First rides & tests (Jan - Dec 2017)

  • 2017 sportsbike of the year: Honda Fireblade SP

    26 October 2017 by Michael Neeves

    2017 sportsbike of the year: Honda Fireblade SP

    Where do you start with the new Honda Fireblade? Talk about contentious. It’s been hopeless in World Superbikes, disastrous at the TT and bombed in a handful of other magazine group tests. So how can...

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  • 2017 retro bike of the year: BMW R nineT Urban G/S

    26 October 2017 by Jon Urry & Michael Neeves

    2017 retro bike of the year: BMW R nineT Urban G/S

    Launched in June it arrived fashionably late, but the new BMW R nineT UrbanG/S has come straight into our number one top slot– immediately establishingitself as our favourite retro of 2017. Like the...

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  • 2017 sub-500cc bike of the year: KTM 390 Duke

    26 October 2017 by Michael Neeves

    2017 sub-500cc bike of the year: KTM 390 Duke

    KTM has completely transformed the 390 Duke for 2017, turning it from merely a good low-capacity naked, to the best machine in the entire A2 licence category. Giving the bike its first major updates...

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  • 2017 scooter of the year: Yamaha TMAX DX

    25 October 2017 by Adam Child

    2017 scooter of the year: Yamaha TMAX DX

    Yamaha have sold over a quarter of a million TMAX maxi scooters since its inception in 2001, making it their best selling bike to date. For 2017 the big scoot gets a new aluminium chassis with revised...

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  • 2017 125cc bike of the year: KTM 125 Duke

    25 October 2017 by Michael Neeves

    2017 125cc bike of the year: KTM 125 Duke

    KTM’s 125 Duke received a much-needed overhaul for 2017. After six years of the original 2011 design, it was aging and lacked the quality of its rivals. Taking styling cues from the mighty 1290 Super...

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  • 2018 Harley Softails ridden

    04 September 2017 by Phil West

    2018 Harley Softails ridden

    Harley-Davidson ‘big twin’ cruisers, which include twin-shocked ‘Dyna’s such as the Street Bob and hardtail-looking ‘Softails’ such as the Fat Boy are being replaced by an all-new eight-bike Harley...

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  • First ride of the Suzuki GSX-S125 incoming

    27 August 2017 by Dan Sutherland

    First ride of the Suzuki GSX-S125 incoming

    MCN’s Acting Consumer Editor, Dan Sutherland, will be riding the new Suzuki GSX-S125 this coming Thursday at its European launch. Part of Suzuki’s latest venture into the low capacity market, the...

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  • First ride of the Suzuki GSX-R125 incoming

    26 August 2017 by Dan Sutherland

    First ride of the Suzuki GSX-R125 incoming

    We’ll be riding Suzuki’s hotly-anticipated GSX-R125 at Silverstone’s Stowe Circuit at its European launch next week. The bike uses a 124.4cc single cylinder engine producing 14.8bhp and tips the...

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  • Gallery: Superbike showdown

    28 July 2017 by MCN News

    Gallery: Superbike showdown

    Superbikes are the very pinnacle of a manufacturer’s talents, a showcase for their genius ability to force power and control to co-exist in some of the smallest and tightest packages ever to have...

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  • Suzuki Burgman 400: First Ride Incoming

    28 July 2017 by Alison Silcox

    Suzuki Burgman 400: First Ride Incoming

    We’re riding Suzuki’s updated Burgman 400 at the world launch in Italy on Sunday. Suzuki’s £6299 399 cc, 30 bhp single cylinder scooter has been updated for 2018. It’s design is slimmer and sharper.

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  • Suzuki GSX250R: First ride incoming

    26 July 2017 by Dan Sutherland

    Suzuki GSX250R: First ride incoming

    We’ll be testing Suzuki’s new GSX250R tomorrow. Costing £4299 for the base model (the GP version is £100 more and includes MotoGP inspired paint scheme), the A2-friendly, 24.7bhp, 248cc parallel twin...

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  • Kymco X-Town 300i first ride

    19 July 2017 by Alison Silcox

    Kymco X-Town 300i first ride

    The Kymco X-Town 300 takes the good-around-town scooter concept to a whole new level with an ability to leave the urban sprawl behind and head for the hills. The A2 licence-friendly scoot is an...

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  • First ride: Aprilia RS125

    30 June 2017 by Jon Urry

    First ride: Aprilia RS125

    The Aprilia RS 125 returns for 2017. But sadly not in two-stroke form… The Aprilia RS 125 first smoked its way onto racetracks 25 years ago and quickly set about dominating its class before Moto3 was...

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  • Video: BMW HP4 Race is the real WSB deal

    28 June 2017 by Michael Neeves

    Video: BMW HP4 Race is the real WSB deal

    BMW’s new £68,000, 215bhp track-only HP4 Race is achingly close in feel and speed to a factory superbike. Here’s why: It’s lighter than a WSB bike.  Tipping the scales at 171.5kg, with its...

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  • MCN tests Norton’s TT missile

    20 June 2017 by Adam Child

    MCN tests Norton’s TT missile

    Norton had a stunning TT 2017, silencing many critics who thought their Isle of Man challenge would never amount to anything.  And although the firm has suffered more than its fair share of lows...

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  • Launch: BMW HP4 Race in Portugal

    20 June 2017 by Michael Neeves

    Launch: BMW HP4 Race in Portugal

    We're riding BMW’s new £68,000 HP4 Race at the Estoril circuit in Portugal tomorrow. The carbon-framed, track-only superbike makes 215bhp and weighs just 171.5k  full of fuel (and a staggering...

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  • Aprilia Shiver 900: "An SV650 with balls"

    14 June 2017 by Jon Urry

    Aprilia Shiver 900: "An SV650 with balls"

    Despite not appearing that much of a change compared to the outgoing Shiver 750, the new Shiver 900 proved a pleasant surprise delivering the kind of refined and smooth ride that is certainly not what...

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  • Gallery: Cafe racer group test

    14 June 2017 by MCN News

    Gallery: Cafe racer group test

    With more bikes being unveiled each year, it looks like the café racer and retro craze is here to stay, and with bikes as attractive as these it is easy to see why. At a time when sportsbikes are...

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  • Aprilia Shiver 900 first ride incoming

    13 June 2017 by Jon Urry

    Aprilia Shiver 900 first ride incoming

    There has been a fair bit of debate on the subject, but Aprilia UK have now confirmed that they will be bringing the new Shiver 900 into the UK and it will cost a slightly odd sounding £8002 OTR due...

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  • SWM Superdual first ride

    07 June 2017 by Michael Neeves

    SWM Superdual first ride

    SWM’s new Superdual might not be big on bhp, cylinders or electronics, but it’s a proper little do-anything, go-anywhere machine.   Big adventure bikes are now caught up in the same power and...

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  • First ride incoming: BMW R nineT Urban G/S

    30 May 2017 by Jon Urry

    First ride incoming: BMW R nineT Urban G/S

    If you are into your G/S models, or GS models depending on the vintage of your bike, then you will probably have been as excited as us when BMW pulled the covers off their latest R nineT model – the...

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  • 2017 Kawasaki Versys X 300 first ride

    25 May 2017 by Jon Urry

    2017 Kawasaki Versys X 300 first ride

    Before I rode the Versys-X 300 there were a few potential issues that I was concerned about – namely the tall 845mm seat height and the screen’s lack of adjustability. I know these may seem small...

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  • Gallery: Rocking retros

    24 May 2017 by MCN News

    Gallery: Rocking retros

    If you want to have a chilled ride, one or two up, a modern classic should do the trick.  MCN contributor Jon Urry put the theory to the test with Honda's CB1100 EX, BMW's R nineT Pure and...

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  • Kawasaki Versys-X 300 first ride incoming

    23 May 2017 by Jon Urry

    Kawasaki Versys-X 300 first ride incoming

    Not every adventure has to be to the furthest flung corners of the world and this year we are starting to see the rise of the mini adventure bike – small capacity machines that offer all of the...

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