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Are sportbikes truly dead? It does not look to be so as the revised 2024 Honda CBR600RR supersport bike leads the middleweight category sales in the UK, in June this year.

Honda UK naturally says it is great news since CBR600RR is now doing well in the SuperSport category in the British SuperBike (BSB) series and won at the recently completed Isle of Man TT.

However, overall industry news is not so rosy. Total registration in June was 12,734 units, which is a 5.8% drop compared to 2023. Year-to-date sales are also 0.7% down from the previous year.

The Honda CBR600RR was dropped for all other markets except for Japan since 2017 but it returned to the UK this year, selling at £10,499 (RM63,579.65). Its 599cc, 16-valve, inline-four engine produces 119 hp, putting it in the same category as the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R.

The CBR600RR is the real supersport machine, compared to the 94hp Honda CBR650R which is more road-oriented. The latter is in the same category as the Yamaha YZF-R7, Kawasaki Ninja 650, Suzuki GSX-8R,  Triumph Daytona 660, and also the Aprilia RS 660. whose engines produce sub-100hp performance.

2024 Honda CBR650R

The 2024 Italjet Dragster 700 Twin was teased a couple of times previously, and has finally been revealed in its entirety.

It is easy to see that it will be aimed at the Yamaha TMAX 560 and Honda Forza 750 in terms of performance, but the Dragster 700 is a stripped down and purely sport model without the frills of run-of-the-mill scooters. In fact, the Italjet’s chief said that he does not want to call it a “scooter.” Hence there is no forward and underseat storage spaces, footboards, and large windscreen.

The 68hp, parallel-twin, liquid-cooled, DOHC, 4-valve per cyclinder engine is sourced from Benelli and mated to a manual six-speed transmission, as standard. It is way more powerful than the TMAX’s 47 hp and the Forza’s 58 hp.

As we mentioned earlier, the higher spec Factory Edition includes Öhlins suspension, Brembro brake calipers, Akrapovič exhaust, and a black/gold livery. Common components for both standard and Factory Edition versions are underseat exhaust, Marzocchi USD forks, adjustable rear shock, 15-inch wheels, twin front disc brakes, Öhlins steering damper.

Italjet had opened the bookings for the Factory Edition since 12 July and will last until the last day of the EICMA 2024 show, or if all 700 limited units had been soon prior to that.

And finally, the price. the standard 2024 Italjet Dragster 700 Twin version will cost around €12,900 (RM 65,688.64), while the Factory Edition costs €14,900 (RM 75,872.50). These prices will of course be jacked up so much higher due to taxes and duties if the bike makes it to Malaysia.

Norton Motorcycles began in 1898 and has gone through a tumultuous history of innovations, racing and sales successes, decline, takeovers, and revivals.

There were three episodes of revival, first under an North American investment company, followed by Stuart Garner, and finally presently by India-based TVS Motor Company in 2020.

TVS Motor has great plans for the legendary brand and is looking forward to expanding it globally.

Begin Press Release

Norton Motorcycles, part of the TVS Motor Company, announced its investment and growth plans to put the company in the ideal place for international expansion. At the Goodwood Festival of Speed, members of Norton’s senior leadership team – Sudarshan Venu, Dr Robert Hentschel and Richard Arnold – shared the vision of the brand and discussed how Norton is now perfectly placed to expand globally.

Sudarshan Venu, Managing Director, TVS Motor Company, said: “Our vision, commitment and investment into the Norton brand is entering an exciting phase. We look forward to sharing that with motorcyclists across the world.

Sudarshan Venu

With TVS Motor’s backing and global capabilities, Norton is being reinvigorated as a global
brand, led by a strong and dynamic team.

TVS Motor has committed £200 million across the life of the investment in new product development, facilities, research and development and world class quality engineering. The new Norton motorcycles will follow the company’s philosophy of ‘Design, Dynamism, and Detail’. Exciting product launches are being planned starting next year, with six new models planned over the next three years. As part of this, Norton is preparing for international expansion with an initial focus on the USA, Germany, France, Italy and India.

Appointments include Richard Arnold, Norton Executive Director, former CEO of Manchester United Football Club and Dr. Robert Hentschel, Executive Director & CEO, of Norton Motorcycles. Bringing together the right people has put Norton in the best position to capitalise on its growth.

As a result of TVS’s investment and support, Norton’s revitalised research and development has been channelled into its product pipeline through its state-of-the-art facility in Solihull, UK. Testament to this is the One of One V4SV, inspired by Steve Hislop’s ‘White Charger’ that sped up the Goodwood Hillclimb every day of the festival.

Dr. Robert Hentschel, Executive Director & CEO, said: “The investment in research and development and leadership has us positioned to take six exciting products to countries across the world, with world class quality and scale, spelling another epoch of success in the Norton story. Our focus on design, drivability and details will maximise the exciting opportunity for Norton as well as for those new customers that choose one of our motorcycles.

Dr. Robert Hentschel

This year also marks the completion of Norton Motorcycles honouring Norton Motorcycles UK Ltd (NMUL) customers. After investing £2.3 million into the development, manufacturing and re-engineering of the Commando and V4 platforms, the fulfilment and delivery of orders for customers of the previous company signifies the closing of a significant chapter in which Norton can fully focus on the company’s future.

Richard Arnold, Executive Director, said: “Norton’s heritage is vast, and plays a key part in our development as a global brand. It’s important for us to prioritise our customers, both in the present and the future. Not only with new bikes but also with every touch point of the Norton experience. The products currently in testing and development are incredibly exciting. Bikers around the world will love to ride them and love to own them, I am looking forward to expanding their availability to local dealers in new territories and connecting with bikers to share the Norton journey.

Richard Arnold
End Press Release

So, let us look forward to Norton reentering Malaysia’s market, shall we?

On-off, on-off. Even probably causing the Indian GP to be moved to an entirely different date. That is the saga with the proposed Kazakhstan MotoGP 2024. It has now been completely cancelled and will be replaced by a second outing at Misano.

Kazakhstan had been slated for 2023 but the Sokol International Circuit was deemed not ready. That pushed the round to this year. Unfortunately, an unprecedented flood hit the Central Asian region in May which forced the round slated to begin from 16 June to be cancelled indefinitely.

Then the Indian GP’s organisers threw another curve ball which put it on hold, too. Consequently, Dorna decided to replace the Indian GP scheduled to begin from 2oth September with the Kazakhstan GP. The Indian GP, on the other hand, was moved to March next year.

But that is not the end, as MotoGP issued a statement saying that the Kazakhstan round has been cancelled altogether owing to logistical issues that “have rendered the event impossible to run” after the flooding.

“The FIM, IRTA and Dorna Sports announce the cancellation of the Grand Prix of Kazakhstan,” the statement reads. “Operational and logistical issues arising from the earlier flooding across the region have rendered the event impossible to hold in 2024.

“Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli will instead host the Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix from the 20th to the 22nd of September.

“MotoGP is excited to stage a second event at the iconic Adriatic venue, giving the passionate Italian fanbase a further opportunity to see the world’s most exciting sport in action.”

The revision creates an awkward situation as the World Superbike Championship will also run during the same weekend, albeit on another Italian track, the Cremona Circuit. The first Misano MotoGP round will be held from 6-8 September. So, Italy sees 3 rounds of motorcycle racing in two weeks.

We have been teased, we have read leaked spec sheets and even seen blurred out images, but it has all come to an end now as Royal Enfield has officially unveiled its second roadster model – the Guerilla 450.

Said to be the road going variant of the successful Himalayan 450, the Guerilla is at home in the mountains as it is on the streets of a densely populated urban city. Hence why the chosen launch location, the vibrant and historic city of Barcelona is such an apt location.

The Guerilla was developed in and around Barcelona, and though we have only been fed some information about the bike in the past few months, Royal Enfield has been quietly working on the bike since 2019. That is a long time in the making, but as they say, good things come to those who wait and after having ridden it, we can say that it is indeed a very good thing.

But we can’t tell you much about how it feels like because of an on-going embargo that does not allow reviews to be published until the 27th of July. That is because the test ride event in Barcelona is still on-going and there still are many journalists who are yet to ride the bike. So to level the playing field, Royal Enfield put out an embargo, and we respect that.

What we can tell you though are the specifications and we can also show you what the bike looks like, in detail this time with no blurred out parts.

The Guerilla 450 shares a lot of its underpinnings with its sibling, the Himalayan, so we are warning you right now that there will be a lot of Himalayan references coming up. Bear with us.

The design though is the biggest (and most obvious) difference. But there are elements of the Hunter 350, which is not all that surprising since the two are essentially Roadsters.

Starting with the tyres, the Guerilla runs on the same Ceat Gripp XL Rad tyres that we first saw on the, you guessed it, Himalayan. The tyres were built specifically for the adventure bike but Royal Enfield says the hard compound tyres have been repurposed for the Guerilla.

The tyres wrap a set of 17-inch wheels front and back while braking power is managed by a 310mm disc up front that is gripped by a dual-piston ByBre caliper. The rear is kept in check by a 270mm single-piston caliper. Both are further backed up by a dual-channel ABS system.

Suspension consists of a 43mm telescopic fork up front with 140mm of travel while a monoshock with 150mm of travel manages the rear. The latter is adjustable for pre-load.

The forks have a rake angle of 21.8 degrees which is 4 degrees less than the Himalayans while the trail measures in at 91mm, a full 27mm shorter than the Himalayan.

This results in the bike have a 70mm shorter wheelbase at 1440mm and overall length of 2090mm, which is shorter by 155mm than its bigger brother.

On the topic of dimensions, the Guerilla is ideal for those who are challenged in the height department. It has an overall height of 1125mm (down by 191mm from the big H) while the seat is just 780mm off the ground. There is an high seat option that sits 800mm off the ground as well as a low seat option that sits 760mm. This makes the Geurilla well suited for all builds.

In terms of weight, the Guerilla weighs just 185kg (kerb with 90% fuel and lubricants) and that makes it 11kg lighter than the Himalayan.

As for tech, the Guerilla has the same circular LED headlight as the Himalayan and the rear too has LED turn signals which also double up as the brake lights.

The colourised four-inch instrument panel is also the same as the Himalayan and offers smart phone connectivity through a dedicated Royal Enfield application. When it comes to navigation, rather than reinventing the wheel, Royal Enfield simply integrated Google Maps into the app and thus gives you turn-by-turn navigation on the meter panel itself. The display is truly extraordinary.

Now to the juicy bits.

Besides the obvious sharing of components, the biggest bit is the engine itself. The 452cc engine is almost unchanged from the one in the Himalayan and makes 40PS and 40Nm of torque.

What has changed though is its state of tune, with Royal Enfield saying that the Guerilla boasts best in class mid-range torque.

The six-speed transmission too is 90% identical with only the final drive being slightly taller. There is also the assist and slipper clutch that makes the lever feel ultra-light, which comes in handy in traffic.

The engine is mounted onto the same steel tubular frame as the Himalayan though it has been slightly modified while the sub-frame is all-new.

Royal Enfield says that the overall mass of the bike has been placed lower and towards the front of the bike to give it a more nimble feel in and out of corners.

The 11-litre fuel tank on the other hand is all new and made of metal, and the official fuel consumption figure is rated at 29.5km per litre which provides a theoretical range of a little over 300km.

There are a host of different colour ways and a bunch of official Royal Enfield accessories to match the character of the bike.

In terms of pricing, Malaysians will have to wait till the bike is officially launched for that but expect a sub-RM40k price tag.

As for the rest of the world, the prices are below:

Here’s a full gallery of over 160 photos of close-ups and action shots:

The Italjet Dragster is already radical as any motorcycle, although being fromally a scooter. Then came the Dragster 559 Twin at EICMA 2023 which sent everyone into a drool fest. And now, there is something even more bonkers on the way, namely the Italjet Dragster 700 Twin.

Italjet Dragster 559 Twin

The company posted a teaser which shows several different areas of the new bike in their Instagram account, besides putting up some engine specs: Two-cylinder, liquid-cooled, DOHC 8-valve, four stroke which pumps out 68 hp (51 kW) at 8,500 RPM and 70 Nm of torque. Power is channeled through a six-speed manual gearbox, and the final drive is via a chain. There is a media house claiming the top speed of 190 km/h.

There will also be a Factory Limited Edition which adds:

  • Black and gold livery.
  • Akrapovič exhaust system.
  • Öhlins rear suspension and steering damper.
  • Brembo calipers.
  • DucaBike clutch cover with a transparent viewing window.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by ITALJET_OFFICIAL (@italjet_official)

But just check out the photos which is like a gallery of Scarlett Johansson: The front end with huge winglets, the rear Öhlins shock, high level underseat Akrapovič exhaust tips, the swingarm and chain drive.

In fact, pre-orders for the Factory Limited Edition will begin from tomorrow (12 July 2024) up until the start of EICMA 2024. You can visit https://www.italjetshop.com/ for more details.

Interestingly, Italjet CEO Massimo Tartarini says, “we don’t like to call it a scooter, but ultimately the end users will decide if they see it as a scooter or a motorcycle.

Vespa began as a cheap form of transportation in Italy post-WWII, but has since grown to be a lifestyle phenomenon. Vespa is now almost in a class of its own, and the company is quick to introduce limited edition ‘local’ models like this Vespa Primavera Batik.

For this edition, Piaggio (the owners of the Vespa brand) designers too inspiration from the Indonesian batik design. The batik is declared a World Heritage by UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation). According to recorded history, the batik making began in the 12th century and is still remains the traditional wear in the country, as well as the formal wear amongst the public servants.

By adopting the Indonesian batik design, Piaggio hopes to convey the message of of joy, prosperity, strength, longevity, respect for all cultures, and wisdom. There are batik motifs on the front and on glove compartment, along the spine of the bike next to the footboards, and underneath the rear nacelle. A cappucino brown seat with green stitching completes the theme.

Mechanically, this limited edition remains the same with the 150cc, air-cooled, single cylinder engine, which produces 12.8 hp and 12.9 Nm of torque.

Piaggio has not confirmed the price for the Vespa Primavera Batik, nor when will it be available.

Now, how about we lobby Piaggio to make a ‘Bunga Raya’ limited edition for the Malaysian market?

DJI is already a famous name for making drones and other video accessories but the United States Congress is seeking to ban their drones. A ban in the US may also lead to a ban in the European Union. So, what does DJI do? Sit down and moan? Not a chance! As such, they diversified to produce the DJI Avinox Drive System for e-bikes.

Utilising their knowledge in controllers and brushless electric motors, the drive unit has a peak power of 1,000 Watts (1 kW/1.34 hp) and 120 Nm of torque. This drive unit weigh only 2.52 kg.

There are two battery options: 600 Wh and 800 Wh. The former weighs just 2.9 kg and delivers a range of up to 120 km. The 800 Wh, on the other hand, weighs 3.7 kg and goes up to 157 km. Both batteries are IP56 dust and waterproof and use GaN fast-charging technology, which helps them charge from 0% to 75% in about 1.5 hours.

Range is of course dependent on how the power is delivered, as such there are five riding modes: Auto, Eco, Trail, Turbo, and Boost. Eco delivers the longest range, while Boost delivers the highest torque while sacrificing range. But, there are also different power modes within those riding modes namely Intelligent Walk Assist, Auto Hold, Hill Start Assist, and Stationary Shifting. There is a pair of handlebar-mounted wireless switches to customise the settings on-the-go.

Included in the set is 2-inch OLED full-colour touchscreen Control Display which functions as a control hub which connects to your smartphone. Through the Avinox app, you can lock/unlock your bike and record your ride data. There is an array of sensors that capture nearly 50 data points, allowing you to customise the contents on the Control Display via the app, including parameters like ride time, range, average speed, real-time power output, and more.

The DJI Avinox Drive System is already in use by the Amflow PL mountain bike. And, it has already won the Eurobike Award 2024. DJI says you can contact them should you want to retrofit it to your current bike.

So, how is that for diversification?

So, here is the much-awaited, much-anticipated, much-revised 2025 BMW R 1300 GS Adventure or better known as the GSA, as surely to follow the ‘standard’ R 1300 GS.

We shall leave thoughts and comments of its styling to you, but underneath all that new cover seems like everything that BMW can throw at it. And we do mean everything.

The GSA is renowned for its larger fuel tank and the this new model does have one, albeit smaller at 30 litres.

Highlights of the new 2025 BMW R 1300 GS Adventure:
  • The Automated Shift Assistant (ASA) with automated clutch operation and automated gearshift in accordance with the selected riding mode. As such, there is no clutch lever.
  • Shared Boxer engine with the non-Adventure GS which features bottom-mounted transmission.
  • The BMW ShiftCam technology is retained for varying the valve timing and valve stroke on the intake side.

  • It produces 107 kW (145 hp) at 7,750 RPM and 149 Nm at 6,500 RPM.
  • Completely redesigned chassis compared to its predecessor with sheet metal main frame and aluminium lattice tube rear frame.
  • New EVO Telelever with flex element and revised EVO Paralever rear wheel guide for better steering precision and riding stability.

  • BMW Motorrad Full Integral ABS as standard.
  • Four riding modes as standard.
  • Engine drag torque control (MSR), Dynamic Brake Control (DBC) and Hill Start Control (HSC) as standard.

  • Driving Modes Pro with additional riding modes as optional equipment.
  • Dynamic Traction Control DTC as standard.
  • Electronic Dynamic Suspension Adjustment (DSA) as optional equipment, with dynamic adjustment of the damping and spring rate, and also load compensation.

  • Adaptive vehicle height control comfort and sport suspension as optional equipment. It automatically lifts the bike by 30mm after setting off, and lowering itself by that 30mm when slowing down toward a stop.
  • Matrix LED headlights and newly developed auxiliary headlights integrated into the body as standard.
  • Headlight Pro with adaptive headlight as optional equipment.

  • Hand protectors with integrated turn indicators as standard.
  • Dynamic Cruise Control (DCC) with brake function as standard.
  • Riding Assistant with Active Cruise Control (ACC), Front Collision Warning (FCW), Lane Change Warning and Rear End Collision Warning (RECW) as optional equipment.

  • Smartphone charging compartment with integrated USB socket and 12 V on-board power socket as standard.
  • Seat heating for rider and passenger for enhanced touring suitability as optional equipment ex works.
  • Handlebar risers up to 30 mm as optional equipment.

  • Wide range of seat height variants as optional equipments.
  • Multifunctional instrument cluster with 6.5-inch full-colour TFT screen and numerous features as standard.
  • RDC, Keyless Ride and heated grips as standard.

  • Intelligent Emergency Call as standard (market-dependent).
  • Colour variants are Triple Black, GS Trophy, and Option 719 Karakorum.

BMW Motorrad claimed that the 2025 BMW R 1300 GS Adventures kerb weight is 269kg, compared to the 2024 R 1300 GS’s 237kg, while its seat height is 870mm adjustable to 890mm.

Pricing in the UK starts from £18,870 (RM113,872.52) to £21,300 (RM128,536.55).

Nine times world champion Valentino Rossi and Francesca Novello are expecting their second child.

Rossi announced the good news in his X social media account with several pictures and the caption “La Franci è incinta, aspettiamo un’altra bambina,” which translates to “Franci is pregnant, we are expecting another little girl.” Yes, their first child was also a girl, named Guilietta.

The photos show Rossi dressed as a doctor attributing to this nickname “The Doctor.” These photos mimic the ones when he announced their first child in 2021. He retired from professional motorcycle racing soon after.

While still retaining his ambassadorship for Yamaha, “The Doctor” is the owner of the VR46 Racing Team that races Ducatis in MotoGP.

Apart from that, Rossi has turned to car racing and has achieved several good results.

He is currently a factory GT3 driver for BMW. The Italian began his GT3 career with the WRT team and Audi in 2022, but the team switched to BMW last year in order to take on its factory World Endurance Championship (WEC) effort in the Hypercar class. As such, the switch to BMW in GT3 was part of the package.

Driving the BMW M4 GT3, Rossi has finished on the podium multiple times in the GT World Challenge Europe (GTWCE) series, including two wins, both at Misano.

This year, he stepped up to WEC in combination with his GTWCE commitments. Rossi scored his first podium earlier this year at round two in Imola. Unfortunately, his #46 BMW was involved in multi-car crashes at Spa. The recent 24 Hours of Le Mans saw his car leading several times before being involved in another multi-car crash.

Here comes the 2024 Ducati Desert X Discovery: The Desert X with all the official touring accoutrements you can shake a stick at.

It uses the stock bike as the base, which is already potent enough what with the 937cc, 90° V-Twin (Ducati insists it is an ‘L-Twin’) that produces 110 hp.

And as if that’s not enough, you have adjustable KYB suspension, Brembo M50 brake calipers, 320mm brake discs up front, 21-inch front and 18-inch rear wheel shod with Pirelli Scorpion Rally STR tyres, and TFT display with connectivity suites. As standard.

To bring it to the Discovery spec, Ducati added:

  • Engine protectors.
  • Sump guard a.k.a. bash plate.
  • Reinforced hand protectors.
  • Radiator protector.
  • Larger touring screen.
  • Heated grips.
  • Centre stand.
  • A pair of 76-litre aluminium adventure side cases.

And suddenly the idea of riding the bike to a remote campsite is not such a worrisome prospect.

The 2024 Ducati Desert X Discovery is priced at £17,295 (RM103,185.71), which is £2,300 (RM13,722.29) more than the standard Desert X.

But… that price is actually dearer than the standard Ducati Multistrada V4 which sells for £16,995 (RM101,394.30) in the UK.

The BMW R 1300 GS Trophy Competition motorcycle has been revealed ahead of the BMW International GS Trophy 2024, this time in Namibia, Africa.

As such, BMW prepared the recently launched 2024 BMW R 1300 GS for this endeavour.

But of course, it is not several one-off specials. Instead, BMW makes it as close to the bike you can buy at your local BMW Motorrad dealer.

The new Boxer engine looks to be untouched and retains its present 145 hp and 149.2 Nm of torque. Apart from that, it is fitted with black cross-spoke wheels with anodised rims, shod with Metzeler Karoo 4 tyres. The suspension is equipped with Adaptive Height Control for safer and easier handling.

Protection for the motorcycle includes engine protection bar, frame guard, large skid plate, headlight guard, white handguard extensions.

An Akrapovič exhaust system, handlebar risers, adjustable gearshift and brake levers, GS Vario rider footrests, enduro hand levers, and a rally seat, complete the equipment list of the competition GS. An adventure tail bag is fitted for storage.

The GS Trophy returns to the continent where it began in 2008 after travelling around the world to locations such as Thailand, New Zealand, Mongolia, Albania, et al. Namibia, which is located at the southwestern coast of Africa promises amazing scenery along with the Big Five animals. However, BMW Motorrad says that this may be the most challenging edition ever.

A total of 60 riders from 22 national teams (16 men’s, 6 women’s) will compete for the coveted trophy GS Trophy 2024 Namibia from September 15th to the 20th. Based on past GS Trophy events, the most successful team will be the one that was best prepared, had the best teamwork, and rode most skilfully.

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