New products: BMW, Ducati, Honda and Kawasaki


New products: BMW, Ducati, Honda and Kawasaki

Ducati remains extreme

Motorcycles with a sharp character profile are a Bolognese specialty and have always had the greatest success. A puristic naked bike with the engine of the 1098 R fits into the picture as well as its decisive demarcation from the new Monster.

Ducati is building a Monster 1100 based on the current 696. Those familiar with the brand have confirmed it for a long time, as another link in a strong chain of circumstantial evidence is now a coarse, but very real cell phone photo. This photo is not a proof, because the engine capacity is not visible from the outside ?? how could he? What can be seen? The single-sided swing arm, the Ohlins fork, the light wheels with the Y-shaped spokes, however, do not fit an entry-level motorcycle, from which the basic design nonetheless comes. For example the tank with the characteristic air inlets, the silencers or the shape of the pillion seat, which is covered here with a red plastic part.

The new Monster with the air-cooled, around 90 hp 1100 cc two-valve engine will be the largest, most powerful and most powerful motorcycle in this series. Four-valve engines are not intended for this. Gradually, the Ducati developers seem to have accepted that the strong, heavy four-valve engine, regardless of whether it is the old one "ottovalvole" or the modern ones "testastretta" acted, never really harmonized with the monster concept, neither optically nor in terms of chassis. Now they act accordingly. They develop a completely new motorcycle that, after all carefully whispered indiscretions, becomes a hammer machine. One would almost be tempted to write: a real monster. A highly explosive mixture brewed from streetfighter and drag bike elements with a rocket engine. According to reports, it is supposed to be the 1198 Testastretta evoluzione of the current Superbike base motorcycle 1098 R. Probably not equipped with milled cylinder heads and titanium connecting rods and probably not 176 hp either. But a good 150 PS with plenty of torque in the lower range can be trusted to this high-caliber.

Unfortunately there is no photo of the Sensations Duc, not even a roughly pixelated one. As an appetizer, the Italian designer Oberdan Bezzi provided his vision of this motorcycle as a computer retouching into which unusual details such as the "self-supporting" Allowed tank rear part to flow. The designation "Hyperfighter" did he choose clever? maybe even overheard ?? because his design takes the refined simplicity of the Hypermotard as a model, despite all the differences in design. As for the proportions, the actual Hyperfighter is likely to be longer and lower than the one drawn. The drag bike elements that it is supposed to carry suggest this as well as the sheer technical necessity: otherwise it would throw its rider backwards every time the accelerator was quickly raised.



Project: BMW G 450 Supermoto.

It became apparent from two directions that BMW was intensively involved in the development of a Supermoto racing machine based on the G 450 X. A prototype with an adjustable steering head angle was spotted on the Bilstain runway in Belgium, with which the pilots Mark Fraikin and Eddy Seel tested different chassis geometry values. The machine was equipped with an Ohlins fork, Behringer brakes and carbon wheels. A surprising choice, because at least on routes with a somewhat rougher off-road component, Supermoto drivers prefer the more elastic spoke wheels.

These are used in the second, recently emerged test vehicle. It comes from the Swiss specialist HPS-Technik and would not be that special if the BMW G 450 X, i.e. the competition enduro, were already freely available. But it is not, and therefore one can assume that the conversions were discussed with BMW. The Swiss equipped the G 450 with an air-sprung fork and shock absorber and, along with other goodies, with a fork bridge, which allows the offset to be changed quickly and thus the caster. Here too, approaching the optimal chassis geometry plays an important role.


The topic remains hot, as Honda spokesmen can dissuade and refer to the year 2010 as much as they want: Even in Japan, well-informed motorcycle journalists usually speculate about the future VFR. The number of cylinders, engine configuration, displacement and technical specialties, for which VFR models have always been good, are the main subjects of interest.

The preliminary answers to these questions are: V4 and 1200 cm³. And as far as the technical delicacies are concerned, a combination of letters reappeared that was first mentioned in July 2005 in connection with large motorcycle engines: VCM as an abbreviation for Variable Cylinder Management. This is the name of a system that Honda initially developed for car engines and which it would like to adapt for large-volume motorcycle engines. Depending on the load, it shuts down up to three out of four cylinders in an engine? for example in city traffic with almost closed throttle valves ?? and should thus reduce gasoline consumption by around 30 percent, based on the consumption level of the 2005 models. Although this announcement is already three years old, it touches on a topic that is almost startlingly topical.

The reduction of internal friction losses as a further measure to optimize consumption was only mentioned in connection with smaller engines, but the knowledge gained can also be applied to larger displacement. And would be a logical addition to the VCM. After all, by intervening in the mechanics, they have the same effect that VCM achieves by avoiding compression pressure peaks, i.e. pneumatically. Overall, the evidence that our Japanese colleagues have collected seems to point more towards touring bikes than with the current 800 VFR, which is considered the epitome of sports touring. Finally, they gave their computer-generated vision of the future VFR a longer wheelbase and thus more space, a lush front fairing and the indispensable cardan drive. It can also be excellently combined with the single-sided swing arm, which has been a feature of the VFR models since the RC 30 and 36. And last but not least, they dare to make a performance forecast: a solid 170 hp. From all four cylinders, of course.



New 2009: Kawasaki Z 750.

Small cause, not inconsiderable effect: A new two-tone paintwork with color fields sharply delimited from black to green significantly enhances the appearance of the Kawasaki Z 750. Because Kawasaki almost ashamedly hid the new color variant in the press area of ​​the homepage, MOTORRAD has it published here. Technically, nothing will change about the quite successful middle-grader for the 2009 season. As already reported in MOTORRAD 14/2008, we reserve the right to make extensive modifications to the ZX-6R and the two ER-6 models n and f. As a promising novelty candidate, MOTORRAD has also identified the long-awaited successor to the ZRX 1100/1200, but even energetic research has so far remained inconclusive.

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