First rides & tests (Jan - Dec 2013)

  • Staff Blog: Not so naked now

    10 June 2013 by Andy Davidson

    Staff Blog: Not so naked now

    I have finally fitted a screen from German firm MRA. The aftermarket plastic is not specifically designed for the Z800 but is a racing screen built for newer, aggressively-styled naked bikes. I fitted...

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  • Staff Blog: Hyperstrada Tyre Testing

    10 June 2013 by Michael Neeves

    Staff Blog: Hyperstrada Tyre Testing

    I’m working my way through as many new-for-2013 tyres as I can for this year, so I can see what the tyre companies have been up to. With each new generation of tyre, we get more bang for our buck. The...

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  • Staff Blog: Thanks for all your suggestions

    10 June 2013 by Alison Silcox

    Staff Blog: Thanks for all your suggestions

    Further to my previous blog I've been really chuffed with the amount of reponses I've received so thank you. My route around North Norfolk is taking shape nicely with the addition of a particularly...

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  • Staff Blog: Passports at the ready

    07 June 2013 by Tony Hoare

    There’s always a tingle that comes with the thought of riding abroad. And, now the working day is coming to a close, I’m feeling the tingle. The sun’s shining, the TT commentary is piping out of the computer and I’m headed for Belgium on the Street Triple R. It’s not designed for touring, but you can go anywhere on anything if you’re in the mood. Which I am. The ride is part of my girlfriend,...

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  • Staff Blog: Mud flinging

    07 June 2013 by Liam Marsden

    Staff Blog: Mud flinging

    Senior Editor Richard Newland's BMW R1200GS isn't the only longtermer with a mud-flinging problem, the Judge has one too. On damp, wet or just plain dirty roads the front wheel throws up a lot of...

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  • Staff Blog: Finding time for the Hyperstrada

    06 June 2013 by Michael Neeves

    Staff Blog: Finding time for the Hyperstrada

    I’ve never known it to be so busy in MCN Road Test land, so I find myself away travelling lots. It means that sometimes I’m riding my Hyperstrada every day and occasionally weeks will go by where it...

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  • MV Agusta F3 800 ridden!

    06 June 2013 by Michael Neeves

    MV Agusta F3 800 ridden!

    MV Agusta’s brand new £11,499 F3 800 is currently being put through its paces at Misano in Italy by MCN Senior Road Tester Michael Neeves. Here are his first impressions:   “The new machine is...

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  • Staff Blog: Deflated at Donington

    05 June 2013 by Steve Hunt

    Staff Blog: Deflated at Donington

    Being responsible for the online aspect of Motorcyclenews, I don’t get much of a chance to leave the office and the phosphorous glow of the monitor screens. So, when I had the opportunity to spend...

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  • Staff Blog: Swings and roundabouts

    05 June 2013 by Richard Newland

    Staff Blog: Swings and roundabouts

    Every bike will delight and frustrate you to some extent – it’s an inevitable truth. While touches of pure and simple genius will provide fodder to evangelise to your friends, there will always be...

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  • Staff Blog: Welcome back CBR500

    03 June 2013 by Andy Calton

    Staff Blog: Welcome back CBR500

    When the first Yamaha FZR600 came out back in the day (1990) I was all over it like a rash. The black and pink paintscheme may have been a little 'let's go disco' naff but these were the days of...

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  • First middle age fumblings with a Ducati

    03 June 2013 by Jeff Patrick

    On a weekend where the sun sat high and my adrenaline ran free, it seemed appropriate in the infancy of middle age to throw my leg over my first ever Ducati and see what Hampshire's bountiful roads had to offer. The bike in question was a 2013 Panigale, which, with its £5,000 insurance excess had the temperature up before the very obliging salesman even turned the key and fired up what can only be...

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  • Staff Blog: I Love Sunny Saturday Rides!

    03 June 2013 by Alison Silcox

    Staff Blog: I Love Sunny Saturday Rides!

      What glorious weather, waking up on Saturday morning with sun streaming through the window I had no excuse but to get out on the Yamaha Fazer8 and ride. My other half was helping mates at the...

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  • Staff Blog: Victory Judge gets rowdy

    31 May 2013 by Liam Marsden

    Staff Blog: Victory Judge gets rowdy

    There's no doubting the Judge looks the part, but as standard it's laughably quiet. To remedy this I've had a Cobra exhaust system fitted to the Judge. Not only does it make the Judge...

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  • Staff Blog: up close and personal with the Hog

    31 May 2013 by Ped Baker

    Staff Blog: up close and personal with the Hog

    Now I’ve had the Street Bob for a couple of weeks I’ve had the chance to do something I suspect many other Harley owners do – park it on the drive, grab a beer and paw over the details that make the...

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  • Video: Borile 450 Scrambler first ride

    30 May 2013 by Michael Neeves

    Video: Borile 450 Scrambler first ride

    Artisan bike maker Borile is creating its first small-volume, full-production motorcycle, called the B450 which will cost £9650 when it goes on sale in September. We rode the bike in Italy.

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  • Staff Blog: Hello Moto(rrad)

    29 May 2013 by MCN

    Staff Blog: Hello Moto(rrad)

    If you’d told me ten years ago that I’d be ecstatic at the prospect of riding an R1200GS as a longterm test bike, I’d have been breathless with laughter before any sort of verbal response could form...

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  • Staff Blog: Time for new shoes!

    29 May 2013 by Ian Jubb

    Staff Blog: Time for new shoes!

    Having just clocked up 3000 miles on the RT the rear is starting to square off and with a trip to France looming I figured it's best to get them switched from the OE Metzeler Roadtec Z8 to the all new...

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  • Staff Blog: I Can See Clearly Now.......

    26 May 2013 by Alison Silcox

    Staff Blog: I Can See Clearly Now.......

    It’s a couple of weeks without riding for me I’m afraid. After 24 years of being a ‘specy-four-eyes’ I’ve taken  the plunge and had lazer eye surgery. You might wonder why I’m writing about this...

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  • Staff Blog: Fair-weather rider? I wish

    24 May 2013 by Tony Hoare

    Staff Blog: Fair-weather rider? I wish

    This year I’ve been trying to turn myself into a fair weather rider. Honestly, it’s not me, it’s the bike  - I don’t mind riding in the wet and have done thousands of miles in the rain over the...

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  • Video: Bimota DBX first ride

    24 May 2013 by MCN

    Video: Bimota DBX first ride

    Bimota has a reputation for taking engines from the likes of Ducati or one of the Japanese big four and building something rather special around it. It's done the same here, but with a twist - taking...

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  • Video: MCN ride Norton's TT challenger

    23 May 2013 by MCN

    Video: MCN ride Norton's TT challenger

    With just days to go before the 2013 TT MCN gained exclusive, extended access over two days to the Norton team. They were preparing to test their new 200bhp V4, £100,000 Senior TT machine, which will...

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  • Video: Ducati Hypermotard new vs old

    22 May 2013 by Michael Neeves

    Video: Ducati Hypermotard new vs old

    Ducati's new 821cc Hypermotard replaces two old Hypermotards: the little 796 and its bigger brother, the 1100 Evo. It has a similar-size engine to the small one, but more power than the big one, so...

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  • Video: Honda NSS300 Forza first ride

    20 May 2013 by MCN

    Video: Honda NSS300 Forza first ride

    MCN's road test editor Phil West recently traveled to Spain for the launch of Honda's new NSS300 Forza scooter. Hear Phil's first impressions on their new bike aimed very firmly at city...

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  • Video: Honda CB500X first ride

    17 May 2013 by MCN

    Video: Honda CB500X first ride

    In the beginning came the Honda CB500F naked and CBR500R sports, now here's the adventure-styled 'X' version of Honda's new twin. Was it worth the wait?

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  • Video: Honda CRF250M first ride

    17 May 2013 by MCN

    Video: Honda CRF250M first ride

    Take the useful, liquid-cooled, four-stroke single out of the popular, learner friendly CBR250R and create a proper trailie around it (the CRF250L). Then let's go one step further and make a supermoto...

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  • Staff Blog: Bagging the F800GT

    16 May 2013 by Steve Hunt

    Staff Blog: Bagging the F800GT

    Another weekend, another trip down to Somerset to catch-up with friends and family. It was also another weekend when the heavens have opened and I’ve had to ride the F800GT down in the pouring rain.

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  • Ultimate Superbikes 2nd place: BMW HP4 Carbon

    16 May 2013 by Michael Neeves

    Ultimate Superbikes 2nd place: BMW HP4 Carbon

    Lap time: 1:47.7 Top speed at end of straight: 167.7mph Max braking (g): 1.29 Max lean: 46.85 Why it’s so special It’s the first sports bike to be produced with semi-active suspension. The damping...

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  • Staff blog: Blinded by handlebar muffs

    14 May 2013 by Steve Farrell

    Staff blog: Blinded by handlebar muffs

    In this week’s paper I report how the heated grips on the Suzuki Burgman 650 could be warmer. Just about every journalist on the launch in Scotland seemed to agree on the point. Some said they seemed...

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