Posts by Category: Bimota

Bimota November 1, 2016 posted by

Nineties Flyer: 1991 Bimota YB8 for Sale

1991-bimota-yb8-r-side

With lightweight bodywork held on by just a few bolts [note the one-piece tank-and-tail unit] and a plastic fuel cell, the Bimota YB8 used plenty of tricks learned on the racetrack and was pretty far ahead of its time. Based on the previous YB4 and YB6 but powered by the larger FZR1000 engine, approximately 250 were produced between 1990 and 1994. Bimota claimed 149hp from the FZR1000 engine, up a bit compared to the stock bike due to Bimota ignoring the "gentleman's agreement" of the time and applying the usual tuning tricks, and the inline four puts its power to the rear wheel through the Yamaha's standard five-speed box. Top speed is a 173mph but, as always with Bimota, it's the cornering that impresses the most.

1991-bimota-yb8-l-side

It's hard to blame a small manufacturer if they wanted to recycle or slightly update an existing frame, especially if the donor engines slot in easily. Looking at the later YB11, the frames look very similar and, as was pointed out by one of the Commentariat, I wonder if a Yamaha R1 engine and transmission might slot in there without too much persuading... Somehow, that doesn't seem to be as sacrilegious an idea as it would be for something like, say, a Ducati. The resulting bike should be a shade lighter than the original R1 if the manufacturers' dry weights are to be believed...

1991-bimota-yb8-clocks

From the original eBay listing: 1991 Bimota YB8 for Sale

Very are super bike, mint condition, needs nothing, we ship at buyer's expense can ship worldwide. Runs excellent, reasonable reserve, rare opportunity.

1991-bimota-yb8-r-side-rear

The listing doesn't include much information and the bike is clearly part of a larger collection. That's unfortunate although, obviously restoring that engine should be much easier than for some other obscure motorcycles. Bidding is up to just $5,200 with the Reserve Not Met, but Bimotas of this era seems to be going for around the $10,000 mark these days. Sure, for the price, you could buy a couple of nice Yamaha R1's, but that's hardly the point of this bit of Italian exotica.

-tad

1991-bimota-yb8-front

Nineties Flyer: 1991 Bimota YB8 for Sale
Bimota October 27, 2016 posted by

Super and Leggera: 1998 Bimota YB11 Superleggera for Sale

1998-bimota-yb11-l-front

1990s Bimotas currently represent an amazing value, and this 1998 YB11 Superleggera has superbike performance, Yamaha reliability, and is very rare, all for under $10,000. “Superleggera” or "super light" is a style of construction that stresses lightweight materials and construction: Ducati’s Superleggera is so super and leggera that it actually weighs less than the British Superbike Championship Panigale including ballast... So while 400lbs dry may not be considered the absolute lightest bike out there by today’s standards, it’s still in the hunt and was a solid 30lbs lighter than the YZF1000 that donated its engine and gearbox.

1998-bimota-yb11-r-side

Plenty of superbikes these days weigh the same and make far more than the YB11’s 145 peak horsepower, but without their electronics and sophisticated traction control systems, they’d likely be wrapped around a tree in short order. The five-valve Yamaha engine that powers the YB11 should be far less peaky than something like an MV Agusta F4 or even a BMW S1000RR, as evidenced by the 5-speed gearbox, which suggests a reduced need to chase narrow powerbands. It says much about the original bike that it’s nearly 20 years old and, with 170mph top speed, can at least keep modern superbikes in sight, especially on the road.

1998-bimota-yb11-gauges

The only catch with that “Yamaha reliability” thing could be actual access to the Yamaha parts on the YB11. That beam frame may be light and strong, but Bimota didn’t worry about things like “servicing” when they designed this beast, and other bikes they've built aren't easy to service: for the similar, Suzuki GSX-R1100-powered SB6R, you actually need to drop the engine to change the front sprocket. The clutch slave? Drop the engine. And the alternator drive on the SB6R tends to fail due to overheating. Guess what you have to do to work on that?

1998-bimota-yb11-l-rear

Those beefy 51mm Paioli forks provide excellent roadholding but could be difficult to source parts for. And when I say “could” I mean, “I know one that was sidelined for a couple years with leaky seals because the parts were unavailable.” Although I'm sure it'd be possible to swap in the front end from a modern superbike, if you're friendly with someone who can knock up a set of custom triple-trees...

From the original eBay listing: 1998 Bimota YB11 Superleggera for Sale

A Unique and Rare Super Bike On Display in the New England Motorcycle Museum!

Extremely rare! Only 650 made! Not many opportunities to buy unmolested, low mileage Bimotas present themselves! Act now!

Borderline savage power-to-weight ratio! There was nothing in its class that could touch it in sheer acceleration

This bike features an engine based off the Yamaha YZF1000 and featured a larger air box, reworked carburetors & a 4 into 1 pipe that turned the Yamaha engine into a rocket ship without comprising its superb reliability!

Immense handling capabilities! Extremely light weight makes for easy input and lean angle limits that are most likely well beyond the rider’s capabilities.

This hand crafted, Italian made motorcycle is gorgeous and the photos speak for themselves! Here’s your chance to own this Italian Stallion!

Ready for your exotic collection

1998-bimota-yb11-tank

The seller does include a video of the bike with a walk-around, but doesn't fire the bike up. It's pretty clear from the photos that this bike is in superlative condition and has just 3,000 on it. I’m not sure if the YB11 has similar servicing issues as Bimota's SB6, but I’d consult with a specialist shop or spend some time on the forums before assuming these will be cheap or easy to maintain. Plus, bodywork might prove a little difficult to replace if you take a tumble. That being said, I’d buy one in a heartbeat: with a Buy It Now price of just $9,500 it’s rare, fast, and Italian. It even has passenger accommodations, something of a rarity for Bimotas in general.

-tad

1998-bimota-yb11-r-side

Super and Leggera: 1998 Bimota YB11 Superleggera for Sale
Bimota October 17, 2016 posted by

Honda-Powered Exotic: 1983 Bimota HB3 for Sale

1983-bimota-hb3-r-front

Considering just how rare Bimotas actually are, they've had a pretty strong influence on modern sportbikes. Take this Bimota HB3 for example: just 100 were ever made. And yet you can see that fully-faired, race-inspired styling that led to more mass-produced bikes like the GSX-R. In fact, Yamaha was very directly "inspired" by the Bimota's frame design when they put their very successful and long-lived FJ1100 together...

1983-bimota-hb3-r-rear

Like all Bimotas that weren't powered by in-house designed two-strokes plagued by aluminum porosity problems that bankrupted the company, the HB3 was motivated by a proven, durable, reliable engine and drivetrain from a well-established manufacturer. In this case, a 1062cc dual overhead cam air-cooled inline four from the Honda CB1100F and a five-speed gearbox.

That combo was good for 115hp and could push the 457lb machine to nearly 150mph, but top speed was hardly the point. There were bikes with higher top speeds, but few could touch the HB3 in a corner and it was praised for its high-speed handling, no surprise given the light weight, stiff frame, and quality suspension.

1983-bimota-hb3-l-side

This example is a bit dusty, but looks otherwise in good shape, although it's difficult to tell from the photographs... That stock Honda dash is a little disappointing, given the bike's otherwise exotic design, but at least you know it flat works, and parts should be no problem if anything ever fails or needs replacing...

1983-bimota-hb3-l-frame-detail

From the original eBay listing: 1983 Bimota HB3 for Sale

1983 Bimota HB3, very rare early Bimota, number 25 of 100, mint condition, 31950 kilometers from new, runs perfect recent tune up and new battery, this bike was the bike used for the Bike Magazine test and feature back in 1983, it needs nothing. We at buyer's expense can ship worldwide. Bike sold on a bill of sale only, very rare opportunity to own a hand made jewel.

1983-bimota-hb3-clocks

The details here are incredible, from the machined from aluminum frame side-plates to that one-piece tank and tail section: just a couple of bolts are needed to remove the bodywork and reveal that stunning trellis frame. Bidding is up north of $8,000 with the reserve not met. There's very little time left on the auction, so move quickly if you want to add this piece of sportbike history to your collection.

-tad

1983-bimota-hb3-l-side-front

Honda-Powered Exotic: 1983 Bimota HB3 for Sale
Bimota September 7, 2016 posted by

Framing the Superbike: 1988 Bimota YB4 Race Bike For Sale

1988 Bimota YB4 R Side

Although it's often the slinky bodywork that people remember about Bimotas, the frames are what really define them. The Bimota YB4 was designed around Bimota’s signature and unmistakable beam frame they used throughout the late 80s and 90s. No soft, moulded contours here: the spars look like girders that were extruded by some giant, industrial device, then cut and welded into place, with access to that five-valve Yamaha "Genesis" engine clearly an afterthought... The frame was amazingly stiff and, equipped with typically top-shelf suspension bits at both ends, the YB4 offered superlative handling.

1988 Bimota YB4 Front

Introduced in 1987, the YB4 started out as a pure racing machine, with no road-legal counterpart. But when rules were announced for the new World Superbike racing series, Bimota was forced to make a limited number of roadbikes for homologation purposes in order to compete. The bike was successful in both the earlier Formula 1 championship that predated the roadgoing YB4 as well as the later fledgling World Superbike series, where it successfully competed against Yamaha’s own highly-developed OW01, a testament to the YB4’s handling prowess.

1988 Bimota YB4 Dash

Of course, being a Bimota, the engine is far more pedestrian than the beautifully crafted frame and sleek bodywork. The YB4 was powered by a 749cc version of the five-valve Yamaha “Genesis” motor which, while not very exotic, packed plenty of performance, and that powerplant was backed by the standard Yamaha six-speed gearbox. The roadbike weighed in at a claimed 396lbs dry and used fuel injection, but the racing machines featured carburetors. Just over 300 were built and unusually, the YB4 is visually almost identical to the bigger-engined and more common YB6 that was stuffed full of 1000cc Genesis motor.

1988 Bimota YB4 Carbs

Today’s YB4 isn’t a road bike, or even a road bike converted into a track-only machine. This YB4 is actually the reason we have any roadgoing YB4s at all: it’s a genuine World Superbike racing bike as raced by Steve Parrish’s team with Keith Huewen at the controls.
From the original eBay listing: 1988 Bimota YB4 Race Bike for Sale

Bimota YB4 Racing WSBK - ex-Huewen/Parrish Team Yamaha Loctite UK

M.Y. 1988 VIN 000037

It is the 1988 Bimota YB4 WSBK Team Yamaha Loctite Parrish/Heuwen The bike was raced in 1988, ridden by Keith Huewen who is now a Moto GP commentator. It was ridden in the British Championship and also some World Championship events like the Hungaroring.

It has all the genuine parts with special quick release pipes magnesium sump etc. and very important it is exactly as it was raced. There were originally only 4 imported to the UK Team Loctite had problems with the fuel injection and converted them all back to carburettors.

Iconic bike of an iconic race era. Ride, parade and collect! Bulletproof investment.

1988 Bimota YB4 L Side Unfaired

According to the seller, the bike is currently in the UK, but that shouldn’t pose much of a problem for the well-heeled or seriously dedicated collectors considering a purchase of this machine. What's it worth? Well, it's basically a successful racing machine from an exotic Italian manufacturer that was campaigned by a famous rider for a famous team, making it a one-of-a-kind piece of motorcycle history.

-tad

1988 Bimota YB4 L Side

Framing the Superbike: 1988 Bimota YB4 Race Bike For Sale
Bimota August 23, 2016 posted by

Affordable Italian: 2001 Bimota SB8R for Sale

2001 Bimota SB8R R Side Front

If simply going fast is your thing, you probably don't spend much time on this site. You went out and bought a Suzuki GSX-R1000, threw some sticky rubber, rearsets, and a Power Commander on it, then went out to dominate road and track, with stone axe reliability and off-the-shelf parts availability. But in a sea of same, some of us want to have our cake and eat it too, and exotic bikes don't necessarily have to cost a fortune to buy and own. Bimota's exotic SB8R generally trades for south of $10,000 and offers up v-twin character and midrange punch, light weight, sophisticated handling, and the reliability of a Suzuki.

2001 Bimota SB8R Front

Styling is striking, if not actually pretty, and the view from the seat is dominated by those huge carbon intakes that recall the ZX-7R of the late 80s and early 90s. Handling was much improved compared to the TL1000R: it weighed a good bit less than the donor Suzuki and, if nothing else, it replaced the famously troublesome rotary rear damper with a more traditional unit.

2001 Bimota SB8R Clocks

The SB8R is surprisingly wide for a twin, but the bulbous fairing at least provides some wind protection but, like all Bimotas, the frame was the real centerpiece of the SB8. In this case, it was a sophisticated variation on the beam frame often used by Japanese superbikes. But here the construction is composite, with aluminum spars and carbon fiber side plates. The tail piece is self-supporting and also made of carbon. If that headlight looks familiar, Bimota wisely cribbed the part for their SB8, along with that very ordinary-looking, but functional dash. Suzuki obviously also lent the bike their eight-valve, liquid-cooled 996cc v-twin engine, modified with different injectors to produce a claimed 138hp, and a real-world 124whp.

Keep in mind that, until World Superbike twins grew to 1200cc and started chasing hp at the expense of the midrange that was previously their forte, 124hp was considered huge power for a twin. Especially when the only traction control was your sensitive right hand...

From the original eBay listing: 2001 Bimota SB8R for Sale

I hate to let my dream bike go, but I have to do it. It's got the factory fuel trimmer and full Arrow exhaust. I have the stock mirrors and rear fender/taillight/blinker assembly. I installed a lithium battery less than a year ago. It makes servicing/accessing the battery a TON easier.

2001 Bimota SB8R R Side Rear

As far as Bimotas go, these are pretty common, but that's not saying very much. The listing is pretty spare, but the photos are good and should give you a pretty good idea of what to expect. Obviously, the engine should be easy to service, but bodywork will be difficult and/or expensive. As always, Bimota experts are welcome to weigh in and point out anything for potential buyers to be aware of but, aside from some slightly faded carbon as you'd expect on a bike this old, everything appears to be in order, or available from the seller. Bidding is very active but currently up to just north of $4,000 with the reserve not met and just a couple days left on the auction.

-tad

2001 Bimota SB8R R Side

Affordable Italian: 2001 Bimota SB8R for Sale
Bimota August 20, 2016 posted by

Metal Confection: 2008 Bimota DB6R for Sale

2008 Bimota DB6R R Side2

For years, Bimota was a byword for high-performance motorcycles that provided ultimate speed and handling. But recent offerings like this DB6R have seemed strangely... practical. This shift even carries over to the exotic Tesi that is available with a set of handlebars, instead of the expected clip-ons. Recent Bimota offerings have showed a clear shift to building lightweight, jewel-like, highly-polished, but useable machines like the DB6. The air-cooled 1078cc Dual-Spark Ducati v-twin is certainly powerful and refined, especially in a machine with a claimed 390lb wet weight, but the 90hp it makes still isn't likely to overwhelm and that upright, naked design is far more practical than previous Bimotas. But that should come as no surprise: as a company, Bimota has had to evolve to keep one step ahead of the major manufacturers that have ruthlessly co-opted their innovations. And the new strategy appears to be: appeal to the more mature buyers who can likely afford toys like this and expect perfection for their money.

2008 Bimota DB6R Front

Bimota got their start in the early 1970s and followed in the footsteps of British builders like Seeley, Spondon, and Rickman, building stiff, lightweight frames around powerful, reliable, and easily serviced engines from the major Japanese manufacturers. Kawasaki, Honda, Suzuki, and Yamaha had clearly figured out how to build engines, but were still working on how to make their bikes really handle. As the major manufacturers caught up, Bimota had to evolve to keep one step ahead, and their new strategy appears to be: appeal to the more mature buyers who can likely afford toys like this and expect perfection for their money.

2008 Bimota DB6R R Side Rear

Today's SB6R is a gorgeously-detailed motorcycle. I've said it before, but it bears repeating: if you're into craftsmanship, just look closely at these pictures. The hinged caps on the risers for the bars, the complex swingarm with tubular and machined aluminum parts, the beautiful brackets and details that set Bimota apart. Miles are low on this one, and the bike appears to be in good condition, although the rear wheel is a bit dirty and the front and rear wheels don't match... For the Buy It Now of $22,000 you'd think the seller could at least clean it up a bit...

From the original eBay listing: 2008 Bimota DB6R for Sale

Bimota DB6R. Another very rare and unique bike from my own personal collection. One of three special bikes I'm currently selling online. No scratches, no wear and tear. One owner. Like new in pristine condition.

Now that the major manufacturers have the whole handling-thing figured out, where does that leave Bimota? Well, for a while, they were in the hyper-bike game, stripping weight out of their bikes to make them even faster than the already very competent bikes that donated their frames. But this "performance first" ethos led to bikes that needed their engines removed for basic valve services and a somewhat fragile reputation, to put it politely. I like this new, more practical Bimota. Will they survive? Only time will tell.

-tad

2008 Bimota DB6R Seat

Metal Confection: 2008 Bimota DB6R for Sale