motorcyclenews.com headed for the Paris Bike show on maxi scooters with a mission.
Many of the new bikes of 2006 are being revealed at exclusive events previewing the show on Wednesday and Thursday (Sep 28/29). The first - Yamaha's - kicked off at 5.30pm on Sep 28. Angus's mission was to reach Paris by then and be ready to report on new bikes as they broke cover.
See below for updates on how he did. See News/New Bikes for the bikes as they emerge.
7:30pm (8:30pm French time): After getting lost looking for fuel then losing chief road testers Trevor Franklin and having to negotiate Paris rush hour they've finally made it. Only 3 hours late for the Yamaha launch.
Luckily MCN was already represented at the launch so we'll try and bring you all the news as soon as we can.
4.45pm Now it's 5.45pm in France and the Yamaha preview bash is underway... without our Maxi scooter crew. Luckily MCN is represented at the event and you can expect news from it throughout this evening. Angus expects to arrive before it ends!
3.55pm: Yes, it's 4.55pm in France - 35 minutes away from the start of the Yamaha preview show. And Angus is 150km from Paris! He's in a service station. And he's having to wait for 40 minutes while chief road tester Trevor Franklin tries to catch up after having taken a wrong turn. Angus would have ploughed on to his hotel near the show site - but Trev's got the hotel vouchers. Looks like our dynamic team is going to be late. Don't worry we've got a back-up plan to bring you the new bikes as they emerge tonight. You won't miss a thing... even if Angus does.
1.20pm: The group has now covered 160miles (from Peterborough to Dover) and are on board a ferry due to arrive in Calais soon. A later-than-planned start meant they got a late ferry and will not get off that ferry until around 2.25pm UK time. But that's 3.25pm French time - and they have to be in Paris for 5.30pm. Hmmm.
They are going to have to get their heads down. The first of the 2006 new bike previews - Yamaha's - starts at 5.30pm.
The Burgman seems the fastest of the lot so far and the Kymco the slowest. Let's hope Angus gets hold of the Burgman when they get off the ferry!
11:30am: Latest: The scooters reach Dover without any further incidents, and are now waiting to set sail at 12 noon.
10am: The group of seven scooters left Peterborough at 7.45am, managing 90 miles and a fuel stop in two hours. Unfortunately one of the guest riders on the test discovered a huge hole in the middle of the Thurrock slip road and tumbled off, but both bike and rider are OK. The convoy will now head down the A2 to Dover to catch their ferry, and aim to be in paris in time for their evening meal and the first launch of the Paris Show.
Myself and six others are riding maxi scooters to Paris and back to visit the bike show. We’ve got all the big scooters going and we’re doing Paris in one hit. It’ll get us there just in time to hit the first bike launch and it will definitely reveal which is the most able as a long-distance scooter.
We’re taking the Kymco Xciting 500, Piaggio X9, Gilera Nexus, Suzuki Burgman 650, Yamaha T-Max, Honda Silverwing and Aprilia Atlantic and just from seeing them parked up they’re pretty impressive beasts with all manner of gadgets and trickery to keep our simple minds entertained.
I’ll be sending back pictures of the trip throughout the day from the 7am start to the mid afternoon arrival so keep checking back for the latest.
And then of course I’ll be the first to bring you the first pictures of the new bike that Yamaha is expected to unveil in the evening, plus the first in-the-flesh pictures of all their 2006 bikes.
And don’t forget we’ll be bringing you up to the minute reports on all the new bikes emerging from the Paris show over the next couple of days. And maybe a few snaps of the babes on the stands as well if you’re lucky.