The TomTom VIO - Scooter-Specific Satellite Navigation

In an attempt to reclaim the satellite navigation industry from he smartphone companies TomTom has designed a scooter-specific GPS.

Over a decade ago, TomTom created its first satnav for cars; it later released TomTom Rider for motorcycles, and has now revealed the TomTom VIO, the world’s first smartphone-connected GPS for scooters owners.

Unlike other satnav units, the TomTom VIO can be used while wearing goves and gives the rider access to various phone functions. It’s waterproof display offers turn-by-turn navigation both on-screen and via a Bluetooth-equipped helmet audio system. If a phone call comes in, the TomTom Vio will display the caller’s image, giving the rider the opportunity to answer using the headset.

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The New Michelin Power RS Sportbike Tire

Even though Michelin is involvement with MotoGP as the new spec-tire manufacturer has just entered its second year, Michelin is already looking to capitalize on that relationship by introducing a new flagship sportbike tire, designated the Michelin Power RS. Superseding the Michelin Pilot Power 3 as the company’s top-of-the-line sportbike tires, the new Michelin Power RS is primarily intended for road use while easily handling the occasional trackday outing.

Michelin is claiming that the new Power RS tire outdoes the competition in every dry pavement performance category, from grip to feel to flickability to stability and even average lap time.

Boasting new dual-compound technology derived from its latest racing exploits, the Michelin Power RS also has a new patented carcass construction that is claimed to allow excellent straightline stability as well as increased confidence at extreme lean angles. Interestingly, the new compounds and carcass have permitted Michelin to actually decrease the amount of ‘softer’ compound on the shoulder of both front and rear tire compared to the previous Michelin Pilot Power 3 tire.

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The Moto Guzzi Multimedia Platform - The little black box

When the Moto Guzzi Multimedia Platform arrived for me to attach to the Moto Guzzi V9 Bobber, I was delighted to find that it really is a little black box. It’s simple enough to fit behind a side panel and wire to the battery.

The idea is that your smartphone connects to it by Bluetooth, and your phone – which you mount to the handlebars – can than act as a supplementary instrument, letting you see a combination of revs, power, torque, acceleration and trip info.

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The Drumcharger - The Budget Forced-Induction Solution

Drumcharging, according to the patent rights holder, is the future of supercharging for motorcycles. And if the Italian-based firm has its way, it’s the future of small cars, tractors and stationary engines, too. Because in these days of increasingly stifled emission controls, which in turn are strangling engines and their output, manufacturers are being forced to find more grunt more efficiently.

If the motorcycle industry looks to the car world, it seems forced induction is where it’s at. But superchargers and turbochargers are not only bulky items to squeeze into compact motorcycle-sized architecture, they also add significant and unwanted cost.

AlterEgo Hardware is all about smart, simple and low-cost engineering and it says its drumcharger may just be the answer. While the drumcharger only offers a fraction of the boost that a conventional supercharger or turbocharger would, it can be produced at a fraction of the price.

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Fixing the Wind Screen with Plastic Polish

I’m coming up tp three years as the owner of my secondhand Yamaha YZF-R1 and it’s still pretty mint; if anything it’s better than it was when I bought it. But last month, on of those infuriating slip-ups happened that has you cursing. When we were swapping the brake fluid on the YZF-R1 during the master cylinder test, we spilt a bit on the screen and by the time we noticed, it had market the plastic.

It was only a small defect but, a bit like someone else’s hairy mole, once you spotted the mark you couldn’t stop looking, so it needed sorting. A new one wasn’t the answer – I waned the standard look for the motorcycle and the stock screen on the motorcycle was mint, so no double-bubble. Also, Yamaha stopped supplying OE screens for my model year.

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New Honda Front Fork Design for MotoGP and Sportbikes

The telescopic fork is one of the most enduring elements of motorcycle design, but new patents from Honda suggest that Honda is looking at alternatives.

While telescopics are hard to beat in terms of packaging, cost-effectiveness and handling response, they’re not without their limitations. Especially under braking, they don’t easily brace the mass of the motorcycle against the enormous force generated by modern tires and brakes. The fork and frame have to be incredible strong to transmit the forces up from the contact patch of the front tire to the steering head and back down to the center of mass.

So far, few alternative approaches have succeeded, but that’s largely down to the overwhelming familiarity of telescopic forks rather than problems with the designs.

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The Dunlop SportSmart2 Max Tire - Radical New Hypersport Tire

The new Dunlop street tires are designed for hypersport motorcycle, the new Dunlop SportSmart2 Max has a radical new front construction for sustained performance and a reduced warm-up time. By reducing deformation at high speeds – especially during lean – durability is improved by a claimed 25 percent.

The new profile of the Dunlop SportSmart2 Max offers lighter handling and more feedback during corner entry, with a reduced tendency to stand up when braking in a turn, along with increased confidence at extreme lean angles.

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Keep Hydrated While Riding your Motorcycle

Whether you’re riding on tarmac of off-road, the constant concentration that’s required and, if you’re green laning, the physical demands put on the body, can be thirsty work. There’s nothing wrong with carrying a few bottles of water in your panniers, but it’s always a bit of a faff to take your helmet off, remove your gloves and then go rooting around for your water if you want a sip.

That’s when hydration packs come in really handy. For those who are thinking ‘what on earth is a hydration pack?’ Put simply it’s a small rucksack that contains a bladder which you fill with water. A hose can then be routed from the bladder to the front of your body, allowing you to easily sip on water while you’re riding, without having to remove your helmet.

As the primary function of a hydration system is to provide you with enough liquid to stave off dehydration, a good pack must satisfy the basic criteria of allowing you to easily take a sip whilst on the move, and have sufficient liquid carrying capacity for whatever riding you have planned. I consider sufficient liquid to be a minimum of two-liters for a normal day’s rail riding or riding on one of the really hot days. Of course, three-liters is even better. More than three-liters starts to become heavy.

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Akrapovic Exhaust Systems Never Compromise

Igor Akrapovic, aged 57, founded Akrapovic in 1991 as a tuning workshop. Unhappy with the quality of exhaust systems available, he started making his own.

Igor Akrapovic explains why his exhaust systems continue to be the most desirable in motorcycling:

It was hard to get on top, but staying there is even harder. But we have managed this feat because of two reasons.

Firstly it’s our huge investment and commitment to development technology and secondly our support over 80 teams and we’re not just there with money and stickers like some of our competitors. We are really pushing to continuously develop the exhaust. And from our huge base knowledge we apply our race technology to the road. Our development and large investment in motorsport helps us to stand our.

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Do Silicone Hoses Actually Make a Decent Difference?

More than just making your motorcycle look cooler, an aftermarket cooling system hose’s job is to better what comes as stock. So just hold fire on ordering that cheap set of cooling system hoses you’re eyeing up…

It’s all about thermodynamics. The idea of a silicone hose is that you replace the standard hose of your cooling system so it doesn’t expand and get hot under pressure. When heat is generated, it expands; water is heated and the hose of your cooling system is there prevent excessive growth as the pressure rises, so your running pressure is reduced.

You brand-new motorcycle, say an Yamaha YZF-R1, has OEM hoses that are brilliant. Manufacturers recommend you replace them every four years as rubber breaks down over a period of time. As the rubber breaks down, it gets softer, so subsequently your engine gets warm, the water expands, the hose expands and pressure inside it reduced.

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Do you like MotoGP racing? Which team do you like?

  •  Yamaha
  •  Honda
  •  Ducati
  •  Apriiia
  •  Suzuki
  •  KTM
  •  No Specific Team
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