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News Jan 2022

Pantah play, Jan 16

Ducati Pantah

Classic Two Wheels has an excellent set of period road tests on Ducati's mid-size Pantah series. Well worth a look, here.

Flashback: The Blithering Stare, Jan 16


Anyone with kids will know the look. It’s that one that only your own offspring can do properly. We at Chateau Conrod call it the blithering idiot stare....more here.

Outlandish V-twin for auction, Jan 15

Travertson Vrex2

Ever heard of Travertson? Don't feel bad if the answer is no. This boutique constructor popped into view in the early 2000s and ended up building a modest number of outlandish machines using Harley-Davidson V-Rod mechanicals and electrics. It seemed to have fizzled out by 2014, though a website still exists.

Prices were as outlandish as the motorcycles. By the time this bike, the VREX 2, came along it was 2010-11 and it would set you back Au$70,000 (US$50,000, GB£37,000). There were some high-profile owners, including (we're told) actor and former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

This 2012 example has popped up for auction, as part of the annual giant Las Vegas January sales, via Mecum. Any guesses on what it will go for?

See this 2011 story for a little more background.

Laverda 1971, Jan 14

Laverda 750 SF

Stylish 750 SF ad from Laverda, 1971.

See the Bennetts (UK) classic review.

Last of the FZRs, Jan 12


This nicely-presented 1995 FZR1000 caught our eye, since surprisingly few survived as road bikes. Sales in the mid-nineties were pretty modest, so the fleet wasn't that large to start with. And you can expect to see it thin out further as Period 7 racing kicks off.

For enthusiasts, this represents the last FZR before the switch to the YZF1000R Thunderace, which struggled for anything like the same market traction.

This example claims 36,000km on the odo and is with a Queensland importer at Au$8950 (US$6500, GB£4800).

See the backgrounder and specs for the 1994 model, which is close except for some cosmetic tweaks;

And a feature on a first-model Castrol 6-Hour replica (1987) that graced our shed.

Laverda Jota 120, Jan 10

              Jota 120

With just 462 said to have been made, this Laverda Jota 120 is one of those models you rarely see on the market.

The 981cc triple is a 1982 model, with the 120-degree crankshaft engine (hence the 120 name) and was good for just shy of 220km/h. See the specs and backgrounder at Motorcycle Specs.

This example is located in Perth, claims a recent restoration, and is on the market for Au$32,500 (US$23,300, GB£17,200).

See the Classic Two Wheels 1986 Laverda SFC test.

Back to the Nineties, Jan 8

Triumph Speed Triple

It's not every day you get to indulge in a little time travel – getting to know our 'new' Mk1 Speed Triple. See the story here.

Yamaha RD/RZ500 on market, Jan 8

Yamaha RD500

In recent years we've seen prices climbing fairly steadily for this V4 Yamaha two-stroke from the eighties, as this example in the UK demonstrates.

It claims just 12,000 miles (19,000km) and to be in very good shape – on the market with a dealer for Au$41,600 (US$30,000, GB£22,000). See it on Ebay.

Ducati time, Jan 6

Ducati 860

Have just spent much of the last two days chasing rear cylinder oil leaks on this lovely thing, our 1975 Ducati 860 GT.

Working on a bevel was a whole new experience and was entertaining, to say the least. It’s all back together now. Fingers crossed on the result…more to come.

Bulk buy, Jan 5

Suzuki dirt

This is what happens when the collection develops a life of its own and reaches a scale that's near-impossible for one person to maintain, or even sell!

An enthusiast in Georgia, USA, has advertised a collection of 35-ish 1970s dirt bikes and three-wheelers, selling as a job lot for Au$44,000 (US$32,000, GB£24,000).

The seller explains he is driven by a need to move house. "I don’t have specific info on each unit but I do have several pictures of each bike and the Vin plate hopefully that will help you identify them I’m sorry I’m very busy and just don’t have time right now to do all the research!"

Speed Trip, Jan 4

speed triple

We recently showed a pic of the 1996 Triumph Speed Triple 900 collected from friend Paul Newbold last week, when it was semi-stripped for a bit of maintenance.
Here’s what it looks like with its clothes on - more to come…

See our profile on this model, and the Classic Two Wheels period road test

Good start, Jan 01

Speed Triple

Good start to the new year - a bit of maintenance on the newly-acquired 1996 Triumph Speed Triple 900.  More about this bike soon…

See our profile on this model, and the Classic Two Wheels period road test

Want earlier news & views? See our archive.


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