Biker News - Regularly updated

Welcome to our News section, where articles are listed below and if relevant within the categories on the right, just to make it easier for you to find what you wish to read...

Please note that the content within our News section (text and images), follows the same copyright laws/notice as all other content on the website - ie not to be reproduced (including slightly amending) without prior consent. 

 RSS Feed

Category: Motorcycles

  1. Current Motorcycle Trends In The UK

    Posted on

    The UK is experiencing a surge in motorcycle sales and usage.
    Find out why bikes are more popular than ever and which models are doing the best...

    A look at current MC market trends in the UK

    Motorcycle usage experienced profound growth in 2020, so much so that third-quarter registration figures increased by 100 000. Last year’s third-quarter figures sat at 1.35 million as opposed to 1.25 million in 2019. The increase in motorcycle purchases was in direct correlation with the rise in household expenditure. One cannot discount the practicalities or the affordability of motorcycles these days either. Chinese motorcycles have made a significant dent thanks to great pricing and low production costs – even Harley-Davidson now produces some of their bikes in China.
    Some of the upswing in terms of UK motorcycle sales and growth can be attributed to the global health crises of the last year and a half. Socially distanced commuting is doing the rounds while the incredible boom in delivery services has also led a massive proliferation in motorcycle usage. Below are some of the bikes doing the most business in the UK right now.

    The Lexmoto LXR125

    125cc bikes have really carved out their slice of the market and we have the various Chinese manufactures to partly thank for that. The Lexmoto LXR125 is both visually appealing and pocketfriendly and this has made it an incredibly popular option. With a price tag of only £2199, the Lexmoto LXR comes in at less than half of what you’d pay for Yamaha’s equivalent – the YZF-R125.
    The Lexmoto offers all the aesthetic qualities such as a racy bodywork and a stubby exhaust and for a little bit more (£2499) you can also get more. Sure, it’s not as fast as the Yamaha nor is it as well-constructed, but seeing as it’s a beginners bike, odds are you’ll trade it in for an upgrade soon enough.

    The Honda CB125F

    The Honda Motor Company has a track record of offering investors in auto and vehicle industries more bang for their buck. As far back as 1948 this Japanese multinational conglomerate has produced both cars and bikes of impeccable quality.
    For the longest time Honda has maintained 
    its reputation when it comes to providing the commuter with something simple, reliable, affordable and economical. It owes a lot of this credit to its old CG125 which it unveiled way back in the 1970s. The most recent of these models, the CB125F, was launched in 2015. The enduring popularity of this bike cannot be denied and this is largely due to its proven reliability, durability and Honda’s well-established footprint in the motorcycle world.

    The Honda PCX125   The Brand New PCX125, 125cc Scooters, Honda UK

    Honda’s PCX125 scooter hasn’t just proven itself to be the UK’s top-selling scooter, it’s also taken the title of top-selling 125, and the sales don’t lie. Last year in 2020, an average of 300 of these models registered each month!

    The bike has received its fair share of stylish updates – mainly in 2014, 2016 and this year again, but the basic recipe for the bike’s success remains the same. As they like to say, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Easy to ride and with very accommodating luggage space, the PCX125 offers both comfort and practicality. It’s also an incredibly sleek and sexy scooter to behold and offers all kinds of modern tropes like a smart LCD digital dash, LED lights and ‘stop-start’ technology – all giving this liquid-cooled number a premium feel. Nippy and affordable, you’d be selling yourself short not to look twice at this one.

     

     

    article supplied

  2. Olympic medalist Declan Brooks visits Suzuki GB

    Posted on

    Tokyo Olympic medalist Declan Brooks visited Suzuki GB last week to meet the team, show off his medal, and collect his new SV650.  Olympic medalist Declan Brooks visits Suzuki GB

    Brooks claimed bronze in the freestyle BMX at the 2020 Olympics, the first time the sport has been included in the Games, but when not performing backflips and bar spins in mid-air the 25-year-old can often be found swapping pedal power for horsepower.

    After passing his test in 2019 but being confined to an A2 licence, Brooks was finally able to graduate to a full A licence earlier this summer, and last week arrived at Suzuki’s UK headquarters to swap his restricted SV650X for a full power SV650.

    While on site, the Team GB athlete was warmly welcomed by Suzuki’s motorcycle division, and spent the morning recounting tales from the Olympic Games while posing for photos with the team.

    He said afterwards, “It was great to get up to see everyone at Suzuki and to pick up the new bike. They laid on a bit of breakfast, which was nice, and it was good to chat about BMXing, the Olympics, and just talk bikes. I don’t think it matters if it has an engine or not, if you’re into two wheels then you can get into any type of bike sport, and they spent a lot of time asking about BMX, the sport, and how we do what we do.

    “It was good to swap to the full power SV as well. I’ve had to spend a couple of years on the restricted one but obviously rode the unrestricted version for my test, and we went out for a bit of a ride after I’d picked it up as well. I definitely think I’m going to like having a bit more power and I’m looking forward to getting some miles in before the end of the summer.”

    Suzuki GB head of motorcycle marketing, Ian Bland, added, “It’s not every day you get to hold an Olympic medal, so we’re very grateful for Declan for coming in and meeting the team and sharing his experiences. It’s an incredible achievement and one he should be proud of. It’s also great to see he enjoys bikes with an engine in the middle as well as pedals, and has now passed his test and is embarking on his own motorcycle journey.”

     

    Olympic medalist Declan Brooks visits Suzuki GB,

     

     

    www.facebook.com/SuzukiBikesUK

  3. Silence helps drive UK electric revolution from West Midlands

    Posted on

    • Spanish ecomobility business invests in West Midlands, for UK headquarters and first UK flagship retail store
    • Silence brand brings all-electric, two-wheel vehicles to UK
    • Solihull HQ site also houses training centre and warehousing, bolstering region as hub for UK electrification
    • Regional launch to precede national roll-out of stores and sales hubs
    • Latest MCIA statistics show almost 300% growth year on year in registrations of electrified mopeds and scooters

    The West Midlands took another leadership step in the electric vehicle revolution – as leading Spanish electric vehicle brand, Silence, opened its ‘urban ecomobility’ headquarters in May 2021, training centre and first UK retail store in Solihull.   Silence helps drive UK electric revolution from West Midlands

    The targeted investment in the region is no accident: it is fast becoming a hub for UK electrification and green travel initiatives.

    As well as being a centre for electric vehicle development and production, the West Midlands will also pioneer a UK Clean Air Zone this summer, when Birmingham launches its charging scheme aimed at reducing emissions from petrol and diesel vehicles in the city centre.

    John Edwards, one of founding partners of Silence UK, commented: “Solihull makes the perfect location for investment, in the first phase of our launch and establishment of our UK headquarters.  Not only is the West Midlands already a hub for electric vehicle businesses and research, but its leaders are focused on ecomobility and infrastructure.”

    Councillor Ian Courts, Leader of Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council, said:

    “We’re delighted that Silence have chosen to base their UK headquarters here in Solihull. Their investment reflects the confidence in the region as we position ourselves to be at the forefront of low-carbon future mobility.

    “Transport currently accounts for 39% of Co2 emissions across the borough. Tackling this area is going to be key to unlocking our low carbon future and achieving our net zero carbon aspirations for the region by 2041.”

    The regenerated site on Haslucks Green Road includes Silence’s first UK flagship retail store and service centre, covering over 700 square metres.  It serves both retail and business customers, with the full UK range of Silence ‘e-moto’ all-electric motorcycles and scooters available for test rides.

    Dan Storer, Chief Investment Officer at the West Midlands Growth Company – the region’s official investment promotion agency – added: “Silence joins the West Midlands’ leading automotive cluster at a strategic moment in its evolution. Building on a robust legacy of spearheading transport innovations, our region has a rigorous proposition to supercharge the future mobility ambitions of industry and Government.

    “The decision for Silence to base its UK headquarters in Solihull is affirmation of the region’s potential to accelerate innovation in the sector and drive interest from foreign companies with aspirations to be part of a world-class automotive ecosystem.”

    The timing of Silence’s UK debut is also no coincidence. 

    Big changes are taking place nationally in electrified two-wheel travel, which is growing in popularity, as an easy and cost-effective way to cut costs and emissions. The electric 50cc and 125cc market grew +50% in 2020 and is up almost 300% in the first four months of 2021, growing by over 550% in April alone.

    These changes are being driven across both the business and consumer sectors.

    Last mile delivery and food delivery services have soared during the pandemic resulting in a boom in sales of light weight, smaller and sustainable modes of transport, particularly in urban areas.

    COVID has also had a significant impact on the individual commuter too with people turning to independent, private, and green transportation. The experience of improved air quality and quieter streets during the pandemic has heightened awareness of the need to choose zero emission mobility to make cities healthier and more liveable.       

    And new research shows the impact of choosing two wheels over four: travelling by micromobility instead of a car just once a day reduces an average citizen’s carbon emissions from transport by 67%, according to the University of Oxford.  Silence helps drive UK electric revolution from West Midlands, Electric Veh

    Lightweight two-wheelers are ideal for smart all-electric power, giving low maintenance, quick and convenient charging, and avoiding urban emissions charges.   The 100% electric Silence ‘e-motos’ are equivalent to 50cc and 125cc mopeds and scooters, travelling up to 91 miles on a single charge while eliminating emissions, noise and vibrations and reducing running costs to around one pence per mile – a massive 80% less than conventional alternatives.

    John Edwards explained: “The combined issues of urban air quality, congestion and cost are accelerating demand for smaller, affordable electric vehicles.  Silence meets that demand head-on, with the latest in EV design and technology, backed by a European manufacturer with over a decade of market-leading knowledge. We are bringing something new and needed to the market.  This is the right idea, at the right time – and the West Midlands is the right place to start.”

    Edwards went on to state: “We look forward to helping larger West Midlands businesses transform their fleet operations as well as supporting local independent operators such as restaurants and delivery riders to go electric.”     

    The Silence DNA of reliable, zero-emission battery power, sharp Barcelona style and smart tech has already captured over 66% of the Spanish and 30% of the European electric scooter market, attracting over 21,000 customers across 25 countries.

    Silence’s flagship retail store in Solihull will be one of several flagship stores opening across the UK, with the next sites planned for London and Manchester.  A partnership model will also allow entrepreneurial businesses who want to join the EV revolution to retail Silence scooters. 10 jobs will be initially created in Solihull with an estimated 200 jobs to be supported across the UK as the company expands.

    The Solihull flagship store is now open to the public with test rides available to be booked on-site or requested online via www.silenceuk.com.

     

     

     

    article supplied

  4. Norton Motorcycles supports student electric motorcycle research with University of Warwick

    Posted on

    • Norton Motorcycles engineers have supported students at WMG, University of Warwick to develop a TT capable electric racing motorcycle, named ‘Frontier’
    • This includes donating a high performance bike frame and data to students undertaking research into study of electric motorbikes at WMG, University of Warwick
    • Students adapted the sports bike platform to run a specially developed electric powertrain rated with a power output of 160kW/201bhp and 400Nm torque
    • Immersion-cooled 16kWh battery pack is the first of its kind for application on a motorcycle, with battery cases manufactured using advanced laser-welding technology to deliver structural integrity and maximise reliability and repeatability

    The Norton Motorcycle Co Ltd. is proud to support students at the University of Warwick who are researching the future of electric racing motorcycles. The group of students undertaking the project are aided by the donation of a sports bike frame by Norton Motorcycles, which has been adapted by the student team to be fitted with an electric powertrain, with batteries and control systems designed in-house.

    The group of 13 students at WMG, University of Warwick – made up of cross-functional team from first- to final-year degree students, with the support of some EngD students – are joined by a selection of leading academics, engineers and researchers representing WMG, at the University. On-campus research has been reinforced with input, support, mentoring and technical guidance from Norton’s own designers and engineers, further to the supply of the frame.

    The research team supported by WMG Centre High Value Manufacturing Catapult have developed an electric motorcycle powertrain, using a high performance sports frame as a platform. The motorcycle developed using this frame has been called the Frontier. The electric powertrain designed to work in the Norton frame is rated with a power output of 160kW or 201bhp, and delivering 400Nm of torque from a standing start. The acceleration and speed characteristics of the electric bike in motion roughly translate into a combustion-engine equivalent of around 900cc to 1,000cc.

    The electric motor draws power from an immersion-cooled battery pack that has been designed and tested by the students and is the first of its kind for application in an electric motorcycle. The battery with a capacity of 16 kWh is designed to last longer with the application of robust thermal management strategies, while also allowing for larger short term power peaks required by a racing motorcycle.

    In addition, the cooling system will enable the team to operate at a more efficient temperature range by optimising the starting temperature of the dielectric fluid prior to a race or testing, based on the requirements of the track.

    The battery can be recharged with the common CHAdeMO connector, facilitating fast charging where available and allowing for a full charge of the battery in around an hour (up to 80% from empty in just 32 minutes). These impressive figures have supported the testing and development of the electric bike prototype, with research teams able to maximise riding time on the track thanks to reduced charging times, allowing for further track-side development and optimisation with the help of a fully instrumented bike.

    The battery case was manufactured using laser welding techniques developed at WMG, The University of Warwick, a manufacturing process that is easily repeatable for potential serial production, while also incorporating process-control to maximise reliability and strength of the joints.

    Students have been able to craft a functioning electric motorcycle based on the Norton frame in just seven months. The project began in October 2020 with the donation of the frame and associated parts, with students working hard to realise their goal alongside studying for their degrees. The bike has undergone significant testing including much computer-based validation such as CFD of battery cooling, modelling around thermal management, along with physical testing of cells and modules – whilst constantly reviewing engineering decisions to minimise and mitigate the risk of failure.

    Dr Robert Hentschel, CEO of Norton Motorcycles, said:
    “We are thrilled to be able to support the engineers of the future, who are developing tomorrow’s technology today, on the basis of a Norton frame. Our support by means of donation of the frame is just the beginning. Norton’s team of designers and engineers have been very interested to observe how this project is taking shape, supporting the student team wherever possible with advice and guidance.”

    Aman Surana, Chief Engineerf the Warwick Moto team, said:
    “Ever since we started the Warwick Moto project, the overall goal has always been around learning and enhancing our engineering experience. We have gained practical experience in our research that is required to deliver a real-world project, along with balancing considerations such as tight budgets and deadlines, while learning logistics and everything around delivering an industry project. This has made us all the more proud with the way the Frontier looks.

    “To have access to Norton’s engineering team, years of experience and data has been a great resource, integral to the design of the bike. Combining the motorcycling knowledge from Norton, with the leading research at WMG, University of Warwick has been a fantastic learning opportunity for all students involved. We’re very excited to see what this collaboration leads to.”

  5. Suzuki announces details of new GSX-S1000

    Posted on

    After indicating earlier this month that a new GSX-S1000 was on the way, Suzuki has now released details of the 2021 naked, which comes with:

    A completely new look, with sharp, aggressive new bodywork and futuristic LED lighting design.

    An updated, Euro 5 compliant 152PS inline four-cylinder engine with a fatter and flatter torque curve, providing a broader spread of power in the low and midrange.

    New electronics, including a quickshifter and auto-blipper, selectable engine maps and more levels of traction control.

    A larger fuel tank and new, wider set handlebars.  Suzuki announces details of new GSX-S1000

    Styling

    Immediately obvious is the new GSX-S1000’s redesigned aesthetic; the bodywork and lighting is completely new, with a focus on sharp, angular, aggressive lines and a powerful stance, with a ‘mass forward’ demeanour.

    Available in Suzuki’s traditional metallic triton blue, a new mechanical matt grey, and a stealthy gloss black, it’s streetfighter looks are enhanced with textured radiator shrouds, MotoGP-insipired winglets, and side panels that feature an urban camo-inspired design.

    Arguably the most striking visual change is the new, vertically stacked LED headlight. As well as the practical benefits of a new mono-focus LED light source that displays a wide, bright light, the new design of two stacked hexagonal units topped by LED position lights creates a look that is lighter and tighter, and aids the desire for a more aggressive pose. There’s a new LED tail light, too, with both flanked by LED indicators.

    Engine

    The inline four-cylinder engine in the 2021 GSX-S1000 produces more power and a broader spread of torque in the lower rev ranges to deliver ideal naked sports bike performance. Changes include a new intake and exhaust camshaft, new valve springs, new clutch, and a new exhaust.

    Compared to its predecessor, the new GSX-S1000 makes more cumulative torque across the rev range, filling in the dips in the graph with a flatter curve. It revs on to provide increased top end power, too, with peak power 152PS at 11,000rpm.

    Thankfully, a new exhaust retains the soundtrack the outgoing model was known for, while aiding in the increase in power and the meeting of Euro 5 emissions requirements with an additional catalytic converter.

    New electronic throttle bodies help achieve a more controllable engine response during the initial throttle opening. A new airbox manages to do without an internal separator, reducing intake resistance.

    Reduced valve overlap also helps the new GSX-S1000 meet Euro 5 emissions standards, thanks to new a camshaft and revised cam profiles. The changes also aid engine controllability for the rider.

    Added controllability and increased performance also comes thanks to Suzuki’s Clutch Assist System. The slipper clutch partially disengages to reduce negative engine torque and mitigate the effect of engine braking when downshifting from high rpm. This helps prevent the rear wheel from locking up or hopping and provides smoother deceleration, enabling the rider to shift down with greater confidence and maintain better control when downshifting into corners.

    Adding an assist function increases the clutch’s clamping force under acceleration and thereby allows the use of softer springs while still efficiently transferring torque to the rear wheel, resulting in a lighter lever operation.

    Electronics Suzuki - An advancement over the previous GSX-S1000 comes with an updated s

    An advancement over the previous GSX-S1000 comes with an updated suite of electronics, courtesy of Suzuki Intelligent Ride System (SIRS).

    A new ride-by-wire throttle makes it possible for riders to more accurately and finely control the relationship between throttle actuation and engine response, especially when allied to the new Suzuki Drive Mode Selector (SDMS) system, with which the new GSX-S1000 is equipped.

    SDMS allows riders to choose from one of three engine maps, depending on the riding conditions or their own personal preferences. Modes A-C all deliver the same peak power, but vary the sharpness and immediacy of the delivery, with A mode the sportiest, and C mode delivering the softest power delivery.

    Performance is enhanced thanks to a bi-directional quickshifter, which reduces the need to operate the clutch during gear changes or close the throttle on upshifts, or blip it on downshifts.

    A new traction control system comprises five modes, while it can also be switched off. Inputs from front and rear wheel speed sensors, and crank, gear, and throttle position sensors feed into the ECU which in turn controls the throttle valve opening, ignition timing, and fuel injection rate, to reduce or prevent wheel spin.

    All the information is displayed on an updated and easy-to-read LCD dash.

    Topping off the electronics package is Suzuki’s always-handy easy start system – which requires only one prod of the starter button to fire the engine – and low RPM assist, which raises engine speed as the clutch lever is fed out, to aid slow speed control and prevent stalling.

    Chassis

     

    The twin-spar aluminium chassis is mated to a rigid, GSX-R-derived swingarm for agile, sporty performance and handling. New, 23mm wider, tapered ‘bars help riders pitch the bike into turns with greater leverage. They are also set 20mm closer to the rider to improve comfort without compromising handling.

    Suspension comes in the form of fully-adjustable KYB front forks and a preload and rebound damping adjustable rear shock, with revised settings from the previous iteration. 310mm front discs are paired with Brembo monobloc calipers.

    A larger, 19 litre fuel tank and 46.3mpg equates to a tank range of 194 miles. Those miles can be undertaken in greater comfort thanks to a new seat.

    Tyres are custom-engineered Roadsport 2 from Dunlop.

    Pricing and availability

    The new GSX-S1000 will be available in Suzuki dealerships from the end of June, with an RRP of £10,999.