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News Mar 2022

CeeBee restomod, Mar 31

              CB1100F restomod

We'll admit we're a bit partial to a nicely-done restomod and this one definitely qualifies. It's a 1983 Honda CB1100F, treated to the wheels and front forks from a 1992 CBR600F2, while the substantial monoshock swingarm is from a 2012 CBR600RR.

              CB1100F restomod

There are numerous other touches, including a freshen up for the powerplant and the addition of a Hindle exhaust, which in total should make a for a thoroughly enjoyable ride.

It recently sold through Iconic in the USA for Au$17,000 (US$12,800, GB£9800).

Honda CB1100F specs and backgrounder at Motorcycle Specs.

Triumph's speedy twin, Mar 30


Triumph's first Bonneville had a surprisingly rocky start to its showroom life. See the story here.

Super Lux, Mar 29


BMW's uber-tourer of 1999, the K1200LT, is now looking like great value in the used market. Here's our backgrounder.

Ducati Mike Hailwood 900e, Mar 29

Ducati MH900e

From Ian Falloon: I was fortunate to visit Pierre Terblanche at Ducati when he had just presented the prototype 900 MHe. Now this is one of most desirable of modern Ducatis...more here.

Zed files, Mar 28

Kawasaki Z1

Classic Two Wheels has just published period magazine features on the ground-breaking Kawasaki Super4 (aka Z1) of 1972/73 and its 1976 Z900 successor.

Plus there's a collector's view from Ian Falloon. See it here.

Boxer book, Mar 27

BMW R90S book

From author Ian Falloon: "I'm in the process of undertaking a second edition of the book BMW R90S. This time I'm doing it with the help of the bike's designer Hans A Muth, so there is quite a lot of new developmental information.

"As the original publisher 17 years ago (Whitehorse Press) no longer exists I will be self-publishing and selling direct." More information to follow.

Meanwhile there is a wealth of material on the model, right here.

Elegant Triumph, Mar 26

1968 T120

We reckon this is one of the most elegant twins ever made, a late 1967 (for the 1968 model year) Triumph T120. This one is on the wrong side of the globe, unfortunately, priced at Au$26,500 (US$19,800, GB£15,000) through a UK dealer, on Ebay.

              T120 Triumph

See our Meriden-era Bonneville backgrounder.

Specs here.

See the Classic Two Wheels period test on the 1978 Bonneville.

Get a Gold Wing, Mar 25

Honda GL1000 gold wing

One of our project bikes...see the latest feature here.

And our model profile here.

Hit the trail! Mar 25

suzuki rv90

Something of a rarity, particularly in the local market, is this restored 1976 Suzuki RV90. It's being offered at $6000 (US$4500, GB£3400). See it here.

See specs and background at Suzuki Cycles.

Aston delivery, Mar 23

Aston Martin AMB001

Delivery has started for the Aston Martin and Brough Superior collaboration track bike, dubbed the AMB001. Three of the planned 100 machines have been sent off, while ten are still looking for owners willing to stump up the Au$145k (US$108,000, GB£81,000) asking price.

Aston Martin AMB001

Aston Martin says the machines have delivered on a promised 180hp-plus at 183 claimed, for a dry weight of 180kg. That's from a turbocharged 997cc V-twin. See the model's web page.

Where's Concept 6? Mar 22

BMW Concept 6

Remember this? BMW's Concept 6 was intended to introduce the company's then new inline six-cylinder motorcycle engine, back in 2009, which it did admirably.

Of course it went on to power a host of sport-tourers and grand tourers, though some of us are still waiting for the naked version. How about it, BeeEm?

BMW Concept 6

Meanwhile, see the 2009 backgrounder from New Atlas.

Speaking of fast BeeEms, see our K 1300 R profile.

Moto Guzzi 1000S, Mar 21

Moto Guzzi 1000S

Arguably one of the best-looking motorcycles ever made by Moto Guzzi is this, the 1000S produced from 1990. Sadly, you don't see a lot of them on the market and when they appear they tend to have a hefty price tag. This 1994 example in Western Australia is on offer via Facebook for Au$29,500 (US$21,800, GB£16,600).

See specs and backgrounder here.

Tamburini special, Mar 21

MV Agusta

We have an excerpt from the upcoming MV Agusta bible, The MV Agusta Story, on the ultimate F4, the Tamburini. See the story here.

Blackbird swap, Mar 20

Honda Blackbird

Well that was entertaining...after an ugly shed incident we ended up spending a morning swapping over the cockpit section of the fairing on our first-model Blackbird. More to come, soon...

Blackbird backgrounder

Pantah power, Mar 19

ducati pantah

Falloon on the beginnings of a then new engine dynasty for the Italian maker. See it here.

EnZed record, Mar 17

NZ speed

Something to while away the hours...303hp at the back tyre and a new 358.4km/h record in New Zealand.

Dax revival, Mar 16

Honda Dax 2023

Dax and relax. So says the new campaign to relaunch an old Honda model line – the mighty Dax, a series the company launched in 1969 and pensioned off in the early eighties.

The new bike uses a pressed steel main frame member, like its predecessors, and is powered by an air-cooled 124cc four-stroke single. The latter is based largely on the similarly revived Super Cub series, with a four-speed transmission and centrifugal clutch. Top speed is said to be 90km/h.

Will it come to Australia? No word on that so far, however it has been launched in the UK. In the meantime, enjoy the launch video.

See this link to the Dax Sporting Club online;

And this backgrounder with specs on the original Dax 70.

Triumph's Daytona triumph, Mar 15

                Daytona 200

We're not usually into race results, but the mention of Triumph winning this year's Daytona 200 - the 80th running of the event - got our attention.

                  Daytona 200

The class for this year's event was Supersport and the winning machine, a Street Triple RS - was piloted by Brandon Paasch. He won last year's race for Yamaha.

Triumph last scored a win in 2014 with Danny Eslick in the saddle.

Triumph Daytona 200 Gary Nixon

Prior to that it dominated the event with its twins led by Buddy Elmore in 1966 and Gary Nixon (pictured) in 1967.

Daytona 200 website

2022 race video

Yamaha stroker hybrid, Mar 14

Yamaha R6 RZ500

This slick-looking Yamaha hybrid popped up on social media recently, apparently built by a couple of Italian lads. It's a neat cross of an R6 chassis with RZ500 powerplant.

Yamaha R6 RZ500

See our feature on another RZ500 build, which has kept the original frame, but injected later-model suspension and steering.

And see our Yamaha R6 backgrounder.

Standard RZ/RD500s are a hot item in the market at the moment – see our backgrounder on them.

Speed day, Mar 13

Triumph Speed Triple

Having a Speed Triple day...a few final touches in the shed: Euro right-side switchblock so there's now a headlamp switch, lithium battery, factory indicators on the front, new front rubber and fork seals. Now it's pretty much where we want it.

It's time to move on to the next project...after a quick ride, of course!

See our previous story on the bike, here.

Hinckley Triumph guides, Mar 12

Hinckley Triumph T300 book

A new Hinckley Triumph T300 series book has been launched, written by David Clarke in the UK. It is a maintenance, restoration and modification guide and we can highly recommend it.

Triumph T300 Daytonas

We've owned five Hinckley T300 series over the years, three of which still reside in the shed, and must admit we were learning new things within minutes of opening the book. Find it via Booktopia at Au$79.50.

Hinckley Triumph T300 book

Clarke also wrote Hinckley Triumphs: the first generation, which is by far the most thorough history available on these machines. Booktopia has it at Au$60.90.
Both books are published by The Crowood Press.

Triumph T300 Speed Triple

Our Speed Triple

Our Daytona Super III

T300 series profile

Travels with Guido column – Mad Dogs & Daytonas

Moto Morini 350 & 500 twins, Mar 11

Moto Morini 500

Ian Falloon on the sometimes forgotten Italian twins...see it here.

Baffling Bimmer result, Mar 10


Yesterday we mentioned seeing some off-the-charts results from the Bring a Trailer auction site. Well, here's another.

This 1976 BMW R90S went for an incredible Au$82,000 (US$60,000, GB£45,500). It happens to be an exceptional restored example with 500 miles on the odo, and a couple of fairly serious concours awards to its credit. Even so, that's a very long way north of what we might have expected it to fetch.

While the R90S, particularly in Daytona Orange, has been collectible it has generally been selling for more reasonable prices.

Another restored example sold on the same website in January 2020 for Au$18,500 (US$13,500, GB£10,300). Mecum this year meanwhile sold two in good unrestored shape for Au$18,000 (US$13,200, GB£10,000) and Au$21,800 (US$15,950, GB£12,000) respectively.

Bonhams actually set a benchmark as far back as 2016 for an exceptional example that sold for Au$36,100 (US$26,300, GB£20,100).

Meanwhile Hemmings in the USA has two listed for up to Au$31,400 (US$23,000, GB£17,500) each.

Back in Australia, there's one on offer at Bikesales at Au$22,000 (US$16,200, GB£12,200).

See our R90S profile

And the period road test at Classic Two Wheels

Sky-high Kawasakis, Mar 9

Kawasaki H2 750

Two recent sales have left little doubt that, after a few years in the doldrums, the prices on hero Kawasaki triple-cylinder two-strokes are again on the march.

Shannons in Australia this month sold the 1973 Kawasaki H2 750 Mach IV shown above for a reasonably hefty Au$34,750 (US$25,300, GB£19,300).

However that effort was overshadowed by a recent sale at Bring a Trailer. A freshly-restored 1973 H2 Mach IV (below) went for a sky-high Au$55,000 (US$40,000, GB£30,500). See the listing here. We've seen a couple of off-the-charts results at Bring a Trailer recently, which defy explanation.

See our quick H2 profile

              H2 750

Ducati Imola, Mar 9

Ducati Imola

The machines that really put Ducati on the performance map...see the story here.

Laverda SFC 1000, Mar 8

Laverda SFC 1000

Eighties swansong...see the story here.

Indian Four at auction, Mar 6

              Four 440

Result proves the lasting appeal of these big Americans...see the story.

Ducati 916, Mar 6

Ducati 916

Tamburini's finest work – see the story by classic Ducati expert Ian Falloon.

Yamaha RZ500, Mar 5

Yamaha RZ500

On the road to redemption...there was a time when RZ500s could be found forgotten and largely unloved in the corner of owners' sheds. Not any more. See the story here.

Roller door, Mar 4

              CB900F2 B

Our random bike brochure for the day, Honda CB900F2 Bol d'Or, circa 1981.

Specs and backgrounder from Motorcycle Specs.

Italian flavour, Mar 4

              bikes auction

Italian bikes, and Ducatis in particular, seemed to be flavour of the month at the recent Shannons auction. A 1979 Ducati 900 Hailwood replica was the stand-out sale at Au$50,500 (US$37,000, GB£28,000).

See the results here.

Royal twin, Mar 4

Triumph jubilee

The public’s fascination with the British Royal family is not a new phenomenon. And it extends well beyond popular entertainment for the masses. Even motorcycles aren’t immune from this popularism and in 1977 Triumph decided to capitalise on a significant Royal event, the Queen’s Silver Jubilee (25th Anniversary)...more here.

Guzzi gem, Mar 2

Moto Guzzi
              Le Mans MkIII

Falloon unwraps an often overlooked variant of the Moto Guzzi Le Mans line. See it here.

Quarter century Strapz, Mar 2

Andy Strapz

Andy Strapz, aka Andy White, the Australian motorcycle luggage innovator and all-round retailer of interesting stuff, is celebrating 25 years in business. Quite an achievement.

From Strapz central: “Its hard to believe it was 25 years ago that I bought a secondhand sewing machine, taught myself rudimentary sewing and knocked up what turned into Andy Strapz,” founder and owner Andy White says. “We were told Aussie manufacturing of quality bike gear would end in tears.  There’s been no shortage of tears but hey, we’re still here.”

Andy was an Emergency Nurse at the time of the business’s inception and after witnessing too many times just how dangerous conventional ‘bungee’ straps were and, as a long-time rider, set out to develop a safer, more effective option for riders.

“The straps were my Mother of Invention and then over the next decade that mother’s sister kept on my case as I developed thermals, seat bags and soft panniers,” Andy recalls. “And so with the help of skilled staff, ‘Bob’s yer Mother’s Brother’ and here we are.

“Andy Strapz is something Im profoundly grateful for and immensely proud of. A combination of dogged persistence and trust of intuition has somehow worked.”

Find them at

Kawasaki Z650C, Mar 1

              Z650 Custom

Random brochure for the day – circa 1979 Kawasaki Z650 Custom. Then, as now, the middleweights were often the sweetest ride in the range.

See the specs and backgrounder at Motorcycle Specs.

Want earlier news & views? See our archive.


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