Motorcycling in America – 2008

Life In America
2008  – Median household is $50,303. The Bush administration implements $150-billion stimulus package. The war in Iraq is estimated to have cost $3-Trillion so far. Fidel Castro steps down as president of Cuba. Sony’s Blu-ray system captures 70% of market. Lil Wayne has the number one song, Lollipop.  The Dark Knight is number one at the box office, and The Sons of Anarchy debuts on FX. Gas is the same as last year at $3.39 per gallon.

Number One Motorcycle Trend:
Scooter and small displacement motorcycle sales soar in the face of $4.00+ fuel prices.

European Brands Road Tested/Reviewed
Aprilia: Tuono R, Shiver 750. Benelli: TnT 1130. BMW: K1200R Sport, G650 X-Moto, G650 X-country, X-challenge, F800ST, HP2 Megamoto. Ducati: Sport 1000S, Sport 1000, 1098, 1098S, Multistrada 1100, Hypomotard 1100S. KTM: 450SX-F, Super Duke, 450 EX/C, 450 XC-F. Husaberg: FE450E. Husqvarna: SMR450. Montesa: Cota 4RT. Moto-Guzzi: California Vintage. Moto Morini: 9 ½. MV: F4CC, F4 1000 R312. TM: 450F. Triumph: Rocket III Classic Tourer, Speedmaster, Daytona 675, Tiger 1050, Street Triple. Vespa: 250GTS.

Asian Brands Road Tested/Reviewed
Honda: CRF450R, Shadow Spirit, VTX1800R, Interceptor 800, CBR1000R. Kawasaki: Vulcan 900 Custom, Ninja ZX-6R, KX450F, Z1000, KX450R, Versys 650, Concours 14, KLR650, Ninja ZX-10R, Ninja ZX-14. Kymco: Xciting 500 (Scooter). Star: V-Star 1300. Suzuki: RM-Z250, Boulevard M109R, GSX-R750, Bandit 1250S, V-Strom 650 ABS, Hayabusa. Yamaha:YZ-R1, Morpheus (Scooter), WR250F, FZ-1,WR450F.

American Brands Tested/Reviewed
Buell: Lightning XB12STT, Super TT XB12STT, 1125R. Can-AM: Spyder. Confederate: Hellcat. Harley-Davidson: Fat Boy, Night Rod Special, Nightster, Rocker C. Victory: Hammer S, Vision.

Other Issues
Editorial in Dec ’06 concerning cell phone usage while driving generates lots of response from readers.
Custom bike builder, Billy Lane is charged with DUI and manslaughter after crossing the double yellow and colliding with a motorcyclist in Florida.

Benelli is sold to China’s Zhejiang Motorcycle Company, Ltd
.
Second auction of Steve McQueen’s estate nets $1.5 million, including $8,500 for an expired Master Charge card.

Authorities in the Netherlands attempt to implement a national ban on Hells Angels.

Supercross founder, Michael Goodwin, is found guilty of murdering promoter and racing legend, Mickey Thompson and his wife Trudy.

April issue devoted to custom bikes, two of the most unique are Jesse James’ radial, 8-cylinder-powered chopper and Roland Sand’s bike, powered by a Honda MotoGP engine
.
National Cycle introduces a product that allows the rider to adjust the noise level of his exhaust system with a switch on the handlebars.

Kenny Roberts’ claims Honda was behind breakup of his 25-year relationship with Yamaha, even though they are now supplying motors for his MotoGP effort.

Timeless Motor Company produces a replica of a 1911 board tracker for only $10,995.

The state of Virginia is making a serious effort to attract motorcyclists as tourists.

James Stewart (Kawasaki) wins both AMA and FIM World Supercross Championships
.
Aprilia offers leasing program, zero down, for 24, 36 or 48 months.

Edison Dye, the “Father of American Motocross” passes.

A second MotoGP race is scheduled for Indianapolis, IN in September

BMW buys Husqvarna.

Motorcycling in America – 2010

Life In America
2010  – Median household income is $50,303. A Deepwater Horizon off-shore well explodes creating America’s worst oil spill. Troop surge is implemented in Afghanistan. Apple introduces the iPod and iPhone 4. Android outsells Apple in the smart phone category. Adele has a hit with, Rolling in the Deep. Toy Story 3 is number one on the silver screen. Jay Leno returns to the Tonight Show. South Park airs 200th episode. Gas is $2.73 per gallon.

Number One Motorcycle Trend:
Electronics are taking over, starting with EFI in the ‘80s, we now have electronic traction control, ABS, throttle by wire, suspension control, steering damping and other devices to improve motorcycles.

European Brands Road Tested/Reviewed
Aprilia: RSV4 R, Mana 850. Bimota: DB7 Oronero. BMW: F800R, S1000R, R1200GS, S1000RR, F800GS. Ducati: Multistrada 1200, 796 Hypermotard, Hypermotard EVO, Hypermotard EVO SP, Multistrada Touring, 1198 Corse, Multistrada 1200S Sport, Hypermotard NCR Hypermotard Leggera, NCR Desmosedici Millona 16, 848 EVO. Husqvarna: TE250, TE630. KTM: 150XC, 8 RC R, 250SX-F, 450 SX-W Six Days, 350 SX-F, 690 SMC. MV Agusta: Brutale 990R, Brutale 1090RR, F4 1000R. Vespa: GTS 300 Super (Scooter). Triumph: Rocket III Roadster, Thunderbird, Bonneville, Sprint GT.

Asian Brands Road Tested/Reviewed
Honda: VFR1200F, CRF250R, Shadow Phantom, NT700V, NT700V-ABS, CBR1000RR ABS, CRF450R, Shadow RS, PCS (Scooter). Kawasaki: Concours 14, KLX110L, KX250F, Z1000, Vulcan 900 Classic, KX250F, KX450FNinja ZX-10R. Kymco: Down Town 300 (Scooter), Super 8 150 (Scooter). Star: Stratoliner Deluxe, V-Star 950. Suzuki: RM-Z250, RM-X450Z. SYM: Simba (Scooter). Yamaha: YZ450F, YZ250F, YZF-R1, Super Tenere.

American Brands Tested/Reviewed
Big Dog: Bull Dog. Brammo: Enertia (Electric), Impulse 100 (Electric). Can-Am: Spyder RT-S. Harley-Davidson: CVO Street Glide, 48, Wide Glide, Iron 883, Super Low. Regen: e-SBK (Hybrid). Victory: Cross Country, XR1200. Zero: X (Electric)

Other Issues
After 21 years David Edwards steps down as Editor of Cycle World and Mark Hoyer takes his place.

Chris Carr pushes the BUB streamliner to a new motorcycle land speed record, 367.382 MPH.

AMA develops legislation that enables local governments to evaluate motorcycle sound emissions based on SAE testing.

Norton is again revived, this time by Brit Stuart Garner and based on Kenny Dreer’s 961 Commando.

Harley-Davidson shuts down the Buell brand, ending a 26-year run.

Danny Eslick pilots a Buell to victory in the new AMA Pro Daytona Sport Bike class.

The Aprilia RSV4 is picked as International Bike of the Year.

The Motus an American designed and built V4 touring bike specs are revealed.

Harley-Davidson announces distribution plans for India, home of the world’s largest middle class.

Dainese and Alpine Stars both introduce rider airbag systems.

Sales of road bikes are down 40% from ’09, off-road bikes are down 28%

May issue features an in-depth history of Buell.

A 1936 Crocker, number 14, sells for an unheard of $350,000.

Elena Myers becomes the first woman to win an AMA Pro Racing Super Sport event.

Suzuki only imports five motorcycles for 2010, four dirt bikes and a small displacement road bike.

Claudio Castiglioni buys MV Agusta back from Harley-Davidson for $1.00.

Motorcycling in America – 2009

Life In America
2009  – Median household is $49,777. Barak Obama is inaugurated president. Michael Jackson dies under curious circumstances. American and Soviet satellites collide over Siberia generating many conspiracy rumors. Sully Sullenberger lands airliner in the Hudson River when plane loses power after bird strike. Number one song is Boom Boom Pow!, by the Black Eyed Peas. The Simpsons celebrate their 20th year on television. Avatar crushes competitors at box office. Gas has dropped to $2.37 per gallon.

Number One Motorcycle Trend:
The once flourishing custom chopper business is fading faster than any other segment.

European Brands Road Tested/Reviewed
Aprilia: RSV4, Mana 850, Dorodoso 750. MXV 4.5, RXV4.5, RSV Factory. Benelli: Tre-K 900. Beta: RS525. Bimota: DB7. BMW: F650GS, G650GS, K1300S, HP2 Megamoto, K1300GT, G450X. Ducati: Monster 1100, 1198S, Monster 1000S, Streetfighter, 848, Sport 1000, 1098R Bayliss. Husaberg: PE450e, FE390. Husqvarna: TE450. KTM: 690 Enduro R, 450 XC-W, 990 Adventurer, 450 EXC, 990 Supermoto. Moto-Guzzi: Griso 1200 8V, V7 Classic. Piaggio: MP3, BV Tourer 250 (Scooter). Triumph: Daytona 675, Thunderbird, Street Triple.

Asian Brands Road Tested/Reviewed
Honda: CRF250R, DN-01, Fury, CBR600R, CRF450X, CRF230M, SH150i, CBR1000RR C-ABS. Johnny Pag: FX-3. Kawasaki: KX450F, Ninja ZX-6R, KLX250S, KX250F, KLX250SF, Ninja 650R, ER-6n, Vulcan Voyager, Vulcan Nomad, Concours 14, KX450F. Star: V-Star 950, Raider S. Royal Enfield: Classic. Suzuki: Boulevard M90, GSX-R1000, Gladius, TU250X. Ural: T Sidecar Unit. Yamaha: YZ450F, YZ250, WR250R, YZ250, YZF-R1, FZ6R, YZ250F.

American Brands Tested/Reviewed
Big Dog: Wolf, Pitbull. Buell: 1125CR, XB12Ss Lightning. Confederate: Wraith. Harley-Davidson: FLHTCU Electra Glide, Iron 883, XR1200, Wide Glide FXDWG. Indian: Chief Vintage. Roehr: 1250SC. Victory: Hammer S, 8-Ball.

Other Issues
Ack Attack team sets new land speed record with 1200 hp Suzuki, 360.19 mph.

Rossi beats Agostini’s 30-year old record with his 69th premier class win at Japan’s MotoGP.

Much to the joy of customers in the US, Harley makes decision to sell flat-track style XR1200 in US.

Cycle World devotes the February issue to GSXs and Hayabusas.

Honda releases factory custom, Fury, some say they missed the sales high-point for these kind of motorcycles.

The Bush administration proposes a 100% tariff on all motorcycles and scooters between 0 and 500 ccs. Tariff is not approved.

KTM shows electric powered dirt bike, but offers no details.

International Bike of the year: Honda CBR1000RR.

Law limiting lead content in children’s toys has unintended consequences, halting sales of youth mini-bikes and ATVs.

HD announces plan to cut 1100 jobs in ’09. Net income down 30%, sales down 10-13%.

AMA President, Bob Dingman cites excessive noise as the biggest threat to both on and off-road motorcycling.

Honda introduces ABS to sportbikes with the CBR600RR.

Suzuki shows prototype hydrogen fuel-cell motorcycle at Tokyo Motor Show.

Arizona declares itself a “strict enforcement area” with 36 fixed and 42 mobile speed cameras.

250GP class becomes Moto2 with 600cc, 150 HP engines.

Snell introduces more motorcycle friendly standard, M2010.

Isle of Man holds first electric-powered motorcycle TT.

Honda Hoot, Moto Giro America, US FIM Motocross Championship cancelled due to economic conditions.

Motorcycling in America – 2008

Life In America
2008  – Median household is $50,303. The Bush administration implements $150-billion stimulus package. The war in Iraq is estimated to have cost $3-Trillion so far. Fidel Castro steps down as president of Cuba. Sony’s Blu-ray system captures 70% of market. Lil Wayne has the number one song, Lollipop.  The Dark Knight is number one at the box office, and The Sons of Anarchy debuts on FX. Gas is the same as last year at $3.39 per gallon.

Number One Motorcycle Trend:
Motorcycle and scooter sales are falling precipitously; the 15 year run up in sales has come to a sudden conclusion.

European Brands Road Tested/Reviewed
Aprilia: Mana 850, Dorsoduro, SportCity 250 (Scooter), SL750 Shiver. Benelli: TnT 899, Tre 1130K Amazonas. Bimota: Tesi 3D, DB7. BMW: HP2 Sport, F800GS, G450X. Ducati: Desmosedici D16RR, GT1000, 848, 1098R, Monster 696. KTM: 690 Duke, Christini/KTM 300 XC-W (e), 530 EXC-R, RC-8. Husqvarna: TE310. Moto-Guzzi: Stelvio 1200 4V. Moto Morini:  Granpasso 1200. MV: F4 312RR 1078. Quantya: FMX (e-off road bike). Triumph: Bonneville T100, Rocket III Touring, Speed Triple, Street Triple, Thunderbird. Vyrus: C³ 4V.

Asian Brands Road Tested/Reviewed
Honda: CBR600RR, CRF450R, CRF450R (2009), CBR1000RR, CRF450X, CRF230L, Night Hawk. Kawasaki: Ninja ZX-14, Ninja ZX-10R, KLR650 M1030M1 Diesel, KLX140L, Ninja250, KX450F. Star: Raider, Raider S, V-Max, Roadstar Silverado, V-Star 950. Suzuki: B-King, Hayabusa, RM-Z450, GSX-R1000, Boulevard C109R, GSX650F, SV650, GSX-R750. Yamaha: TT-R110E, YZF-R6, YZF-R1, XT-250. WR250X.

American Brands Tested/Reviewed
Buell: 1125R. Can-AM: Spyder SE5 Roadster. Harley-Davidson: 1200 Sportster, Rocker, Road Glide, Night Rod, XR1200, XL883 Sportster, Road King Classic, Road Glide FLTR. Sabertooth: Wildcat. Victory: Kingpin 8-Ball, Vision Street, Kingpin Tour.

Other Issues
In an effort to revive flat-track, AMA implements a basic expert class for twin cylinder bikes allowing most of the Japanese and several Euros into the game.

Ricky Carmichael retires with a record 150 wins and 16 AMA Championships.

Vetrix e-scooter hits market, $10,999. 40 – 60 mile range, 63 mph top speed, 2-hour recharge.

International Bike of the Year: Ducati 1098S

Terrorist threats cause cancellation of Dakar Rally for first time in 30-year history.

Industrial designer in UK announces plans for revival of Ariel brand.

Rossi agrees to pay Italian government $51-million in back taxes.

A ’39 Crocker is sold at auction for $250,000.

Honda announces plan to end production of motorcycles at Marysville plant. All motorcycle production will shift to new facility in Japan. Marysville has produced 2.25-million motorcycles and ATVs since 1979.

AMA sells roadracing rights to Daytona Motorsports Group (DMG), owned by NASCAR’s Jim France and Roger Edmonson.

Honda unveils radical motorcycle/scooter concept with CVT, the DV-01.

Former roadracing star Anthony Gobert is arrested in Australia for theft and purse snatching. Currently unemployed, he tells judge he’s got a job application in at a Subway sandwich shop.

Honda, Kawasaki, and Suzuki all offer fuel-injected motocross bikes.

Ecosse Moto Works delivers two of four T-Series RR motorcycles, $275,000 each.

In a suggestion intended to bring more V-Twin riders to the Daytona races, Kevin Cameron suggests a road racing class based on existing cruisers with limited RPM. Suggests it be named “Torkers.”

Motorcycling in America – 2007

Life In America
2007 – Median household is $50,233. Daimler Chrysler sells Chrysler to private equity fund. Electric Tesla sports car debuts. Housing bubble bursts, real estate prices drop 2 – 15% across the country. Apple introduces the iPhone. Fergie tops the charts with, “Big Girls Don’t Cry.”  Spiderman 3, is the nation’s number one hit at the box office. The Simpsons, airs their 400th episode, and Ice Road Truckers debuts on the History Channel. Gas hits $3.39 per gallon.

Number One Motorcycle Trend:
Scooter and small displacement motorcycle sales soar in the face of $4.00+ fuel prices.

European Brands Road Tested/Reviewed
Aprilia: Tuono R, Shiver 750. Benelli: TnT 1130. BMW: K1200R Sport, G650 X-Moto, G650 X-country, X-challenge, F800ST, HP2 Megamoto. Ducati: Sport 1000S, Sport 1000, 1098, 1098S, Multistrada 1100, Hypomotard 1100S. KTM: 450SX-F, Super Duke, 450 EX/C, 450 XC-F. Husaberg: FE450E. Husqvarna: SMR450. Montesa: Cota 4RT. Moto-Guzzi: California Vintage. Moto Morini: 9 ½. MV: F4CC, F4 1000 R312. TM: 450F. Triumph: Rocket III Classic Tourer, Speedmaster, Daytona 675, Tiger 1050, Street Triple.  Vespa: 250GTS.

Asian Brands Road Tested/Reviewed
Honda: CRF450R, Shadow Spirit, VTX1800R, Interceptor 800, CBR1000R. Kawasaki: Vulcan 900 Custom, Ninja ZX-6R, KX450F, Z1000, KX450R, Versys 650, Concours 14, KLR650, Ninja ZX-10R, Ninja ZX-14. Kymco: Xciting 500 (Scooter). Star: V-Star 1300. Suzuki: RM-Z250, Boulevard M109R, GSX-R750, Bandit 1250S, V-Strom 650 ABS, Hayabusa. Yamaha:YZ-R1, Morpheus (Scooter), WR250F, FZ-1,WR450F.

American Brands Tested/Reviewed
Buell: Lightning XB12STT, Super TT XB12STT, 1125R. Can-AM: Spyder. Confederate: Hellcat. Harley-Davidson: Fat Boy, Night Rod Special, Nightster, Rocker C. Victory: Hammer S, Vision.

Other Issues
Editorial in Dec ’06 concerning cell phone usage while driving generates lots of response from readers.
Custom bike builder, Billy Lane is charged with DUI and manslaughter after crossing the double yellow and colliding with a motorcyclist in Florida.

Benelli is sold to China’s Zhejiang Motorcycle Company, Ltd
.
Second auction of Steve McQueen’s estate nets $1.5 million, including $8,500 for an expired Master Charge card.

Authorities in the Netherlands attempt to implement a national ban on Hells Angels.

Supercross founder, Michael Goodwin, is found guilty of murdering promoter and racing legend, Mickey Thompson and his wife Trudy.

April issue devoted to custom bikes, two of the most unique are Jesse James’ radial, 8-cylinder-powered chopper and Roland Sand’s bike, powered by a Honda MotoGP engine
.
National Cycle introduces a product that allows the rider to adjust the noise level of his exhaust system with a switch on the handlebars.

Kenny Roberts’ claims Honda was behind breakup of his 25-year relationship with Yamaha, even though they are now supplying motors for his MotoGP effort.

Timeless Motor Company produces a replica of a 1911 board tracker for only $10,995.

The state of Virginia is making a serious effort to attract motorcyclists as tourists.

James Stewart (Kawasaki) wins both AMA and FIM World Supercross Championships
.
Aprilia offers leasing program, zero down, for 24, 36 or 48 months.

Edison Dye, the “Father of American Motocross” passes.

A second MotoGP race is scheduled for Indianapolis, IN in September

BMW buys Husqvarna.