Posts by tag: Skorpion

KTM April 24, 2020 posted by

Skorpion’s Sting: 2010 KTM RC8R Akrapovič Edition for Sale

First sold in 2008, KTM’s RC8R superbike came at the tail-end of the analog superbike era, just as things like ride-by-wire, traction-control, and cornering ABS were becoming the norm. After some initial issues with a crunchy gearbox that were quickly resolved, the RC8’s four-valve, twin-plug 75° v-twin was increased from the initial 1148cc to 1195 and gained the “R” designation. It didn’t have the electronic bells and whistles of the contemporary Ducati or BMW, nor did it have much in the way of [road]race-winning heritage, but the Katoom’s 175hp and 90 ft-lbs of torque meant it could easily keep up with other superbikes of the era.

It’s much more user-friendly than any Ducati, with adjustable ergonomics and a general layout that seems to favor taller riders. Handling is excellent and the bike was well-reviewed when new, although the high price and KTM’s inexperience in the world of big-bore sportbikes meant it never sold well. And the styling, although far from subtle, looks as fresh now as the day it was introduced. For better or for worse, depending on your point of view. Buying one now, it’s a good idea to find one with any significant upgrades you might want already installed. The RC8 is pretty rare and have been out of production for a while, so quality components like aftermarket exhausts can be hard to source new. Luckily, this one has that all sorted out already.

Unhappy with the prices of high-performance motorcycle exhaust systems from western countries and with the low-quality of ones available from Eastern Europe, motorcycle racer Igor Akrapovič founded Skorpion to build them himself. If you remember Skorpion from back in the 1990s, you probably had no idea that they would eventually grow to become a juggernaut of aftermarket and official factory accessory exhausts for both cars and motorcycles. The original Skorpion brand Igor founded evolved into the one bearing the Akrapovič name, and awful mispronunciations began.

For the record, it’s pronounced /ah-KRA-po-vich/. Try not to maul it too badly.

From the original eBay listing: 2010 KTM RC8R Akrapovič Edition for Sale

This a very rare special bike. This is not a typical RC8R. It is a genuine Factory Akrapovic Edition. They only made this bike for 1 year and only 25 made for the United States. This bike was imported from Austria. Over $26,000.00 new.

Has Full Akrapovic Exhaust.
Marchesini Forged wheels
Factory Akrapovic Paint/Decals
Annodized forks
Several other factory extras

Bike is mostly stock with slipper clutch and quick shift added. Also has Akrapovic sets and a few other bolt ons.

Excellent Condition. No damages. Recently Serviced. No issues

Only 2500 miles. You won’t find another bike like this. It is a beast ready for the track, collector or hooligan street bike enthusiast. Super condition.

Watch “2010 RC8R Akrapovic Edition” on YouTube

Clean TX Title in Hand

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The seller is asking $12,900 for this very clean, very rare machine and includes a YouTube link to a walk-around of the bike here. Akrapovič makes high-quality stuff although, perhaps owing to their close working relationships with a number of major manufacturers, they do tend toward the quieter end of the aftermarket spectrum. That being said, you can hear the nice, mellow tone the system produces in the video and the exhaust should be up to their usual high standards of quality. The aftermarket quickshifter helps drag the old-school machine into the modern age. You’ll have to manage your own downshifts, although the addition of a slipper-clutch should help there.

-tad

Skorpion’s Sting: 2010 KTM RC8R Akrapovič Edition for Sale
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 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 December 6, 2014 posted by

The People’s Sportbike: 2001 MZ Skorpion Sport Cup

2001 MZ Skorpion Cup L Front

If you’re looking for something a bit different that won’t break the bank to buy or maintain, the MZ Skorpion offers something different for folks who don’t mind being on the receiving end of the occasional double-take, a 660cc sportbike with just one cylinder… Built from 1994 to 2004 and a very popular choice for club racing in “Sound of Singles”-style classes these days, they offer handling and versatility in an unintimidating package that stresses finesse over raw power.

2001 MZ Skorpion Cup L Rear

MZ, formerly known as “MuZ” was an East German company that dominated two-stroke racing, until defecting racer Ernst Denger fled to the west, taking their expansion-chamber tuning secrets with him to Suzuki…

There’s a bit of “people’s bike” DNA still here, and the entire MZ range of the time featured the same Yamaha 660cc five-valve single, here wrapped in fully-faired sporbike bodywork. Instead of chasing top speed and horsepower numbers, a single-cylinder sportbike offers useable midrange performance, reliability, and character.

2001 MZ Skorpion Cup Dash

Like some Communist dream of a sporting motorcycle for the proletariat, the MZ is good-looking, handles well, and fast enough to challenge all but the best riders, assuming their egos can cope with the mere 48hp produced by the thumping single, a bike with racy looks and a working-class heart.

From the original eBay listing: 2001 MZ Skorpion Sport Cup

The MZ Skorpion Cup is a very unique and super fun alternative to all the other 600 sport bikes out there. This one is a super clean version and sure to bring a smile to your face everytime you throw a leg over it and go for a ride…….street or track? You decide……..these things make great lightweight road race bikes or can be the perfect track day bike!! And your buddies will not be riding one! This bike is ready to go with all new fluids and brakes and perfect Michelin Pilot tires. You will not be disappointed!!!  Why be NORMAL when you can ride an MZ Skorpion cup bike?

Yamaha XT660 single engine
Grimeca Brake with new Dunlop Race pads
Factory steel braided brake lines
Michelin Pilot tires
Factory adjustable rear sets
Factory Clip ons
Rare Yellow color
Solo seat and rear passanger seat included
All fluids just changed

The seller also includes a picture of the included passenger seat to replace the solo cowl, and a nice aftermarket M4 slip-on that should make a pretty cool, thumpy dirtbike snarl when fitted. Because of course you’ll be fitting that: there’s really no point in trying to be subtle when you’re riding a bright yellow sportbike.

2001 MZ Skorpion Cup L Rear Wheel

This bike isn’t perfect, but it is in excellent, road-ready condition with very low miles. And while a Buy It Now price of $4,000 is on the high side for these, it’s still well within the impulse-purchase range. With a very unusual combination of rarity and bulletproof reliability, this is the ideal bike for the rider who wants to be different, but lacks any interest in designer-brand namecheck tomfoolery, the kind of rider who also probably drives an old SAAB 900 when their VW Bug is laid up for the winter.

Someone who appreciates the funky.

-tad

2001 MZ Skorpion Cup R Front

The People’s Sportbike: 2001 MZ Skorpion Sport Cup
MZ June 25, 2014 posted by

Low-Buck Fun: 1997 MZ Skorpion Cup

While I love the idea of owning a 200hp Italian exotic, the realistic side of me recognizes the limitations that come with that purchase. It’d be like owning a great white shark as a pet: the “wow” factor when people come to visit is definitely there.  It’s a beautiful animal, a stunning apex predator, and a great way to get rid of unwanted guests. But maintaining both could be a truly horrific problem in terms of cost and inconvenience.

Basically, a great white shark would make an impressive, if very impractical pet.

But what’s the motorcycling equivalent of a Labrador Retriever then? Something that won’t especially impress anyone, but makes for a great day-to-day companion. Probably something frisky and fun like this 1997 MZ Skorpion Cup.

1997 MZ Skorpion Cup R Side Front

For a while there in the late 1990’s, MZ had a whole range of bikes available in the USA, all based around Yamaha’s sturdy, 48hp 660cc single. There was the dual-sport Baghira, a bike with a name so evocative, you’d buy it for that alone. The supermoto-styled Mastiff, a twin-headlight machine with brutal looks right out of a Mad Max movie. There was the Skorpion Traveller, a vibe-y single with a fairing and hard bags… And today’s Skorpion Cup, the raciest of the bunch, not counting the Replica which was a hotted-up version of the Cup.

1997 MZ Skorpion Cup L Side Close

MZ [sometimes “MuZ” for “Motorrad und Zweiradwerk”] actually was famous for its pioneering role in the two-stroke revolution. Successful in racing for years due to their singular understanding of how to optimize two-stroke engines, their luck changed when racer Ernst Denger defected and took the proprietary technology with him. MZ is no longer with us: Wikipedia tells me that the former factory is now a nightclub called “MZWerk”.

1997 MZ Skorpion Cup Dash

From the original listing: 1997 MuZ Skorpion Cup for Sale

Immaculate 1997 MZ Skorpion. 7,751 careful miles. German made bike with a 660cc single cylinder Yamaha engine. Comes with solo cowl, owners manual and new front tire. (back tire still good) Not many of these were brought into the country, and few are left in this condition. Runs and rides great, no problems. 

The listing also includes a nice video of the bike starting up and chugging happily away during the walk-around. Pricing on these is generally very modest, parts for the engine are easy to come by, and the bike makes for a fun back-road-boogie partner or a great, low-buck racebike. It’s hard to find more fun for less money, with a price of $3,500. If you want a trackday single, and can’t pony up for a Ducati Supermono or a Bimota BB1, then this is your ride.

-tad

1997 MZ Skorpion Cup R Side Rear

Low-Buck Fun: 1997 MZ Skorpion Cup
MZ January 6, 2014 posted by

Double Take: 1995 MZ Skorpion

1995 MZ Skorpion For Sale

I say double take because this is one of those bikes that at first glance looks familiar and then as you get close always strikes me “what is that?!” A guy in town owns one and it turns up from time to time at the local bike meets. This conservative design is perhaps more cafe than sportbike, but the details are really cool. It’s a German bike, with a Yamaha 5 valve single, and features Italian components!

1995 MZ Skorpion for sale on eBay

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And to continue with the double take theme, the seller tells me that he bought this bike when he spotted it on our site in June of 2012. This time around it’s a no reserve auction with an opening bid of just $1795. Not a bad little bike for (potentially) under two grand!

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from the seller:

This bike is great fun to ride but gets very little use in my collection so It is time to find a new home for it. It’s really light, handles great, stops on a dime and has loads of torque. It runs great, shifts smooth and the clutch works perfectly. The chain and sprockets are in excellent condition. It uses a Yamaha 660 engine which has a Holeshot Performance Vortex slip-on exhaust system, K&N filter element in the stock airbox with the top removed and a matching Holeshot Performance carb rejet. The exhaust has a nice single cylinder bark to it. This past summer I serviced the forks – new 20W fluid and seals and I noticed it has Progressive Suspension spings installed, oil and filter change, brake fluid flush, coolant flush and a new battery. It also has less that 200 miles on the rear tire and less that 1,000 miles on the front. I replaced the OEM directional signals with Triumph signals in the front and an integrated LED taillight with signals in the rear.

The plastics on the bike are in very good condition with original paint that still shines well and the bike shows no signs of ever being dropped. The center stand is in place. These bikes are a wonderful mix of German engineering and framework, Italian suspension, wheels, brakes and controls and Japanese electrics and drivetrain. Because of the ‘parts bin’ approach to the build it is surprising what parts are available for the bike. I have a parts interchange chart that will come with the bikes paperwork and I have the engine service manual in English that goes with the bike.

Everything electrical works as it should except the clock. Both instruments work perfectly. MZs have an odd speedometer where the speed is in MPH but the miles are in KpH. So the odo shows 31k which translates to 19,300 miles.

Clear title in my name. If you know MZs then you know what fun this bike is to ride and how durable they are. It is rare to see one in this condition for sale.

Double Take:  1995 MZ Skorpion