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The Zero S electric motorcycle

The latest in our series of video road tests is America's leading electric motorcycle: the Zero S, from California's Zero Motorcycles. Seventy-five miles per hour and 60 miles between charges are the big numbers here – but how does that translate to real life use? Also, since electricity costs so much less than petrol, can an electric motorcycle be viewed as an economical option? And what about the environment? When the carbon cost of electricity generation is taken into account, how green are electric vehicles? These questions and more, answered after the jump!  Read More

Honda's RC212V took four of the top five finishing spots in the opening round of MotoGP 20...

The first MotoGP race of the year has been run and won, so we've got our first glimpse at what season 2011 is going to look like. And it seems it's going to look like the Honda Cup. Delivering on the promise the bike showed last year, Honda's RC212V took four of the top five finishing spots in Qatar, with only defending champion Jorge Lorenzo waving the flag for Yamaha in second place. Ben Spies rode to an encouraging sixth place for Yamaha, and the Rossi/Ducati combination started with a whimper, not a bang, in 7th. Smart money would have to be on Australian Casey Stoner for the title; after a brief dice with a wearied Dani Pedrosa, Stoner strolled away to a 3.5-second win.  Read More

The 2011 Zero XU

If you're going to be an early adopter and get yourself an electric motorcycle, one thing you'll need to get used to is charging the bike more or less whenever you're not riding it. If there's power outlets where you park, or the boss lets you bring the bike into the office, that's no problem – but if not, you might struggle to find an accessible spot to plug in. Which is where the latest addition to the Zero Motorcycles 2011 lineup could come in very handy; the Zero XU is the first Zero streetbike (and one of the only electric commuters we've seen) that allows you to quickly remove the battery and charge it away from the bike. Great idea, but we wonder how it will work in practice.  Read More

The Vyrus 986 M2 Factory

Boutique Italian motorcycle company Vyrus is hoping to cause a real shake-up in top-level racing by entering its radically unorthodox Vyrus 986 M2 Factory in the heavily standardised Moto2 competition. With the same weight, engine, tyres and electronics as its opponents, the Vyrus bike is more or less a controlled experiment in the racetrack effectiveness of hub-center steering. It will be the first time in decades that we've seen a machine enter top-level racing without a set of traditional telescopic forks at the front end. If it succeeds, it has a real chance at causing a suspension revolution in the sportsbike world. Oh, and there's streetbike and kit versions available too. Very exciting news.  Read More

The Canon EF 200-400mm f/4L IS USM EXTENDER 1.4x lens with built-in 1.4x focal length exte...

Fiddling with lenses and focal length extenders to get the effects we want is an annoying necessity for photographers – but the latest announcement from Canon has the potential to make all the company's lenses at least twice as useful. The Canon EF 200-400mm f/4L IS USM EXTENDER 1.4x is the first lens Canon has made with a built-in focal length extender. At the flick of a switch, it goes from 200-400mm to 280-560mm while maintaining its presumably stellar L series optics through the whole zoom range. That's one less fiddly lens change for wildlife and sports photographers, and one heck of a great idea!  Read More

Production prototype of the Agility Saietta

Agility will never be accused of sticking to tradition for tradition's sake. Freed from the constraints of complicated combustion engines and all the associated tackle, designer Lawrence Marazzi has unveiled a brand new, fully electric British motorcycle that turns the rules of motorcycle design on their head. The Saietta features a hossack-inspired front end, an eye-popping fairing design and a crazy degree of mass centralization that could only be achieved with battery cells. Billed as a guerrilla commuter, it promises to be a very exhilarating ride. See the video after the jump to hear Marazzi talk about the design process, the future of electric motorcycles and the unique properties of the Saietta.  Read More

Bing has been caught recycling Google search results.

Google doesn't have a lot of competition in the search world – it rose from obscurity in the late 1990s to its current position of utter dominance on the back of its clever results ranking algorithm; Google is the megalithic entity it is today, because for the last decade people have chosen its results over MSN, Yahoo and other search options. And now it seems Microsoft's new(ish) search competitor, Bing, is copying Google results in order to make its own search results better. In an embarrassing sting operation, Google claims it has proven that Bing is taking Google search results and displaying them as if they're coming from the Bing engine – and you'd have to imagine the guys at Google are absolutely delighted.  Read More

Seth Goldstein's tie-tying robot

Seth Goldstein must hate doing up his ties even more than I do. I changed my lifestyle about four years ago so I'd never have to wear one again, but Goldstein has put countless hundreds of hours into designing a robot that can do the job for him. The 'Why Knot?' kinetic sculpture is hypnotic to watch, as the video after the jump shows – and it makes you wonder at the marvel of our human machinery when you see how difficult this simple task is for a purpose-built robot to replicate. Oh, and when you watch it in double-speed, it also sounds a bit like glitch techno music. Very cool.  Read More

Honda's 2011 CBR250R

Twenty years ago, quarter-liter sportsbikes ruled the roost in many regions, offering a mix of racy looks, light weight and snappy performance. But in recent years, with all the other major players leaving the segment, Kawasaki has enjoyed unchallenged sales success with its sharp-looking, yet friendly Ninja 250. But the mini-ninja will soon face stiff competition from Honda's totally re-conceived babyblade CBR250R, equipped with a 249cc single-cylinder, fuel injected engine, a tasty fairing that mimics the CBR1000RR and the first instance of optional ABS to grace the market segment. This will be a killer learner machine and a great introduction to the sport for legions of young riders. It's good to see the quarter-liter segment getting some love again. Oh, and check out what the aftermarket's already coming up with for these new machines.  Read More

Jetbuster's new Jetrider XL, unveiled this week in Dusseldorf

Surfango is dead … long live Jetbuster! Our favorite powered kayak is back with a new name, a new look and an air-suspended seat unit which will come as sweet relief to anyone who's ever suffered the battered buttocks you tend to get from jumping waves in one of the older models. The new Jetrider XL has been unveiled in Dusseldorf, with a joystick-controlled 9.5hp motor, 25mph (40kmh) top speed and the new Airshox seat unit, for a retail price of US$2,999.  Read More

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