelona on June 2, 2011, just in time for the future Moto3 class that’s set to take the place of the current 125cc category of the GP125 class of the FIM Road-Racing World Championship.

The new NSF250R 4-stroke bike bears striking similarities to the bike it’s replacing, the RS125R. Incidentally, the RS125R was ridden by both Dani Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso to their respective World Championship runs.

In developing the NSF250R, Honda Racing Corporation wanted to build a bike that took the same high-performance, lightweight, and compact elements of the RS125R. “We want users to ride with the same sense of comfort and inherits important elements from the RS125R such as the ability to learn the basics for moving up from entry level to the MotoGP ,” HRC explains.

The bike is scheduled to have its official press face time on June 2nd at the Catalunya circuit in Barcelona with a public demonstration by Alex Criville happening a day later on June 3rd followed by another demo lap right after the warm-up session of the MotoGP race on Sunday, June 5th.

Those of you interested in keeping tabs on the new Moto3 class of MotoGP, you might find it worth your time to check out the bike that’s being groomed to contend in the new series beginning in 2012.

UPDATE 10/11/2011 : America has waited enough, Honda . Now the Japanese company is finally dropping the wait after announcing the arrival of the 2012 HRC NSF250R. Developed for the FIM GP road racing competition in the Moto3 class, the NSF250R promises to live up to the hype - and so much more.


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