Posts by tag: I-4

Suzuki August 13, 2018 posted by

Summer Fling – 1987 Suzuki GSX-R400

For 1987 Suzuki left the GSX-R400 substantially unchanged from ’86, but thankfully returned to the twin headlight fairing.  In a catchy single-year iteration of Suzuki blue and white, Deftone Cycles has brought this GK-71F with low km’s and Ohio title.

1987 Suzuki GSX-R400 for sale on eBay

Suzuki had introduced the 400 Gixxer in 1984 and made steady improvements over the years, the ’86-87 models using water, oil, and air cooling to keep temps down.  Since it was a JDM progressive license machine, horsepower was stuck at 59 by statute.  Still the topped-off weight of just 365 lbs. made the most of the available ponies.  An interesting concept was the Deca Brake system, with a separate brake pad for each caliper piston, ten in all, hoping to work around some unhelpful disk brake dynamics.  New vents on the endurance fairing help draw heat out of the fairing and away from the rider.

As very few GSX-R400’s were exported by Suzuki, most recent arrivals have some cosmetic issues from long storage.  Deftone has gone over the bike to insure trouble free running, but doesn’t try to gloss over the truth.  A short cold start video is available – here –.  This is a low-mile fighter that could easily be a lover with some TLC.  Greg’s comments from the eBay auction:

8,484 Miles (13,653 Kilometers) Completely original and unrestored.  Four stroke, transverse four cylinder, DOHC 4 valves per cylinder. One-year color scheme. Mechanically Sorted.  All fluids are fresh.  Shifts and revs to redline perfectly.  Starts effortlessly every time. Very Honest Bike. Very few scratches overall. Left lower fairing is where most of the issues are. Please see Images. Fuel tank is Rust Free.

Having stayed mostly in the home market, Suzuki’s 400 gave ground in the period shoot-outs, but had their usual simpler, stronger, lighter cards to play.  Now rarer, they often don’t have their original price advantage.  But this one is more affordable, if there was ever a 400 to doll-up as you learn to ride a lightweight, this might be it…

-donn

Summer Fling – 1987 Suzuki GSX-R400
MV Agusta June 15, 2018 posted by

Naked Super Sport – 2005 MV Agusta Brutale 750S

MV’s 749cc Brutale was their first dabble in the naked sector after Cagiva’s investment, and the F4 sportbike without fairings has stood the test of time and a few engine updates.  Compared to more specialized Agustas, the 750S or Strada used little carbon or magnesium but imprinted a very sporty feel and sound on the rider.  This example has just under 11,000 miles and should prove to be a nice introduction to the MV world.

2005 MV Agusta Brutale 750S

Coming over from the F4 750 in a slightly less peaky tune, the Brutale’s engine still makes 127 hp at a lofty 12,500 rpm.  The chrom-moly trellis suspends the engine from above and is hung with 49mm Showa forks.  The 4-1-2 exhaust isn’t constrained under the seat and makes its exit across from the single sided swingarm.  The aluminum frame connectors, and plastic fender and covers were a small step down from the Serie Oro, but adjustable suspension and 6-piston Nissin brakes reflect the overall quality.

This Brutale has just a few modifications, includes a rear stand, and its original catalyst for a prospective Cali buyer.  Replacing the patina-ed ignition switch cover would be a quick way to improve things.  The Pennsylvania owner keeps it short in the eBay auction:

Garage kept, 3rd adult owner, never raced, never dropped.
Everything in pictures goes with bike, plus correct oil and filters.
Mid pipe installed, but CAT comes with bike
Non OEM mirrors installed, OEM mirrors also along with sale.
Rear tire has less than 100 miles.

Reviewed as sweet handling and smooth, it doesn’t have much of the cruel and ruthless the name implies.  It tackles the difficulties of hiding the plumbing and bracketry with a lot of style, and comes off a lot sportier in person.  This example seems about the middle of the pack, substantially stock but not fawned over, and unless the reserve is out of line, on target for a reasonable price…

-donn

Naked Super Sport – 2005 MV Agusta Brutale 750S
Yamaha June 2, 2018 posted by

Saved Not Spent – 1989 Yamaha FZR-400 with only 1,200 Miles !

The four stroke small-sports are definitely whipping up on the stock market this year, and this barely used 1989 will likely continue the trend.  It’s a cornering machine with 60 hp and ready-to-ride weight well under 400 lbs.  New repro bodywork to preserve the excellent factory set can only help.

1989 Yamaha FZR-400 for sale on eBay

The progressive-license wars had been going on for several years overseas, and all of the big four had four valve inline fours available with racey lookalike styling.  The Yamaha won the refinement award with the EXUP exhaust valve tailoring the torque curve, and build quality was just shy of the red benchmark.  Except for the fields with numbers, the specs read like its big brother OW-01 – Deltabox frame, Genesis top end, quad Mikunis, dual front disks, and staggered alloy wheels.

The owner’s not saying much about the history or whether this example is an import, but despite the nearly three decades it shows no corrosion and has Colorado paperwork.  Some 1989’s have updated seat console and fairing while this one has more details from a few years before, perhaps an aficionado could comment.  From the eBay auction:

Never raced.

This bike comes with two sets of plastics.

The plastics on the bike currently are Japanese racing repro’s.

The bike comes with the original plastics in fantastic condition.

In addition the bike comes with original manual, rear footpegs, back seat,
spare perfect condition radiator and hoses and a new red front fender.

The bike does not smoke or drip.

Tires are older and should probably be changed before serious riding.

There is a hairline crack in the original front fender not noticeable unless you look for it.

The original pipe has a couple of scratches that have been touched up but there are no
dents or damage of any kind.

Though the FZR-400 was imported for a few years, the displacement arms race and premium MSRP curtailed its long term success.  Riders with a track day habit or easy access to some twisty bits have re-discovered the segment, and the bikes can be maintained at home. This one looks too nice to track, but could certainly take in some turns on the way to a bike night…

-donn

Saved Not Spent – 1989 Yamaha FZR-400 with only 1,200 Miles !
MV Agusta May 25, 2018 posted by

Featured Listing – 2007 MV Agusta F4 Senna with 85 Miles !

Buying an exclusive commemorative, one would hope for a low-mile example. This F4 Senna has but delivery miles and has never been registered.  Its rarity is enhanced by the as-new condition.

2007 MV Agusta F4 Senna with 85 miles !

Recalling the great Formula 1 champion and benefiting his charity for children, the MV Agusta F4 Senna was first displayed in 2002, and was renewed for the 1000cc model in 2006-07.  Hard to call 174 hp “standard” but it is expected from every 998cc F4 with Weber-Marelli multi-point injection.  The suspension is equally qualified with 50mm Marzocchi forks and the Sachs monoshock with adjustments for high and low speed rebound.  No electronic nannies, but radially-mounted Serie Oro Brembo brakes, Ohlins steering damper, and Agusta’s Engine Brake System ( which acts similarly to a slipper clutch ) round out the rideability aids.  Fit and finish is luxurious, the grey and black livery accented by the red frame and alacantra seat.

Never registered and only recently titled, the Senna has spent its days on display.  It looks every bit the part of a superb model which hasn’t been used, in contrast with most which have a few thousand miles.  Here are the owner’s comments:

Never registered, first titled at the end of 2017. The bike was purchased at a private collectors auction last year.  I have copies of the original MSO and Bill of Sale showing the original purchase price of $29,995.  Comes with original stand and cover along with an MV Agusta helmet bag.  The bike is in overall excellent condition with one small defect, it appears something fell against it while in storage for the original owner causing a scuff on the left side fairing which is very difficult to see in photos.  I highly recommend an inspection done in person.  Will help with shipping arrangements.  Own the lowest mileage example I’ve ever seen! Asking $18,500 but open to offers from a person who will treat this motorcycle as art like it deserves.

Agusta executive Claudio Castiglioni and Senna were friends, ensuring that the benefit to the Instituto Ayrton Senna was not just a marketing exercise.  As well as being a premium model with outstanding components, the F4 1000 starts with a superb Tamburini design, with Ferrari’s assistance in the engine department.  The owner Chad asks $18,500 and welcomes offers on (716) 901-6046.

Featured Listing – 2007 MV Agusta F4 Senna with 85 Miles !
BMW May 10, 2018 posted by

Stealth Tron Bike – 1991 BMW K1

BMW offered its radical K1 in eye-catching ketchup and mustard or a Michigan fan’s navy and gold livery, but is occasionally seen in a grown-up grey or black.  This one is fan-owned and looks excellent.

1991 BMW K1 for sale on eBay

BMW was looking to inject some pizazz into its inline engine menu, and equipped the K1 with a four valve engine which was limited to 100 hp but capable of more.  The bodywork cheated the wind to a cD of .34 – a new low for a production machine.  Contrary to their usual practice of building most everything in house, Marzocchi forks and Brembo brakes were used to complete the BMW Paralever’s work.  Always a safety innovator, the company made ABS standard on the K1.

Bone stock with just over 10,000 miles, this K1 whispers the name where most examples shout.  With complex bodywork made since 1988, this ’91 likely has all the adjustments made by the factory to address heat control and fit issues.  From the eBay auction:

This example is an all original K1 with no modifications.  The bike has been recently serviced and has a new battery.   Powered by a 1000CC/100 hp engine that runs smooth and strong.  Transmission shifts flawlessly through all gears.   The factory graphics on the gray K1 were subtle and only across the base of the fairing. The bike needs nothing but a new home.  Odometer has just kilometers; above distance ridden is listed in miles because kilometers are not offered.   The K1 is a very nice collectable bike that will be a valued addition to any collection.   Bike is sold on a clear Florida title in my name.

The K1 attempted to bridge the sport-touring divide with an interesting result.  A sporty engine concealed an annoying secondary vibration, and the sleek design required special soft luggage.  Wet weight and wide turning radius made it an experienced rider’s machine, which I guess the MSRP did as well.  This is a super example for a fan or collector without a taste for the garish 90’s graphics…

-donn

 

Stealth Tron Bike – 1991 BMW K1
Kawasaki April 20, 2018 posted by

Un-Green – 1990 Kawasaki ZX7 H2

Kawasaki threw a spanner into the manufacturer ID-by-color system with this black and gray metallic harlequin.  The green was for guys who wanted you to know they were on an H2 Ninja, a lower-cost challenger to the RC30 in the race-on-Sunday-sell-on-Monday sweepstakes.  This example had a couple of close shaves but has been studiously rejuvenated.

1990 Kawasaki ZX7 H2 for sale on eBay

The ZX7 was Kawasaki’s passport to the AMA Superbike Championship with the RR variant, but the base model H2 had great power with the 748cc four supplying 107 hp.  The CAD designed twin spar chassis was massive and supported fully adjustable Uni-track monoshock and the last year of 43mm right-side-up forks.  The flex tubes supplied fresh air to the updated engine, and countless vacuuming jokes.

The owner has put improved running with a jet kit, and battled the NLA demons of the water pump, bodywork, and exhaust shields.  Each repair found a way forward, looking good except for the exhaust which cries out for a NOS Muzzy.  From the eBay listing:

Given the bike’s age and mileage it has survived exceedingly well. The finish on the alloy parts, the painted engine cases and wheels and, of course, on the plastics is very nice. There is a small, chafed area in the paint atop the tank; aft and to the right. It is responding to hand polishing with Maguire’s #6 Polish/Wax and gets better every time I go after it. There’s one of those clear adhesive paint savers on the back of the tank which seems to have protected the paint as it shows some scratches. Every time I walk up to the bike, it puts a smile on my face; it is a very handsome motorcycle and I’m sure I’ll miss it when it’s gone. As seen in the pictures, all the original pieces are there; windshield, grips, levers, reflectors, exhaust, solo seat cowl, tool kit and Owner’s Manual. The guy who owned the bike before me obviously cared for the bike, (despite the drop…but it’s happened to all of us, right?) while not being shy about riding the thing; it looks like a much lower-mileage bike.

Doug Chandler and Scott Russell combined for four AMA Superbike crowns in the 1990’s, the road machine close to the racer at least with precise handling, a tough riding position and hard suspension.  The overall stock appearance works in this Ninja’s favor, and the monochrome livery is a quiet attention-getter.  The owner states that the ask is just that, and the Make Offer button is ready…

-donn

 

 

 

Un-Green – 1990 Kawasaki ZX7 H2
Suzuki March 30, 2018 posted by

Sling Blade – 1983 Suzuki GSX1100S Katana in Canada

A world away from the usual design-by-committee UJM, Suzuki’s original Katana set the stage and riding position for a new generation of road-going sportbikes. This largely original survivor is just across the northern border.

1983 Suzuki GSX1100S Katana ( Canada ) for sale on eBay

 

Designer Hans Muth spent the 1970’s bringing aerodynamics and attitude to BMW’s R90S and R100RS, and left to form Target Design with partners Hans-Georg Kasten and Jan Fellstrom.  The designers’ first commissions were for Suzuki, the GS550M and GSX1100S.  The 1100 brought 4 valves per cylinder and 111 hp to the party, and the Katana’s wedge fairing made 137 mph possible.  Changes for 1983 included forged connecting rods and progressive rear springs to accompany the anti-dive forks.  Competition formulas of the day didn’t have a place for 1100’s, but the Katanas sold well on Suzuki’s other successes, and the model name was used until the mid-2000’s in the U.S.

 

Waiting for spring in Montreal, this Katana shows 20,000 miles, super clean and factory bodywork in great condition.  Wheels and exhaust have been updated.  From the eBay auction:

Beautiful Katana 1100 with lots of care given to it.  Paint is perfect.  Engine runs super smooth.  New tires.  Original seat in perfect condition.  New exhaust system.  And wider aluminum rims.  (I do not have the stock wheels and exhaust).

 

Largely eclipsed by the GSX-R line-up, the Katanas soldiered on in the showroom providing options for those less track-oriented.  Kind of the Hayabusa of its day, the 1100 Katana was Cycle World’s fast machine for 1983, using a half-mile yardstick.  The design got high marks for stability once the stiff suspension was backed out to minimums.  The riding position calling for speed, this Katana could certainly be on the road, but with a little attention could be shown as well…

-donn

Sling Blade – 1983 Suzuki GSX1100S Katana in Canada
MV Agusta March 27, 2018 posted by

Papa-Paparazzi – 2005 MV Agusta F4 Tamburini #256 of 300

Like a director’s cut of your favorite movie, a special edition sportbike named for the designer will be a memorable experience.  The Tamburini signature F4 is the second 1000cc special edition, and number 256 of 300 has been upgraded and cared for by a notable collector.

2005 MV Agusta F4 Tamburini for sale on eBay

 

The F4 was introduced in 1999 as a 750cc, and the Tamburini is a bit of a return to the original Oro edition where carbon was used extensively.  The Ferrari-designed heads have the valves arranged on the domed top of the combustion chamber for theoretical optimum flow and power, but complicating the head with valves splayed slightly in three dimensions.  With multi-point fuel injection the 998cc four is rated at 173 hp, and the torque curve is helped by the newly introduced Torque Shift System, which shortens the intake runners substantially as rpm’s approach 10,000.  Presuming a skilled rider, electronics can help slow the throttle curve and limit power, but there is no traction control or ABS.

 

Somehow this F4 has amassed 14,800 miles, but looks quite excellent.  Along the way the wheels were replaced with BST carbon fiber, the exhaust changed to the factory racing set, and front brakes upgraded to carbon-ceramics, which alone save around 3 lbs of unsprung weight.  Other upgrades are described in the eBay auction:

The original owner went crazy with upgrades and it has BST full carbon-fiber wheels, a performance slipper clutch, carbon ceramic rotors and Brembo mono-blok calipers.  Also has  Ohlins shocks nice adjustable rear set and numerous other things.   All in all I see well in excess of $20,000 spent on upgrades.
The bike comes with an extra seat, the racing exhaust (installed) as well as the street exhaust.  I am including two keys, the rear paddock stand, the cover as well as a few spares like the original license plate frame, grips, levers and clutch.  Bike has the original invoice as well as service records from new.
The original wheels do not come with the bike but I understand they are available if you choose to take off the $10,000 wheels that are currently on the bike.  
I have just had the bike serviced and it runs fantastic.  The brakes are absolutely amazing!   I had all fluids replaced, valves adjusted and the radiator upgraded with a popular reinforcement (weak link on these bikes) All in service cost $1,600.   
I purchased the bike from Guy Webster who is very well known as a collector of rare Italian motorcycles.  The bike still has his signature “Motoguy” stickers on the bodywork, easily removed. 

 

Guy Webster is a rock band photographer whose bike collection was part of the “Art of the Motorcycle” show in 1998 and got a neat write-up in the Robb Report.  From the looks of it the F4 may have just been too new to really fit in.  My back-of-the-napkin math shows a pretty serious discount from the original purchase price to the buy-it-now, compounded by some dollar-intensive upgrades.  Hopefully a fan will step in and give this distinctive MV a permanent home…

-donn

Papa-Paparazzi – 2005 MV Agusta F4 Tamburini #256 of 300