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Ducati unveils new adventure-ready DesertX

Ducati has revealed its new DesertX, bringing plenty of performance as well as a variety of off-road-focused touches.

Following on from a concept motorcycle released in 2019, the DesertX takes inspiration from Enduro motorcycles of the 1980s. Powered by a 937cc v-twin engine – the same as you’ll find in Ducati’s Multistrada V2 – the DesertX’s gear ratios have been specially tuned.

For example, first and second gears are shorter – making them better for low-speed, off-road riding – while sixth gear is purposefully long to help make longer rides more comfortable and efficient.

Though able to tackle seriously tricky terrain, Ducati has fitted a variety of features to ensure that the DesertX can handle longer journeys too. There’s a 21-litre fuel tank, while 120 litres of load capacity means there’s plenty of space for luggage and equipment. The padding and shape of the seat have been designed to make it comfortable for both rider and passenger, too.

Photos: PA Media

With long-travel suspension, the DesertX should be able to handle big compressions, with a 46mm upside-down Kayaba fork and a Kayaba monoshock combined on the bike. There’s also 250mm of ground clearance.

The DesertX sits on 21-inch front and 18-inch rear Pirelli Scorpion tyres, while an ABS cornering function is fitted too. When it comes to brakes, there are Brembo M50 monobloc radial calipers with four 30mm pistons and at the rear there’s a single 256mm disc with a Brembo twin-piston caliper.

The DesertX is also equipped with six riding modes, including a new Rally Riding Mode that gives full engine power and reduced electronic controls, making it the go-to setting for more experienced off-road riders. All key information is accessed via a five-inch TFT colour display.

Up front, there’s a full LED double headlight with integrated daytime running lights, while the rear light can automatically flash in the event of sudden braking.

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Suzuki reveals Katana updates for 2022

The Suzuki Katana has been given an update for 2022, gaining more power, improved electronics and other new feature upgrades.

It’s based on the new GSX-S1000 platform that was introduced earlier this year and uses a 999cc four-cylinder engine that makes 150bhp at 11,000rpm.

That’s a couple of horsepower up on before with a broader spread of torque across the rev range thanks to a new intake and exhaust camshaft, new valve springs, new exhaust, and a new airbox.

A new ride-by-wire throttle has also been introduced to deliver power more smoothly. Further control over the power delivery comes from the Drive Mode Selector system. There are three settings available, each having the same peak power but with differing levels of throttle response that vary from sharp and sporty to a softer setting ideal for wet conditions.

The Katana has a bi-directional quickshifter and five traction control modes to keep wheel slip in check – including a fully off setting.

Photos: PA Media

Completing the electronics package is a new clutch assist system that mitigates the effect of engine braking when downshifting from higher rpm, as well as an easy start system and low revs assist that improves low speed control and avoids stalling.

The new Katana has the same lightweight aluminium frame and GSX-R-derived swingarm, with fully adjustable KYB front forks and rear shock. There are Brembo monobloc callipers up front biting 310mm discs, with six-spoke, cast aluminium wheels wearing Dunlop Sportmax Roadsport2, custom-made for the GSX-S platform.

The sharply styled bodywork takes cues from the original machine from the 1980s and now wears new colours including a dark matte blue, complemented by gold forks and wheels. The dark grey version gets red wheels, while all Katanas come with a new red night mode from the dash.

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Updated Yamaha TMAX brings new look and tech upgrades

Yamaha has introduced an updated version of its TMAX scooter, bringing a more compact body as well as a great level of technology.

Available in TMAX and flagship TMAX Tech Max guises, the scooter has been slimmed down to make getting on and off even easier, though the seating position is somewhat sportier than before.

Designed with Yamaha’s supersport motorcycles as inspiration, the TMAX’s exterior design has been completely remodelled for a sharper look. At the rear is a new T-shaped light, too. The TMAX will also be available in ‘Extreme Yellow’ for the first time, alongside Icon Blue and Sword Grey shades.

A newly designed adjustable screen has also been included. It’s kitted out with a central air intake which, according to Yamaha, reduces wind pressure on the rider’s body when travelling at greater speeds, making the experience more comfortable. It also helps to reduce wind noise. This screen is electrically adjustable on the TMAX Tech Max.

A new seven-inch colour TFT display has been fitted too and it can be configured to show one of three display styles. All three display a large central digital speedometer, though ‘Sporty’ mode features a radial block-type tachometer.

Photos: PA Media

Riders can also connect their smartphone to the system via Bluetooth, Wi-Fi or USB connection, enabling them to play music, receive notifications and respond to calls in conjunction with a headset which will need to be purchased separately.

A full Garmin navigation system is included too, offering live traffic updates and spoken turn-by-turn instructions, while PhotoReal Junction View gives a realistic depiction of junctions and road turns ahead.

Tech MAX versions also benefit from a heated seat and grips, as well as cruise control.

The TMAX is powered by a 560cc twin-cylinder engine – the same as that fitted to the previous version – though the scooter also benefits from lighter spin-forged wheels and revised suspension.

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New Yamaha XSR900 arrives with retro look and lighter frame

Yamaha has unveiled the new XSR900, a retro-inspired motorcycle with more power and lower overall weight than before.

The XSR900 was first introduced in 2016, but given the expansion of the Sports Heritage segment it sits within, Yamaha has decided to give the bike an overhaul in order for it to stay current.

It boasts a lighter ‘Deltabox’ frame than before, with a lower head position and longer swingarm to help with straight-line stability. It’s powered by an 889cc transverse triple engine, boasting 119bhp and a specially-tuned exhaust.

The XSR900’s fuel tank takes inspiration from Grand Prix road racers from the 1980s and incorporates air intakes at the front which aid engine efficiency. Not only that, but Yamaha claims that these vents help to transmit intake sound to the rider when travelling at higher speeds.

At the front of bike sits the XSR900’s trademark round headlight, but it has been upgraded with the help of LED technology. It’s housed within a brushed aluminium surround, enhancing the heritage feel further. The XSR900’s LED taillight is ‘hidden’ too, fitted beneath the seat hump.

Photos: PA Media

Fitted with a new Brembo radial front master cylinder, the XSR900’s braking system is comprehensive. There are also gold-finished and inverted KYB forks, coupled with spin-forged cast wheels which Yamaha says offer a 700g weight saving compared with those fitted to the previous model.

The older bike’s circular LCD screen has been replaced by a 3.5-inch TFT display which can be configured to show a variety of secondary information, as well as key readouts such as speed and RPM.

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Ducati reveals the new Multistrada V4 Pikes Peak

Ducati has revealed the new Multistrada V4 Pikes Peak, which it is calling the sportiest version of the model yet.

The Multistrada is designed to offer a compromise between touring and performance, with this new Pikes Peak model aimed at those who want to lean towards sportiness without going for a full sports bike.

Updates that differentiate this from the rest of the range include a 17-inch front wheel and single-sided swingarm. To further hint at its sporting prowess, the Pikes Peak model gets a Moto GP-inspired racing livery.

The chassis itself has also evolved, while that new wheel uses forged aluminium rims that are 2.7kg lighter than those fitted to the V4 S, and they’re wrapped in new sports tyres. The suspension has also been upgraded to Ohlins Smart EC 2.0 units, which can automatically adjust their settings based on the rider’s behaviour on the bike.

Photos: PA Media

The braking system has been derived directly from the Panigale V4, with Brembo calipers and larger discs.

Riding geometry has been completely refreshed, with the pegs moved back to increase the maximum lean angle, while the handlebar is lower, narrower and curved, which Ducati says improves the sporty feeling.

Power comes from the 1,160cc V4 Granturismo engine making 168bhp and 125Nm of torque. A new Race Riding Mode is a first for the Multistrada range, which raises the rev limiter, while downshifts can be more aggressive.

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Triumph reveals limited-run Bonneville Gold Line editions

Triumph has revealed a series of special edition motorcycles that will only go on sale for one year.

Called the Gold Line Editions, they’ve been designed to celebrate the hand-painted gold lining skills of the firm’s paint shop.

The eight custom-inspired designs have a unique style from the rest of the range.

The limited-run designs will be available on the Bonneville T100, Speedmaster, Bobber and T120, as well as the Street Scrambler and Scrambler 1200 XC and XE.

Each version has a slightly different specification, for example, the Bonneville T100 has a Silver Ice fuel tank with a Competition Green infell edged with hand-painted gold lining, with colour-coordinated mudguards, side panels and stripes.

The Street Scrambler has a blue tank with a graphite stripe and black mudguards, while the Bonneville Bobber has a red fuel tank with a black twin strip design and features a new gold and silver logo.

Photos: PA Media

The gold lining is applied by hand in the Triumph paint shop, requiring ‘incredible patience, years of experience and the steadiest of hands’.

Most of the editions above have a two-tone paint job with the gold lining applied in one single stroke, usually in the space where the two base colours meet.

The gold lining paint is specially formulated by mixing a powdered colour with a cellulose lacquer to get the correct consistency. Automotive paint is usually too thin for brush work.

Once completed, the paint artist signs their initials by hand on the vehicle’s bodywork.

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All set for the 20th BMW Motorrad Days

For almost two decades now, attending the BMW Motorrad Days has been a must for motorcycle fans from all over the world. Visitors from countries such as the US, Japan or Australia, sports, touring and enduro riders, customising freaks or motorsports enthusiasts will all find their personal highlight to feel great and have loads of fun at the BMW Motorrad Days.

Following a two-year break – caused by the COVID-19 pandemic – BMW Motorrad invites fans and friends of the brand to the BMW Motorrad Days again on July 2, 3, 2022. This time the location will be in the Summer Garden of the Messe Berlin trade fair grounds. The event will immediately follow the Pure&Crafted Festival, which will take place on July 1, 2022 at the same location and for which BMW Motorrad is once again the initiator and title sponsor.

Currently, the fourth edition of the Berlin Pure&Crafted Festival held on September 17 and 18, 2021 has already impressively shown that the new location in the heart of City-West has what it takes not only to become the permanent new home for the Pure&Crafted Festival, but at the same time also offers perfect conditions for the BMW Motorrad Days.

Dr Markus Schramm, Head of BMW Motorrad, said: “The new concept is based on establishing a long-term presence at the BMW’s Berlin plant location with the BMW Motorrad Days. We can make use of the synergies with the already well-known and proven Pure&Crafted Festival. However, they will continue to be two separate and independent events: BMW Motorrad is a partner and sponsor of the Pure&Crafted Festival, while we host the BMW Motorrad Days, the brand’s biggest customer event worldwide, ourselves.”

On the first weekend of July next year, Pure&Crafted will offer its magic, charm and special moments to visitors already on Friday. As a unique event, the festival will thrill everyone attending with a distinctive mix of live music, motorcycle culture and new heritage lifestyle before the BMW Motorrad Days take the reins on Saturday and Sunday.

Lasting two days, the gathering will once again be dedicated entirely to the international BMW Motorrad fan community and riding fun on two wheels. In addition to new products, spectacular stunts, motorsports celebrities, test rides and a great deal more, guests can particularly look forward to the now legendary party atmosphere of the BMW Motorrad Days, garnished with a dash of Bavarian lifestyle. Visitors to the BMW Motorrad Days 2022 in Berlin can look forward to a varied programme of activities that is broader than ever. The tastes of both young and old are catered for with fun and high spirits being guaranteed for everyone.

The stunt shows push the limits of driving physics and in the original Motodrom, the oldest Wall of Death in the world, the great tradition of wall-of-death riding will be revived. Customizing fans will get their money’s worth in the Heritage Area where they can inspect a whole series of custom bikes and the respective equipment”.

On top of that, the Berlin hinterland can be explored by motorbike both onroad and offroad on organised tours with local guides. Once again in 2022 there will also be a wide selection of current BMW Motorrad models available for test rides.

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Phantom name returns with special edition Suzuki GSX-R1000R

Suzuki has revived its Phantom name with a new special edition of its GSX-R1000R.

Inspired by the GSX-R1000 K6 Phantom from 2006, the GSX-R1000R Phantom receives a Yoshimura exhaust incorporating an R11 silencer and heatshield finished in ‘black metal magic’ with a carbon cap.

It also gets a variety of accessories, including track-focussed brake and clutch lever guards, a tank pad and fuel cap trim.

Powered by an inline-four-cylinder engine with 199bhp that uses the same variable valve timing system as the MotoGP world championship-winning GSX-RR, the Phantom also features a variety of electronic assistant systems including a bi-directional quickshifter, lean angle-sensitive 10-mode traction control and three power modes. Large Brembo brakes provide plenty of stopping power, too.

Photos: PA Media

A digital LCD display sits in front of the rider and relays key information back to the rider.

As well as the black colour paint scheme, the Phantom receives gloss black details and gold wheels with matching gold Showa Balance Free front forks. A smoked double bubble screen gives some protection from the wind, too.

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Triumph releases limited-edition Tiger 900 Bond Edition

Triumph has created a new limited-edition motorcycle inspired by one used in the upcoming James Bond film No Time To Die.

Called the Tiger 900 Bond Edition, it takes direct influence from the Tiger 900 used in a series of action sequences in the new 007 movie.

Lee Morrison, No Time To Die stunt coordinator, said: “The Tiger 900 is the most confidence-inspiring bike, it allows you to really push the ride as far as you want, you can take as many liberties as you want; stand up sideways drifting in third gear, slow wheelie it, slide it Supermoto-style. I honestly think it’s one of the best bikes I’ve ever ridden, it’s fantastic.”

Limited to just 250 examples – with each individually numbered and accompanied by a signed certificate of authenticity – the Tiger 900 Bond Edition receives a matt black paint scheme and 007 graphics, as well as a billet-machined handlebar clamp.

Photos: PA Media

A blacked-out styling package brings a black finish to the frame, headlight finishers, side panels and sump guard – among other components – giving the bike an understated look.

Each bike gets a unique 007-theme startup animation on the screen, while the heated rider and pillion seat receives special Bond Edition branding.

To enhance the Tiger’s go-anywhere abilities, the Bond Edition also wears Michelin Anakee Wild off-road tyres, though factory fitted Bridgestone Battlax tyres are also included. An Arrow Silencer with a lightweight brushed stainless steel body and carbon end cap is also included.

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