Posts by Category: MZ

MZ April 15, 2018 posted by

von Zschopau – 2005 MZ 1000ST with just 16 Miles

With everything from two-stroke racers to sidecars in their century-long repertoire, state-owned MZ ( Motorenwerke Zschopau ) went private in 1990 and was sold to Malaysian investors in 1996.  These were their salad days, with lots of new smaller-displacement models and their first original four-stroke engine for the MZ1000S.  This ST variant has the S frame and is tuned for more torque, but more importantly was dealer-owned and on display since new.

2005 MZ 1000ST for sale on eBay

Sometimes known as MuZ, the company designed a 998cc parallel twin for their new machine, in sport touring tune showing 117 hp and 71 ft.-lbs. torque.  Components were up to date with Marzocchi forks, Sachs monoshock, and Nissin brakes.  The twin spar frame is a double-tube design similar to the Aprilia Falco, but this time in chrome-moly steel.  The angular fairing knifes through the air with a slightly bug-eyed expression up front.

A few thousand NOS parts flying in formation, this MZ has never been registered, and is seemingly undamaged by years of display and storage.  It's a bit monochromatic in silver, gray and black but in staggering condition.  Luggage was part of the original package but is not pictured, either way it can stay on the shelf.  From the eBay auction:

This bike is in essentially brand new condition. Being sold by a former MZ motorcycle dealer. This bike was kept as a show / display bike. It has been regularly maintained, washed and only ridden from the store to the owners home and around the dealership. It has approximately 16 miles on it. Its never been tagged and has been stored in a climate controlled environment. It was started recently and fired right up, the battery is still great, tires are excellent, seat is in like new condition. Shows very minimal sign of age considering it is 13 years old. There is some slight rust on the rear side of the exhaust, see pictures. This should come off with some elbow grease. 

MZ was unconstrained by years in the liter-bike market and the 1000S reviewed as a fresh look at some issues, the twin compact if not underweight.  The company battled the demons of international trade until 2009 and tried but never returned to motorcycle manufacture.  For a fan of the brand or maybe Saxony, this rare example looks worth a shot...

-donn

 

von Zschopau – 2005 MZ 1000ST with just 16 Miles
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: Motorcycleonline.com 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.

-tad

Simple Pleasures: 1995 MZ Skorpion Sport for Sale
MZ September 24, 2017 posted by

Cheap and Fun: 1995 MZ Skorpion Replica for Sale

Very much a sportbike designed for the masses, the MZ Skorpion Replica has everything you need, and nothing you don't. Included is a sophisticated frame, adjustable suspension front and rear, sleek bodywork, and a flexible, simple, reliable, and easily-serviced engine. What it doesn't have is expensive, difficult to maintain technology, or an excess of power that most riders really don't need anyway. A true sportbike with a simple, humble powerplant, it's a shame they weren't able to sell very many when new.

If you're not familiar with MZ, they were an East German motorcycle manufacture most notable for completely dominating two-stroke racing in the 1950s using Walter Kaaden's revolutionary expansion-chamber tuning. Factory rider Ernst Denger defected to the west, and gave the technology to Suzuki which effectively ended the dominance of MZ, then known as MuZ. The reborn MZ of the 1990s was a bit like Triumph of the same period: both built an entire family of motorcycles around the same basic frame and engine. MZ's frame was actually a bit more sophisticated than the Triumph's, and they used Yamaha's torquey 660cc five-valve single and five-speed gearbox. The result? A brace of sportbikes, a sport-touring machine, a dual-sport, and even a supermoto.

The Replica really was a high-spec machine, aside from that relatively pedestrian engine. 50hp and a wet weight of just over 400lbs don't offer scorching straight line performance, but that wasn't the point at all. The Skorpion was still capable of an honest 110mph and those triple-disc brakes, with Brembo Gold Lines up front, should bring things to a halt quickly. When new, motorcycleonline.com claimed it "was one of the best handling bikes we have ever tested" helped no doubt by the light weight, the well-developed frame, and the adjustable WP suspension. 

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

For Sale, my 1995 Replica, number 87.  A little over 3200 miles on the odometer.  It is silver and charcoal and has several chips on rear upper cover. The bike has never crashed, everything works.  It comes with tools, owners manual, good battery and good tires. It is currently registered and ridden.  This bike does not need any repairs. Sold “as is” the bike is in Rhode Island and is available to be viewed prior to purchase.

This particular MZ Skorpion Replica has very low mileage, is in excellent condition, and looks great in a very appropriately German silver color. Bidding is up to just over $3,000 although there is plenty of time left on the auction so I'm curious to see where this ends up. Regular Skorpions generally go for surprisingly low prices, but the Replica might generate a bit more attention: just 16 made their way to the US in 1996. Skorpions have become pretty popular with Sound of Singles racers of late, although this one seems way too nice and unusual to chop into a race hack. Instead, it'd make the perfect partner for embarrassing much faster machines on fast canyon rides.

-tad

Cheap and Fun: 1995 MZ Skorpion Replica for Sale
MZ November 23, 2016 posted by

Iron Curtain: 2005 MZ 1000S for Sale

2005-mz-1000s-l-front

Looking a bit like Aprilia's Falco, the MZ 1000S was a high-end sport-touring motorcycle from a largely forgotten East German manufacturer that was powered by a big-bore parallel-twin engine. What could possibly go wrong? Well, not much really: as the seller mentions, parts to maintain the 1000S are available online, they've got a good reputation for reliability, and are apparently relatively easy to service. If you're looking for something quirky and practical, with real-world performance, this might be worth a look.

2005-mz-1000s-front

Unfortunately MZ or Motorrad und Zweiradwerk is relatively unheard of outside vintage biking circles and fans of weird 90's bikes powered by Yamaha singles. And even if you know the name, you might associate it with agricultural-grade, commuters and smoky two-strokes, which is hardly the image they were trying to present with this upmarket machine. More likely, they'd want you to remember their racing roots, and the fact that MZ two-strokes developed by Walter Kaaden basically set the standard for two-stroke performance and dominated the smaller racing classes between 1955-1976. The Japanese really only broke their stranglehold when racer Ernst Denger defected and took the brand's racing secrets to Suzuki...

2005-mz-1000s-dash

Parallel-twin engines aren't found in too many premium motorcycles these days: they're reliable and very compact, but tend to vibrate badly as displacements increase. Just ask Norton and Triumph... But with modern balance-shafts, vibration is manageable, and parallel-twins offer up the character and midrange of a v-twin without the packaging challenges, and the MZ's engine was backed by a six-speed cassette gearbox. Made for just three years before disappearing, along with the rest of MZ, the bike received positive, if not glowing reviews.

From the original eBay listing: 2005 MZ 1000S for Sale

You are bidding on my 2005 MZ 1000S "sport touring" bike. This bike is in great condition with very low mileage, a little over 2,000 miles,and ready for thousands more. This bike is totally stock with no mods, and really a steal for what you are getting. There are many "Chinese" bikes going for this price, but you get real German engineering/quality with this one. Here are the details:

This bike is in great shape, and I just had the following done within the last month. All oil/filters changed to factory spec Silkolene products, as well as brake & clutch fluids. Battery replaced at the same time, so this bike is ready for many miles. Starts right up,and runs though the 6-speed cassette transmission with no issues. Previous owner swapped out the gearing from factory original 17/43 sprockets to Vortex 16/45 sprockets to aid in upper end tractability. I do not have the original; sprockets, but they are easily obtainable on eBay if desired. The original turn signals were replaced by the previous owner, and I do not have the originals.

Cosmetically the bike is in great shape with a small amount of scratches in the factory paint here & there, but by no means rough. Hard to actually photograph to be honest.

Parts are easily obtainable from Grahams Motorcycles in the UK, and a lot of the the consumable items such as sprockets, brake pads,filters are readily available on eBay. Original factory owners manual included. Clear title ready to transfer.

Overall a really nice bike that will not get "lost in the crowd" of also ran sport bikes. Please ask questions, as all sales are final, and shipping transport must be completed within 2-3 weeks unless prior arrangements made. A Paypal deposit of $250.00 due within 48 hrs of auction's end, and full payment within 7 days. Also, please make sure you clear it with your wife/girlfriend/boyfriend /dog/cat before bidding. Thanks!

2005-mz-1000s-fairing-detail

The Buy It Now price is listed at $4,499.99 which, aside from looking like it belongs in the window of something on a used-car lot, is a pretty screaming deal, considering the performance and rarity. It's not going to offer cutting-edge performance, but that was never the intent. Instead, it's a mature sportbike you can ride to the twisties, then through the twisties, without needing a chiropractor at the end of the day.

-tad

2005-mz-1000s-r-front

Iron Curtain: 2005 MZ 1000S for Sale
MZ April 8, 2016 posted by

Budget Blaster: 1997 MZ Skorpion Sport Cup for Sale

1997 MZ Skorpion Sport Cup R Side

Not every exotic needs to try and tear your arms out as soon as you twist the throttle, and not every rare motorcycle needs to cost a packet to buy or run: sometimes our need to be just a little bit different clashes with life’s practical considerations. For riders in that particular situation, may I present the MZ Skorpion Sport Cup, a big, thumping single wrapped in sports bodywork and featuring a name virtually forgotten here in the Decadent West.

1997 MZ Skorpion Sport Cup R Side Front

MZ was originally an East German manufacturer of two-stroke motorcycles back when East Germany was actually a place. All you fans of sporting Japanese two-strokes should be familiar with them: they absolutely dominated two-stroke racing in the late 1950s until MuZ rider Ernst Degner defected and brought their Walter Kaaden-developed expansion-chamber tuning techniques to Suzuki where he helped develop their bikes and continued his racing career.

1997 MZ Skorpion Sport Cup Dash

But then in the mid-1990s, seemingly out of nowhere, an entire range of new machines sprouted up, all badged as MZs. The modular design recalls Triumphs of the same era, and the line of bikes included the dual-purpose Baghira, the supermoto Mastiff, sport-touring Traveller, and the various Skorpion variants. All were built around Yamaha’s 660cc five-valve single backed by a five-speed gearbox. 48hp and a weight not much over 400lbs with a tank of fuel means that the lightweight Skorpion was capable 110mph with excellent handling and good reliability.

1997 MZ Skorpion Sport Cup R Side Front Wheel

From the original eBay listing: 1997 MZ Skorpion Sport Cup for Sale

Conceived by the acclaimed UK design firm SeymourPowell, the MZ Skorpion represents a motorcycle design perfect storm of sorts. The elegantly simple, yet rigid chassis inspired by (some might say stolen from) the work of Tigcraft's Dave Pierce contains an ultra simple and reliable XT660cc engine as well as electrics from Yamaha. The world class Grimeca and Paoli suspension and braking components come from Italy. All of this was designed and assembled by the German engineers at MZ - one of the oldest, most venerable marques in the history of  motorcycling.

The Skorpion didn't sell in large numbers, but had a solid following in the racer community. It's exceptional handling and simplicity spawned single model MZ Cup series all over Europe and the United States in the 90s and the beginning of the 21st century. This particular variant - the Sport Cup - came with a full fairing, and was made to compete in the US and UK MZ cup series as stock, with no modifications allowed. Because of the popularity of the class, few unraced, clean Sport Cups exist today.

The Skorp also appeals to every day riders. It is refreshingly small in size, light weight and has the broad power and bulletproof reliability inherent in the Yamaha dirtbike inspired power plant that is still being built today. Simple and reliable, it is an easy bike to maintain and, unlike many exotics, most of the wearing components interchange with various Yamahas of the period and are therefore quite available. Motorcycle News calls it "light, lithe, generally reliable, and reassuringly practical" and "one of the best singles of modern time".

This particular bike is in truly excellent condition. It was garaged all of its 3,500 mile life and has been kept clean and well maintained. The only non-stock component is a center stand from its sister model, the Traveller. While not the norm on the club racer, it makes for easy wheel and chain maintenance, and is easily removed. It also comes with the full original toolkit, the factory solo seat cover to replace the rear seat, and the original owners manual.

1997 MZ Skorpion Sport Cup L Side Rear

These bikes are virtually forgotten now, and can be had for very small sums on the rare occasion you can actually find one. This example has almost insanely low mileage, considering the bike’s nature, and appears to be in very good condition. The Buy It Now is just $3,000 with very little interest so far. A one-make racing series was available for the bikes at the time, and they are very popular for use in single-cylinder racing classes today, but it’d be a shame to see one this nice get chopped into a track bike.

-tad

1997 MZ Skorpion Sport Cup L Side

Budget Blaster: 1997 MZ Skorpion Sport Cup for Sale
MZ February 16, 2015 posted by

V-Twin Alternative: 2005 MZ 1000 Sport for Sale

2006 MZ1000 Sport L Side

If you're in the market for a practical exotic that will turn heads and won't break the bank to buy or to run, this virtually new MZ 1000S deserves a closer look. As much as we'd all probably love a garage full of weird exotica, for budgetary and space reasons, many riders are forced to buy a do-it-all machine.

2006 MZ1000 Sport Dash

So what do you buy if you want a bike that's sporty and practical for daily use, but one that's also good for riding to the twisties and not just in the twisties, something with a bit of "get out of town-iness". And what if you want something a bit out of the ordinary? Well, the Ducati ST2, 3, and 4 represent a pretty great bang for your buck, but were introduced before Ducati adopted much longer service intervals, and the four-valve L-twin can be pricey to maintain. The BMW R1100S and the Triumph Sprint are also pretty good choices, but not really all that exotic...

2006 MZ1000 Sport Front

Introduced in 2005 and powered by a big parallel twin that provided packaging advantages and midrange punch at the expense of top-end performance, the 1000S engine was an ideal powerplant for the road. Unfortunately, the lack of a truly prestigious brand name worked against the 1000S and was at odds with MZ's quirky, grassroots image and the bike was discontinued after just three years. These are extremely rare in the US, although the ones that do come up for sale tend to be in excellent condition, and this one has just 16 miles on the odometer from new.

2006 MZ1000 Sport R Side Fairing Detail

From the original eBay listing: 2005 MZ 1000S for Sale

The MZ 1000 Sport Touring bike is a museum quality motorcycle. Owned and sold by a former MZ Motorcycle dealer, this bike is one of a kind. It has only been ridden around the dealership to park it. It has been kept in a climate controlled environment on display in the owner's various stores, from Michigan to Tennessee. This is truly a wonderful bike for the European motorcycle collector or for someone who is just looking to buy a piece of German history. 

Everything on it is original, everything is perfect like it would have been 20 years ago. Never titled, never tagged.

The bike listed for $11,000 in 2005.There were only 40 of these bikes imported into the USA. This bike is like new. Owned by the original dealer and sold by the original dealer. Fantastic bike.

Who ever is fortunate enough to become the new owner of this bike will become the proud owner of the last brand new MZ 1000 in the world.

It truly should be in a museum. 

2006 MZ1000 Sport Cockpit

In spite of the racy looks, the 1000S was really never intended as a pure sportbike, with handling biased towards the "comfort" end of the spectrum. But don't let that fool you into thinking this bike can't get a wiggle on when asked. It will function as a sporty, stylish everyday motorcycle that can munch miles and looks far less dated than many other bikes from the "straight edge" school of design.

2006 MZ1000 Sport Tank

If you really want a classy, competent machine that will leave onlookers scratching their heads or or nodding in sagely respect, something like the MZ 1000 Sport should do the job nicely, assuming you're willing to take a bit of a chance on servicing and parts. These are reportedly very reliable, and easy to get serviced by non-MZ mechanics, but it's still a bit of a leap of faith, buying an out-of-production sportbike that was never made in great numbers.

-tad

2006 MZ1000 Sport R Side Fairing

V-Twin Alternative: 2005 MZ 1000 Sport for Sale