Church Of MO First Impression: 1997 Suzuki XF650 Freewind

April 30, 2017 Troy Siahaan 0

I’ll be honest: I’d never heard of the Suzuki XF650 Freewind before. But as I was digging through the archives, looking for this week’s post, when I came across this beauty I knew it was the one. A Suzuki V-Strom before there ever was one, the 1997 Suzuki XF650 Freewind could easily make the case as being the V-Strom’s predecessor. Off-road-ish styling, psuedo knobby tires, street and dirt intentions – all of those are traits the V-Strom carries. Heck, both even have 650(ish)cc engines! How is it like to ride? Here’s our man Yossef Schvetz with the answer.


First Impression: 1997 Suzuki XF650 Freewind

Suzuki’s Euro All-Arounder

By Yossef Schvetz Mar. 19, 1997
Photos by Ziv Koren and Suzuki-Europe

“Hey! What’s going on here?” I shout to myself while the right footpeg leaves a trail of rubber on the asphalt of my favorite canyon road. “This is supposed to be a budget priced, do-it-all beginner’s bike? What’s going on here?” But first things first.

Suzuki’s engineers always seemed to have a keen hand for crafting good value bikes. It’s surprising that a do-everything sort of bike was missing from their line-up. Enter the new Suzuki XF650 Freewind for 1997, a true all-’rounder. Naturally, this depends on your definition of the perfect do-it-all bike. We’re not talking about just street riding, so the new crop of naked “standard” mounts, such as Suzuki’s own Bandit, just won’t do.

Also, the bike should be plenty capable of touring road work while still being able to tackle the occasional fire road or trail, so that rules out most dual purpose machines as well.

For many Americans and Europeans the answer has been BMW’s F650, a bike that’s topped European sales charts the last few years and might do the same in the U.S..

The Japanese have been slow to catch up with this trend, but now Suzuki is playing along. And with a price tag that blows away the BMW.

Suzuki built their Beemer-beater simply: they took the engine from their successful DR650 dual-purpose mount, slotted it in a lowered frame and equipped it with an abundance of road-oriented features such as massive body work, a useful fairing and 19-inch front wheel.

Result?

The most European-looking Japanese bike made in the last few years. With its understated Suzuki logo the Freewind appears more like the spawn of a fancy Italian manufacturer and celebrity designer than a committee-designed big-four machine.

On the street many onlookers refused to believe that those sensuous curves belonged to “just another Suzuki.” You won’t see much of its styling from the saddle, right?

So let’s get moving. Taking the Freewind off its stand takes very little effort. Indeed, it’s no heavyweight at 360 pounds. The first shocker comes gazing upon the instrument panel, or should I say instrument screen, as it’s 100 percent LCD. After putting LCD odometers in their latest sportbikes, Suzuki equipped the Freewind with a complete LCD panel, displaying speed with digital numbers and revs with a graphic bar. It has a nice fuel gauge to boot. And you know what? It works better than expected. Even in strong sunshine everything is easily read, and its rev bar and speedo are fun to watch, too.

Start the Freewind and you’ll hear a very muted and un-thumper-like sound. This should come as no surprise, with noise regulations being what they are these days. What is surprising was its lack of stomp from idle when compared to its livelier cousin, the DR650.

Suzuki’s Freewind will still pull a wheelie if actively persuaded, but a less-experienced rider shouldn’t fear the bike ever doing an unwelcome rear wheel stand.

A quick get away from a full stop requires a lot of revs, but from then on the Freewind gets into its stride and accelerates smartly. The general feel is soft.

With a reasonable seat height of 32.5 inches that sags quite a lot with rider weight, you get an excellent beginner’s mount. It should be noted that like the DR650, the Freewind can be made even lower by readjusting its suspension.

The wide off-road type bars allow for plenty of leverage in tight situations, and all other controls are extremely light. The seating position does feel a bit odd at first, with a deeply curved seat locking the rider into a fixed position, but after a long time in the saddle this proved to be a rather comfortable compromise.

Good city manners are expected from a dual purpose hybrid. Less expected is the excellent freeway behavior. Try cruising at more than 70 mph on most big trailies and you’ll get plenty of handlebar wag.

Thanks to its 19-inch front wheel and low mounted aerodynamic fender, the Freewind shows none of this misbehavior, tracking straight and true at elevated speeds.

Its single lung engine enjoys stretching those gear changes too, and what you get is seamless acceleration. Even more impressive is the total lack of vibration from its engine at all revs.

You’ll be hard pressed to find a smoother running single. When you consider that Suzuki achieved this smoothness by using just one balance shaft (to save weight) instead of the usual two found in most singles, you can appreciate what a great design this mill really is. Its smoothness allows for long periods of high-speed mile eating. Also, the Freewind’s fairing does a good job protecting the rider’s chest from windblast. I’m a fairly tall rider, so shorter riders should find even more peace behind the screen. Suzuki’s Freewind offers a true, rounded and sorted package.

All this might sound a bit too sedate and proper, and the Freewind indeed has that user friendly personality that prompted Suzuki-Europe to target women riders, but the XF650 turns out to have a strong liking for kinks and sick lean angles. Yes, we all know that D-P bikes can run circles around sportbikes in the tight twisties, but truly the Freewind is in a league of its own.

Thanks to its lowered and stiffened DR suspension, the XF stays firm and steady at lean angles and speeds of which most D-P bikes can only dream. No less important in the traction equation are the excellent Pirelli MT80 tires. They are totally road oriented and seem to be made from a track compound that allows footpeg scraping in a bike with supposedly endless ground clearance.

Well, you say, my Bandit 600 can do all the above with ease and power to spare. But what do you do when the road ends? I know I wasn’t supposed to, but the temptation to try the Freewind on a trail was too great. In a word, the Suzuki can cope, and rather well at that.

Fire roads are entirely within its scope, and only its expensive looking plastic and shortened suspension persuade you not to take on too big a challenge. With a good rider aboard and proper tires, the Freewind could tackle any hard-packed flat trail. It is nice to know that off-road ability is there.

This new segment of light, single-cylinder do-it-all bikes is now alive and kicking. Until now, BMW pretty much owned the market, but not any more. With a price tag in some markets around 15 percent cheaper than the F650, Suzuki’s  Freewind offers a true, rounded and sorted package that will take a rider in comfort to almost anywhere, both on- and off-road.

For a beginning rider who doesn’t know what their preferred kick might be, the XF650 can supply a guided tour through most motorcycling activities. And next time you think those road-going pseudo trailies are dull and boring, go out and check your local canyon road. You might be in for a surprise.

Specifications:

Manufacturer: Suzuki
Model: XF650 Freewind
Engine: Four-valve single-cylinder, air-oil cooled
Bore and Stroke: 100 x 82mm
Displacement: 644cc
Carburetion: Twin 32mm Mikuni
Claimed power: 47 hp @ 7000 rpm
Transmission: 5-speed
Wheelbase: 58.3 in (1465mm); 57.3 in (1455mm) lowered position
Seat height: 32.6 in (830mm); 31.5 in (800mm) lowered position
Fuel Capacity: 4.9 gal (18.5 liters)
Weight: 355 lbs (162 kg)

Church Of MO – First Impression: 1997 Suzuki XF650 Freewind appeared first on Motorcycle.com.

2017 Aprilia RSV4 RR/RF Review First Ride

April 28, 2017 Tom Roderick 0

After a half-decade of sitting second chair to BMW’s S1000RR (Honorable Mention 2010, and again in 2015) Aprilia’s RSV4 finally, deservedly, secured Motorcycle.com’s 2016 Sportbike of the year award. Subjectively, the RSV and its V-Four engine have been a staff favorite every year since its introduction, but where does one go after having ascended the throne? For the 2017 RSV4 RR and RF, the answer is improved electronics.

2016 Aprilia RSV4 First Ride Review

Last year brought a variety of much needed mechanical upgrades to the RSV resulting in a 16-horsepower bump to a claimed 201 hp at the crank (measured rear wheel output of 179.5 at 13,700 rpm), effectively equalling BMW’s claimed 199 hp (measured rear wheel output 182.9 at 13,100 rpm). Although we didn’t conduct a multi-superbike shootout last year, there was a cage match between the RSV4 RR and Kawasaki’s then new-to-the-scene ZX-10R (The $17,000 Superbike Faceoff) in which the RSV emerged the winner. Also like last year, the RSV returns looking much the way it has since its inception because, to paraphrase Piaggio’s chief designer Miguel Galluzzi, when you create a bike that looks this good, there’s no reason to change every year.

Miguel Galluzzi and the 2017 Aprilia RSV4

Aprilia’s RSV4 is the most MotoGP-looking superbike you can buy, thanks to one of the most renowned designers of modern motorcycles, Miguel Galluzzi. The director of Piaggio’s Advanced Design Center in Pasadena, CA, recently gave us his personal Top 10 Motorcycles.

Getting back to this year’s models, we detailed in full all the upgrades to both the RF and RR back in October in our 2017 Aprilia RSV4 And Tuono V4 1100 Previews. In a nutshell, here’s what happened:

How’s that for a boatload of acronyms? More importantly, how do they affect the performance of our reigning champ?

2017 Aprilia RSV4 V4-MP

One of the coolest technologies the new V4-MP multimedia platform offers is the ability to download a track map with corner-by-corner MotoGP settings already included. If the track doesn’t already exist, hit the record button and it’ll create a track map in which you can input your own personal corner-by-corner settings for ATC and AWC. Standard on the RF, optional on the RR.

After spending the weekend studying the lines of various MotoAmerica and MotoGP riders cutting inhumanly fast laps around the COTA circuit, then having to wait a day while Troy rode the new 2017 Suzuki GSX-R1000, it was finally my turn to take to the track. Having never ridden COTA, learning its 3.4-mile 20-turn layout was somewhat daunting, but I can’t think of another bike I’d rather be aboard for the learning curve.

2017 Aprilia RSV4 RR

Editor Score: 94.5%
Engine 20.0/20
Suspension/Handling 13.5/15
Transmission/Clutch 9.75/10
Brakes 10/10
Instruments/Controls4.5/5
Ergonomics/Comfort 9.0/10
Appearance/Quality 9.5/10
Desirability 9.25/10
Value 9.0/10
Overall Score94.5/100

First up, the RR. Outfitted for 2017 with an up-and-down quickshifter and Brembo M50 calipers gripping larger 330mm discs, the RR, at $16,999, arguably represents the best of what is possible in this price range. Extolling dominant engine performance and a chassis we’ve praised with every flattering analogy we can think of, the RR had me quickly up to speed around COTA.

Accelerating off the slow Turn 11, pointing the RSV down COTA’s long back straight and firing, the 65-degree V-Four spins furiously fast, reaching speeds in excess of 170 mph before brake pressure need be applied. Learning just how fast and how deep into the corner the RSV can be pushed before slowing for the tight Turn 12 took multiple tries as the RSV sheds speed rapidly, and it takes some experimenting before you’re brave enough to keep the throttle pinned with brake markers approaching at what seems lightspeed.

Keeping all this ferociousness manageable is Aprilia’s laudable electronics package. For the most part, I kept both ATC and AWC at level 1, allowing for an enjoyable amount of rear-wheel spin and enough front-wheel lift to make me feel like a MotoGP stud in full control of a 200-horsepower firebreather (see image below). The best part is you know there are electronic aids working in the background, but they’re never intrusive enough for you to know they’re functioning other than the occasional dashboard light illuminating – unless, of course, you have ATC turned way up.

2017 Aprilia RSV4 RR

During one of the first go-arounds of the COTA circuit I rocketed up the elevation-gaining front straight and in a little hot to Turn 1. Grabbing a handful of front brakes resulted in the rear end getting out of line. I have to think that Aprilia’s Rear Lift-up Mitigation system helped keep the situation from getting out of hand.

We started the day with the ride mode set to Track, then by our third session and no crashes, Aprilia felt confident with us switching to Race mode, which allows the engine to spin quicker in the first few degrees of throttle twist. I actually preferred Track mode, as Race mode changes power delivery from rheostat to lightswitch, making throttle modulation a more difficult task, especially through COTA’s S sections where small throttle adjustments are required. I switched back to Track mode – without having to pit because Aprilia makes most adjustments on-the-fly easy – and left it there for the remainder of sessions.

2017 Aprilia RSV4 switchgear

The RSV’s new switchgear is handily manipulated, and navigating through the various menus a straightforward process. The only complaint is the toggle switch that moves left/right and up/down with no issues but gets a little persnickety when it’s time to push the button straight down and actually select a setting, oftentimes requiring a two-finger push instead of just your thumb. No longer is BMW the only hardcore sportbike with cruise control. Of course, there was no testing this tech at the racetrack, but I did sample the Pit control button, which works as you’d expect, keeping speeds limited to pit-imposed limits.

2017 Aprilia RSV4 RF

Editor Score: 95.75%
Engine 20.0/20
Suspension/Handling 14.75/15
Transmission/Clutch 10/10
Brakes 9.75/10
Instruments/Controls4.5/5
Ergonomics/Comfort 9.0/10
Appearance/Quality 9.5/10
Desirability 9.75/10
Value 8.5/10
Overall Score95.75/100

Switching to the RF model, it was apparent on the first lap out what top-shelf suspension and lightweight forged wheels bring to the table. Hosting its first race a short five years ago, all those cars lapping COTA since have rippled the pavement in various places throughout the circuit. The RSV4 RF, outfitted with the latest gen Öhlins NIX fork and TTX shock, was better able to manage all the dips and bumps around the COTA circuit. Not to say the RR’s Sach’s fork and monoshock don’t perform admirably, but when ridden back-to-back, it’s hard to overlook the increased compliancy. In hindsight, without having a direct comparison, I’d be totally happy with the performance of the Sachs units and would welcome the reduced MSRP they reflect.

More significant (to me, at least) are the forged wheels the RF wears. The first time through COTA’s S turns on the RF, the difference felt as though the RR model was outfitted with wheels of concrete as the RF transitioned with a renewed sense of ease and immediacy. The reduced rotating mass coupled with the Öhlins ability to deal with surface imperfections exposed an increased sense of stability, generating more confidence in my ability to attack the COTA circuit.

2017 Aprilia RSV4 RF

Also working in the background to keep you upright is the Bosch cornering ABS system. It’s a system you’ll probably never realize how many times it’s saved your bacon. We tested cornering ABS on a bike with outriggers last year and came away from the experience fully recognizing its potential.

Shifting either model around the COTA course is made ridiculously easy by way of Aprilia’s up-and-down quickshifter. The system worked flawlessly, eagerly grabbing gears without hesitation, and downshifting, blipping the throttle as it goes, all the way to first gear without upsetting the chassis. The only way to interrupt the operation is by allowing your foot to rest atop the shifter, which stops the system from grabbing the next gear. We’ve found that sometimes what works at track speeds and aggression levels doesn’t always transfer to street use, so we’ll have to wait until we have an RSV in our possession as to how its quickshifter works in the real world of street riding.

When you piece the whole picture together; a manageable 200-hp engine, grade-A suspension and brake components, MotoGP-level electronics, and magic-carpet-ride handling, you begin realizing the RSV4 RF would probably run circles around a 10-year-old World Superbike racer. All for a $23k MSRP.

If that price is a little steep – which it certainly is for a lot of us – the RR model is a perfectly good substitution, offering the best aspects of the RF model in a much more affordable package at $16,999. In fact, purchasing the RR model and installing a set of forged aluminum wheels will get you seriously close to the RF while still keeping the price below $20k. Either way, the RSV4 remains one of the best liter-class superbikes a performance junkie can wish to own. How it measures up against the competition will soon be discovered in our upcoming 2017 Superbike Shootout.

2017 Aprilia RSV4 TFT instrument display screen


The new full-color TF display is second-best one I’ve seen this year next to Triumph’s new Street Triple RS. You can choose between two screens, Road and Race, both with night and day backlighting.

042817-2017-aprilia-rsv4-2554-cropped 042817-2017-aprilia-rsv4-2554 During one of the first go-arounds of the COTA circuit I rocketed up the elevation-gaining front straight and in a little hot to Turn 1. Grabbing a handful of front brakes resulted in the rear end getting out of line. I have to think that Aprilia’s Rear Lift-up Mitigation system helped keep the situation from getting out of hand. The RSV’s new switchgear is handily manipulated, and navigating through the various menus a straightforward process. The only complaint is the toggle switch that moves left/right and up/down with no issues but gets a little persnickety when it’s time to push the button straight down and actually select a setting, oftentimes requiring a two-finger push instead of just your thumb. No longer is BMW the only hardcore sportbike with cruise control. Of course there was no testing this tech at the racetrack, but I did sample the Pit control button, which works as you’d expect, keeping speeds limited to pit-imposed limits. 042817-2017-aprilia-rsv4-rr_18 042817-2017-aprilia-rsv4-rf_20-front-wheel 042817-2017-aprilia-rsv4-wheeler_611 042817-2017-aprilia-rsv4-wheeler_106 042817-2017-aprilia-rsv4-wheeler_103 042817-2017-aprilia-rsv4-rf-shock Aprilia’s RSV4 is the most MotoGP-looking superbike you can buy, thanks to one of the most renowned designers of modern motorcycles, Miguel Galluzzi. The director of Piaggio’s Advanced Design Center in Pasadena, CA, recently gave us his personal Top 10 Motorcycles. 042817-2017-aprilia-rsv4-lean-right One of the coolest technologies the new V4-MP multimedia platform offers is the ability to download a track map with corner-by-corner MotoGP settings already included. If the track doesn’t already exist, hit the record button and it’ll create a track map in which you can input your own personal corner-by-corner settings for ATC and AWC. Standard on the RF, optional on the RR. Also working in the background to keep you upright is the Bosch cornering ABS system. It’s a system you’ll probably never realize how many times it’s saved your bacon. We tested cornering ABS on a bike with outriggers last year and came away from the experience fully recognizing its potential. The new full-color TF display is second-best one I’ve seen this year next to Triumph’s new Street Triple RS. You can choose between two screens, Road and Race, both with night and day backlighting.

2017 Aprilia RSV4 RR/RF Review – First Ride appeared first on Motorcycle.com.

Elias Leads The Pack Heading In To Suzuki ECSTAR Championship This Weekend

April 28, 2017 Press Release 0

The Suzuki ECSTAR Championship at Road Atlanta looks to be an exciting one. 

Begin Press Release:


Elias Leads Them In To Road Atlanta

The Suzuki ECSTAR Championship At Road Atlanta Is This Weekend  

COSTA MESA, CA (April 27, 2017) A year ago Yoshimura Suzuki’s Toni Elias came into Georgia fresh off his two wins at the Circuit of The Americas. After seeing the 2.54-mile Road Atlanta track for the first time during Thursday’s track walk, Elias had wide eyes and plenty of trepidation. He said the track, with its varying undulations and blind corners, was unlike any he’d ever seen.

Come race time, Elias knew where he was going and he went out and won race one, proving his mettle as fast learner. Although he suffered a crash in turn five in race two that would ultimately prove costly to his championship aspirations, he still left as a fan of the racetrack.

This weekend, Elias again returns to the Suzuki/ECSTAR Championship at Road Atlanta as the points leader after, once again, sweeping to wins in both races in the Motul Superbike class at COTA. This time he’s got Road Atlanta’s 12 turns etched in his brain and with an appreciation and fondness for the racetrack.

“Of course, going back to Road Atlanta for a second time will make things easier,” Elias said. “I love the track. I will start working from the first practice, and I hope I will be more ready for the races than last year.”

Although Elias won both races at COTA last weekend, both Motul Superbike races were hard-fought. In Saturday’s final he had his Yoshimura Suzuki teammate Roger Hayden nibbling at his heels for the duration with a margin of victory of 1.7 seconds. On Sunday, he had his hands full with Hayden and Monster Energy/Yamalube/Yamaha Factory Racing’s Cameron Beaubier for the entire race with Beaubier bouncing back from a crash on Saturday to finish second – .716 of a second behind Elias.

Elias arrives at Road Atlanta with a perfect points haul of 50 points, 14 more than Hayden, who was second and third in the two races in Texas. Beaubier, who was able to remount from his crash on Saturday to finish eighth, is third with 28 points – 22 behind Elias and just one point better than Quicksilver Latus Motors Kawasaki’s Bobby Fong.

Fong was impressive at COTA, riding his Bazzaz Superstock 1000-spec ZX-10R to third in the first race and fifth in race two and both of those were wins in the Superstock 1000 class, which runs with the Motul Superbike class on-track.

Yamalube/Westby Racing’s Mathew Scholtz will make his Road Atlanta debut this weekend and he comes into round two fifth in the Superbike standings and second in Superstock 1000. The South African is a quick learner, but Road Atlanta will still provide a challenge in the early practice sessions.

The rest of the top 10 in the Motul Superbike class are all relatively close, led by Josh Herrin in sixth place. Herrin and his HelmetSounds.com/Western Services/Meen Motors Yamaha YZF-R1 finished seventh and sixth in the two races. Jake Lewis had a good weekend on his M4 ECSTAR Suzuki GSXR-1000, finishing third and fourth in the Bazzaz Superstock 1000 class over the two days.

Josh Hayes had a rough start to his Superbike season, the four-time Superbike Champion crashing in Saturday’s race and remounting to finish 14th. On Sunday, he was much better and rode to fourth. But his championship is starting on the wrong foot and he’s eighth in the series standings after the first of the 10 rounds (and 20 races).

TOBC Racing’s Danny Eslick (third in the Superstock 1000 title chase) and Genuine Broaster Chicken Honda’s Jake Gagne are ninth and 10th in the Superbike Championship, respectively, coming into Road Atlanta.

Supersport was the only other MotoAmerica class to race at COTA and it was just a single event on Saturday. It was won by JD Beach with the 2015 MotoAmerica Supersport Champion putting his head down and leaving M4 Suzuki’s Valentin Debise and defending Supersport Champion Garrett Gerloff, on the second Monster Energy/Yamalube/YES/Graves, to battle behind him. The fight went to the finish with Debise second and Gerloff third, but some 4.9 seconds behind Beach.

Road Atlanta and the Suzuki ECSTAR Championship at Road Atlanta is the first in the 2017 MotoAmerica Series that will feature all the classes, including the opening rounds of the Superstock 600 and KTM RC Cup. That results in a full slate of on-track action for three days at the scenic track in Braselton, Georgia.

Both the Superstock 600 and KTM RC Cup Championships should be wide open with both series champions moving on. Superstock 600 Champion Bryce Prince, who dominated the 2016 season, has moved to the Bazzaz Superstock 1000 class and KTM RC Cup Champion Brandon Paasch is now in the Supersport class. In fact, the top three in last year’s KTM RC Cup have moved up with Anthony Mazziotto III and Ashton Yates moving to Superstock 600.

This year’s Suzuki ECSTAR Championship at Road Atlanta will feature a Motul Superbike race on both Saturday and Sunday, unlike the first two seasons of MotoAmerica when both Superbike races were held on Sunday. Both are sure to entertain. Remember last year when Hayes took out his teammate Beaubier in race one?

With practice and qualifying taking place on Friday, racing action begins on Saturday with the Supersport/Superstock 600 race at 2:25 p.m., followed by the first 21-lap Motul Superbike/Bazzaz Superstock 1000 races at 3:30 p.m. The day will conclude with the first KTM RC Cup race at 4:35 p.m.

Sunday’s main events start at 11:30 a.m. with the second KTM RC Cup race and the one-off WERA Superbike race, which is the opening round of WERA’s Triple Crown Series. The final two races of the day are the second of two Supersport/Superstock 600 and Motul Superbike/Bazzaz Superstock 1000 races.

Road Atlanta Notes

Toni Elias‘ two Motul Superbike wins at Circuit of The Americas were the seventh and eighth of his MotoAmerica career. Elias won six races in his debut season of MotoAmerica, including race one at Road Atlanta.

Josh Hayes is second on the all-time Superbike win list with 60 victories, 22 behind all-time leader Mat Mladin. Hayes won twice in 2016, his lowest total since he started compiling his record-setting numbers. Although his win total was low, Hayes was on the podium 12 times. He also earned one pole position – at Road America.

Pole position in the opening round of the series at Circuit of The Americas last week went to Roger Hayden, for the second straight year.

Defending two-time MotoAmerica Superbike Champion Cameron Beaubier was on pole last year here at Road Atlanta, the Yamaha rider lapping at 1:24.84. It was one of four pole positions for Beaubier in 2016. Beaubier won eight times, including race two at Road Atlanta, in 2016 and now has 19 career Superbike victories. Beaubier was leading race one when he crashed together with his teammate Hayes. Beaubier won both Superbike races at Road Atlanta in 2015 with both held in wet conditions.

Garrett Gerloff comes into Road Atlanta as the defending Supersport Champion and also as the defending race winner in Georgia. Gerloff swept the doubleheader last year for two of his six wins in 2016.

###

About MotoAmerica

MotoAmerica is the new North American road racing series created in 2014. MotoAmerica is an affiliate of KRAVE Group LLC, a partnership that includes three-time 500cc World Champion, two-time AMA Superbike Champion, and AMA Hall of Famer Wayne Rainey, ex-racer and former manager of Team Roberts Chuck Aksland, motorsports marketing executive Terry Karges, and businessman Richard Varner. For more information on MotoAmerica, visit www.MotoAmerica.com. Also make sure to follow MotoAmerica on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Elias Leads The Pack Heading In To Suzuki ECSTAR Championship This Weekend appeared first on Motorcycle.com News.

Kevin Schwantz And His New Suzuki GSX-R1000

April 28, 2017 Press Release 0

Another Suzuki in the garage for Kevin Schwantz.

Begin Press Release:



SUZUKI PRESENTS KEVIN SCHWANTZ WITH ALL-NEW 2017 GSX-R1000 SERIAL NUMBER 34

Former Grand Prix Champion Gets the 34th 2017 GSX-R1000 to Roll Off the Production Lin

Brea, CA (April 28, 2017) – Suzuki Motor of America was proud to present 1993 500cc Grand Prix World Champion Kevin Schwantz with production model No. 34 of the all-new 2017 Suzuki GSX-R1000. The motorcycle was presented to Kevin at last weekend’s MotoGP Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas in Austin, TX. It was a brilliant debut for the new GSX-R as Team Yoshimura Suzuki took back-to-back wins in the Moto America Superbike doubleheader. The new bike also started from pole position in both races.

“It’s an honor to accept this Suzuki GSX-R1000 from Suzuki,” Schwantz said. “For them to give me VIN number 34 makes it even more special. I raced with Suzuki my entire career and it’s amazing to see how the GSX-R has evolved over the years into this year’s model, which is as close to a street-legal Grand Prix racing machine as you can get.”

Schwantz came out of Texas and quickly rocketed to prominence as one of America’s best road racers during the mid-1980s riding for Yoshimura Suzuki. By the late 1980s, Schwantz moved to international competition in the 500cc Grand Prix World Championships. He was a perennial top rider in that series and won the world championship in 1993. During his Grand Prix racing career, Schwantz racked up 25 500cc GP victories, all with Suzuki, putting him second all-time among American riders. Today Schwantz is a member of the Motorcycle Hall of Fame and MotoGP Legends.

The popular Texan was the first factory rider in America aboard the Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R750, when the model was introduced in America in 1986. He won six of his nine AMA Superbike victories on Suzuki GSX-Rs (his first three win were on GS750ES models) including his famous 1988 Daytona 200 win. Schwantz was also the first rider to win an AMA Superbike pole and the first to stand atop an AMA Superbike podium on a GSX-R. His connection to the model is unparalleled and the reason why Suzuki chose to present him with the iconic number 34 bike.

The special motorcycle he was presented is serial No. 34, the 34th 2017 Suzuki GSX-R1000 to be made. It has been three decades, with more than a million editions sold, since the GSX-R line was born. And a decade and a half has elapsed since the first GSX-R1000 transformed the open sportbike class forever. Now, the all-new 2017 GSX-R1000 is redefining what it means to be The King of Sportbikes.

Schwantz had the opportunity to ride his new GSX-R1000 at the Circuit of the Americas during the MotoGP weekend.

“First laps around the track in fairly cold conditions, it’s amazing how light and nimble this bike feels,” Schwantz explained. “To ride it around COTA made me smile. It really feels like you’re riding a 600 until you roll on the throttle and feel all that smooth torque and power on hand.”

The new GSX-R1000 is the latest incarnation of the iconic sportbike line. Its heritage reaches back to the GSX-R Schwantz raced during his illustrious career.

“We’re happy to present Kevin with 2017 GSX-R1000 No. 34,” said Kerry Graeber, Suzuki Vice President Motorcycle/ATV Sales and Marketing. “Kevin and Suzuki are so closely associated so we thought it was fitting to give Kevin this token of our appreciation for the years of services he’s given to Suzuki. The racing number 34 is forever aligned with Kevin and, in fact, is part of his ‘brand’. We know Kevin will enjoy owning and riding this motorcycle.”

There are three models of GSX-R1000: the GSX-R1000R model, the GSX-R1000 ABS, and the standard GSX-R1000. The standard version, which Schwantz was presented, is a model exclusive to the U.S. market and is made specifically for American riders. It is ideal for riders seeking an ultra high-performance street- or track-day bike, or as the foundation of a full-on racing machine.

Visit www.suzukicycles.com for more details.

Kevin Schwantz And His New Suzuki GSX-R1000 appeared first on Motorcycle.com News.

Yamalube Lean With Us R6 At Remaining MotoAmerica Rounds

April 28, 2017 Press Release 0

Look like a hero on the Yamalube Lean With Us photo op!

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Yamalube Offers Fans A Chance To Lean With Us

As close to the feeling you can get without actually doing it

COSTA MESA, CA (April 28, 2017) – Want to get the feeling of leaning off a championship-winning motorcycle, dragging your knee and capturing it all in a photo – without the possibility of crashing? Yamalube and MotoAmerica are offering that opportunity with the Lean With Us championship-winning YZF-R6.

At each of the nine remaining rounds of the 2017 MotoAmerica Series, Yamalube’s Lean With Us R6 will be available for fans to throw a leg over, experience the feeling of racing an R6 in a corner with 55-degree angle, and walk away with the ultimate “selfie.”

“MotoAmerica has always been a great partner of ours,” said Yamalube’s Roxanne Flores. “When they told us of the idea of the Lean With Us program, we were excited to bring this one-of-a-kind experience to the fans throughout the 2017 season.”

The Yamaha used in the Lean With Us promotion is a new 2017 YZF-R6 with current race team graphics that match Garrett Gerloff’s R6.

In addition to getting the opportunity to “Lean With Us,” MotoAmerica fans will also get the chance to win a brand-new R3 by signing up with the Yamalube girls at the Lean With Us display at the MotoAmerica rounds.

Round two of the 10-round 2017 MotoAmerica Series is this weekend, April 28-30, at Road Atlanta in Braselton, Georgia.

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About MotoAmerica

MotoAmerica is the new North American road racing series created in 2014. MotoAmerica is an affiliate of KRAVE Group LLC, a partnership that includes three-time 500cc World Champion, two-time AMA Superbike Champion, and AMA Hall of Famer Wayne Rainey, ex-racer and former manager of Team Roberts Chuck Aksland, motorsports marketing executive Terry Karges, and businessman Richard Varner. For more information on MotoAmerica, visit www.MotoAmerica.com. Also make sure to follow MotoAmerica on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Yamalube Lean With Us R6 At Remaining MotoAmerica Rounds appeared first on Motorcycle.com News.

Zero Motorcycles Partners With Big Sur International Marathon

April 28, 2017 Press Release 0

Electric motorcycles and thousands of runners who want to breathe fresh air during a marathon are a natural fit, making the announcement from Zero Motorcycles about their partnership with the Big Sur International Marathon great news.

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ZERO MOTORCYCLES ANNOUNCES PARTNERSHIP WITH THE BIG SUR INTERNATIONAL MARATHON

Partnership brings electric motorcycles to one of California’s Greenest sporting events

SANTA CRUZ, Calif., (April 28th, 2017)Zero Motorcycles, the global leader in the electric motorcycle industry, announced today that they will provide two motorcycles for use at the upcoming Big Sur International Marathon. The fully electric motorcycles will be used by the lead event marshal as well as by a course photography team of driver and rider. In the past, the event marshal used a bicycle due to its low environmental impact and crowd friendliness, but the range and speed was limited. Now, with the Zero, the lead marshal will be better able to oversee his team of 45 riders and more quickly respond to situations on the course. By replacing the bicycle with a Zero, it not only greatly increases the geographic footprint he can travel during the race, it also does so while aligning with the event’s mission of sustainability. The photography team will also be able to travel greater distances to capture more shots along the spectacular 26.2-mile marathon route.

“Big Sur events are very Green, and we pride ourselves on having a 99% recycle/conversion rate for all waste produced over the course of the race,” said Julie Armstrong, Marketing and Communications Director for the Big Sur International Marathon. “Highlighting the gorgeous scenery and keeping the environment as pristine as possible is key to us, and using Zero’s electric motorcycles for increased logistic support allows us to improve the race experience while staying true to our values.”

The Big Sur International Marathon is heading into its 32nd year, and is considered a “bucket list” race for runners around the world. It offers six different distance options, and sells out all 8,000 spots almost immediately after registration opens. Runners from 49 states and 35 countries will participate in this year’s event.

“As a California based brand, Zero is particularly excited to partner with the Big Sur International Marathon for this iconic race down the California coast,” said Todd Andersen, VP of Sales and Marketing for Zero Motorcycles. “This event marks one of several such cooperative efforts with sporting events around California. It represents the growing interest we’re seeing from global sporting event organizations looking to leverage the benefits of electric motorcycles for their participants, racers, and the planet.”

For those living in the general area, California currently offers a $900 rebate for the purchase of an electric motorcycle, with Monterey, San Benito, and Santa Cruz counties offering an additional $900 rebate. In total, one could purchase a new 2017 Zero and get up to $1800 back from state and local governments.

For detailed information on Zero’s 2017 line and information on how to test ride a Zero in your area, please visit www.zeromotorcycles.com

The Big Sur International Marathon is to be held on April 30th, 2017.

About Zero Motorcycles

Zero Motorcycles is committed to transforming the motorcycling experience by bringing to market highly innovative electric motorcycles that offer exceptional value and performance. Zero is powered by innovation, driven by passion, guided by integrity and measured by results. Through extensive research, insight and experience, Zero combines the art and science of motorcycle development to create and manufacture products that excite consumers and inspire brand loyalty. Every model is designed and built in California. Zero is determined to be the preeminent global electric motorcycle company.

About the Big Sur International Marathon

The Big Sur International Marathon (BSIM) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to providing beautiful events that benefit the community. Currently their ‘family of events’ includes the Big Sur International Marathon (April), the Half Marathon on Monterey Bay (November), Run in the Name of Love 5K/2K (June) and the Salinas Valley Half Marathon (August). In addition, BSIM administers the award-winning JUST RUN® youth fitness program. www.bsim.org

 

Zero Motorcycles Partners With Big Sur International Marathon appeared first on Motorcycle.com News.

Your Chance at last to Snap Up Agostinis Own MV Agusta 500 Triple

April 28, 2017 John Burns 0

Actually it’s a replica of the bike Ago won seven 500cc world titles on, but this 2010 version of the 1972 championship bike is said to be close enough that Giacomo had it in his own collection. Now Sotheby’s is set to auction it off May 27, and says you should bring at least 200,000 Euros.

Details here.

Your Chance at last to Snap Up Agostini’s Own MV Agusta 500 Triple appeared first on Motorcycle.com News.

2016 AMA Member Sweepstakes Winner Receives Yamaha Super Ténéré

April 28, 2017 Press Release 0

Congratulations to AMA Member Sweepstakes winner, Ron Gonichelis. Good luck to the 2017 entrants.

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American Motorcyclist Association delivers Yamaha Super Ténéré to 2016 sweepstakes winner

2017 AMA Member Sweepstakes is under way 

PICKERINGTON, Ohio — Ron Gonichelis of Euless, Texas, was chosen as the winner of a 2016 Yamaha Super Ténéré in the 2016 AMA Member Sweepstakes.

Gonichelis, who has been riding street bikes for 12 years and has been an AMA member since 2014, picked up his new motorcycle April 21 at Freedom Powersports of Hurst in Hurst, Texas.

“I want to say thank you for the Yamaha Super Ténéré,” said Gonichelis, 57. “I rode the bike Sunday morning-no traffic-to get acquainted. It was wild. Honestly, I felt like I was 18 again.

“I just love it,” he said. “When I got my license in 2005, that inspired two of my friends up in New Jersey to get their licenses, and we used to ride together when I lived in New Jersey. And the motorcycle was one of the factors that made my wife fall in love with me. My second date, I called her up and asked her out to breakfast and to take a ride on the bike. She was mine ever since.”

Those who join the AMA or renew their memberships during 2017 are automatically entered to win prizes.

The grand prizes for the 2017 AMA Member Sweepstakes are a 2017 Yamaha FZ-09 and 2016 Suzuki GSX-S750.

Other 2017 prizes include:

  • A Shark Kage Ramp
  • Cardo Systems/Scala Rider Freecom 4
  • Tourmaster Select Saddlebags
  • Cortech Sequoia XC Adventure Touring Jacket
  • Liberty Sport Eyewear
  • Guardian Weatherall Plus Motorcycle Cover
  • AMAGear.com shirts

All the details on the sweepstakes are available at www.americanmotorcyclist.com/For-Members/Member-Sweepstakes.

About the American Motorcyclist Association

Founded in 1924, the AMA is a not-for-profit member-based association whose mission is to promote the motorcycle lifestyle and protect the future of motorcycling. As the world’s largest motorcycling rights and event sanctioning organization, the AMA advocates for riders’ interests at all levels of government and sanctions thousands of competition and recreational events every year. The AMA also provides money-saving discounts on products and services for its members. Through the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in Pickerington, Ohio, the AMA honors the heroes and heritage of motorcycling. For more information, visit www.americanmotorcyclist.com.

2016 AMA Member Sweepstakes Winner Receives Yamaha Super Ténéré appeared first on Motorcycle.com News.

Turbocharged Suzuki Revealed in Patent Filings

April 28, 2017 Dennis Chung 0

Suzuki has filed 13 separate patents with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office related to a motorcycle with a turbocharged engine. The patent illustrations show a parallel-Twin engine resembling the XE7 turbocharged engine Suzuki presented at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show.

The illustration above shows the engine in a motorcycle that closely resembles the Suzuki Recursion, a turbocharged concept shown at the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show. Though only a faint outline, the motorcycle has a similar fairing and the same trellis license plate holder behind the rear wheel. One big difference is the trellis frame and subframe shown in the patent instead of the Recursion’s twin-spar frame.

Turbocharged Suzuki patent diagrams

Figure 2 shows the engine in the frame with two radiators. Figure 6 shows the engine, with Figure 10 highlighting the components of the forced induction system. The turbocharger (121) is located just below where the header pipes join. The airbox (115) and intercooler (131) form a single unit located above the cylinder heads.

Turbocharged Suzuki XE7 engine

The engine shown in the patents looks very similar to the XE7 engine shown at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show.

The engine still looks to be a mid-size parallel-Twin. Stacked transmission shafts make for a very short powerplant, and this enables what appears to be a very long swingarm, which would reduce the tendency to wheelie.

A few of the patents describe the engine’s lubrication system, the placement of balancer shafts in front of and below the crankshaft, the twin radiator set-up, and a way to make sure cooling water is supplied to the turbocharger when the motorcycle is parked and leaned over on its sidestand.

We know that Suzuki has been working on turbocharger technology for a few years now, and these new patents show signs of progress. We’ve previously published Suzuki patents related to the Recursion but these 13 new patents show significant differences including the use of the XE7 engine. The Recursion was said to use a 588cc engine and the XE7 looked to be close to that displacement, as does the powerplant in the patents. The detail involved in illustrating the engine and the frame indicate they will be close to the finished product, while the less distinct Recursion-shaped outline may be just a temporary placeholder before the design is finalized.

Turbocharged Suzuki patent diagram right sideTurbocharged Suzuki patent diagram left side

If (when?) Suzuki’s turbocharged motorcycle goes into production, it may not bear the Recursion name. Though Suzuki has registered trademarks for “Recursion,” the company has also registered for trademarks for “Katana” and the symbol for “Gamma,” two classic Suzuki names that would be intriguing fits for a new turbocharged model.

042717-suzuki-recurusion-turbocharged-concept 042717-suzuki-xe7-turbocharged-engine 042717-suzuki-xe7-turbocharged-engine-vs-patent 042717-suzuki-turbocharged-twin-patent-us20170114708-2 Figure 2 shows the engine in the frame with two radiators. Figure 6 shows the engine with Figure 10 highlighting the components of the forced induction system. The turbocharger (121) is located just below where the header pipes join. The airbox (115) and intercooler (131) form a single unit located above the cylinder heads. 042717-suzuki-turbocharged-twin-patent-us20170114708-fig-2 042717-suzuki-turbocharged-twin-patent-us20170114708-fig-3 042717-suzuki-turbocharged-twin-patent-us20170114708-fig-4 042717-suzuki-turbocharged-twin-patent-us20170114708-fig-6 042717-suzuki-turbocharged-twin-patent-us20170114708-fig-10

Turbocharged Suzuki Revealed in Patent Filings appeared first on Motorcycle.com.

Royal Enfield Dealers Increase By 50 In One Year!

April 27, 2017 Press Release 0

We are happy to see more Royal Enfield dealers coming online nationwide.

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50 DEALERS ADD ROYAL ENFIELD. WHO’S NEXT?

In the past year, 50 dealerships in North America have put Royal Enfield on the showroom floor and helped legions of customers Return to Pure Motorcycling. It’s a proud moment for us, especially when we consider the quality of the business people now on the RE roster. May the next 50 be as awesome! Want be an Royal Enfield dealer?

Royal Enfield Dealers

Let’s get to know each other.

Royal Enfield Dealers Increase By 50 In One Year! appeared first on Motorcycle.com News.