Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Loz Blain

BMW Concept Roadster: Another outstanding visual statement from Bavaria

BMW chose this year's Concours d'Eleganza Villa d'Este in Italy for the unveiling of its latest boxer concept – and like the R Ninety before it, this one is a beauty. The R1200-based Concept Roadster is a hard-edged streetfighter with bloody knuckles, knee sliders on its valve covers and an eye-popping rear end. Will this one make it to production like the NineT?  Read More

Part energy drink, part global mega-brand: Red Bull's outrageous stunts have made it one o...

You could be forgiven for forgetting that Red Bull sells more than 5 billion cans of soft drink a year. For every logo you see on a can of energy drink, there must be another five plastered on screaming Formula One cars, upside-down motorcycles, stunt planes and skateboards. Red Bull almost single-handedly created the energy drink market we know today, piggybacking on the rise of extreme sports to get its brand out there ... and delivering some truly memorable marketing stunts along the way. Here's our five favorites.  Read More

The new photo print app from Adidas will let you print your own photos on your sneakers What could possibly go wrong? Adidas is preparing to release a smartphone app that takes your favourite photos and maps them onto a pair of sneakers, which you can then order. The example shoes actually look pretty sweet, but personally I'm looking forward to seeing the worst designs the public will have to offer.  Read More

Lightning's LS-218 at the 2014 Quail Motorsport Gathering

No road vehicle needs a 218 mph (350 km/h) top speed. No motorcycle needs to make 200 horsepower, with as much torque as a Hyundai iMax people mover. These are figures of absolute excess – and that's the point. The Lightning LS-218 will be a truly, horrifyingly fast motorcycle, the fastest on the planet, at least straight out of the crate. And it's set for release this summer in America. Hold onto your hat and invest in some brown leathers.  Read More

Bultaco's all-electric Rapitan, featuring a Hossack-inspired front suspension setup

It’s been 13 years since a bike came out with the famous Bultaco thumbs-up logo on its side. By 2001 the once-glorious road racing days of this Spanish motorcycle company had ground to a halt, and only retro off-road two stroke enthusiasts and trials riders really heard the name. But that’s set to change, as the brand is about to resurrect itself as an electric motorcycle manufacturer, starting in 2015. Bultaco today revealed two prototypes that point the way forward – the Rapitan and Rapitan Sport. Both feature 53 horsepower, 92 lb.ft electric motors, Hossack-style front end suspension and enough battery storage to get over 200 km in town.  Read More

2014 Zero SR: review video still

Last week, we rode the 2014 Zero SR, and its awesome electric performance made us question everything we thought we knew about motorcycling. Here's our road test video.  Read More

Yamaha's PED1 and PES1 at the Tokyo Motor Show

Yamaha has announced a revision to a key line in its annual report from 2013, flagging that it will launch electric motorcycles "in the near future" instead of "in the next two years." It's the clearest sign yet that a major manufacturer is ready to jump in to the electric motorcycle market, which is developing at an absolutely crazy rate as battery technology makes power packs smaller, cheaper and higher in capacity. So let's take a closer look at the two electric concepts Yamaha has shown to date – the PES-1 naked sportsbike and the PED-1 motocrosser – to see what the company might bring to the table.  Read More

Seatower: bringing down the cost of offshore wind farming

Offshore wind farming combines the clean, green, environmentally neutral benefits of land-based wind turbines, while being a lot less visually intrusive ... and restricting the usual NIMBY opposition to crustaceans and invertebrates. It's currently a lot more expensive to install turbines out at sea, though, and that's restricting the sector's development. Which is why the Seatower Cranefree turbine platform could be such a significant step forward. Cheaper and easier to install, and requiring less gargantuan and specialized equipment than standard monopile foundations, the Seatower base could help offshore wind farms reach profitability a lot quicker.  Read More

The 2014 Zero SR (Photo: Dave Abbott/Gizmag.com)

It's been about three years since we last tested one of Zero Motorcycles' electric bikes, and in that time, the company has been very busy. Compared to the 2011 Zero S, the 2014 Zero SR has between 200-400 percent more everything – riding this bike was an absolutely shocking progress report on the state of the art. The SR represents a liminal moment in motorcycling. We may look back in years to come and see this as the first time an electric motorcycle stood shoulder to shoulder with petrol powered bikes, and made them feel like yesterday's heroes.  Read More

Leica T with 18-56mm Vario-Elmar-T lens (Photo: Loz Blain/Gizmag)

The Leica T is a true supermodel of a camera, a masterpiece of design, engineering and machining perfection that begs to be touched and turns the heads of Leica fans and lesser mortals alike. But Leica is adamant that it doesn't make sculptures, and it wants the T judged on its performance. So let's see if its results stand up to its astronomic price tag. Loz Blain spent a week with a compact camera that costs, coincidentally, exactly as much as his car.  Read More

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