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Yamaha brings retro appeal with new XSR125

Yamaha has introduced a stylish and retro-inspired motorcycle – the XSR125.

Sitting alongside the MT-125 and R125 in the firm’s range of 125cc motorcycles, the new XSR125 features a range of throwback styling touches such as a long, flat seat, rounded fuel tank and distinctive decals.

It’s powered by a four-valve 125cc engine that meets the latest Euro 5 emissions standards. Kicking out 15bhp, the unit utilises Yamaha’s Variable Valve Actuation, which allows the engine to produce a good amount of torque at a slower pace while also ensuring decent performance at higher speeds. This means that the bike is easy to ride both around town and on the motorway, too.

The XSR125 utilises a steel frame with an aluminium swingarm, while up front you’ll find 37mm upside-down forks. The block-pattern tyres hark back to classic bikes but provide plenty of traction, too, and they’re coupled with lightweight 10-spoke alloy wheels.

A full LED headlight is housed within a retro-style circular shell, while at the rear there’s a compact LED taillight. An upright riding position makes the bike particularly user-friendly for new riders and they’ll be able to easily read key information via a circular LCD readout that features a chrome surround.

Three colours will be available – Redline, Tech Black and Impact Yellow. Each of them receives matching painted front and rear mudguards as well as dual-stripe tank graphics and side panel logos.

Two accessory kits are available. A Racer Kit incorporates a headlight cover, front number plate and side number plate, while the Urban Kit brings a flyscreen, aluminium engine side cover and radiator side cover.

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BMW Motorrad expands equipment range for R 18 and R 18 Classic

The existing range of optional equipment and the still growing range of Original BMW Motorrad accessories offer many possibilities for customising the R 18 and R 18 Classic. With the introduction of the Option 719 parts, BMW Motorrad is now adding features that enable highest-level bike customisation based on historical roots. After all, the internal code “719” at BMW Motorrad already stood for particularly high-quality and exclusive special equipment, unusual special requests and unique items decades ago. The new Option 719 parts will be available from September 2021.

The Option 719 Design Package AERO includes the cylinder head covers on the left and right, the front cover and the intake snorkel cover on the left and right. All parts are made of aluminium sheet with a brushed, colourless anodised surface. The cylinder head covers feature finely wrought air vents reminiscent of the “streamliners” of the 1920s and 1930s. The highlight is a badge on the front and side covers: This is made of solid copper which is chrome-plated and partially finished in white. The white paint enclosing the number sequence “719” is reminiscent of historical emblems that were typically lined with enamel during that era.

For the new R 18 and R 18 Classic, the Option 719 seat is a particularly exclusive alternative to the standard seat. In addition to the standard seat height, it offers integrated seat heating as well as a fascinating material selection and finish. For example, two black upper materials are used, which are combined with diamond-shaped quilted embossing. An embroidered BMW logo and the 719 symbol on the side round off this exclusive seat.

The colour Galaxy Dust metallic is a flip-flop finish that shimmers in a spectrum from violet to turquoise blue, depending on the incidence of light. In addition, the many large effect pigments create a unique visual effect when exposed to sunlight. This special finish is combined with a Titanium Silver 2 metallic mirror on the fuel tank. The transition between the two colour surfaces consists of a hand-applied smoke effect familiar from the legendary R 90 S. In addition, the mirror surface is surrounded by a classic white double line.

Photos: BMW

The two Option 719 wheel sets AERO and ICON in the basic colours matt silver and matt black, respectively, provide a particularly refined and technically sophisticated look. The cast alloy wheels feature a six-spoke design. The milled filigree ribs of the spokes are a real eye-catcher. The milled areas give the aluminium a fascinating contrast with the paint colour of the wheels – hence the name Contrast Cut.

BMW Motorrad entered the cruiser segment with the market launch of the R 18 in September 2020, followed in February 2021 by the R 18 Classic, the second member of the new model series. The R 18 Classic embodies the nostalgic tourer, echoing the beginnings of the big cruisers suitable for touring. Compared to the very purist R 18, the R 18 Classic is characterised above all by the large windshield, the pillion seat, the saddlebags, the LED auxiliary headlights and the 16-inch front wheel.

Both R 18 models are rooted in the tradition of historic BMW motorcycles. Both technically and visually, they borrow from renowned models such as the BMW R 5 and focus back on the essentials of the motorcycle: purist, straight-up technology and the boxer engine as the epicentre of riding pleasure, combined with “good vibrations”.

The very successful market launch of the BMW R 18 and the R 18 Classic was carried out with the First Edition models. Production of these exclusive, limited-edition models will already cease at the end of July 2021, after more than 13,000 units have been manufactured to date.

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2021 Suzuki GSX-S1000 revealed with a new look and more powerful engine

Suzuki has pulled the covers off the 2021 GSX-S1000, showing off its new look, updated engine and improved electronics.

The popular naked bike has been given completely new bodywork and lighting, now sporting a sharper, more angular aesthetic designed to give it a ‘mass-forward’ appearance.

It’s available in three colours, called triton blue, gloss black and a new matt grey. It also gets textured radiator shrouds, Moto GP-inspired winglets, and urban camo side panels.

The biggest departure from the old model, though, is the vertically stacked headlight, which gives a wider, brighter light while also contributing to the narrower, more aggressive styling. There’s an LED rear light, too, with LED indicators front and rear.

Photos: PA Media

The engine is a four-cylinder unit and has more power than before with a wider spread of torque in the lower rev range – peak power is still incredibly high, though, with 150bhp at 11,000rpm.

A new exhaust is said to keep the old bike’s raucous soundtrack while also aiding in the extra power output and meeting Euro 5 emissions through an additional catalytic converter. Other upgrades include a new intake, new valve springs and a new clutch.

There have also been wide ranging updates to the electronics, with a new ride-by-wire throttle improving throttle control, a new drive mode selector providing three engine mapping choices, and a new traction control system.

As for the chassis, there are new 23mm tapered bars, which are wider than before to help riders pitch into the turn, while they’ve also been moved 20mm closer to improve comfort. Suspension comes in the form of adjustable KYB units, while the fuel tank has increased to 19 litres providing a 194-mile range.

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Enter: the 2021 Yamaha TMAX 20th Anniversary

The powered two-wheel world changed forever when Yamaha launched the original TMAX back in 2001. By being the very first machine to offer motorcycle performance with scooter comfort and convenience, this dynamic Sport Scooter has transformed the lives of hundreds of thousands of TMAXers all over Europe.

As the best-selling Sport Scooter in Europe every single year since its launch, the TMAX has been on an incredible journey, and along the way has established a truly iconic status among its legions of fans. Two decades after the introduction of the very first TMAX, Yamaha has created a special edition model that marks the outstanding achievements of one of the most loved and revered designs in the company’s history.

Featuring a range of exclusive equipment and offered in a unique new colour, the TMAX 20th Anniversary celebrates the continuing success of the world’s most successful Sport Scooter, and gives TMAX lovers the opportunity to own the ultimate edition of this truly remarkable Yamaha.

Before TMAX, anyone looking for a fast, comfortable and enjoyable way to get to work had the choice of a smaller capacity scooter or a geared motorcycle. Both of these options were fine for many customers, but neither was the ideal solution for a discerning group of commuters and leisure riders who specifically wanted a machine that offered the simplicity of a “twist and go” automatic scooter together with the thrilling acceleration and high speed stability of a sports motorcycle.

Recognising the gap in the market, Yamaha’s designers embarked upon the project to build the world’s fastest scooter in the late 1990s. Nothing was ruled in or out, and in true Yamaha style the company ignored conventional thinking and created a totally new kind of hybrid two-wheeler that successfully combined the advanced engine and suspension technology from a motorcycle with user-friendly scooter features. Equipped with a step-through chassis and wind-beating bodywork – as well as automatic transmission, luxurious seating and a large underseat storage space – the radical TMAX was a huge gamble for Yamaha, but it was a gamble that was to forever change the face of long distance commuting.

Photos: Yamaha

The rest is history, and in 2001 this innovative and exciting high performance maxi scooter was launched into a vibrant European market that had never seen anything like it before. Its unique blend of motorcycle performance combined with scooter comfort and convenience made long and medium distance commuting quicker, easier and more fun than ever before.

In fact the original TMAX was so far ahead of its time that there wasn’t even a category for it, and so Yamaha created the Sport Scooter class which has since grown to become the most important segment in the scooter business.

TMAX has maintained its immense popularity and has been the best-selling Sport Scooter every year since its introduction 20 years ago. With almost 300,000 units sold to date in Europe, TMAX is by far and away the most successful Sport Scooter ever produced, and is one of the most important models in Yamaha’s line-up.

As a tribute to the outstanding success of the TMAX over the past two decades, Yamaha is introducing the new TMAX 20th Anniversary. Only 560 individually-numbered units will be manufactured, making it one of Yamaha’s most exclusive special editions that is sure to be appreciated by TMAX customers all over Europe.

The key feature on this new model is the forged carbon bodywork that gives every scooter its own “fingerprint”. Unlike traditional carbon fibre which has a uniform weave pattern, each of the forged carbon fibre components used on the TMAX 20th Anniversary has its own individual surface finish that makes every one of the 560 units unique.

The distinctive boomerang body panels as well as the front fender and muffler heat shield are all manufactured from this strong and lightweight carbon material, giving the TMAX 20th Anniversary an even more dynamic look and premium feel – and yellow highlights on the boomerangs and fender are a reminder of the original model’s bright yellow colour scheme.

Manufactured from premium grade materials, the exclusive heated seat features yellow stitching to match the accents on the boomerangs and front fender, and a 20th Anniversary logo confirms the scooter’s exclusive status. Heated grips are also standard, and these feature special end grips that enhance this iconic Sport Scooter’s specification.

Each TMAX 20th Anniversary will be fitted with a numbered badge that confirms its exclusivity as one of just 560 units that have been manufactured as a tribute to the industry’s most successful and iconic Sport Scooter. Together with the unique “fingerprint” of the forged carbon bodywork, the production number gives every individual model its own special identity.

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Suzuki updates Burgman 400

Suzuki has updated its popular Burgman 400 scooter, bringing a raft of upgrades alongside a revised 400cc engine.

First launched in 1998, the Burgman went through updates in both 2006 and 2018. This new version – set to arrive in dealerships this summer –  introduces a new twin-plug cylinder head incorporating simultaneous ignition timing, delivering strong power delivery and added combustion efficiency. As well as improving fuel consumption, the change also reduces the possibility of engine knocking in the upper-speed range.

The injectors have been changed from 16-hole to 10-hole too, which helps to improve fuel consumption further. A new catalytic converter helps to ensure that exhaust gases are kept as clean as possible.

Photos: PA Media

A new traction control system has been fitted to the Burgman 400, aiding when riding in slippery conditions. A new ABS unit, which is 36kg lighter than before, has also been included.

Practicality levels have also been retained through 42 litres of underseat storage, which combines with 6.3 litres of storage in the forward compartments. This area also houses a 12V charging socket for electronic devices.

LED running lights, headlights and taillights have been fitted to ensure high levels of nighttime visibility, while Suzuki’s Advanced Immobiliser System and a magnetic ignition barrel cover ensures that only the owner can start the bike. A chain gate allows the rider to use a chain lock and loop it through the bodywork, around the frame and around an immovable object when parked.

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Aprilia updates learner-friendly SX and RX125 models

Aprilia has revised its SX125 and RX125 motorcycles.

Popular with learner riders, both bikes arrive with a new engine, clearer instruments and a new ECU which should provide sharper throttle response.

Both bikes weigh in at just 134kg with fluids and benefit from a Bosch ABS system for better braking performance. Each bike receives 41mm forks with 240mm of travel, too.

Both the SX125 and RX125 use 124.2cc single-cylinder which produces 14.8bhp and complies with the latest Euro5 emissions regulations. It’s also fully CBT-compliant, meaning that riders will be able to legally pilot it with L-plates after finishing compulsory basic training. That new ECU should help to make the throttle more responsive too, while a new exhaust features a steel silencer with Aprilia badging.

Photos: PA Media

The SX125 rides on 17-inch wheels with road-going tyres, while the RX125 has a more off-road look thanks to knobbly tyres. The RX125 uses 21-inch rims up front and 18-inch rims at the rear, too.

A new LCD display is fitted to both bikes which relays information such as speed and two trip computers. A USB charging port can also be fitted under the seat as an optional extra. A special Rally Tribute colour scheme can also be specified for the RX125 which brings colours from Aprilia’s rallying heritage. A Red Raceway exterior paint can be optioned for the SX125, too.

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Honda upgrades its luxurious Gold Wing ‘Tour’

The Honda Gold Wing, since its introduction as a naked 1000cc machine in 1975, has always represented the ultimate in two-wheeled travel. And it’s a motorcycle that’s been very much on its own journey, growing in physical size and displacement over the decades, all the while creating an enduring and unrivalled reputation for luxury, quality and comfort.

For 2018, in response to the evolution of demographics and the motorcycle market, it made a radical departure from what would have been a traditional update trajectory. The GL1800 Gold Wing and Gold Wing ‘Tour’ took a new direction and, brand new from the wheels-up, became sleeker, lighter and more agile – very much a rider’s motorcycle – while adding a host of new features to cement the Gold Wing’s reputation as a technological flagship, including the option of seven-speed Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT).

Photos: Honda

And, as a result, the Gold Wing Tour’s appeal became instantly broader, reaching out to a younger generation of motorcyclists that may have overlooked – or simply not been aware of – the previous incarnation. In 2020, standard-fit LED fog lights, larger pillion grab handles plus improvements to suspension and slow speed manoeuvrability further complemented the evocative, flat six-cylinder engine beating at the heart of Honda’s premium tourer.

For 2021, the Gold Wing Tour gains carrying capacity, improved pillion comfort and an audio upgrade, further cementing its standalone desirability.

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Triumph updates Bonneville range for 2021

Triumph has revised its Bonneville range for 2021, bringing a more efficient engine and enhanced handling.

The new Bonneville T120 and T120 Black shed 7kg over their predecessor through the use of lightweight aluminium wheels, while both bikes benefit from higher-specification Brembo brakes and twin discs.

Cruise control comes fitted as standard while both road and rain riding modes have been enhanced, too.

Photos: PA Media

The Bonneville T100 has also been updated. The 1200cc twin engine is now Euro 5 compliant, yet is more responsive while producing lower emissions than before. It gains 10bhp over the older Bonneville engine, resulting in a total of 64bhp and 80Nm of torque. It’s also more responsive and brings a red line 500rpm higher than before.

It’s 4kg lighter than before, while a higher specification Brembo front brake has been fitted too.

The new Street Twin gains a cleaner and more efficient 900cc twin engine. A new deeper foam, more comfortable bench seat has been fitted while new cast wheels with machined detailing match the brushed aluminium detailing used on the bodywork. A special Street Twin Gold Line bike – limited to just 1,000 units – receives a matt sapphire black paint scheme with gold detailing.

The Bonneville Speedmaster and Bonneville Bobber have also been revised with more efficient engines, with both utilising a 1200cc engine. Both receive new Showa forks, while the Bobber benefits from a larger fuel tank as well as a 16-inch fat front wheel.

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MV Agusta updates Dragster RR for 2021

MV Agusta has announced a revised version of its Dragster RR motorcycle.

The performance motorcycle has been given a variety of upgrades, applied to areas such as the engine, chassis and gearbox.

The engine has had updates to make it meet Euro5 standards, with higher pressure injectors ensuring the unit runs more smoothly, while a redesigned exhaust has been fitted too. This is combined with a new clutch and a revised quickshifter, while MV Agusta’s auto-clutch can also be fitted as an option.

Dragster RR motorcycle. Photos: PA Media

Total power for the engine stands at 138bhp, with MV Agusta quoting a top speed of 151.6mph.

A variety of bronze-coloured elements brighten up an otherwise dark exterior, while a black frame helps to extend the Dragster’s stealthy appearance.

The linkage for the rear suspension has been changed to elevate the bike’s comfort levels, while new side plates for the frame make it stiffer than before. The front suspension has also been retuned to tie in with the rest of the updates.

The throttle has been sharpened up too, while a new lean-sensitive traction control system has been incorporated alongside cornering ABS for an added sense of security when going through the bends. A central 5.5-inch TFT screen gives the rider access to all key information and it can be paired with a smartphone to help provide navigation instructions too.

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