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MZ March 22, 2018 posted by

Simple Pleasures: 1995 MZ Skorpion Sport for Sale

MZ's history is more significant than the average enthusiast realizes, especially if you're a fan of this site and/or grey market two-stroke sportbikes. "Why is that?" You might ask. Or more likely, "Who is that?" MZ, formerly MuZ was an East German manufacturer of two stroke motorcycles. Engineer Walter Kaaden actually pioneered the use of expansion chambers while working for Motorrad und Zweiradwerk to tune and increase performance of the dirty little smokers. But after factory rider Ernst Denger fled to the West, taking the company's secrets with him in a move to Suzuki [technically the East then] MZ's dominance ended and the company faded into the background. Later, they built a range of simple, very Soviet-looking bikes based around a Rotax single, but it wasn't until their mid-90s revival with bikes like this MZ Skorpion Sport that they really looked like a modern alternative to anything.

Like an East German version of Triumph's 1990s lineup, MZ's entire range was built around a common frame, and all the bikes used Yamaha's five-valve XT660 single backed by a five-speed gearbox. The frame was less top-heavy than Triumph's spine design, but the big thumper meant modern sportbike fans weaned on Japanese inline-fours were... confused, to say the least. The package made sense for the Mastiff supermoto or the Baghira adventure bike, but wasn't the ideal choice for the Traveller [guess what that one was supposed to be for] and the Sport, along with its Cup and Replica variants, and the bikes were never all that popular.

All the better for the rest of us! The Skorpion wasn't scorchingly fast in a straight line, but throw it into a set of corners and the bike was in its element: referred to the limited-production WP-suspended Skorpion Replica as one of the best handling bikes they'd ever tested. The lower-spec Sport seen here might not handle quite as well right out of the box, but the basic components are there and the bike just a cartridge kit and an updated shock away from similar results. There's a good reason people like to use them as the basis for affordable track and racebikes.

From the original eBay listing: 1995 MZ Skorpion Sport for Sale

Rare and nifty sport single! Yamaha, 5-valve, 660cc, liquid cooled, electric-start engine as used in Yamaha 660cc ATV's Quads. Chassis is unique English design and great handling! Manufactured in (formerly) East Germany. Stock except for Holeshot muffler. Clear title. Runs well, stops great and steers amazing! Please look at photos and ask questions. Local pickup or you handle shipping. Thanks!

At 26,000 miles, this is no garage queen, but it looks like it's in good cosmetic condition and the XT660 powerplant isn't exactly rare, so basic maintenance should be easy. Considering the bidding starts at just $1,799 with no takers yet, this should be on the short list of anyone looking to graduate from track days to racing, fans of affordable exotica, and basically anyone that's a lover of fun, honest, practical motorcycles.


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Ducati March 21, 2018 posted by

Distant Rumble – 2004 Ducati 1000DS SuperSport

Long and lean, Ducati's 1000 Dual Spark SuperSport impressed reviewers with stable handling and sensible seat height.  Its 85 air-cooled hp don't snap the bike upright but do just fine making the cars and bikes behind get smaller.  This 2004 model has miles but recent maintenance and a very factory appearance.

2004 Ducati 1000DS SuperSport for sale on eBay

Ducati used two sparks plugs ( and valves ) per cylinder to help increase power.  Similar 90-degree L-twins powered the Monster and Multi Strada, trading the stable temperatures of liquid cooling for the simplicity and lighter weight of air cooling.  Many updates were made to the heads to improve valve angles and gas flow.  The classic trellis frame provides a solid platform for the 43mm Showa forks and alloy swingarm with Öhlins shock.  The dry clutch is also all aluminum to save weight.  Gold line Brembo calipers are found over dual 320mm front disks and 245mm rear.

Despite 24,000 and 14 years, this 1000DS looks very good.  As a 2004 it has alloy swingarm, Marchesini wheels, and Öhlins rear shock that were later value-engineered into cheaper components.  It also has the rarely seen aluminum mufflers and factory turn signals.  I had thought that Ducati only offered the 1000DS SuperSport with full fairing, but maybe this example snuck in under that wire as well.  Maintenance history from the eBay auction :

Work at 17,000 Miles :

  • Valves Checked (No adjustment needed)
  • New Timing Belts Installed

Recent Work at 21,000 Miles :

  • New Brakes

Just Installed at 24,000 Miles :

  • Oil Changed – 100% Synthetic, with new mounts on the oil cooler
  • Ducati Air Filter
  • New Front and Rear Tires
  • New chain
  • Both sprockets (front and rear) are new, geared for the highway
  • New Battery
  • New Rubber Oil Cooler Mounts


Fans might differ on the complex Terblanche design, but the basic facts of a nicely faired 1000cc sportbike remain, with the fanfare of the big L-twin on approach.  Some afficionados recommend buying the very latest of whatever model you choose, but the 1000DS SuperSport is an exception, this 2004 being better equipped than later years.  Since the last year of the model was 2007, all major improvements are on board the '04.  The simplicity of the desmodue also lends itself much better to hobbyist maintenance than a new bike, and this well cared-for example is worth a look-see...


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Laverda March 20, 2018 posted by

Featured Listing: Zero-mile Laverda 750S

When a mid-nineties Ducati just ain't cutting it as far as style, panache, build sheet, rarity and dubious build quality are concerned, it's hard to do better than a contemporary Laverda. Sure, you could go Bimota and snag Japanese reliability with the sex appeal only Italy can muster, but you couldn't be too much more obvious.

1998 Laverda 750S for Sale on

Today's Laverda 750S solves all of those problems, with a reputation for millimeter-perfect handling, pretty Paoli squishy bits and a proprietary, fuel-injected 750cc parallel twin. The bike appears to have covered just eight kilometers from new, and is supplied with nearly enough spares to make an entire new bike.

From the seller:

I’m interested in selling my 0 miles Laverda 750 S (the bike + spare parts of a 15.000 km sister bike: engine, electric system, forks, wheels. No frame, no fairings).

Top shelf components:

Brembo brake system;
Marchesini wheels;
Paioli forks.

Only two items aren't original: the carbon look mirrors, coordinated with other true carbon details, and the electric system (a more common and reliable Ducati Monster's electric system is on).

The bike has always been stored in a warm and dry garage, it's is maniacally well cared, the original tires weren't in good conditions, hence I switched them with the twin bike's 5.000 km ones. The bike is ready to roar tomorrow, then it would be a nice deal for collectors and/or users targeting not an ordinary ride. A gorgeous sound and the extreme rarity put the user under the spotlights even on a sunny day.

In case of further need of spare parts, I can put you in contact with "3C moto" company, managed by a former Laverda technician and big lover of the brand who withdrew all the original Laverda parts (or you can straightly contact

My target price is 5.600 euro (a bike and half, it seems a fair price for a ready-to-use exotica, isn't it?).

The bike is located in Varese, Northern Italy. I can arrange a worldwide delivery at the purchaser's cost (air or sea, according to buyer preference). Any precaution and delivery terms (insurance for the transport included) will be agreed according to the destination.

Contact Stephano with your interest:

The Laverda 750S represents a throwback to a time when there were still companies that very much felt like they were screwed together by dedicated enthusiasts in a small shop. Japanese bikes are great for obvious reasons, but they all carry just a whiff of their manufacturers' roots in heavy equipment manufacture.

If you can swing the 5,600 EUR pricetag and import fees, this is a great way to set yourself apart from the crowd.


Full size image gallery:

Ducati March 20, 2018 posted by

Lust AND trust: 2004 Ducati 999R FILA edition in Florida USA

Today's post is for a Ducati FILA 999R in Florida  with less than 2,000 miles since new.  While the 999 series isn't hard to find for sale, approximately 70 FILA editions were imported into the USA so finding one in this condition and mileage is quite rare.

2004 999R FILA with under 1300 miles on ebay

For a while it seemed like every Ducati sportbike had at least 3 different versions with some also having a "commemorative edition".   While these commemorative editions seemed to be mostly overpriced marketing exercises (cough-Nieman-Marcus-748-cough) the Ducati FILA edition was a bit different.  The FILA 999R was launched to celebrate Ducati's 200th win in the World Superbike Championship and came with all the 999R level goodies such as carbon-fiber bodywork, top-level engine internals, as well as an upgraded fuel system and upgraded suspension.  All the changes meant that the R offered 40BHP more over the basic/strada version while also being lighter and handling better.

The FILA edition also had another advantage over the other 999 versions; it just looked much better.  Initial reviews of the 999 series were that it certainly wasn't as pretty as the predecessor 998 (which still looked in large part like the legendary 916).  Many people commented that the 916 had a balance of form and function, also sometimes called "the-balance-between-lust-and-trust".  The 999 was perceived as high trust, low lust in large part due to its full fairing on the front but very small rear fairing.  Fortunately the FILA edition elicited no such complains although a few reviewers indicated the paint and decal quality could leave something to be desired.

This particular bit of carbon wrapped goodness is being offered by a dealer in Florida.   Unfortunately there is zero information in the listing about any servicing and given the low miles, I would expect the tires and fluids to all be original and also the belts would likely need to be redone.  While this (and possibly a battery) would be likely costs, this bike looks to be absolutely pristine.

So is this 999R FILA worth the Buy-It-Now price of $18,500 USD?   Honestly I think that price is a bit high.  FILA editions seem to trade somewhere between 11-13k so the price bump for this one seems to be based on the mileage and the fact that the seller is a dealer.  The seller does indicate an opening bid price of $15,000 USD which is more reasonable and demonstrates a bit of potential movement on the price.

Perhaps the real question is whether this one will appreciate going forward.   While certainly not as dramatic as a Desmosedici or Supermono, the FILA edition does seem to be the most desired 999 series bike.  I would predict a bit more depreciation over the next 8 years, then a stabilization and slow price increase over time.  This one will probably appeal to a collector with a long term mindset and homologation/Ducati R series collector.


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Honda March 20, 2018 posted by

Featured Listing: 1990 Honda CBR 250RR MC22

This little Texas Tornado (with a nod to Colin Edwards) embodies the spirit of what RSBFS is all about. A high-revving, razor-sharp handling, tasty morsel of forbidden exotica, this grey bike was successfully imported, plated and titled in the United States. At the highest level, this is a story with a happy ending. Because even now as the current owner places it for sale, it becomes available to all who ride - not just those with the means and skills to import. And this is one bike that you need to ride.

Featured Listing: 1990 Honda CBR 250RR MC22 for sale in Texas!

As we learned from the two stroke lessons through the 1980s, Japanese home market restrictions placed a huge amount of emphasis on smaller classes. Long derided as beginner bikes in the cubic-inch hungry US, the Japanese cultivated a rich and amazingly technical cadre of sub 500cc machinery. Far from a beginner bike, this 250cc example sports a liquid-cooled, inline four cylinder powerplant with four valves per cylinder and a redline that extended into the 20,000 RPM range. Sophisticated suspension bolted to a light-but-stiff aluminum frame gives this 45 HP / 300 LB racer a fighting chance when facing down much larger competition.

From the seller:
I have an immaculate 1990 Honda CBR 250RR MC22, It is fully legal and was imported in full compliance with US laws. It is registered in my name with all paper work done and inspection through February 2019. Texas blue title in hand.

For those of you who don't know, this bike was never sold in the US. It is a 250CC inline 4 cylinder 4 stroke motorcycle that revs up to ~20,000 RPM. It is a 1990 model so there was no limiter. Do a quick YouTube search on what the bike sounds like to give you an idea.

More from the seller:
This bike is practically flawless. Runs perfectly and strong and was imported via a popular JDM Motorcycle importer based in the east coast where the bike was inspected head-to-toe. Along with a cosmetic restoration, the bike went through a full mechanical inspection including the engine and carburetors, clutch and transmission, front and rear suspension, brakes and cables, all lights and electrics, and the fuel, oil, & coolant systems.

More from the seller:
There are new fairings on the bike in perfect condition with no scratches, dents or blemishes. I have owned the bike for about 2 months and have never dropped it, but there are scratches on the engine case and exhaust can as the PO in Japan had a spill at low speeds. This damage is pretty insignificant considering the age of the bike and I still deemed it worthy to import here to the States. There is one LED out in the tachometer cluster (around 10k RPM) but you can still see your RPMs even at night from the other LEDs. I believe in full transparency when selling my vehicles and I am a motorcycle enthusiast through and through. This is the only issue (if you would even call it that) with the bike. In the sale I will include 1 extra Honda Key, an OEM Honda Regulator and cable ($150 not including shipping from Australia), and an OEM Honda air filter.

More from the seller:
Last but not least this bike was meant to be ridden. It would be great fun in and around the city, and even more fun on the track. Easily the most fun bike I've ever ridden in my life. It is a rider's bike. I put a lot of money into getting this bike here and getting it fully legal. That being said since I've done all the leg work and the bike is now turn-key, I believe my price is pretty fair, but I have room for a little negotiation.

Price: $6,000

What you are looking at is a bone fide rare import that is also a rider. It has been legally and correctly brought into the US, and is looking for its next home. Bigger riders may find the cockpit a bit cozy, and forward motion will be affected by the additional gravity (physics, after all, does impose limitations), but few riders could step off of this bike without a gigantic grin. If you are a rider that aches for an apex, are up to the challenge of dealing with tens of thousands of revs, and want to distance yourself from the cookie-cutter crowd, your mad motor scooter has arrived. Serious shoppers should drop Kenny a line at Good Luck!!


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