Posts by tag: Italian

Aprilia March 20, 2017 posted by

Never Been Kissed: 2004 Aprilia RS250 Challenge with ZERO Miles!

Update 3.20.2017: Back on eBay after first being on RSBFS in August 2014 for $11k. Current bid is just under $7k reserve not met. Links updated. -dc

I’ve always loved the look of the Aprilia RS 250, but I’m only a recent convert to the stink and rattle of two-strokes. Well, technically, I’m a hypothetical convert, since I’ve yet to actually ride one. For many riders, their very first experiences on two wheels involved quasi-legal antics on dirt bikes, but I’m the only gear-head in the family, and bikes were strictly verboten growing up. I'm also biased against them: after spending years in LA working late-night jobs, there’s nothing I hate more than the tinny wail of a leaf blower at 8am so I sure didn’t want my motorcycles to sound related to those hateful things.

2004 Aprilia RS250 L Rear

But while I still don’t think they make a very pretty noise, the light weight and tinny, chainsaw shriek of bikes like the RGV and Gamma have become increasingly intriguing for me. There’s something strange and exotic about them, and I’m pretty sure the RS250 would be a great place to start.

2004 Aprilia RS250 Dash

Aprilia’s little road and track bike used a modified version of Suzuki’s RGV250 motor boosted to 60hp and featured classy, generally subdued race-replica paint schemes that have aged very well. Although those 60 ponies come on in a typical two-stroke rush that keeps you dancing on the shift lever, the bike’s very light weight and amazing handling make that a joy, rather than a chore.

2004 Aprilia RS250 Gearshift

From the original eBay listing: 2004 Aprilia RS250 Challenge for Sale

Brand new, zero miles, mint condition from the factory. I bought the bike for my collection. It has been properly stored and the engine has been fogged once a year with CRC Marine engine fog. It should be noted that this bike is not street legal. It has no turn signals, brake lights, or headlight. THIS IS A RACEBIKE THROUGH AND THROUGH. It would make a great addition for a serious collector, or perfect for your local track day. This bike may be the last of the great two stroke RS250s with zero miles. The bike comes with the very detailed factory manual and the factory spring tuning kit.

2004 Aprilia RS250 L Front

This bike presents a bit of a problem. The RS250 Challenge is a tool for going fast, a full-on track-rat race bike. So what do you do with this one? Seems a shame to abuse it on the track, but what else to do with such a focused motorcycle? Display it? They’re great-looking machines, but they’re meant to be ridden, and with no title, making it street-legal is not an option without some serious DMV shenanigans. And then there’s that whole “zero miles” thing again…

For collectors, it won’t get any better than this: a hermetically-sealed time capsule limited-edition bike that actually runs. For riders? Well, we’ll probably go sniffing around elsewhere for a bike we won't feel guilty about thrashing.

-tad

2004 Aprilia RS250 R Rear

Never Been Kissed: 2004 Aprilia RS250 Challenge with ZERO Miles!
Bimota March 2, 2017 posted by

Sweet Air – 1991 Bimota YB9 Bellaria in Italy

Seen only a couple of other times at RSBFS, only a handful of the 145 total YB9 Bellarias ever made it to the states.  Bimota's only two-seater is based on the Yamaha FZR600 drivetrain, with a few extra horses from intake and exhaust work.  Re-painted as many were in reaction to the factory's ice blue color scheme, this Bellaria is offered in Italy, but would be worth a side trip from Venice if you are headed that way.

1991 Bimota YB9 Bellaria ( Italy ) for sale on eBay

Framed in Bimota's usual twin alloy spars with billet connectors, the YB9 was quite compact for a 600, even more so for a biposto.  Handling with the Marzocchi suspension front and rear reviewed better than the FZR, though the bikes were really for different markets, the Bimota being more of an exotic.  Oversize Brembo brakes and tires, plus 4-2-1 exhaust system insure function follows form.  Riding position is fairly relaxed with elevated clip-ons and roomy seat.  The air intakes make an outstanding visual statement crossing the frame and the lines are echoed in the seat console and belly stripe.  Early digital dash looks clean but was hard to read.

 

While the fairing on this Bellaria appears original, the usual stepped dual seat has been replaced with a sportier mono-plus, maybe a knowledgeable reader knows the origin of this mod.  Now in white with what seems to be the factory steel blue trim, shows low miles and looks good save the alternator cover.  The auction indicates a salvage title which would have to be investigated.  From the eBay auction:

BIMOTA BELLARIA YB9 RARE MODEL ONLY 142 EXEMPLARY PRODUCTS, THE MOTORCYCLE IN QUESTION HAS THE NUMBER OF CHASSIS 112.
THE MOTORCYCLE 'marching, COUPON HAS MADE ONLY 6350 KM (3900 MILES) PLEASE NOTE AS' WAS CHANGED BACK,
FOR ALL INFORMATION AND VIDEO OF THE MOTORCYCLE FUNCTIONING, CONTACT,
SHIPPING WORLDWIDE THROUGH COURIER SPECIALIZED.

 

Bimota claimed 95 hp from the 599 cc four, and weight was nicely under control at 385 lbs. dry.  Named for and built to cruise the coastal towns near the factory's home, the Bellaria was easy on the eyes if not the checkbook.  Impossibly rare here, winning the auction would just be the beginning of a story involving travel and paperwork, and with luck a sweet ride in the last chapter...

-donn

Sweet Air – 1991 Bimota YB9 Bellaria in Italy
Gilera August 25, 2015 posted by

Last gasp: 1992 Gilera CX125 in Australia

Here is one that ticks all the collector bells for me (and I think a lot of other people), a 1992 Gilera CX125.  Located in Queensland Australia, this is only the second Gilera CX125 to be posted on RSBFS.  The first appeared last September and was quite popular which was interestingly since the little CX125 wasn't a popular bike when it was produced.

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The little Gilera was part of a wave of bikes with fully enclosed bodywork such as the Honda CBR Hurricane.  However Gilera was also forced to comply with laws in Europe that limited the displacement of motorcycles that young riders/"learners" could get their hands on to no more than 15bhp.  Unlike the larger firms which could use existing designs as the basis of their learner bikes (ex:  Cagiva Mito based on the Ducati 748),  Gilera gambled on producing a totally unique 125 design.  The result was what was possibly the most outlandishly styled 125 sport bike of all time – the Gilera CX125.

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1992 Gilera CX125 for sale on ebay australia

Unveiled at the 1989 Milan EICMA show the CX125 concept was a tiny sport machine with fully enveloping bodywork that looked like something straight out of a design studio, in large part due its having  single sided suspension on both ends. But unlike a lot of concept bikes, the CX  hit the market in 1991 as an honest-to-God working motorcycle that featured the same space-age styling and radical suspension as its prototype.

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So what happened?  Well even though the CX had a unique look the design was actually pretty conventional.  Reviewers seemed to be disappointed in the bikes' being merely competent/"ordinary" on the road.  As one reviewer wrote, "It’s not that the CX was wasn't a good bike, but it felt far more conventional than the styling suggested.  It's essentially a bike that looks like something from the future but rides like something from the present."

It also probably didn’t help that popular opinion of the CX varied between “incredibly cool” and “tragically ugly”.  Production of the CX125 was discontinued after a year with only 1000 examples being made and parent company Piaggio discontinued Gilera’s motorcycle production in 1993.  The CX is often referred to as the last gasp for Gilera as a true motorcycle producer.

Note:  The Gilera brand was continued by Piaggio but only as a scooter lineup.

gvbz2

 

Asking price is 8900 AUD/6500 USD.   Is it worth that? Honestly, I think it is.  The seller states it only has 5083 Km and condition certainly looks to be absolutely pristine.  While no service info is offered and the number of pictures is less than I would like, only 1000 were made for a single model year, the technology of both front and read single sided swingarms has yet to be reproduced except for perhaps the Bimota Tesi/Vyrus and perhaps most importantly, the CX125 pretty much marked the end of Gilera as a serious motorcycle manufacturer.

I think this one is a good pickup for a collector located in Australia.  To be honest,  if I could figure out a sure fire way to  get it into my living room I would be bidding.

-Marty

Last gasp:  1992 Gilera CX125 in Australia
Moto Guzzi August 9, 2015 posted by

Freight Train coming through – 1995 Moto Guzzi Sport 1100

1995 Moto Guzzi Sport 1100 on eBay

MotoGuzzi_profile

If you like being the guy on something different, here is a nice way to stand out.  Full of character, history and heritage, Moto Guzzi is the oldest European motorcycle manufacturer still in constant production.  Guzzi's are described as an "acquired taste" full of idiosyncrasies that set them apart for better or worse from other motorcycles.  The most obvious thing to jump out at you is the longitudinally mounted 1064cc v-twin engine which, in theory, should allow for a shorter wheelbase.  As you can see, this didn't exactly play out.  The Sport 1100 is big, it's long and it's heavy.  It is not quick to turn, but once it's cranked over, it holds a line extremely well.  Contributing to this stability is the outsourced WP forks which also hold Brembo brakes.

MotoGuzzi_rightside

This particular Sport 1100 is showing a very low 2300 miles and is in near flawless and original condition, down the to 20 year old OEM tires (you may want to address this if you plan on doing any actual riding).  It is striking to look at, and like many Italian bikes of the era, would make a great Sunday cruiser, but is probably not very practical for daily riding.  You can check out the eBay listing here:  1995 Moto Guzzi Sport 1100 on eBay.

1995 MOTO GUZZI SPORT 1100, TWO OWNER MOTORCYCLE, THE FIRST OWNER KEPT IT IN HIS COLLECTION IN CONNECTICUT AFTER BUYING IT NEW IN JUNE 10, 1996 FROM MARSH MOTORCYCLES IN EAST WINDSOR CT. AND PUT LESS THEN 1900 MILES ON THE BIKE, SECOND OWNER HAD A LOT OF MOTORCYCLES AND WAS VERY BUSY WITH HIS FLYING JOB AND HARDLY RODE IT.  TODAY IS HAS 2270 ORIGINAL MILES!
THAT IS NOT A MISPRINT, THE BIKE HAS LESS THEN 2270 ORIGINAL MILES!!!

THIS HAS TO BE THE FINEST, LOWEST MILE, MOST PERFECT 1995 MOTO GUZZI SPORT 1100 ON THE PLANET!!

IT IS MY UNDERSTANDING THAT ONLY 100 OF THESE WERE IMPORTED INTO THE UNITED STATES THAT YEAR!

I HAVE THE ORIGINAL OWNERS PAPERWORK, BILL OF SALE ($9752.00 IN 1996!) AND THE BROCHURE FROM THE DEALER THAT IS BEAUTIFUL WITH MANY COLOR PICTURES.  BIKE WAS ONLY AVAILABLE IN THREE COLORS, BLACK, RED AND SILVER AND THIS BIKE HAS THE SILVER PAINT, EXCEPT FOR ONE TINY SCRATCH ON THE TAILPIECE (PICTURED) THE PAINT AND DECALS ARE PERFECT DUE TO THE FACT THE BIKE WAS INSIDE STORED ALL OF THESE YEARS! IT LOOKS LIKE IT WAS NEVER OUTSIDE IN THE SUN, IT IS THAT PERFECT AS ARE THE DECALS AND HAS NEVER BEEN IN THE RAIN ACCORDING TO THE TWO PREVIOUS OWNERS!

MotoGuzzi_leftfront

MotoGuzzi_rightrear

Freight Train coming through – 1995 Moto Guzzi Sport 1100
Laverda August 4, 2015 posted by

The Unknown Italian – 1999 Laverda 750S

1999 Laverda 750S on eBay

lav_rightside

The Laverda 750S was just like everything else the other manufacturers were making in the 90s... yet completely different at the same time.  When you look at it, there are hints of Kawasaki's ZX-7, Honda's CBR900RR, Ducati's 851/888 and even Suzuki's RF series.  It's a mashup of styles that somehow manages to work when it's all together.  Like the other Italian manufacturers at the time the suspension, brakes and wheels were supplied by top notch companies like Paoli, Brembo and Marzocchi and/or Marchesini.  Unfortunately, they also suffered from the same reliability problems as the other Italian manufacturers back then.  The electronics were particularly troublesome and they developed a reputation for leaving their owners stranded.  Most Laverda owners learned very quickly that a hint of rain often meant it was best to leave the old girl in the garage for the day.  The reliability problems ultimately led to Laverda closing their doors in 2000.

lav_front

Also fairly unique about the Lav 750S was the powerplant.  While the Japanese were running strong with the inline four cylinders and Ducati was cornering the v-twin market, Laverda went in another direction with a parallel twin.  It was a bit of a thrasher that shined best the more you revved it.  It produced almost 100hp which was pretty good for a 750cc twin and, naturally, it sounded fantastic.  In addition to a pretty good engine, the beautiful aluminum beam frame and the high quality suspension parts meant that it handled even better than it went.

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While the cynics will surely have a jab about the low mileage being due to the lack of reliability

1999 LAVERDA 750S CARANETO SPORT BIKE - ABSOLUTELY STUNNING.

LOW LOW MILES. COLLECTIBLE.

PHOTOS SHOW CONDITION, BUT THIS IS A PRE-OWNED BIKE SO PLEASE EXPECT SOME WEAR AND TEAR.  DUE TO THE NATURE OF PRE-OWNED USED MOTORCYCLES, THIS IS SOLD AS IS WITH NO WARRANTY.  INSPECTIONS WELCOME BY APPOINTMENT.

SERIOUS BUYERS ONLY PLEASE.

NATIONWIDE AND WORLDWIDE TRANSPORT & DELIVERY AVAILABLE AT ADDITIONAL COST.

The Unknown Italian – 1999 Laverda 750S
Ducati July 15, 2015 posted by

You’re Not Worthy: 2014 Ducati Superleggera for Sale

2014 Ducati 1199 Superleggera R SideThis weaponized Ducati Superleggera, resplendent in nuclear red paint that looks like it causes cancer to people standing near it is one of those bikes that lives up the hype. Many Ducati special editions have been a bit disappointing, unless you were looking for a living room decoration. All that carbon fiber added to the cost, but saved just a few pounds compared to bikes that weren't all that light to begin with, and the upgraded suspension bits may have looked cool, but racers probably binned the original bits for even higher-spec parts before they hit the track, as the stock parts often looked better than they performed...

2014 Ducati 1199 Superleggera L Side Front

But the Superleggera went on a truly ruthless diet. Yeah, the usual fairing panels were replaced with carbon as you'd expect. But then basically everything on the bike that could be lightened or replaced with lighter parts, was lightened or replaced with lighter parts. The updates were comprehensive, and include magnesium airbox/headstock, magnesium engine cases, lightweight internals, and a carbon-fiber subframe.

The result was a bike that weighed in, full of gas and still wearing lights and mirrors, at under 400lbs. That's nearly 70lbs less than the BMW S1000RR, one of very few bikes that could outperform the stock 1199.

2014 Ducati 1199 Superleggera R Side Rear

And it's a screamer, too: I'm still getting used to the idea of a 1200cc v-twin that revs to 12,500rpm. That was four-cylinder territory until this bike came along. Pankl rods, titanium valves, and other lightweight internals all add up to a bike that puts out almost 190hp at the wheel, well over 200hp at the crank.

This is, quite literally, a World Superbike that's completely road legal. Well, it's actually a few horses short, but it's also lighter than a World Superbike...

From the original eBay listing: 2014 Ducati Superleggera for Sale

The 1199 Superleggera is the most exclusive and desirable Ducati ever made. Materialized in magnesium, carbon fiber, and titanium, it boasts the highest power-to-weight ratio of any production motorcycle in history and will be produced as a limited edition of only 500 units. Discover all the details and in-depth information in the sections dedicated to materials, technology and mechanics.

2014 Ducati 1199 Superleggera Triple Clamp

This bike is notable for being the lowest-priced Superleggera I've seen so far which, at $49,999.00 maybe isn't saying all that much. This rock-bottom price might be because of the massive 2,500 miles this thing's racked up since new... But it is nice to know these things are being ridden by some of their owners. I've even seen them on the road and in the canyons.

And ride them you should: after all, that's perhaps the very coolest thing about modern motorcycles. We're quickly heading towards Moto GP levels of performance on our streetbikes, and that would obviously be impossible for most riders to handle without some electronic aids to keep that killing power in check.

2014 Ducati 1199 Superleggera L Side Rear

Oh? You say you're so good you don't need that stuff? Yes you do. And that safety net means that you folks who are convinced you're better than this bike are that much less likely to high-side yourselves into Low Earth Orbit, and there might be a few of these left for me at some point.

This one's actually a bike I'd love to own at some point, once the prices drop. If they drop: I'm hoping for an F4CC sort of precipitous drop in values over the next few years, but that might just be wishful thinking...

-tad

2014 Ducati 1199 Superleggera R Side Front

You’re Not Worthy: 2014 Ducati Superleggera for Sale