Archive for November 24th, 2008

Ducati’s ‘Special Invitation’

November 24, 2008

Still interested in purchasing a Desmosedici RR? Ducati North America today posted on its website a “special invitation” for folks who missed out on the first offering of the bike to make their reservations for one of “a few units” that are newly available. But, by the time you read this, they may be gone. Doh!
Desmosedici RR
The initial batch of the $72,500 limited production bike sold out quickly, leaving many interested individuals closed out of the ordering process. However, Ducati North America says it has been fortunate to have “secured limited inventory to deliver in the coming months” to individuals who were closed out of the initial ordering process.

If you’re one of the lucky few that still have that kind of cash to spend on a bike, visit to see whether you can get your hands on one of the 1,500 bikes that were produced.

Spy photos??

November 24, 2008

The news from Milwaukee about the XR1200 reminds me of a posting over at the Biltwell Inc. blog back on July 5. Seems the Biltwell guys were cruising the byways of Corona, Calif., when they saw this guy blasting through traffic.

My only question is: Who do they think they’re fooling with that black tape?

Whoops. Looks like I made those pics a bit small. I’ll resize and repost.

Harley’s XR1200 — Here at last!

November 24, 2008

OK, does anybody have a spare $12k hanging around? If only they were still giving out loans like Halloween candy because the Motor Co. has officially (if very quietly) announced that it is offering the XR1200 to the U.S. market.



H-D’s media man, Paul James, confirms that dealers are taking pre-orders for the limited run of 750 units on a first-come, first-serve basis. The early window closes when all 750 are gone, or by Dec. 15, 2008, whichever comes first.

Early buyers get to choose from orange and black or … orange and black. It looks like two additional colors will be available after the Dec. 15 date. They are Vivid Black and Denim Pewter. MSRP runs from $10,799 to $11,179 with we lucky folks in Cali 100 bucks more a pop.

But honestly if I had, and this is a big if, the scratch I’d be down at the dealership this afternoon.

Suzuki & AMA Pro Racing

November 24, 2008

American Suzuki’s still-unannounced plans regarding the 2009 AMA Pro Racing season has some journos publicly pontificating that the company may well be pulling out of the series because of the less-than-stellar finances of its parent company, Suzuki Motor Corp.

I disagree.

If that were the case, wouldn’t we be seeing Japan’s Suzuki Motor Corp. pulling out of other road race series that they take part in around the world?

According to what the OEMs who are expected to take part in the Daytona Motorsports Group-owned series tell me, they 1) don’t understand why DMG wants to make such massive rules changes in its first year of ownership, and 2) don’t understand why DMG doesn’t simply model the series after the FIM rules that are otherwise accepted in most other parts of the globe.

Having a totally unique new set of rules put forth by DMG means that the American-based OEMs (American Suzuki, American Honda, Kawasaki Motors Corp., USA, and Yamaha Motor Corp,. USA) will have to spend mucho dinero in making changes to their existing race ops. Is that fiscally responsible in this time of economic woe?

If changes must be made (and, really, did they have to be?) why wouldn’t DMG change the rules to be in line with the FIM’s rules? If the FIM is the supreme governing body, shouldn’t everyone around the world adhere to its rulebook? Seems to make more sense from a financial perspective. One set-up for multiple nations. Apples to apples. Oranges to oranges.

So, to think that a U.S.-based OEM’s decision to not participate in the DMG’s AMA Pro Racing series is because of the larger parent company’s current financial position is a bit short-sighted and off the mark. The reason isn’t because the parent companies are out of money to go racing, but because they’re acting in a fiscally responsible manner.

Remember: Suzuki is not alone in this debacle. American Honda and Kawasaki Motors Corp., USA haven’t agreed to anything either.

Oldie but a Goody

November 24, 2008

OK, I know it’s been a while since news of the Harley-Davidson/MV Agusta deal first broke, but I was cleaning off my desktop and found this picture. I may be simple, but it makes me laugh every time I look at it.

Those streamers have been wind-tunnel approved.

Those streamers have been wind-tunnel approved.

So do you think the first production bike will have a sissybar like that?