Connect with us


Yamaha’s Niken offers a ‘New Corner Carving Experience’



Hands up who likes cornering corners? We all like cornering corners!

We would probably all admit to wanting to carve corners too. Which is lucky because Yamaha’s new Niken is here to offer us a ‘New Corner Carving Experience’ and now we can all be cunning, corner carvers.

Released at the Tokyo Motor Show and then seen by most people in the metal at the 2017 EICMA motortcycle show in Milan, the leaning multi-wheeled Yamaha Niken was as divisive a motorcycle as you could get.

Here at MF we avoided the usual bandwagon of hate that motorcyclists seem to have for anything remotely new and different, and proclaimed our (albeit reserved) love for the MT-09 based machine and were instantly excited at the opportunities that it might bring.

Not everyone was quite so open-minded of course and the comment pages of most motorcycle publications were filled with slightly more anglo-saxon versions of the phrase ‘kill it with fire!’.

Yamaha knew that a big, three-wheeler would need a little bit of time for everyone to get used to of course, and they also knew that they have a little bit of work to do when it comes to persuading people to actually consider a purchase.

Which is right where this this new technical video from Yamaha Europe comes in.

Detailing benefits such as ‘deep lean angles’, ‘high agility’ and a ‘natural riding feeling’, the video goes into a little more description as to how the Leaning Multi Wheel (LMW) system works whilst detailing precisely the reason as to why two front wheels might just be the future.

There are lots of conversations about geometry and it also uses exciting words such as ‘parallelogram’ and  phrases like ‘steering knuckle’ but ultimately what the video does is make the whole machine look an absolute blast to ride!

Is now the time for three-wheelers to shine?

Fire it up in the comments below:

Join us as we aim to lift the coverage of motorcycling online. If it's bikes, then it'll be on Motofire. And don't forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube for all of the latest as well!


Custom of the Week: Yamaha SR500 ‘Scrambler’ by Daniel Peter




SCRAMBLERS ARE A HOT TOPIC. Build one, and you’re sure to be judged solely by how well equipped it is for hardcore off-piste use.

But that’s not all that scramblers are about. Daniel Peter compares his latest build to his childhood BMX—and it’s pretty much how we feel about modern-day scramblers too.

“When I was four years old, my BMX bike became my life,” he explains. “It was so simple, yet so fun. Just wheels, pedals and brakes. I’d ride it to the beach, jump a few curbs along the way, race my friends. Those were the good days.”

“30 years later, I set out to build a motorcycle based on the same principles. There’s nothing on this bike that doesn’t need to be there. It has wheels, a punchy engine and great brakes. I didn’t even put a speedo on it, because I never looked at the one on my last bike.”

Daniel works as a photographer in Chicago, but wrenches during the winter to keep his passion for riding alive. He keeps a workshop in Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood, outfitted with a tool cabinet, a welder, and a 1940s South Bend lathe.

This 1978-model Yamaha SR500 is the fourth Yamaha 500 he’s built to date. “It’s the most simple, yet the most thorough, of the bunch,” he says.

The motor’s been bumped to 540 cc, with a grocery list of go-fast bits that includes a lighter XT500 crank, a new piston from JE and a Megacycle cam for better torque down low.

R&D valve springs with titanium caps, a Powerdynamo ignition and a high-flow oil pump from Kedo round out the package.

Hoos Racing refreshed the crank and cut new valve seats for Daniel, but he tackled the rest of the rebuild himself. Every single bearing and seal was replaced along the way too. As for the carb, it’s been swapped out for a 39 mm Keihin FCR flatslide number, fed by a fat K&N filter.

The exhaust system is a combination of a custom made stainless steel header, and a Cone Engineering muffler.

The SR rolls on 17” supermoto wheels, borrowed from a KTM (front) and a Honda CRF450 (rear). They’re wrapped in Pirelli MT60 Corsa tread; a 120 up front, and a chunky 160 on the 5” rear rim. (“It juuust fits,” says Daniel.)

The brakes have been upgraded with a mix of Brembo and Beringer parts, with an RCS 14 radial master cylinder up front.

On top is an aluminum Yamaha XT500 fuel tank, wrapped in a paint scheme “inspired by an unforgettable riding trip through Baja.” Just behind it is a new saddle from MotoLanna, with a new kicked-up subframe loop.

It’s just about spring in Chicago, so Daniel must be itching to rack up the miles on his SR500. And we’re betting it’s going to be impossible to get him off it.

A version of this article first appeared on Bike Exif. It’s republished here with permission.

Fire it up in the comments below:
Continue Reading


Icon claim back the streets in their latest, epic video



Street’s Not Dead.

Regular readers will know that we eagerly await anything released from the US streetwear firm Icon Motorsports. So the moment that a video drops from the Portland firm we’re bound to pay attention.

That’s an interest piqued double when they post it alongside what is essentially a call to arms…

“Street’s not dead. If you think it went away, you’d be wrong. Street’s still here undermining pompous authority, rejecting standards, and bucking the status quo..”

And they’re not kidding either. With the Icon clad rider thrashing their Kawasaki ZX-10R through city streets, car parks and even a public fountain at one point, there’s a lot to take in.

Couple that with their usual loud, Icon style and you’ve certainly got a statement of intent.

(Don’t try this at home kids).



Fire it up in the comments below:
Continue Reading

On Fire...

Copyright © 2018 Motofire Limited