Supercharged show-stopper: Bimota Tesi H2 available in Europe from October 1
Following months of social media teasing and rigorous track testing, Italian exotica brand Bimota have confirmed the full specs of their supercharged Tesi H2 and it’s a bit of a monster.
Slated for a 250 unit production run, each with its own unique serial number plate, the bike was made available to pre-order online from Wednesday, September 9 and sports a darker livery than the prototype, while retaining licks of Bimota’s signature red and white. A blacked-out version is also available; exposing more of the carbon weave. At present, just 10 units have been allocated for the UK.
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The Tesi H2 is the first production-ready machine from the small-time manufacturer since Kawasaki purchased a 49.9% share of the company last year and uses the claimed 228bhp supercharged 998cc four-cylinder engine from the Japanese firm’s Ninja H2. The second of these machines; the Ninja 1000SX-powered retro KB4 is due in Spring 2021.
Draped in a set of carbon fibre reinforced polymer fairings (a lightweight plastic reinforced by carbon fibres), other elements taken from Kawasaki include the part-analogue TFT dash, which comes from the latest chirping H2.
Weighing 207kg dry, the Tesi does away with the Kawasaki’s conventional fork and trellis chassis set-up for Hub centre steering and uses the four-pot powerhouse as a stressed member for the swingarms alongside compact aluminium chassis parts.
Although radically different to look at, the dual billet-alloy swingarm set-up promises advantages such as keeping braking forces away from the suspension, allowing you to trail brake deeper into a bend.
At either end sits a set of forged wheels, with powerful Brembo Stylema calipers biting onto up front biting onto chunky 330mm semi-floating discs.
To truly make your Tesi H2 your own, Bimota also say the ride height is adjustable by 20mm (+/- 10mm) without altering the frame geometry and that the foot peg position can be tweaked for comfort.
The suspension itself will be manually adjustable, comprised of two Öhlins TTX shocks housed within the rear swingarm, with remote preload adjusters. Although quality units, it’s not the semi-active suspension it appeared to have on the original concept bike revealed last year.
Away from the suspension, the Tesi H2 has been treated to a full suite of Kawasaki electronics, including an up-and-down quickshifter, nine-stage traction control, an Öhlins electronic steering damper, a Bosch IMU, launch control and more.
First revealed last November at the 2019 Eicma trade show, in Milan, the bonkers machine was initially set for launch in July 2020, however production at the Italian factory was pushed back by a month-long Covid-19 lockdown. The first bikes will be available for European customers from October 1, priced at €64,000 (approx. £59,400), before expanding to a global market.
As always, keep an eye on our website for an expert, in-depth Bimota Tesi H2 review coming soon.
Back on track: Bimota ramp up testing of supercharged Tesi H2 ahead of September production
First published 17 July 2020 by Dan Sutherland
Following online footage and photos of on-circuit testing, exotic Italian motorcycling marque, Bimota, have confirmed to MCN that their supercharged Tesi H2 will go into production in September, complete with a new paint job.
Speaking exclusively to MCN, Bimota spokesperson Gianluca Galasso revealed: "For the finished bike, ready to be delivered to the customer, we need [until] September 2020."
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Initially slated for a June launch, complications with the supply of parts due to coronavirus, plus a month-long shutdown, delayed elements of the build. Earlier interviews suggested this would be until September, with the Italian brand now confirming that date. It is hoped that the first 20 bikes will be completed during the month.
"For a registered bike, with the paint - now slightly different to the Eicma show - and all the production parts, we need to wait until the beginning of August," Galasso continued. "The red is a particular formula and it changes shades in accordance to the light angle. The white is a matt pearl white."
The news comes following the release of an onboard video shot at Autodromo dell'Umbria circuit, in Magione, Italy, to the firm’s YouTube channel, which shows the bike’s front wheel and hub steering working in harmony. Images were also shared on their social media.
This was then followed up by another longer, multi-angle short film later in the week, showing suspension travel at the front and rear and a smaller shot of the Kawasaki Ninja H2-derived part-analogue clocks. You can watch the full film below.
"We went to Magione because this is the toughest racetrack for brake tests," Galasso said. "It is very easy to have brakes 'fading' due to the limited time to cool down the rotor discs and calipers.
"Basically, the whole bike had to be tested - particularly the brakes, trail, ground clearance, height, shocks setting and few other small parts," he added.
"We had to declare in advance the name of the Bimota workers in attendance because only they were allowed to enter in the paddock. Once there, they had to wear the masks and have their body temperature checked. The garage and the restrooms were sanitised every two hours by the authorised personnel."
The Tesi H2 was revealed at Eicma 2019 as part of Kawasaki’s announcement that they had purchased a 49.9% stake in the company. Based on the Japanese firm’s Ninja H2, it uses the same claimed 227bhp four-cylinder engine and was the first new Bimota to be revealed since the BMW S1000RR-inspired BB3 superbike in 2014. No pricing is available at this time.
No Bimota KB4 until spring 2021
Alongside discussing the Tesi H2, Galasso also revealed that their second incoming model; the Kawasaki Ninja 1000SX-powered KB4 retro sportsbike would not be ready until spring 2021, however a working prototype was already in use.
"The KB4 will be ready in spring 2021," he explained. "At the moment, the forecast of the Covid-19 delay is difficult to estimate, but we hope it’s around three or four months. I can tell you that the first prototype of the KB4 is really fun to ride."
Although details remain scarce, Bimota have confirmed that – should the virus not delay things for too long – the ‘70s-inspired machine will feature electronically-controlled Öhlins suspension. Although no official figure is available, also expect pricing to fall in line with the competition.
Bimota is back! Tie-up with Kawasaki results in stunning new Tesi H2
First published on 6 November 2020 by Dan Sutherland
Meet the brand new, 2020 Bimota Tesi H2. Kawasaki have today confirmed they’ve purchased a 49.9% stake in legendary Italian firm Bimota, revealing this new supercharged, hub-steered monster based on the Japanese brand’s supercharged 227bhp Ninja H2.
The first new Bimota model since the BMW S1000RR-derived BB3 superbike in 2014, the new machine, finished in the traditional red and white, uses a striking hub-centre steering set-up, with what appears to be two semi-active Öhlins shocks at the rear of the bike, braced under the single seat.
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Details remain scarce, however the front swingarm appears to be connected to its designated shock via a linkage running down the left side of its four-cylinder Kawasaki engine. Wires protruding from each of the suspension units would suggest some form of electronic damping, with remote adjusters also accessible for preload.
Although unconventional, the advantages of including hub steering is that it provides a narrower front-end, as well as the ability to trail brake into a corner, with braking forces kept away from the front suspension, leaving it free to deal with bumps in the road. The disadvantage of this though is that with so many linkages, front-end feel can be reduced.
The brakes themselves are also neatly hidden within the front mudguard, with the front swingarm preventing the calipers from being positioned conventionally.
Alongside revised suspension, the new machine also appears to use the Kawasaki engine as an integral part of the chassis, with the front swingarm mounted to a front frame, also housing the Kawasaki-derived clocks, via steel tubing.
The rear arm also appears to bolt directly to a pivot point towards the rear of engine, with the Bimota DB8-styled rear cowling held in place by a carbon fibre subframe.
Sources from Bimota at the Eicma show have told MCN that the bike is homologated to the same specs as the latest H2, meaning similar power and weight, with prices expected to sit in the region of €50,000 (around £43,000). Bikes are set to arrive in June 2020. Keep an eye out for the Bimota Tesi H2 review coming soon on MCN.