Tag

Honda Archives — Bikernet Blog - Online Biker Magazine

Players dominating Electric Bike Market

By | General Posts

by Joe D’Allegro from https://www.cnbc.com

  • Harley Davidson and Honda are among the dominant motorcycle makers with big plans in electric bikes.
  • Harley also recently announced that it is spinning off a nascent electric bicycle business.
  • Uber is among the top investors in electric scooter company Lime, which just posted its first quarterly profit, while competitor Bird is reportedly planning to soon go public via a SPAC.
  • NIU Technologies, which makes smart scooters, has seen its share price soar.

Tesla reached a $500 billion market valuation this week, a sign of its dominance in the electric vehicle market. But Elon Musk has shown no real interest in one growing EV segment: battery-powered scooters and motorcycles. An accident he suffered as a youth on a motorbike — nearly fatal, Musk has said — turned him off two-wheelers, for now. But the manufacturing of battery powered bikes is growing and consolidating, which means it’s likely to produce one or more dominant players in the years to come.

The electric motorcycle and scooter market reached $30 billion in 2019, according to a June 2020 report by Preeti Wadhwani and Prasenjit Saha from the research company Global Market Insights (GMI). They estimated that the market — which includes everything from large motorcycles meant for interstate cruising to tiny stand-up scooters as used by Lime and Bird — will grow more than 4% annually for the next few years and hit $40 billion in 2026.

Concerns over vehicular emissions, increasing consumer awareness about air pollution, and increasing investments by government authorities in the development of EV charging infrastructure are all expected to keep the market growing. Another factor boosting electric bike prospects is the continued improvement in batteries.

E-bikes, scooters and motorcycles

Electric motorcycles and scooters are still relatively pricey, and none yet matches the range of the best gas bikes, but that’s slowly changing. Lithium ion battery costs are down 85% in the last decade, said Garrett Nelson, senior equity analyst at CFRA Research. Within another 10 years, electric motorcycles can achieve price parity with gas bikes, he predicts.

“The playing field is wide open,” says Nelson. He noted that Honda, Yamaha and Harley-Davidson together control about two-thirds of the global motorcycle market, and are each developing electric motorbikes. So too are other big established players, such as the Indian-multinationals Hero Motors and Bajaj Auto, and some smaller electric-only startups, including Zero Motorcycles and Energetica.

Electric mobility is leading to a manufacturing boom for vehicles sized between small foldable scooters and full-on motorcycles, said Sam Korus, an analyst at ARK Invest, which is known for its big bet on Tesla. Uber led a round of investment in Lime earlier this year, while Bird is reportedly considering a public offering through a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC).

Troy Siahaan, a road test editor at Motorcycle.com, races a lightweight custom-built electric bike, giving him insight into the similarities and differences between gas and electric two-wheelers.

“The riding experience of an electric bike is similar to gas-powered motorcycles in that you twist the throttle and go,” he said, “but you don’t get sound, vibration or engine heat with electric bikes. By and large, they also don’t require shifting, so they’re easier for new riders than most gas bikes.”

Siahaan also likes the torque output — a measure of the acceleration — of electric bikes, since it is all available at the outset.

Nelson noted that most growth right now is in the small- to mid-sized section of the electric motorcycle and scooter market. These are popular in China and Southeast Asia, where two-wheelers are more common as a mode of transportation, and pollution and noise reduction are socially and environmentally appealing.

Post-Covid-19 demand in urban mobility

Korus said Chinese scooter manufacturer NIU is among the promising players operating in the space between small folding scooters and large motorcycles. The company, which went public in 2018, sells its app-supported smart scooters in 38 countries across Asia, Europe and North and South America. Its stock has risen sharply. The stylish sit-on scooters offer up to 87 miles of range (140 km), multi-color dynamic gauge displays and GPS-based anti-theft systems.

NIU’s primary competition are low-cost manufacturers in China, which make scooters that are less “smart” than its offerings, as well as the higher-end players out of Asia and Europe, which tend to be priced higher. A NIU model may sell for roughly $3,100, while a comparable Honda is over $5,000, a Vespa over $7,000, and a BMW anywhere from $10,000 to $15,000, according to Vincent Yu, a Needham & Co. analyst.

Korus noted that NIU’s software actively collects data that can be used to support autonomous driving and allows the company to add value on top of just selling products. This is also a key feature of Tesla’s business model, which ARK Invest CEO Cathie Wood has pointed to in her bullish thesis on Musk’s company. But for NIU, monetization of autonomous driving may be fairly far off into the future. Yu said today there is high value in the smart features focused on theft prevention and vehicle maintenance, for example, knowing when parts need replacement. Its lightweight lithium-ion batteries are also an advantage over heavier, older electric scooters as consumers look for more portable batteries that are easier to swap in and out.

A big question for NIU is just how big the market can get and whether it can grow both manufacturing capacity and a retail store network along with it, Yu said. Asia is still heavily reliant on petroleum-based scooters, especially Southeast Asia, but that is changing. And, as the world emerges from the Covid pandemic, Yu is betting more travelers will shy away from mass transit and opt for scooters. In countries like China, they are much easier to obtain than cars thanks to lower costs and less regulation and permitting requirements, especially in larger cities.

NIU commands over 26% of the Chinese e-scooter sales market, and has risen in Europe to No. 3 over the past two years. Yu added that NIU is building a new factory, targeting major Southeast Asian markets like Indonesia, and adding more stores around the world to capitalize on the demand. In Q3, the company opened 182 stores and now has another 100 under construction.

Harley-Davidson and the electric future

In the U.S., smaller motorcycles suitable for urban transportation and only occasional highway use are not as popular as in Asia and Europe. Nelson said U.S. buyers tend to be older and favor larger bikes with traditional looks and the signature sounds of a combustion engine.

Harley-Davidson, the largest and oldest U.S. motorcycle manufacturer, has addressed these buyers with its LiveWire, an electric motorcycle with traditional cruiser styling and an impressive 105 horsepower that lets it accelerate to 60 miles per hour in a quick 3.1 seconds. The LiveWire is 7-feet long and nearly 550 pounds, giving it the size and weight to fit in with the company’s mainstream gas-powered offerings, but, at $30,000, it’s just too expensive for many potential customers.

With the traditional American motorcycle buyer aging, Harley sales are down almost 40% since their peak in 2006. “Demographics will be a problem for them,” Nelson said.

Harley is committed to electric under a relatively new management team, led by CEO Jochen Zeitz, who earned high marks for his focus on sustainability as CEO of Puma. “We believe electric needs to play an important role in the future of Harley-Davidson,” he recently told Wall Street analysts. He said sales volumes are low relative to traditional bikes, but added, “It must be an important segment in the long term future of the company and it’s also attracting new riders, new customers to the brand that might not have considered Harley-Davidson before.”

Craig Kennison, who covers Harley for RW Baird, said the priority for Zeitz and his team is to shore up Harley’s finances and focus its business on the key markets where it can generate the most profits from core consumers today, and it will continue to generate the vast majority of its business from its V-twin internal combustion engine cycles (sales for LiveWire are not disclosed but the assumption is they remain very minor). “It’s not a big number,” Kennison said.

Similar to the path chosen by Tesla to first focus on the luxury consumer, Harley needs to perfect the electric motorcycle technology and given the price points today — it cannot alone control the cost curve in key areas like battery technology — only over time will it become more affordable to a larger consumer market. But if Harley makes the right decisions on current profitability centers, it will support the investment in electric vehicles over the decades to come, he said. “Right now Harley has a huge market and needs to make as much money as they can, and servicing the core customer, which is still highly profitable, is the focus.”

Harley is headed into the pedal bicycle market as well. It recently announced that it will spin off its electric bicycle effort, which has been in research and development for a few years, retaining a minority stake in the new firm, Serial 1 Company, a reference to its first-ever machine.

Targeting the e-bicycle market, with pricing below $5,000, is a smart move by Harley’s new management, as it makes the brand affordable for the masses in a growing segment, said Brandon Rolle, Northcoast Research analyst. And similar to NIU’s target scooter market, riders may not need a driver’s license to operate these vehicles, which will help in Harley-Davidson’s appeal to urban commuters and casual recreational cyclists.

High-end bicycle makers like Specialized have an early lead in this market — e-bikes which generate power that is multiplied by the human pedaling activity — and it does have the potential for widespread appeal in the future, according to Kennison. “It lets ‘the everyman’ get on the road … especially during the pandemic people want to get outside and bicycling is a great way to do it, but depending on your fitness level, having the added electrical power creates a totally different experience. You can go 20 to 50 miles and it changes the appeal” he said.

Harley’s motorcycle competitors

In the near future, pent up demand for outdoor products caused by Covid-19 could benefit motorcycle makers, including Harley, which has had a “rough last five years” according to Wedbush Securities analyst James Hardiman. “A lot of investors have looked at Harley-Davidson and the broader motorcycle one as not benefitting,” from the new outdoors boom, the analyst said. But industry sales and used sales are both up, and those are precursors for a broader-based recovery in bike sales, Hardiman recently told CNBC. While the bear case about the aging demographics isn’t going away, it has been that way for a decade already, he said.

Among Harley’s competitors for the future full-size motorcycle buyer are not just traditional players like Honda and Yamaha, but Zero and Energetica, which have some of the most advanced electric bike technology currently available, Siahaan said.

Zero, founded in Santa Cruz, California, in 2006, isn’t a household name, but it’s one of the most established players in the field. It began selling electric motorcycles in 2009, making it one of the very first production two-wheelers (the earliest production electric motorcycles and scooters appeared in the 1970s and 1990s, respectively, but enjoyed limited success).

Zero’s current all-electric line-up includes everything from the FX, a small on- and off-road capable “dual-sport” motorcycle starting at $9,300, all the way up to the SR/S sportbike which starts at $20,000. The 110-horsepower SR/S can reach 124 miles per hour and is capable of more than 200 miles of range when equipped with an enhanced battery. The FR/S is so advanced Road and Track alluded to Zero getting close to the being the Tesla of two wheels in its review. Zero offers it with an app that lets users modify the bikes maximum speed, power, torque and regenerative braking parameters.

Zero reached a 10-year deal with Polaris, a recreational vehicle powerhouse, that should give it the resources to further expand manufacturing and distribution. It will bring Zero’s powertrain technology and software to Polaris’ lineup of snowmobiles and off-road vehicles.

The high-end brand Energetica was formed in 2010 as a subsidiary of CRP Group, a motorsport and aviation manufacturer based in Modena, Italy. It offers a small lineup of attractively styled bikes starting at $17,600 for the general-purpose Eva EsseEsse9, and ending with the top-of-the-line Ego+. The latter is a 145-horsepower sportbike with an eye-watering starting price of nearly $24,000, but a 150 mph top speed and up to 250 miles of range.

Saha of the Global Marketing Institute told CNBC that the company is investing highly in R&D and owns several patents related to electric vehicle manufacturing in Europe, Asia, and North America.

Of course, as the largest motorcycle manufacturer in the world, Honda Motorcycles of Japan, is not standing still. It recently filed patents for electric-powered versions of its CB125R and CB300R, these are small, easy to manage general purpose bikes with “café racer” styling.

Saha notes that Honda is also making large investments in the development of swappable battery technology for electric motorcycles to allow riders to quickly replace the batteries after use. These moves, and factors like its global dealer and distribution network will aid Honda, Saha said.

Tesla moving beyond cars

And then there is Tesla. Though Musk has said the company will not produce a road bike, he has announced plans to release an electric all-terrain vehicle, the Cyberquad, late in 2021, and has at least teased the possibility of one day making a two-wheeled electric bike. In the least, Tesla could easily pivot a portion of its battery business to supplying other manufacturers, says Nelson.

Generating revenue is a big concern for any start-up, but especially in the electric motorcycle space, where federal and state-level regulation abound and consumer expectations are high. Many of the companies that first entered the electric two-wheeler market place have failed or been absorbed by larger players. This includes Brammo, which launched in 2002 and sold bikes with six-speed transmissions like those in traditional gas bikes rather than the single-speed automatics most electric manufacturers use. It was first purchased by the recreational vehicle maker Polaris in 2015, then engine maker Cummins in 2017. Brammo-branded bikes are no longer sold, but its technology lives on with its purchasers.

A similar fate befell Alta Motors, a maker of technologically advanced off-road electric bikes. The company shuttered operations in 2018 and its assets were taken over by Bombardier’s Recreational Products business in 2019 for use across its product lineup, which includes Ski Doo snowmobiles and the Can-Am line of three-wheel motorcycles.

“It’s always difficult to predict the future,” Siahaan said. “A lot of companies come out with big, bold announcements, but never even come to market.”

“It’s very early, so it is difficult to see how it all plays out, but that’s typical of a true growth market,” added Kennison.

All-New Rebel 1100 Cruiser from Honda

By | General Posts

by Sabrina Giacomini from https://www.rideapart.com

Not all new motorcycle rumors are true, especially when you’re Honda and you run your own rumor mill. Sometimes, however, despite all the noise, some of those rumors turn out to be real and we get nice surprises like this shiny new 2021 Honda Rebel 1100.

We’ve been talking about a possible Rebel 1100 since March, 2020, when the folks at Young Machine published a render of an upscaled Rebel 500 armed with the Africa Twin’s new 1100 engine. The bike ultimately showed up in a patent in October which seemed to confirm the rumor. It became more a matter of “when” rather than “if”.

Well, folks, the “when” is November 24. Honda pulled the cover off its all-new buffed up Rebel, equipped, as expected with a retuned version of the CRF1100L’s 1,084cc, 270-degree, Unicam, parallel-twin. Also, like the Africa, the Rebel 1100 is equipped with a ride-by-wire throttle that allows the cruiser to feature three riding modes (Standard, Sport, and Rain) and is offered with a choice of a six-speed gearbox or a DCT.

At the front, the cruiser chassis is mounted to a 43mm telescopic fork while the back is support by a pair of Showa shocks with piggyback reservoirs. The 18-inch front wheel is equipped with a 330mm disc with a four-piston caliper while the 16-inch rear wheel gets its stopping power from a single 256mm disc. The bike also features ABS at both wheels and Honda Selectable Torque Control with wheelie control.

A 3.6-gallon fuel tank sits on top of the chassis (versus 2.96 gallons for the Rebel 500 for comparison) and the bike weighs in at a total of 487 pounds for the manual trim level and at 509 pounds with the DCT.

Pricing for the new 2021 Honda Rebel 1100 starts at $9,299 which is $700 cheaper than, say, the Harley-Davidson Iron 1200 ($9,999) and $2,000 less than the Forty-Eight (for a comparable bobber-ish silhouette). Honda also offers a collection of factory accessories that includes soft saddlebags with rack, a batwing fairing, quilted saddles in black and tan

Here’s A Custom Honda CB900F Bol d’Or That’ll Have You Awestruck

By | General Posts

by Silvian Secara from https://www.autoevolution.com

Senhor Motorcycles’ spells made this fatigued CB900F regain its former youth.

Back in the day, Honda’s fearsome CB900F, or the Bol d’Or, was a force to be reckoned with. Quite frankly, to say that it was ahead of its time would be an understatement! This glorious piece of Japanese machinery is powered by a vicious four-stroke DOHC inline-four colossus, with four Keihin carbs and a compression ratio of 8.8:1. The air-cooled beast prides itself with a humungous displacement of 901cc.

At approximately 9,000 rpm, CB900F’s fiendish powerplant will generate up to 95 hp. On the other hand, ruthless torque output of 57 pound-feet (77 Nm) will be accomplished at around 8,000 revs. A five-speed gearbox channels this force to the rear 18-inch wheel via a chain final drive. Ultimately, the whole ordeal leads to a respectable top speed of 135 mph (217 kph).

Without going into any other details, it’s safe to conclude that Honda’s iconic two-wheeler is no toy. However, even a gem like Bol d’Or will begin to show its age after spending as many as four decades on the tarmac. Thankfully, the moto industry was blessed with countless customization workshops that’ll be more than happy to work their magic on a weary creature.

Nacho Fernández’s Senhor Motorcycles is one such enterprise, and their one-off CB900F does a neat job at demonstrating their abilities. The transformation began with the removal of its outdated suspension modules. In their stead, the Spanish firm installed Suzuki GSX-R1100’s forks at the front, along with dual YSS shock absorbers on the other end.

Next, the crew replaced Bol d’Or’s stock hoops with a pair of 17-inch six-spoke wheels from a Honda VTR SP-1. These bad boys wear GSX-R1100’s brakes up front, while VTR’s rotor takes good care of stopping power at the rear. Additionally, the rims are hugged by high-performance Roadtec Z8 rubber from Metzeler’s catalog.

After experiencing a comprehensive restoration, CB900F’s inline-four monstrosity was treated to a majestic four-into-four exhaust system, retuned carburetors and a set of pod filters. The Senhor team even went as far as crafting an array of unique components inhouse, such as one handsome front fairing and a new subframe that supports a hand-shaped tail section, to name a few.

Lastly, you will find several aftermarket items that round out the fresh aesthetic, including a Motogadget Chronoclassic gauge, LSL clip-ons and a Lucas taillight kit.

Personally, I’m aching to see what other projects Senhor Motorcycles is planning to tackle in the future!

Royal Enfield Meteor 350 To Launch After New Honda Rebel Cruiser

By | General Posts

by Arun Prakash from https://www.rushlane.com

Meteor 350 is the latest offering from Chennai-based manufacturer; and will replace Thunder 350 and Thunderbird 350X

Motorcycle enthusiasts who were patiently awaiting launch of the new Meteor 350 would have to hold on a bit longer. Royal Enfield has now postponed the launch of Meteor 350 to next month.

Technically, the launch has not been postponed – as Royal Enfield never really announced a launch date for Meteor 350 officially. It was the reports via leaked images, sources and brochures, which confirmed that launch of Meteor 350 was to take place later this month. But now same sources state that launch has been postponed indefinitely.

The reason for this postponement of launch is yet unknown. But it is likely, the reason is due to the upcoming Honda Cruiser. In the last few days, Honda Motorcycles and Scooters India has announced that they will be launching a new cruiser motorcycle on the 30th of Sep. They have also released a teaser, which includes the exhaust note of this new motorcycle.

It has been years, where Honda has talked about entering the sub 500cc cruiser segment, to take on Royal Enfield. As of now, in the 350-500cc segment, it is Royal Enfield which enjoys monopoly with over 85% market share. Will Honda finally give India a fitting rival to Royal Enfield motorcycles on 30th Sep?

The teasers indicate that the upcoming Honda motorcycle is either the Rebel 300 or Rebel 500 or something which is based on them. In either case, one thing is confirmed that this new motorcycle is going to be a direct rival to a Royal Enfield motorcycle in India. The question now remains is, which RE motorcycle will be targeted by this new Honda cruiser, and what will be its price.

With Honda Cruiser launch date so near, it is possible that RE would want to wait and see what is Honda actually going to launch and in what price segment. And this could be the reason why launch date of Meteor 350 has been postponed (unofficially).

Meteor 350 Engine

Meteor 350 is built upon the new J1D platform and will draw its power from a new 349cc single-cylinder air-cooled motor. This unit is capable of producing 20.2 bhp and is 27 Nm of torque. This is 0.4 bhp more and 1 Nm less than the previous generation 350cc engine.

The new generation Classic 350 is expected to be the next motorcycle under this range. The transmission is likely to be a 5-speed gearbox however this new gearbox is said to offer far smoother gear shifts. Similarly, the clutch is also newly developed with less number of linkages and components- resulting in a better clutch life.

Features on offer

As far as features are concerned, the Meteor 350 will be equipped with a semi-digital and semi-analog instrument cluster. It also comes with a USB charging point which enables the riders to charge their phones and action cameras, thus becoming a handy touring option. The TFT screen reads out important details of trip metre, service reminder, odometer, etc. It gets a round-shaped halogen headlamp which is circled by a ring of LED DRL.

Extended features include inbuilt turn-by-turn navigation called ‘Tripper Navigation’ and Bluetooth connectivity. The Royal Enfield Meteor 350 is likely to be priced from Rs 1.65 lakh (ex-showroom) onwards.

One-Off Honda VF500C Magna Prides Itself with Tasty Retro Livery

By | General Posts

by Silvian Secara from https://www.autoevolution.com

Germans never fail to amaze us with their fascinating displays of top-grade engineering.

Let me tell you, ANX Prototypes’ Nick Xiromeritis is no stranger to the automotive industry. Over the course of several years, this Detroit-born petrolhead’s career would carry him all around the globe. After spending a good chunk of time working for Mazda in Japan, he took off to Paris, where he was employed by Renault.

As of today, he lives in Cologne, Germany. Xiromeritis founded his very own workshop a few years ago, while his interests gradually shifted towards motorcycles. He shares the workspace with none other than JvB Moto’s Jens vom Brauck, a gifted aftermarket surgeon that’ll happily tackle just about any two-wheeled custom exploit.

For a clear demonstration of Nick’s abilities, we’ll be having a quick look at one of his spectacular undertakings. The project is based on Honda’s feral 1983 VF500C, otherwise known as V30 Magna. Needless to say, this bad boy loves its intricate retro-styled livery!

Before we go into any details about the build itself, we’ll start by reminding ourselves of the donor’s main specs. This fiendish piece of machinery is brought to life by a ruthless four-stroke V4 powerplant, with a total of 16 valves and as many as four 34 mm (1.34 inches) Keihin carburetors. The liquid-cooled DOHC leviathan boasts a compression ratio of 11.0:1 and a respectable displacement of 498cc. Additionally, it has a glorious redline of 12,500 rpm.

At around 11,500 revs, this nasty animal is capable of delivering up to 68 bhp, along with a torque output of 32 pound-feet (43 Nm) at 10,500 rpm. The engine’s force travels to a chain final drive by means of a six-speed transmission. Ultimately, this whole shebang enables VF500C to reach a top speed of 122 mph (197 kph) and run the quarter mile in just 12.8 seconds.

Up front, the entire structure is supported by a set of air-assisted telescopic forks that allow 5.5 inches (140 mm) of travel. A single shock absorber handles suspension duties on the opposite end, permitting up to 4.53 inches (115 mm) of rear wheel travel. Stopping power is taken care of by twin 255 mm (10 inches) brake discs at the front, joined by a drum setup at the rear.

Now, Xiromeritis’ one-off entity features a plethora of repurposed components from other bikes. A Honda VF1000’s front end modules, including the 16” Comstar wheel, triple clamp and 41 mm (1.61 inches) forks were all transplanted onto his V30 Magna. You will also find a VF1000’s clip-on handlebars and braking units, along with a larger radiator from a VF750.

On the other end, he installed a pair of fully-adjustable shocks, VF750’s exhaust tips and a 17” wheel, as well as a Cagiva 125’s rear-mounted foot pegs and controls. Furthermore, we notice a Kawasaki AR 125’s fuel tank and a leather saddle from Ducati’s Pantah.

ANX Prototypes’ mastermind also equipped a healthy dose of custom goodness, such as the new tail section and aluminum front fairing. As a result of his surgical interventions, the VF500C experienced a whopping weight reduction of approximately 73 lbs (33 kg).

All things considered, this magnificent machine does a pretty sweet job at looking unique! I’ll have to say that I’m stoked to find out what Nick Xiromeritis might come up with in the future.

Meet the Spider, KrisBiker’s Heavily Customized Honda CB750 F2

By | General Posts

by Silvian Secara from https://www.autoevolution.com

It looks like Peter Parker has a mechanical soulmate!

The Spider’s story begins as a regular 1995 model in Honda’s CB750 F2 family. A Polish motorcycle surgeon, by the name of Krzysztof Rogalinski, tackled the painstaking task of breathing new life into this weary two-wheeler. Needless to say, his spectacular creation is (almost) an entirely different animal. However, for comparison’s sake, we’ll start by having a quick look at what the original bike was capable of.

While the MY ’95 CB750 F2 wasn’t exactly what you’d refer to as impressive or groundbreaking in any way, it wasn’t entirely disappointing either. Come on folks, we’ll have to at least give it some credit for the latter, right?

It is put in motion by a four-stroke DOHC inline-four engine, with a generous displacement of 747cc. At 8,500 revs, the air-cooled mill would generate up to 73 hp, accompanied by 46 pound-feet (62 Nm) of torque output at 7,500 rpm.

Additionally, this piece of machinery comes equipped with four 34 mm (1.34 inches) carburetors that help it breathe with ease. As to CB750 F2’s drivetrain, a five-speed manual gearbox allows for the powerplant’s force to be handed over to the rear wheel by means of a chain final drive.

Up front, the entire structure rests on a pair of 41 mm (1.6 inches) telescopic forks, joined by dual adjustable shock absorbers on the opposite end. The front wheel wears twin 296 mm (11.65 inches) brake discs, coupled with two-piston calipers. On the other hand, you will find a single 240 mm (9.45 inches) rotor and one-piston caliper at the rear.

I know, you’re probably thinking this whole shebang sounds painfully average, and I’m not about to disagree. Hang in there though, we’re just about to dive into the exciting part!

Krzysztof Rogalinski (aka KrisBiker) specializes mainly in restoring motorcycles of all shapes and sizes. However, he decided to pursue a more creative undertaking and blessed a mediocre ‘95 Honda CB750 F2 with a welcome makeover. As such, this undistinguished machine morphed into a groovy cafe racer that’d look right at home in a Spider-Man movie.

“In January, I completely restored a Russian Ural M63 in 30 days using 98% original parts,” explains Rogalinski. “I thought a cafe racer project would be a walk in the park. I was wrong.”

Firstly, he modified the bike’s frame to accommodate a ‘70s CB550 F’s fuel tank, as well as a one-off saddle that matches the desired aesthetic. The gifted craftsman continued by installing a fresh set of Gixxer forks, along with a pair of Ohlins shocks on the other end.

The Spider rolls on 17-inch Excel multi-spoked wheels, hugged by Pirelli’s top-of-the-line Night Dragon tires. At the front, the wheel is dressed in dual 318 mm (12.5 inches) floating discs and Brembo brake pads, coupled with a CBX750’s caliper and a single brand-new brake disc at the rear.

In terms of F2’s inline-four powerplant, Rogalinski treated it to a full restoration and recalibrated its carburetors to optimize their behavior. To top it all off, he honored the 747cc mill with a splendid satin black finish, as well as an aftermarket four-into-one exhaust system that guarantees a healthy performance upgrade.

Next, he relocated the electric components to Spider’s modified swingarm and provided his creation with a full LED lighting kit. Besides a considerable weight reduction of 46 lbs (21 kg), the reborn Honda CB750 F2 prides itself with Accel clip-on handlebars – a must-have item for any respectable cafe racer.

And there we have it. Now that we’ve wrapped this up, why not pay KrisBiker a visit on his Facebook page and show him some love for his two-wheeled marvel?

2021 Honda Mini Motorcycle Lineup Welcomes All-New Trail 125 ABS

By | General Posts

by Mircea Panait from https://www.autoevolution.com

It’s ready for adventures, big and small. Two years after Honda showed this bike as a concept in Tokyo, the Trail 125 ABS joins the Super Cub, Monkey, and Grom for the 2021 model year with a rugged construction, plenty of ground clearance, and a no-clutch transmission.

Priced at $3,899 excluding $190 for the destination charge, the CT125 is offered exclusively in Glowing Red with black garnish and old-school decals. The design harks back to the Trail 90 from more than half a century ago, and just like the original, this mini motorcycle is a blast to ride in the urban jungle as well as on more engaging roads.

Tipping the scales at 259 pounds including fluids and 1.4 gallons of gasoline, the four-stroke bike relies on a two-valve engine and four speeds for the semi-automatic transmission. The front and rear suspension promise 3.9 and 3.4 inches of travel (99 and 86 millimeters), and both wheels measure 80/90 by 17 inches just like the Super Cub C125 ABS.

The high-mounted air intake and upswept exhaust system enhance low-end and midrange torque, and on full song, you can expect 8.7 horsepower and 8.11 pound-feet of torque. Tree stumps and rocks shouldn’t pose a problem to the engine guard, and the lack of a radiator is means that we’re dealing with an air-cooled motor that’s relatively easy to service.

“The Trail 50 became ubiquitous in American campgrounds and on motorhome bumpers in the ’60s and ’70s and led to a number of successors,” declared Lee Edmunds, senior manager of Powersports Marketing. “For that reason, the CT brand has a special history with the U.S. market, and it’s great to see it return with the Trail 125 which, like the Super Cub and Monkey, harkens back to a golden era of American motorcycling.”

Zero accessories are available at the time of reporting, and the same can be said about optional extras and trim levels. The ABS in Trail 125 ABS stands for anti-lock braking system, and as expected of a budget bike, only the front wheel is treated to this safety feature.

1992 Honda CBR600 F2 Morphs Into a Funky Cafe Racer

By | General Posts

by Silvian Secara from https://www.autoevolution.com

In case you were wondering what the Honda CBR600 would look like as a naked bike, here’s your answer.

During the early ‘90s, the CBR600 F and F2 were a truly groundbreaking pair! Not only were these Honda’s best-selling two-wheelers at the time, they were also the Japanese manufacturer’s most innovative motorcycles to that date. In fact, let’s dive into some technical details and see what made these machines so special.

As of 1992, the legendary F2 was powered by a fierce inline-four DOHC mill. This feral four-stroke beast had a displacement of 598cc and was capable of delivering up to 100 hp at 12,000 rpm, along with 47 pound-feet (64 Nm) of torque output at 10,500 rpm. A six-speed transmission carries the engine’s power to CBR600 F2’s rear wheel through a chain final drive. Honda’s bad boy would accelerate 0-62 mph (0-100 kph) in a whopping 3.3 seconds and reach a top speed of 147 mph (236 kph).

Up front, it was supported by a pair of 41 mm (1.61 inches) adjustable forks, accompanied by a Pro-Link damper at the rear. In terms of braking, the ruthless F2 was provided with dual 276 mm (10.87 inches) discs and two-piston calipers at the front, along with a single 218 mm disc and one-piston caliper at the back. However, since the heavily customized marvel we’re going to be looking at has very little in common with the original model, we can probably skip the other details.

Wido Veldkamp founded WiMoto several years ago in Elst, a small town in The Netherlands. Besides bike customization, his workshop also specializes in manufacturing top-quality aftermarket components. As you browse their portfolio, you’ll run into a splendid project based on a 1992 Honda CBR600 F2. Out of the whole bunch, this spectacular thing must be my favorite!

After disposing of its body panels, Veldkamp’s crew built a custom subframe that was to accommodate the new saddle and modified tail section. Meanwhile, WiMoto tasked Tijger Leathers with upholstering the gorgeous seat.

Additionally, Veldkamp explains that “the CBR600 F2 had an ugly rectangular swingarm which had to go.” As a result, his team crafted a chromoly tubular swingarm with eccentric chain adjusters to match the desired appearance. The custom swingarm also offered the opportunity to install a fully adjustable Wilbers monoshock.

The following step consisted of tweaking the front forks and reducing their length, to then fit a new set of handlebars that bring about a scrambler aesthetic. This proved to be a challenging process, which demanded a great deal of structural modifications and reshaping. Nonetheless, the final result turned out to be incredibly neat.

WiMoto had the inline-four monstrosity refurbished and blessed it with an upgraded four-into-one exhaust system. Furthermore, CBR600 F2’s powerplant breathes more freely, thanks to a K&N air filter and optimized carburetors.

To top it all off, the workshop disposed of Honda’s stock lighting to make room for a full LED package, including a halo-style headlight and bullet-type turn signals. The stock wheels were retained and dressed in high-performance Heidenau K73 rubber, as well as Motomaster brake discs that improve the bike’s stopping power.

Finally, a bright orange finish covers the fuel tank and front fender, guaranteeing that WiMoto’s delicious two-wheeler will stand out on the road like an orange in a basket full of potatoes!

If you’re loving these folks’ CBR600 F2 makeover as much as I am, I’ll suggest that you head over to the firm’s Facebook page, where you’ll find some of their other masterpieces.

Electric Honda motorcycle in the works

By | General Posts

from https://www.financialexpress.com

Electric Honda motorcycle in the works: Leaked patent images depict bike to be based on CB125R

Honda patent images reveal a new electric motorcycle that seems to be based on the existing CB125R. The patents show a Neo Sports Café inspired motorcycle with chassis parts of the CB125R but with an electric motor.

It was rather sudden focus on electric motorcycles grew but soon the global markets were dotted with electric two-wheeler startups. Did they pay attention to a segment that would see growth at a time when mainstream players didn’t? That may have been the case but now, the story got different when Harley-Davidson rolled out in its first electric motorcycle. Kawasaki is working on an electric Ninja and Royal Enfield has an ongoing electric motorcycle project. And now, the word is that Honda too is stepping in the game. According to a report by Visordown, Honda seems to be working on multiple electric motorcycle models.

The report mentions patent images that depict an electric motorcycle based on the Honda CB125R, adding that the manufacturer recently patented design for the electric CB125R hinting that the bike likely in its final stages of development.

There is so far no confirmation from the company and Honda have not given it a name yet either. But the patent images do show frame from a CB125R that houses an electric powertrain, along with drawings of the electric motor as well. The motor seems to be a slim pancake-style design with a large diameter that should make it easier to fit onto the slim frame of the CB125R.

The Honda electric motorcycle will not be one of those performance EVs and would likely have similar power figures as its petrol-powered counterpart. The ICE (internal combustion engine) CB125R puts out 13 hp and does speeds of up to 130 km/h. The electric version could offer similar speeds but initial acceleration may be quicker given that electric motors deliver maximum torque the moment you twist open the throttle.

The patent images suggest the electric version of the CB125R could share about 75% of its components with the petrol-powered Honda CB125R. That should make the development process simpler and hence easier and quicker to roll out in the market.

Honda Self-Balancing Concept Is Meant for Disabled Racers and Moto GP Lovers

By | General Posts

by Cristian Curmei from https://www.autoevolution.com

You love motorcycles, and you love racing them. But life sometimes throws things at us that take away some of our most treasured abilities. This is the story of how a concept could bring a second chance to disabled amputees.

So you’re a Moto GP racer. Last season, while trying to overtake the soon to be second place racer, your rear tire was clipped from the outside and you were thrown over the bike. Not too big a deal, as you’ve been through it before. But this time you somehow end up underneath the bike and are dragged till you pass out.

You wake up in the hospital, with doctors telling you that the only other choice they had was to let you pass on. You try to move but you can seem to prop yourself on your left arm. Looking to your left, you see that there is no left arm to hold you up any longer. You break down in tears knowing you’ll never again experience the track or life as before.

That’s most likely the kind of story that gave way to this concept by Tom Hylton. This two-week project was designed to offer a second chance to amputee riders. It is a two-part unit, and since we’ve recently introduced the arm into the stories, it’s now time for the bike.

The entire design includes the modular Honda robotic arm, which is specifically tuned for motorcycle use, but also this wonderous beast upon which a rider is placed.

What we are looking at is a self-balancing design that can stay upright without any sort of assistance. Behind its self-balancing trick is similar technology to the BMW Motorrad Vision Next 100. But this isn’t about BMW. It’s about how Honda could meet a need for a very niche market.

The design behind it is quite simple. As it never made it past the conceptual stages, there really isn’t much to go on. We know that the design is made for the track, so features that offer aerodynamics, strength and speed are surely in the mix.

A large and low front end leads to a lifted rear and rider position much like on a GP bike. While a low and wide bottom offers a low center of gravity to help keep the bike stable during turns.

At the front of the bike you’ll see that it feels a bit off as one of the handlebars is missing. It’s all in the works. Remember that the arm and motorcycle are designed for one another, so the area that’s missing the handlebar is designated for the arm function. One of the cool ideas behind this setup is that once the rider connects to the bike through that arm port, the bike and arm open a communications channel where an exchange of information will also affect the rider.

Based on the needed speed or angle of the rider, the arm should position itself in such a way as to optimize riders body position.

As we look at the bike we also see a long ride outline. This outline highlights the riding position. It starts up on the seat and drops down along the body to where we find grooves cut into the frame so that your knees are protected, and the body streamlined. At the rear, the feet rest on part of the frame rather that pedals.

We’re also told that the bike is designed as an EV and the rear motor is powered by a large battery hidden within the frame.

Now the design shows us that it’s meant for much more than just the track. We are shown a future where she can be ridden through snow covered hills with ice spikes.