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Honda CBR300R ABS 2022 : Road Test

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by Kyle Smith from https://www.hagerty.com/

Picture this: You’re hanging around the Rock Store at the top of Mulholland Highway with your rental Camry the day before you fly home. The leather-clad crowd around praises the virtues of the GSXR600 chassis and the electronics package on the R1 for what seems like hours before a voice from the ether comes down and declares that, in fact, all of that sucks. Instead the holy follow the real truth of Slow Bike Fast.

This truly enlightened rider who belongs to that voice is astride a miniscule machine that looks like a sportbike that stayed in the dryer just a bit too long and has an exhaust note like a mix of an old enduro machine and the Singer your mom used to repair your jeans way back when. Is this person insane or a prophet? There’s only one way to say for sure. I took the Honda CBR300R out for a week of playing in the canyons alongside some high-horsepower (and highly capable) machines to see if it truly held up.

This 250cc-400cc market segment is now a packed class, with the KTM RC390, Yamaha R3, Kawasaki Ninja 400, and Suzuki GSX250R all competing for both attention from new riders and track rats alike. That is two very different subsets of buyers but it all boils down to similar wants and desires: Reliability, approachability, and fun factor.

Honda comes right out and calls the 300 a commuter machine in some of its press materials. It is an evolution of the CBR250R which lived from 2011 to 2015, after which the engine was upsized to the current 286cc. The non-ABS equipped model comes in at $4,899 plus $600 in destination and freight charges. Add in the well-tuned ABS, as seen on our test bike, and the price rises to just $5,099. Either trim can be had in grand prix red or matte gray metallic.

The engine is not the main reason I would recommend this bike though. It’s the chassis that gives the baby CBR the most fun character. A scant 30” seat height is the first thing that stood out when I threw my leg over the bike for the first time. My 32” inseam means that I am rarely bothered by seat heights, but the CBR’s lower seat combined with the narrowness of the chassis to feel playful to me. Riding through twists and turns was an absolute delight.

Straight line speed was not astonishing, but the Honda still moved quickly enough to be safe and fun. Unfortunately, those canyon roads were a place the CBR’s suspension really showed its pricepoint and intended use case. The fork is sprung on the soft side and the rear begs for more rebound damping.

The dash consists of a simple analog sweep tachometer and LCD display for speed, distance, and other necessary measurements. Simple and functional. A cable-pull clutch and hydraulic front brake round out the rider touchpoints.

The ready-to-ride weight comes in at just 354 pounds and it very much feels like it. The single front brake measures just 296mm diameter, with 220mm rear disc and the combination has no problem slowing the CBR. The ABS threshold is fairly high, as we had to work to get it to intervene but it cycled quickly and consistently once engaged.

(Editor’s note: I think the 320cc Yamaha R3, which I’ve ridden quite a bit, feels even lighter on its feet — Jack Baruth)

The CBR is a delight to ride just about everywhere. The only place it fell short was highway riding. Honda claims a top speed just shy of 100mph, but 70mph felt busy on the little machine and the tach needle fluttered in the top third of its range. Will it do it? Yes. If that is your main use though, the larger CBR500R is likely a better fit.

Once off the superslab we had no trouble racking up miles on the comfortable seat. The bike just was not tiring to ride like most small-displacement bikes tend to be.

The low seat height and light weight combine with smooth controls to make a very beginner-friendly package.

It’s also one that veteran riders will find playful to ride–this is the core of “Slow Bike Fast.”

The little CBR is not the perfect motorcycle, but it is a great second (or third) bike; delightful to ride, and once you have one you will likely find yourself reaching for its keys more than you would think.

Aptera Motors Beta Vehicle

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Happy Holidays from Beta!

It’s been a BUSY last few weeks for Aptera. We’ve been hard at work building our first Beta vehicles and now we can gladly say the long hours have paid off. We achieved our goal of taking our first drive in Beta before year’s end and we cannot wait to share more footage with the entire Aptera family soon!

Over the last few weeks, we finished the assembly and fine tuning of our very first Beta, which includes impressive improvements in the front and rear suspension as well as neater cable routing of our in-wheel motors. This first Beta will be used for vehicle dynamics testing and for the validation of our suspension design.

WHO’S READY TO SEE IT ON THE TRACK?

Because of your incredible support of Aptera, this is just one of many milestones we hit in 2021. We now have over 150 employees, 15,000 future Aptera owners and over 8,000 Aptera shareholders from all over the world. We are so humbled by the support of so many people who share our commitment to building the world’s most efficient transportation.

We are stepping into the New Year with a lot to be grateful for and much excitement for the year ahead.

BEST WISHES TO YOU FROM THE ENTIRE APTERA FAMILY!

Still need a last minute holiday gift? You can get 50% off an Aptera pre-order reservation (a value of up to $50) for a loved one until the end of the year. Use promo code HOLIDAY50 at checkout to qualify. And don’t forget, our fundraising round will also be closing on December 31 at midnight.

WEBSITE : https://www.aptera.us/

Why motorcycle lane-splitting is Legal in California but Not in 49 other states

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Why California lets motorcycles legally split lanes while 49 other states do not
from https://ktla.com by Tony Kurzweil

If you’ve ever been startled out of the doldrums of your afternoon commute by a thundering, lane splitting Harley Davidson and cursed whoever is responsible, you’re not alone.

But before you blast the California Highway Patrol with emails listing all the reasons why that congestion-cutting biker should be given a ticket and told to stay in his lane, there are some things you should know.

First, not only is lane sharing or lane splitting legal in California but the CHP wrote the safety guidelines as instructed in AB51, which was approved by Gov. Jerry Brown in 2016.

In fact, although lane sharing occurs in other states, California is the only place where the practice has been made legal.

But why?

Well, one reason is that lane sharing has been going on in California ever since motorcycles have been on the freeway, so it was important to set some ground rules, CHP Motorcycle Officer Brian O’Toole said.

The second, and maybe more interesting reason, is that it makes time spent on the freeway shorter, not only for motorcyclists but for us four-wheel motorists as well.

“As motorcycles are moving through, splitting the lanes … that’s one less vehicle occupying that lane,” CHP Motorcycle Officer Brian O’Toole said.

“It’s saving the average motorist in a car time … If we were to all of a sudden not allow lane splitting anymore, that’s a motorcycle sitting in the lane ahead of them,” O’Toole said.

But just because the motorcyclist has the CHP on their side when it comes to lane sharing, it doesn’t mean they can recklessly speed past you.

“It’s still a privilege … We’re the only state left, so it’s a privilege for us to do this,” O’Toole said

The CHP’s guidelines say bikers should only split lanes when the flow of traffic is 40 mph or less, and not travel more than 10 mph faster than the vehicles surrounding them.

However, nothing is set in stone, O’Toole said. It is always up to an officer’s discretion as to whether the motorcyclist’s actions are deemed unsafe.

Also, like motorists, motorcycles are not allowed to cross in and out of the carpool lane unless there is a designated opening.

“You’re not any more privileged than a car would be to jump into that carpool lane,” O’Toole said.

Motorcycles are supposed to be sharing a lane on one side or the other and cross over only when there’s a broken line marking an entry and exit point.

As for drivers, they can help out too.

“Move over to the left or right, depending on which lane you’re in, and create a little bit of a gap for motorcyclists to safely pass. It’s a win-win situation for both,” O’Toole said.

Ultimately, riders and drivers need to work together to save everyone time on the freeway.

Honda Motorcycle bought in 1981 with zero miles in original condition

By General Posts

Honda motorbike bought in 1981 that has zero miles on the clock because it was confiscated by its teenage owner’s father and locked in garden shed goes up for auction for £2,000

  • Honda CB100N was bought 40 years ago but was never ridden by its teen owner
  • Strict father banned him from riding it and it stayed untouched locked in storage
  • After father died, son found his bike in remarkable condition four decades later
  • The 1981 bike is now going up for auction and is expected to fetch up to £2,000

by Katie Feehan from https://www.dailymail.co.uk

A 40-year-old Honda bike with no mileage on it has been rediscovered and is up for auction after the disapproving father of its first teen owner banned him from riding it and locked it away in storage for decades.

The 1981 Honda CB100N was bought brand new by the youngster in his youth while he lived with his parents.

However, his boyhood fantasy of riding a motorcycle never materialised because his strict father banned him from riding it.

Instead the machine was left to languish in storage for the next four decades.

After his father died the unnamed owner, who is now aged in his 50s, was tasked with clearing out his house in Bridgewater, Somerset, and stumbled upon his old but immaculate bike.

He agreed to sell the time-capsule Honda to neighbour Graham Tozer who has now put it up for sale at auction.

The bike still has its original tax certificate with an expiry date of July 31, 1982. The odometre displays the exact mileage of a mere four tenths of a mile.

Mr Tozer, 64, said: ‘I’m a collector of classic bikes and cars, so six months ago my neighbour called me up and said they needed rid of it.

‘He was born in the house and spent all of his life there. When he was a youngster he really wanted his own bike but when he brought it home his dad wouldn’t let him ride it.

‘He’d saved up for such a long time to buy it but his father just said, ‘you’re not going on that. You can stick it in the shed’.

‘Apparently his dad was really strict. He was ex-military and he was the boss of the house.

‘I would have loved a bike like that when I was younger but my dad probably would have done the same thing.

‘To have a motorbike from the eighties which hasn’t been touched is so unique. It really is like the Holy Grail for collectors.’

George Beale, a specialist at Charterhouse Auctioneers of Sherborne, Dorset, said: ‘These bikes were ordinarily used for commuting, so those which are still on the market from the 1980s tend not to be in the greatest condition.

‘But with a little work this one could be like brand new, which is incredibly unusual for something so old.

‘It would be rare to find any vehicle from the 1980s without any miles whatsoever. It just so happens that this young boy’s tyrant father was far more forceful than he was.’

The Honda is being sold with a pre-sale estimate of £2,000 at the Haynes International Motor Museum on October 14.

BMW Vision AMBY showcases excellence against H-D Serial 1 e-bikes

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SOURCE: https://www.autoevolution.com/

SOURCE: https://www.financialexpress.com/

BMW unveils Vision AMBY electric bikes: 300+ km range, 60 km/h top speed!
BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY Breaks the Norm With Striking Design and Advanced Tech

Of BMW’s 2021 IAA display, a very interesting one is the BMW i Vision AMBY, a peddle electric bicycle that boasts three speed ratings – 25 km/h for cycle tracks, 45 km/h for the city and 60 km/h for multi-lane roads (although, higher speeds would require a licence as well).

The i Vision AMBY also gets the rest of fancy EV features like geofencing which can be used for automatically adjusting its speed. It is one of five different concept vehicles with which the BMW Group is presenting at the IAA Mobility event.

While users of the BMW i Vision AMBY have to constantly pedal in order to benefit from the assistance of the electric drive system, BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY accelerates via a throttle grip

One of the five concept vehicles showcased by BMW at IAA Mobility 2021 is truly innovative – neither a bike or a motorcycle, the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY blends the best of each category with advanced connectivity and geofencing technology.

BMW unveiled two electric vehicles with two wheels under the “Adaptive Mobility” (AMBY) concept. Both of them come with three speed levels for different types of road, and require an adequate driving license, insurance license plates, and a helmet for riding at maximum speed. Compared to the BMW i Vision AMBY that requires constant pedaling, the Motorrad Vision uses the throttle grip and features footrests instead of pedals, like a motorcycle.

According to BMW, while it resembles a bicycle, the new Motorrad Vision flaunts the features of a powerful motorbike, including an 830 mm-tall (32.6”) seat, a large bicycle fork, a small headlight with the U-shaped BMW Motorrad light signature, and the fact that it’s accelerated from the handlebars. However, at 65 kg (143 lbs), it’s lighter than typical motorbikes, which makes it more agile and manageable.

Instead of manually selecting the riding mode – 25 kph (15.5 mph) on cycle paths, 45 kph on inner-city roads (27.9 mph), 60 kph (37.2 mph) on multi-lane roads and out of town, geofencing technology and the HERE map service could be enough for automatically adjusting speed levels.

This way, the vehicle could determine the type of road and adjust the speed accordingly, without any intervention. Plus, the license plate would act as an innovative display, where the operating mode would be visible for the other road users.

The problem is that, at the moment, there’s no legal basis for this “modular speed concept”. This is where the Motorrad AMBY becomes a true pioneer, because it’s precisely intended to help bring out the legislation that will regulate this concept in the near future.

No future driving or riding experience can be envisioned without connectivity, and the BMW specially developed app allows the rider to activate the motorbike, while providing access to basic functions and status data.

While additional features such as an optimized ABS system or a tire pressure monitoring system could make the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY even safer and more efficient, this concept motorbike already reflects a truly innovative spirit that redefines the boundaries between bikes and motorcycles.

PRESS RELEASE: 6 SEPTEMBER 2021

As a completely new concept between bicycle and motorbike, the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY taps into fresh possibilities for the innovative, urban mobility of the future. It is one of five different concept vehicles that the BMW Group will use at the IAA Mobility 2021 in Munich to showcase its vision of individual mobility in and around the urban setting.

Under the common umbrella of electric mobility, digitalisation and sustainability, these five pioneering concepts form a versatile and sustainably conceived mobility mix on two and four wheels that comprehensively addresses a highly diverse range of mobility needs.

BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY and BMW i Vision AMBY.

AMBY stands for “Adaptive Mobility”. The BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY and the BMW i Vision AMBY (see BMW i Vision AMBY press release) interpret the fundamental idea of adaptive urban mobility on two wheels based on differing facets. Both vehicles are electrically powered with three speed levels for different types of road. The drive allows up to 25 km/h on cycle paths, up to 45 km/h on inner-city roads and up to a top speed of 60 km/h on multi-lane roads and out of town. A helmet, insurance licence plates and the relevant driving licence are required to be able to travel at higher speeds, however. While the BMW i Vision AMBY as a high-speed pedelec requires constant pedalling in order to gain assistance from the electric drive, the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY is accelerated using the throttle grip and has footrests instead of pedals, as is typical of a motorcycle.

The modes available to the rider are stored in the app on the smartphone that connects to the respective AMBY vision vehicle.

Manual selection of the speed level is conceivable, as is detection of the road by means of geofencing technology, thereby allowing automatic adjustment of the top speed. As there is currently no legal basis for such a vehicle with a modular speed concept, the idea behind the AMBY vision vehicles is to prompt legislation that will enable this kind of set-up. In this way, the BMW Group is demonstrating that it will continue to be involved in providing mobility options in big cities in the future and offers innovative solutions.

New stimuli for emotional mobility on two wheels.

“The BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY takes us into new territory. For us, the focus is on user behaviour – the question is: how will customers want to get around in the future? What will they expect their vehicle to be capable of? This was precisely the starting point of our deliberations. Our aim was to develop an extremely emotional vehicle for smart mobility in and around the city that offered maximum freedom. The BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY really does enable our customers to experience urban life in a whole new way, cover distances more flexibly and “break free” of the city from time to time, too. At the same time, BMW Motorrad is consistently pursuing its electromobility strategy for urban conurbations. It’s a fascinating introduction to the world of BMW Motorrad that also promises maximum riding pleasure,” explains Edgar Heinrich, Head of Design BMW Motorrad.

The design – the DNA of BMW Motorrad.

The BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY defies all existing categories: visually akin to the world of bicycles, it is a motorbike at heart. Its slender proportions promise ruggedness and adventure, while its design suggests clear echoes of the expressive style and layout of an BMW Enduro motorbike. With chunky treads on both the 26-inch front wheel, which has a thinner tyre, and the 24-inch rear wheel with its more rounded tyre, the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY clearly shows that it is both willing and able to go anywhere. The firmly integrated seat with a height of 830 mm is just as typical a motorbike feature as the fixed footrests.

The seat also acts as a design element over the flat, rising upper frame section, creating a striking flyline. This produces a completely new, fresh look for BMW Motorrad – a link between the e-bike and motorbike world.
The large energy storage unit and drive unit form a dark graphic block at the centre of the frame.

The large-dimensioned bicycle fork on the front wheel features protectors and gives the entire front section a more massive, powerful look. A small headlight with the U-shaped BMW Motorrad light signature is a clear reference to the roots of the concept, as is the double LED element as a tail light. Another BMW Motorrad feature is that the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY is accelerated from the handlebars, as is customary on a motorbike.
With a total weight of just 65 kg, the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY is significantly lighter than other motorbikes, ensuring it offers excellent manoeuvrability and agility.

Colour and material concept featuring depth and unexpected details.

As compared to a conventional combustion engine, the concept of the electric drive in the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY means there is little in the way of visible mechanics.
For this reason, its technical heart is deliberately disguised and showcased in a striking machine-like style. This accentuates the highly elaborated colour and material concept, which goes well beyond the traditional dark underlying colour scheme and use of white highlights.

In its use of materials, the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY cross-references two other concept vehicles that will also see their world premiere at the IAA Mobility 2021: The BMW i Vision Circular and the BMW i Vision AMBY. The trim material used on the energy storage unit – known as “floating grey polymers” – is also used in the bumper of the BMW i Vision Circular. It consists of recycled plastic and can itself be fed back into the material cycle at the end of the product lifecycle. Meanwhile the material used for the seat is also to be found in the saddle of the BMW i Vision AMBY and in the tyres of the BMW i Vision Circular. Based on recycled plastic granulate and sporting a fascinating terrazzo look, it demonstrates how several materials can be given a second life with a new form and function.

Asymmetrical design of the sides of the vehicle.

In keeping with the unexpected, self-assured character of the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY, its two sides have deliberately been designed distinctively. On both sides, the white “AMBY” lettering catches the eye above the light-coloured drive unit, making a striking statement as a stylised graphic on the trim of the energy storage unit. While the lettering on the left gains additional visual depth from a colourfully shimmering, iridescent drop shadow, the inscription on the right appears deliberately without a drop shadow. Below the energy storage unit there are two iridescent elements that add a further accentuation.

On the right-hand side of the vehicle, three small turquoise blue tubes visibly emerge from the silhouette, clearly alluding to the electric heart of the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY. Next to this is a quote by Markus Schramm, Head of BMW Motorrad: „Electro-mobility will be very significant for the future of motorcycling. We foresee a slew of upcoming products with a focus on electric propulsion, particularly in the field of urban mobility. And I’m not only thinking of classic scooters here, but also of alternative modern, emotional products. Electro-mobility on two wheels needs to be really fun and adventurous and BMW is committed to developing corresponding products.”

On closer inspection, the interplay between the technoid pixel font with the classic serif font reflects a great attention to detail at several points: together these bridge the gap between the past and the future – just like the vision vehicle itself. The coordinates on the right are a reference to the BMW Motorrad Design Studio in Munich, where the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY came into being. On the opposite side, the letters “AMBY” also appear in Morse code, but with dashes visualising the dots. In their perfect interplay, all these carefully conceived details create a unique graphic and a highly contemporary sense of style.

The smartphone as the key.

The specially developed app enables the user to activate the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY for riding, read in their stored driving licence classes and make use of the appropriate insurance cover on an on-demand basis as required. In this way, the app performs the classic key function while also making use of the customary identification options provided by the smartphone such as Face ID. Basic functions and status queries (e.g. current charge status) are available as in the BMW App. Further developments and adjustments to the software can be provided to customers at any time via over-the-air updates.
The smartphone shown in the vision vehicle charges inductively on the magnetic holder in the rider’s lower field of vision. These connectivity options would also allow anti-theft protection and the freely programmable immobiliser to be offered as basic functions.
And the answer to the question “Where is my BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY?” would be just a click away on the smartphone, too.

Geofencing as a key technology.

Instead of choosing the riding mode yourself, geofencing technology combined with the detailed HERE map service could provide the required parameters for automatically adjusting speed levels (25/45/60 km/h) and the matching insurance cover. This technology enables the vehicle to detect the type of road, cycle path or slow-traffic area currently being used so that the maximum permitted speed can be automatically adjusted. In this way, the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY would transform from a vehicle similar to an S-pedelec to something that is more motorcycle-inspired. The user cannot override the mode. The required licence plate takes the form of an innovative display surface, so the mode selected at any given time can be easily recognised and read by other road users.

Additional technological innovations are conceivable for the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY, too: an optimised ABS system could further increase safety, as could an automatic high beam or brake light assistant, as well as daytime running lights. A tyre pressure monitoring system such as the one already available as an optional extra in BMW Group motorcycles is also conceivable. Finally, potential safety features could also include a distance radar with a range of up to 140 m to provide a visual and acoustic warning in the app when there is a vehicle approaching from behind.

The BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY shows one possible manifestation of what the modern, urban mobility of tomorrow might look like. It is intended as a blueprint to drive forward conversations about future-oriented travel in cities.

Figures of the BMW Motorrad Vision AMBY.

Battery: not specified

Output: not specified

Vmod1: up to 25 km/h

Vmod2: up to 45 km/h

Vmodmax: up to 60 km/h

Range: approx. 110 km (combined according to WMTC)

Wheels: Studded spoke wheels with 26-inch front and 24-inch rear

Seat height: 830 mm

Unladen weight: approx. 65 kg

Electric dream: Horwin CR6 reviewed

By General Posts

by Fraser Addecott from https://www.mirror.co.uk

Sales of electric two-wheelers are booming and with manufacturers producing bikes like this one, it’s easy to see why.

It seems difficult to keep up with the number of new electric two-wheelers coming on to the market these days.

The trend was already under way and has only been accelerated by the pandemic, with commuters and others looking for alternatives to public transport.

Figures from the Motorcycle Industry Association show sales of electrics for June up 155% compared to the same month last year.

Sales for the year up until last month are also up 210% compared to the same period in 2020.

That is impressive growth, with the majority of bikes sold falling in the 50cc and 125cc equivalent categories.

Artisan Electric is a British company established in 2016 with a “mission to change the face of electric motorcycles and scooters with industry-leading innovation and product quality”.

The company offers a range of seven electric bikes and scooters – and the one I am testing here is the CR6.

This is a 125cc-equivalent machine, with a pretty cool retro-meets-futuristic look.

The air-cooled electric motor is powered by a 3.96kWh Panasonic lithium-ion battery.

Careful riding will produce a range of around 60 miles.

Haring around flat out – top speed is about 55mph – will cut your range to around 30 miles.

That may not sound much, but the CR6 is aimed at commuters and for jaunts into town, so it’s perfectly adequate.

A full charge from zero takes around four hours, but bear in mind you’ll hardly ever be charging from completely flat, so shorter times are more realistic.

Charging is via a standard three-pin socket and a socket in the side of the bike.

The battery comes with a reassuring three-year warranty.

On board, the ride position is relaxed and comfortable with a long and well-padded cafe-racer type seat.

There’s a round retro/modern, backlit, colour clock with a rather unnecessary rev counter across the top and a LCD panel with speed, charge level etc.

As with all electrics, the acceleration is instantaneous and impressive.

At just 134kg, this bike is light and it feels agile, manageable and nippy – perfect for the urban jungle.

With low-down weight, a decent aluminium chassis and an excellent turning circle, the CR6 handles extremely well.

The non-adjustable USD forks and preload-adjustable rear monoshock do a perfectly reasonable job.

And braking via a front 265mm disc and three-piston caliper and rear 220mm is plenty powerful enough.

The headlight is a nice bright LED and the “tank” is actually a lockable storage compartment, ideal for the charge cable, gloves etc.

It also contains a USB port – handy for charging your phone.

At five grand, the CR6 is obviously a bigger initial outlay than a petrol 125, but running costs work out at just a penny a mile.

Overall then, the Horwin is a solid little city commuter, easy to ride, with good looks and decent performance.

Specs:
Horwin CR6
Motor: Air-cooled electric
Max power: 8bhp
Max torque: 30ft lb
Colours: White; blue; green; black
Price: £4,992

Yamaha XSR125 makes global debut

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from https://www.financialexpress.com

Smallest neo-retro XSR to launch in Europe in June.

A new-retro-styled Yamaha has just been revealed which would make fun daily commuter, enter XSR125 – the smallest XSR to date. The Japanese manufacturer is expanding its 125cc portfolio with the XSR125 which is based on the same platform as the MT-125 and R125 but with classic clothing. Although it packs a range of modern features which are quite a necessity now.

Yamaha XSR125 is powered by a 124cc liquid-cooled SOHC engine that puts out 14.7 bhp at 10,000 rpm and 11.5 Nm of torque at 8,000 rpm and is paired with a six-speed transmission. The engine boasts advanced Variable Valve Actuation and is Euro V compliant.

Being a neo-retro, the XSR125 gets a round headlamp casing but with an LED lamp and an LED tail lamp as well, a rounded fuel tank design, and a long flat seat. Bodywork has been kept at its minimal with the underbelly revealing the engine and radiator, but it does get an engine guard.

The instrument cluster is a retro-themed LCD display with a chrome outer finish. Colour options include Redline, Impact Yellow and Tech Black, along with contrasting decals for each.

Suspension setup includes 37 mm upside-down forks and swingarm for the rear and brakes are covered by a 267 mm disc up front and a 220 mm at the rear. Tyre sizes are 110 and 140, front and rear. It weighs in at 140 kg with a seat height of 815 mm, 160 mm ground clearance and a fuel tank capacity of 11 litres.

Yamaha Tricity 300 is the ideal Covid commuter machine

By General Posts

by Rob Hull from https://www.dailymail.co.uk

Covid commuter: Yamaha’s three-wheel Tricity 300 can be ridden with just a car licence and used in bus lanes – is it the answer for safe pandemic transport?

For those of us living or working in cities, getting around has been a whole lot more complicated in 2020.

With the Government repeatedly telling us to keep away from public transport if at all possible and traffic returning to near pre-pandemic levels, as more people use their cars, many have been left to make the difficult decision of taking risks with their well-being or enduring hours a week in jams to get to work.

But there could be an answer to the problem – and it comes with three wheels.

It’s called the Yamaha Tricity. And while it might look like a cross between a scooter and a Transformer, it could be the ideal commuting machine during the Covid pandemic…

I live in London and am one of the lucky ones who has been able to return to a coronavirus-compliant office a few days a week to escape the rigmorale of home working.

But having winced each time after touching a hand-rail on the bus or grumbled at the sight of people without face masks on the underground, I began researching alternative transportation options.

That’s when I stumbled across the new Tricity 300, which was released earlier this year.

As is the dead giveaway in the name, it has three wheels and a 300cc (well, it’s actually 292cc) single-cylinder engine.

Scooters like this are not out of the ordinary these days; Piaggio launched the first three-wheeler – the MP3 – way back in 2006, and it’s become a popular choice along with rival tripod scooters, especially among commuters and delivery riders in London and other major cities.

Yamaha Tricity 300 has loopholes to make it perfect for pandemic commuting

But the Tricity 300 has a few tricks up its sleeve. That’s because – unlike other tripod scooters – you don’t need to hold a motorcycle licence of any type to ride it.

If you’re over the age of 21 and have a full car licence you can drive one without having to undertake any extra training – even if you’ve never sat on a motorbike of any type before in your life.

This is due to a stipulation about the distance between the two front wheels.

The gap between them – 470mm – and the fact it has a foot pedal brake means the Tricity 300 qualifies as a trike rather than a motorcycle.

That means a ‘B’ car licence is adequate to ride one and, in theory, you don’t even have to wear a helmet – though we’d dissuade you from doing so on safety grounds and that it would likely to make you popular with police officers.

You can even take a passenger on the back, which is also fully within the rules.

And the Tricity has a few other loopholes up its sleeve that make it appeal to a wider audience than just dedicated bikers.

Not least the fact you can use it in bus lanes, which are free to access on a trike with a weight of less than 450kg in London – with the Tricity tipping the scales at almost half that (239kg). Perfect, for bombing past car drivers backed-up on congested routes.

You can also use dedicated motorcycle parking bays that are dotted around metropolises.

The one downside I discovered is, because of its length, it is not exempt from the Congestion Charge, which could mean taking the odd diversion if you’re destination is in – or route is via – central London.

How easy is it for novice riders?

As an experienced motorcyclist (I’ve been riding motorbikes since I was six), it took a little time for me to reset my brain to understand not just riding but handling a three-wheeled scooter from a novice’s perspective.

The first thing anyone would notice is that it’s a bit of a lump to wheel around – and most of the weight is top heavy due to the oddball front suspension system.

However, Yamaha has equipped the Tricity with something called ‘Standing Assist’, which is a button on the left handlebar that, when activated, locks the front forks in a fixed upright position.

This makes it far easier to wheel the bike around, whether that’s to manoeuvre it in a garage or slot it into a small space in a bike parking bay. So much so, in fact, that you can push it back and forth with one finger without having to worry about the bike toppling over.

The assist system can also be triggered when you’re slowing to a standstill, in traffic or when stopping at a junction for instance.

Creep below 8mph and an orange light illuminates on the digital dashboard to say it can be activated before the clocks hit 0mph.

It means you never have to put your feet down, if you can get the hang of it.

It sounds easy in theory, but it does take some time to master – even more so for a novice rider with just a car driving licence to their name.

That said, it rapidly become second nature, and you’ll quickly be levitating at every set of traffic lights.

Once you open the throttle – even the lightest twist of the grip – the Standing Assist automatically deactivates and the front end can freely rock from side-to-side again, so you need to give it some welly if you haven’t got a sole on the tarmac.

Once on the move, the Tricity is a nimble vehicle. Even at low speeds, it takes very little effort to lever it from one side to the other. The biggest compliment I can give it is that it feels very much like a conventional motorcycle at pace.

And it’s not slow. Even with just 28bhp at the back wheel and a weight of around a quarter of a tonne, it fires off the line with plenty of urgency.

It also comes with traction control on standard, which cuts the power if the rear wheel spins up on damp tarmac or if you’re too hamfisted – a safety feature rarely available on a scooter of this size.

Flat out, it will – reportedly – accelerate over an indicated 80mph, and thanks to the large fairing it offers ample wind protection if you do take it out on a motorway.

Security you just won’t find on two wheels

By far the biggest benefit of a scooter of this ilk is that it gives you something you’ll always lack on a motorcycle, and that’s added an added sense of security.

With two wheels out front, you could ride it across an ice rink and not fall off it.

It delivers this sensation of safety in droves and you quickly build up confidence to tip into corners in the wet without a concern in the world, rather than having the fear of the front wheel washing away from underneath you at any given moment.

Adding to this feeling of security is the extremely potent braking power.

While it has the traditional lever on the right bar to operate the front brake, both the left lever and additional foot pedal in the right-hand-side of the footwell anchor the brakes for all three wheels and is incredibly responsive.

We didn’t use the footbrake at all, to be honest, but grabbing a handful with your left mitt and the scooter comes to a standstill in an instant – and you don’t have to worry about the front wheel sliding from beneath you and leaving you in a heap in the road.

What are the running costs like?

In theory, the Tricity 300 returns a claimed 85.6mpg, depending on how aggressive you are with the throttle, so it takes quite a few miles for you to empty the 13-litre fuel tank. I was averaging around 70mpg, though predominantly riding through town.

Tax is just £44 a year, insurance will be substantially cheaper than car cover and consumables like the tyres and brakes last longer because the stresses put through them are shared across three locations rather than two.

The biggest stumbling block is the price, with an option-free Tricity 300 ringing in at a fairly steep £7,547. Put down a deposit of £1,574 and monthly payments on PCP finance fall to £89 over three years (and a final balloon payment of £3,780 if you want to keep it after the 36-month period).

Is it the ideal Covid commuter?

Even for someone who has never ridden a motorcycle before, the Tricity 300 will be a doddle to use – definitely a safer stepping stone than going from four wheels to two.

Unlike some bikes that will frighten newcomers with bundles of power and the possibility of it flinging you off at any moment, the Tricity instills confidence you can’t get with two wheels.

Throw into the mix that it has both a side stand and centre stand, hand-operated parking brake, keyless ignition and under-seat storage for two helmets – or a couple of rucksacks when you’re riding – and it has a modicum of the practicality you’d expect from a tiny city car. You also get a 12v-volt chargepoint on the inside of the fairing near your knee – though an USB would have been a better socket for 2020 life.

A winter pack option, which adds an apron, heated grips and knuckle visors to keep your hands toasty, is a recommended £280 addition if you are going to use it at this time of year.

The downside is the bulk – more so when you’re trying to move it around with the engine off. The standing assist function works well, but it still feels like you’re pushing a hulking shopping trolley around rather than a light motorcycle.

Commuters should be warned that you do need to take care when filtering. It feels wider than a skinny 300cc-comparable two-wheeler and the mirrors in particular – which are mounted just below the screen – are at the same height as most commercial vehicle wing mirrors, so can result in clangs with white van men.

But trundling past stationary traffic while you keep yourself isolated from the virus will fill you with a smugness that will make you forget about how cold it is commuting on a scooter in November time.

For getting to work safely, quickly and cheaply, there are few better choices than this.

Price: from £7,547

Engine: 292cc, single cylinder, liquid-cooled, 4-stroke, SOHC, 4-valves

Power: 28bhp

Top speed: 85mph

Fuel consumption: 85.6mpg

CO2 emissions: 77g/km

Kerb weight: 239kg

Fuel tank capacity: 13 litres

Length: 2,250mm

Width: 815mm

Height: 1,470mm

Seat height: 795mm

Wheelbase: 1,595mm

Electric scooter sharing firm VOI raises $30 million for European expansion

By General Posts

VOI-Electric scooter sharing firm VOI raises $30 million for European expansion

STOCKHOLM: Electric scooter sharing firm VOI Technology has raised $30 million in another fundraising round since being set up seven months ago for its European expansion and investment in research to fend off growing competition, it was reported on Monday.

Uber Technologies Inc, Alphabet and several other high-profile investors are very interested in gambling on scooter-sharing leading to rapid rise in Europe thanks to large commuter populations and lower levels of car ownership compared to USA.

Domestic startups such as Tier and Dott and U.S. rivals Bird and Lime raised thousands of dollars in 2018 to expand further into the crowded marketplace after having successfully put many scooters on European roads.

VOI is backed by investors such as BlaBlaCar CEO Nicolas Brusson and venture fund Balderton Capital. Their belief they can beat rivals by building closer relationships with city authorities gives them an edge over competitors such as Uber.

Unlike major rivals, “asking ‘permission’ before we enter new towns and cities means we can work with the authorities on the ground to offer more than just a viable alternative to cars,” CEO Fredrik Hjelm said. We could also “help people to combine their e-scooter journeys with the existing public transport network,” he added.

People can locate nearby VOI scooters via an app or maps and then ride it by paying a 1 euro unlocking fee plus riding costs of 0.15 euro per minute.

August launch has seen VOI build up over 400,000 riders, taking more than 750,000 rides, and it said it would use the new funds to expand in Italy, Germany, Norway and France.

Critics warn operators could face similar issues as bike sharing firms. Forced into price wars due to competition and facing backlash from authorities over rules and vandalism, bike operators GoBee and Mobike have retreated from Europe.