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BMW's 2010 S1000RR superbike

BMW's S1000RR 1000cc superbike might not be making big waves in World Superbike competition just yet, but today's release of photos, specifications and a hugely detailed press pack leaves us in no doubt that the new Beemer flagship will be an absolute monster on the road. A massive 193 horsepower is just the beginning - the S1000RR packs a combined ABS that's lighter and smarter than Honda's, variable intake tracts and exhaust butterflies that outdo the Yamaha and MV Agusta systems, a 4-mode variable engine mapping system that seems a lot better thought-out than Suzuki's, and a very clever traction control system that's integrated into the mind-boggling fly-by-wire engine management system in a way that seems much more logical than Ducati's. Brand new in every way, this purpose-built German superbike is set to hit showroom floors well before the end of the year.  Read More

Spies leads race 2

Japan’s Nitro Noriyuki Haga and American newcomer Ben Spies were victorious in round one of the WSKB held today at Australia's Phillip Island Circuit in front of a record crowd of 63,250. Haga took the podium in race one after an enthralling battle with German Max Neukirchner which saw Haga's Ducati 1098R cross the line just 32/1000ths of a second ahead of the Suzuki.  Read More

2009 World Superbike qualifying, Phillip Island

The 2009 World Superbikes season is off to a cracking start, with an action-packed qualifying stage and Superpole now decided. Boasting a huge grid of superstar riders, some ominous new faces, a raft of new bikes and brand new teams from BMW and Aprilia, we've tipped WSBK 2009 as the one to watch over MotoGP in our detailed season preview a few weeks ago. And what a start! Texan Ben Spies has taken an astonishing Superpole victory on his international debut for Yamaha, ahead of veteran Max Biaggi on the brand new Aprilia RSV4 and newcomer Jonny Rea on his Hannspree Honda CBR1000RR. The new Superpole format has proven itself to be pure cut-throat desperation and a great spectacle - and the races tomorrow should be absolutely stunning. Check TheBikerGene for full coverage of Round 1 of the 2009 World Superbike Championship.  Read More

Noriyuki Haga follows Michel Fabrizio

The global financial crisis has clearly hammered the highest echelons of prototype racing, with established teams like Honda and Kawasaki pulling out of F1 and MotoGP respectively in the last couple of months. But for the production-based (and much cheaper) World Superbike series, things have never looked better than they do at the start of 2009. Despite the retirement of beloved champion Troy Bayliss, the 2009 WSBK grid will field a record 32 bikes from a record 7 manufacturers as BMW and Aprilia join the fray with exotic new machinery. There's also an influx of phenomenally talented riders - including AMA champ Ben Spies, BSB champ and ex-GP god Shakey Byrne, and precocious youngsters Tom Sykes and Leon Haslam to do battle with battle-hardened veterans like Nitro Nori Haga, Biaggi, Corser and Kagayama. The first pre-season test has been run, giving us a glimpse at who's fast and who's faster, so it's time for a WSBK season preview, looking at the class, the teams, the bikes and the personalities that make SBK the race series to watch in 2009.  Read More

Troy Bayliss thrashes the 2009 Ducati 1198S

MotoGP fans can argue all they like about whether Casey Stoner's 2007 World Championship was a triumph of Ducati electronics over rider skill - but the fact remains that traction control technology is certainly relevant to us lesser riders, particularly in an age where half the price of a family car can buy you a 180-horsepower, featherlight superbike missile at any dealership. Ducati's 2009 1198S packs a 170-horsepower, 97lb-ft L-twin, top-rate Öhlins suspension front and rear, 7-spoke Marsechini wheels, an upgraded data acquisition and downloading system - and the same 8-stage traction control system you'd find on Stoner's GP8 or Bayliss's 1098R. Oh, and if you paid USD$40K for the 1098R last year, you might be annoyed to find out that this year's 1198S, a virtually identical bike with just 10 less horsepower in stock trim, is going to sell for less than USD$22K. Ouch.  Read More

TTX GP founder Azhar Hussain and the bike he commissioned, the prototype TTX01.

UPDATED It’s the first electric superbike and though its range is considerably less than the first modern four-stroke superbike, the 1969 Honda CB750, its top speed of 125 mph (200 km/h) is almost identical. Yesterday the first prototype of the TTX01 Electric Superbike was showcased at a press conference for the 2008 NEC Bike Show. Built to demonstrate the potential of electric sports motorcycles for the first emissions-free Grand Prix, the initial prototype is based on a Suzuki GSX750 frame and running gear and runs two 43 bhp Agni Lynch Electric motors arranged in line with the frame. Together, the motors produce 125 Newton Metres of torque and both have been modified to withstand high RPM using Kevlar-reinforced armatures. The vision is to create a lightweight, carbon fiber framed 2WD TTX02 with "hot swappable", 20 kilowatt hour battery packs, regenerative braking and a production run of 50 machines in 2010 with a target price of GBP20,000.  Read More

Ducati 1098 Streetfighter

Ducati has officially taken the wraps off its new super-naked - the Streetfighter - and it's one mouth-watering package. The familiar Ducati trellis-frame houses a water-cooled 1098cc L-Twin putting out 155 horsepower, add an aluminum single sided swingarm, dry clutch, Brembo radial monoblocs, Marella electronic fuel injection, stainless steel 2-1-2 exhaust system and a weight figure of 167 kilos and you have a bike that backs its aggressive stance with performance topping anything the company has ever released without fairings.  Read More

BMW's Lo-Rider concept

Big change is afoot at BMW's motorcycle division. After unleashing the ferocious K1300 series, the crazy HP2 Megamoto and the instantly-competitive S1000R superbike, BMW today showed a bruising concept bike to the fascinated crowds at Milan's EICMA motorcycle expo. Reminiscent of the certified bad-ass Confederate Hellcat, the 1200cc Boxer-engined Lo-Rider is a nasty-looking stubby musclebike that takes BMW's conservative image and beats it to a pulp behind the school toilets. The Lo-Rider is nearly ready for production if interest is high (which it will be) - and BMW are already talking about a mix-n-match sales process that lets customers choose their own headlight, seat and tail units, pipes and paint schemes for a true factory custom vibe.  Read More

Aprilia's 2009 RSV4

We've been following Aprilia's 2009 V-4 engined superbike closely through its development stages, excited to learn what the company can do with its brand new, fully electronically managed and incredibly compact 1000cc motor. And the first official images and press information have been released. Stunning to look at, the RSV4 will make at least 180 horsepower in roadbike trim (and somewhere around 220 in the version Max Biaggi will race in WSBK 2009) - but more astounding than that figure is the amazing amount of chassis tuning the RSV4 will allow. With adjustable steering head angle, swingarm pivots and even engine mounting points, the new Aprilia can lay a genuine claim to being the most race-focused production motorcycle on the planet.  Read More

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