INTERMOT Cologne 2008
BMW surprised the visitors with the world premiere of their extensively revised K-series. Starting in 2009 the new K 1300 S, K 1300 R and K 1300 GT models with ABS as standard will be powered by a 4 cylinder in-line engine with a larger displacement of 1,293cc. The output of the K 1300 S is 175 hp at a maximum torque of 140 Nm, making it the fastest, most powerful BMW ever built. The German manufacturer offers gear assistance, slip control and a new electronically adjustable frame as optional equipment for the K models. As a tempting preview of their entry in the Superbike World Cup 2009, BMW introduced the new S 1000 RR super sport machine with racing trim. The street version of this bike, with dynamic traction control and sport ABS, will be available from spring 2009. The Husqvarna brand, which belongs to BMW, introduced the new SM 450R supermoto, which wasn't only optimised visually, but will roll into the next model year with a new, stiffer frame and an upgraded engine.
At the stand of Harley Davidson subsidiary Buell, motorcycle enthusiasts had their first chance to see the new Cafï?½ Racer 1125 CR, a bike with strong character and an aggressive look. It is among the lightest and most dynamic machines in the segment. Its liquid-cooled V2 engine with an anti-hopping clutch generates a remarkable output of 148 hp and 111 Nm of torque.
At Harley Davidson, trade fair visitors could admire the new VRSCF V-Rod Muscle for the first time. The new Power Cruiser features a liquid-cooled, 121 hp, DOHC V-twin engine with 1,250cc of displacement, ABS as standard, LED rear light and LED indicator lights integrated into the mirror. The rest of the Harley-Davidson model range was presented with extensive model enhancements. For instance, the frames of the touring bikes, which also come with ABS as standard, now offer a 67 per cent increase in rigidity.
Kawasaki presented not only the KX 250 F and KX 450 F, two extensively redesigned motocross racers, but also a bike making its European debut - the KLX 250 with a 22 hp, 249cc, liquid-cooled one cylinder engine, fuel injection and a sport enduro frame. The ER-6f and ER-6n, two popular mid-range machines, stood out by virtue of their aggressive styling. A treat for the eyes at the Japanese company's stand was the addition to the VN family of several new models - the VN 1700 Classic, VN 1700 Classic Tourer, and the VN 1700 Voyager with its full line of equipment features. And the new ZX-6R super sport bike will be about nine kilograms lighter when it takes on the competition next year. Kawasaki has not yet released any performance data for the machine.
From Mandello del Lario, Italy - the home of Moto Guzzi - comes the 1200 Sport 4V. This sporty naked bike is powered by a longitudinally mounted 105 hp V-twin engine and features a manoeuvrable frame. Amongst others the brand Stelvio model has been updated. The Gilera brand has long been renowned for its high quality scooters. The company's one cylinder four-stroke Nexus 300 scooter will be a great addition to the market in 2009. And scooter specialist Piaggio presented a new three-wheel machine - the MP3 LT - which features a one cylinder engine with a choice of 250cc or 400cc of displacement. The unusual thing about the MP3 LT is that only a standard car driver's licence is required to ride it. Minor changes have been made to the XEvo and the Beverly.
Vespa is marking its 60th anniversary with two new scooters featuring nostalgic retro style - the LXV and the GTV. The new Vespa S50 4V is powered by a 50cc four-stroke engine, and the popular GTS now has more than 125cc of displacement. Minor modifications have been made to the Vespa Scooter LX and the GTS 300 Super.
Triumph presented its Thunderbird cruiser with belt drive to the general public for the first time. At 1,599cc, the motorcycle's engine has the largest displacement of any parallel twin and its standard equipment version delivers more than 75 hp and 135 Nm of torque. Visitors also enjoyed the comprehensively re-engineered Daytona 675, which is now even lighter and more powerful, as well as the classic design of bikes such as the Thruxton and the Bonneville.
A bike that caused quite a sensation was the brand new Yamaha YZF-R1. With an entirely redesigned power train for 2009, it is sure to be a big hit with customers. The new engine incorporates many principles from Valentino Rossi's MotoGP machine, including a new crankshaft with crank pins offset at 90 degrees to deliver more torque at all engine speeds and power that builds in a manner even easier for riders to control. Also extensively modified is the chassis, which now features a new, even stiffer Deltabox frame and a die-cast magnesium frame tail. The Yamaha brand has even more new products up its sleeve, for example the amazingly powerful VMAX, which draws its brute strength from the 200 hp and 167 Nm of torque of its 1,679cc V4 engine. Many design elements from the VMAX's famous predecessor have been retained in the new bike. And then there is the new mid-range four cylinder XJ6 Diversion, which is powered by a heavily modified 78 hp, 600cc engine from the FZ6. Like the VMAX, the XJ6 is equipped with a sensitive ABS system. Riders who love great looking cruisers are crazy about the newly introduced XVS 950 with its air cooled four-valve V2 engine. Yamaha also is presenting two impressive additions to the 125 line-up - the 15 hp, one cylinder WR125R enduro bike and its supermoto counterpart, the WR125X. Finally, the popular Neo's scooter has been equipped with a 50cc four-stroke engine.
While all leading manufacturers of motorbikes are responding to the growing awareness of environmental concerns by offering increasingly efficient engines and exhaust treatment systems, alternative drive systems from less well known manufacturers and importers of scooters are helping to ensure mobility that is more environmentally friendly. Examples include the Solar Scooter with wheel hub drive from Solar Mobil GmbH, which is fully electric powered, and the Hybrid Power Scooter from Mawi, which debuted at INTERMOT Cologne and is equipped with a combustion engine and an electric motor.
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