Triumph Australia is expecting the 2016 Rat Rally to be its biggest ever. This year’s rally will be held at the Jindabyne Station Resort from 11th – 13th March. The Rat Rally is the biggest social event on the Triumph Australia calendar, and the Snowy Mountains setting will provide the opportunity to experience some of the best mountain roads and local destinations in Australia. Triumph says this year’s event will have even more for participants to be involved in. There will be more demo ride opportunities with test rides available from Friday afternoon and all day Saturday. Among the fleet of test bikes will be the new Bonneville Street Twin and T120 range. The entertainment line up across the weekend will include 80’s rock cover bands, comedians and stunt riders. A barbecue dinner will be held on Friday night and a 70’s and 80’s trivia night is planned for Saturday night. The “Show and Shine” competition is expected to attract the usual stunning display of bikes and a range of prizes will be on offer across a number of categories. Triumph will also have clothing and accessories for sale throughout the weekend. Triumph Australia’s technical manager Cliff Stovall will be available to demonstrate the technical innovations and safety features of the 2016 range, and professional photographer Danny Wilkinson will be on hand to capture photos. Triumph Marketing Manager, Mark Berger says the rally is always a great social event, with plenty of riding, plenty of laughs and great entertainment. “Getting together for riding events with our customers is always a highlight of our calendar; the brand attracts such a passionate range of riders on all different Triumph bike styles from supersports to big bore cruisers, adventure bikes and classics.” While the event is primarily aimed at Triumph owners, the organisers are encouraging people to bring their friends regardless of what they ride. Check in for the rally will be open from 3pm on Friday 11th March at the Station Resort. Tickets are just $150 and include meals, entertainment and a commemorative T-shirt, and can be purchased online before the event. More information is available on the Triumph website.
Author: Matt Coopz
Electric scooters and motorcycles will feature more in the BMW motorcycle range over the coming years as the company places even more emphasis on the development of electric vehicles. BMW earned the title as the first major motorcycle manufacturer to release an electric model when the C Evolution electric scooter was launched in 2014. Although being very heavy at 265kg, the C Evolution performs well. The water cooled electric engine produces peak power of 35kW, it has a top speed of around 120km/h and a range of 100km. It also has a very reasonable charge time of just 3 hours. The C Evolution has all the right features for an alternative urban machine, but unfortunately hasn’t been the sales success BMW would have hoped for. It has never been imported into Australia and European sales were limited primarily because of the scooter’s cost. With governments demanding environmentally clean vehicles to meet ever tightening emissions requirements, BMW acknowledges that electric vehicles are here to stay. And even though the company is satisfied with the C Evolution scooter, it is working to make it more viable as an alternative form of transport to petrol and diesel powered machines. The C Evolution uses 3 of the same batteries as the i3 electric car, and as sales of electric cars increases the cost of producing the batteries should drop. BMW is reportedly also working to redesign the electric motor of the C Evolution, hoping to reduce its cost but this may come with an impact to the scooter’s performance. Looking to the future, there is also the possibility of an electric version of the C1 going into production. The C1 was an “all weather” enclosed scooter produced in 2001 and 2002. It was designed to offer the convenience of a scooter or motorbike but without many of the associated dangers. BMW incorporated passive safety features into the C1 and claimed that in a head-on collision, it offered a standard of protection comparable to that of a European compact car. Initial sales were good, but drastically falling sales in it’s second year forced the C1 out of production. The same design platform was used in 2009 for the C1-E, an electric scooter concept vehicle. BMW also recently released details of it’s eRR experimental sports bike based on the S 1000 RR.
Triumph has released information on the 2016 Triumph Tiger Sport ahead of its official unveiling at the London Motorcycle Show later today. The bike has been heavily updated with over 100 changes to the 1050cc triple cylinder engine, the inclusion of a suite of rider focused technology and enhanced comfort and capability. The engine updates are designed to optimise power delivery and increase torque, improve fuel consumption and to meet the strict Euro 4 emissions regulations that come into force next year. The updated engine also has a new Engine Control Unit (ECU) which has allowed the introduction of ride-by-wire throttle control on the Tiger Sport. The exhaust is now more free flowing which has not only given it a richer sound but has contributed to the improvement in fuel economy. With the new ECU also comes a whole suite of electronic technology. The bike now has 3 selectable power modes, multi-level traction control, cruise control and ABS all as standard equipment. The 3 power modes are Rain, Road and Sport. As we have come to expect, they allow the rider to alter the engine’s throttle response and traction control settings to suit the riding conditions. The 2016 Tiger Sport has been given a new instrument panel with two trip computers and fuel gauge. Riders will be pleased to know that navigating through the many display screens is simple and mostly intuitive. The bike now has a slip assist clutch as well, which Triumph says eases the strain of both city commutes and long-distance adventure by reducing the effort required for each operation. The Tiger Sport has been restyled and will be available in two colour schemes – subtle matt black with neon yellow detailing or striking aluminium silver with red details. It has redesigned and grippier footpegs, a tinted and adjustable screen, new mirrors and hand guards as standard features. The 2016 Triumph Tiger Sport is expected in Australia in the middle of the year and Triumph Australia has announced the recommended price will be $17,150 plus on road costs.
Harley-Davidson Australia and New Zealand is once again teaming up with some NRL legends to support the annual “Hogs for the Homeless” ride. Rugby League greats Brad Fittler, Nathan Hindmarsh, Matt Cooper and Steve Menzies will join this year’s ride to raise awareness and funds for Father Chris Riley’s Youth off the Streets charity. The three week long tour leaves Sydney on Monday, 15th February 2016 and ends at Brookvale Oval on Friday, 4th March. The riders will then perform a lap of honour before the Sea Eagles vs Bulldogs Round 1 NRL clash. The guys will be joined along the way by Josh Perry, Steve Roach and Ian Schubert. They expect to travel more than 3,500km, and make stops in 17 country towns including Mudgee, Forbes, Wagga Wagga, Tingha and Gloucester. As well as the charity work, they will run Rugby League clinics at schools and local Rugby League clubs and distribute 3,000 footballs to children. Brad Fittler has been a passionate supporter of Youth off the Streets since his playing days and is thrilled to be a part of the journey again. “It is amazing to see how animated the people get when we arrive in these small country towns,” said the former Origin captain. Harley-Davidson Australia and New Zealand have provided a Hard Candy Custom Gold Flake Forty-Eight valued at $19,995 to be raffled during the tour. Adam Wright, Director of Marketing for Harley-Davidson Australia and New Zealand, said “We’ve been able to help spread the word and bring the troubling issue of youth homelessness in our community to light with the help of our national dealer network and some of Rugby League’s biggest names. That in itself has been a great reward for our team and the dealers involved”. According to Homelessness Australia, 1 in 200 people in the country are homeless and 27% of those are under the age of 18. The itinerary for the tour and raffle ticket sales can be found here.
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MV Agusta’s CEO, Giovanni Castiglioni, says he sees the Italian brand as being a 10,000 unit per year company and that it is right on track. The brand sold close to 9,000 motorcycles last year according to recently released figures, a 30% increase in sales over its 2014 results. “I am still defining MV Agusta,” he said speaking at the world launch of the new Brutale 800 in Spain last week. “At one time, I thought that we could make a lot of motorcycles but now I think that the right number is 10,000. “I see Ducati as being like Porsche and I want MV to be more like Ferrari – a super-premium brand.” The Veloce Turismo, Dragster RR and Brutale 800 have all been major influences in sales growth and accounted for around 35% of all MV Agusta sales last year. The new 2016 Brutale 800 is likely to improve sales even further. MV Agusta has had its best growth period in many years since Castiglioni bought the company in 2010. It has also been one of the most stable periods in the company’s recent history. Like many old European manufacturers, the company has had many owners and tough times since it was started in 1945. The last ten years or so have been particularly turbulent. Malaysian car maker Proton bought the company in 2004. At the time MV Agusta was heavily in debt, and Proton sold it only a year later for the reported price of 1 Euro. Harley-Davidson agreed to acquire the MV Agusta Group in 2008, but then announced it would divest its interest in the company in October 2009. In August 2010, Harley-Davidson announced it had sold MV Agusta to Claudio Castiglioni. Mercedes-AMG has had a long term partnership with MV Agusta since October 2014, and has a 25% minority stake in the brand.