Posts by tag: SP

Ducati May 8, 2013 posted by

Read Between The Lines: Ducati 916 SPA (UK)

Massimo Tamburini’s greatest creation, the Ducati 916 stormed the world of Superbikes. Using a motor that was effectively the evolution of the Desmo power plant of the 888, the 916 had otherwise a radical new design. This included the most sexy figure in motorbikes’ history, a single rear swing arm and under seat exhaust, to mention a few. I remember one interview with Valentino Rossi, mentioning what a huge leap forward was the design of the 916 versus the previous rather “boxed style” (yet effective) 888. And so, between the Terblanche designed 888 and 999, Ducati produced the highly successful 916, 996 and 998 series. Perhaps, the most iconic motorbikes Ducati will have in the history books, thanks also to the almost absolute dominance in World Superbike Racing. Among the rarest of samples, we can find the 916 SP America.

Ducati 916 SP America (955 SP) For Sale on eBay in the UK


Produced in very few numbers to allow the entry into AMA races with a 955cc motor, the 916 SPA was a special among the already exclusive Sport Production limited versions. The SP featured a few carbon bits, a single seat unit and most notably an engine with important upgrades of intake, exhaust, pistons, con rods and cylinder heads. The SPA had in addition larger pistons and cylinders with a total capacity of 955 cm3. To recognize an authentic SP America, one would need to read the “ZDM955…” on the motor.


The model found in the UK, seems to have the right credentials as it was imported from the US.


At an asking price of 12000 £, this is one of the most expansive 916 you will encounter. But with less than 10000 km and provided this is a genuine SP America (you need to check the engine code) ,  it could be a rare find.

A few words from the seller:

DUCATI 916 / 955 SP A rare opportunity to own a stunning example of this prestigious machine.

 This is the SP model which has a 955cc SP engine

 Imported from the USA prior to first registration this bike was first destined for the American market but demand in the UK for Ducati was greater in the UK and it was common for imports from both the USA and Europe at this time.

 The bike has covered under 10k miles from new.

 The photos don’t do the bike justice and anyone viewing would be delighted I am sure

 I will put a fresh mot on the bike prior to sale.

 Unfortunately I do not have the owners handbook or service book for the bike but I do have some old mot certificates and service receipts, including complete engine refresh from Ducati, dyno sheet and testimony.

 The V5 / registration document is in my name

 please note if i think you question is dumb, if you suggest its worth 5k and your 95 fireblade please dont be surprised if you dont get a response.

 Viewing welcome.

 This would be a great investment as the prices of these bikes are rising steadily now.

Apparently only 50 of them were ever sold to the public !


Suzuki March 7, 2013 posted by

Rare late special Gixxer: 1994 750 SP (in Germany)

The Suzuki GSX-R 750 was my first Superbike. It was a 1993 water cooled model (W) and I will never ever forget it. It was fast, smoother than a Kawa and nastier than a Honda. It was also very reliable. In those years, the usual R (for Racing) code was often replaced by another: SP (for Sport Production). When it comes to sport bikes,  the GSX-R is one of the most iconic names in the business. The special versions like the GSX-R R limited from 1986, the RK from 89 and the later SP from 1994 are highly desirable bikes.

GSX-R 750 SP_3

This sample here is currently on sale on eBay in Germany. The asking price of 12ooo EUR for a bike with 31.000 km is in my opinion on the high end of the scale. The seller mentions a recent sale in UK for an equivalent model that topped 12.000 pounds which is roughly 14.000 EUR. In addition the bike was recently re-sprayed and there we go…

Anyway, it is still an SP, which means you get a different exhaust and carbs for better breathing, a close ratio 6 speed box with a tall 1st gear, improved chassis, better brakes and lighter engine parts. The SP is still a Special.

GSX-R 750 SP_1

GSX-R 750 SP_2

A few words form the seller :

The bike is an original SP (Sport Production), which was produced only in 1994, in 1000 samples, of which 800 went to Race.

Only 200 on the road in 1994. How many are left, I do not know.
Many differences from the normal GSX-R750, which includes 40mm carbs, 1100 Brakes Many magnesium engine parts. also first speed (135 km / h) + much, much more.

The bike is just invaluable for me and is just more money’s worth, and with the right buyers, many money’s worth. (Imagine … in the UK for £ 16,000, which has been sold)

An investment?
The bike is original to 99% in 2009 and was repainted in the original colors, with new decorations.
Has about 1500km driven side.
New serviced and just cleaned and adjusted carburetor so that it plays only max.

Here are the specs of the 1994 SP versus the ones of the 1993 standard version:

GSX-R 750 SP 1994
Overall Length: 2,095 mm (82.5 in)
Overall Width: 730 mm (28.7 in)
Overall Height: 1,135 mm (44.7 in)
Wheelbase: 1,440 mm (56.7 in)
Dry Weight: 198 kg (436 lbs)
Engine type: Water-cooled 749 cc inline-4, DOHC, 16 valves. 118 hp (86.1 kW)/ 11,500 rpm, 78,46 Nm/ 9,500 rpm

GSX-R 750 1993
Overall Length: 2,070 mm (81.5 in)
Overall Width: 730 mm (28.7 in)
Overall Height: 1,135 mm (44.7 in)
Wheelbase: 1,440 mm (56.7 in)
Dry Weight: 208 kg (458 lbs)
Engine type: Water-cooled 747 cc inline-4, DOHC, 16 valves. 118 hp (86.1 kW)/ 11,500 rpm, 78,46 Nm/ 9,500 rpm

If you are a Suzuki fan and looking to add this to your garage click on the link below.

P.S. the seller includes also a colour matched full leather kit which provided it is your size I think is a really nice add on

Suzuki 1994 GSX-R 750 in Germany 


Honda March 5, 2012 posted by

Beautiful ’94 Honda Rothmans NSR250R SP

Mileage: 800 miles on fresh motor

Price: $10,800

Update 3.5.2012: Now listed on BARF with additional details. -dc

Do sportbikes get much better looking than this? Go ahead, take it all in. I think you’ll find the answer is no. The NSR 250 is as legendary as you can get in any sportbike circle and if you are fortunate enough to get an SP, well then, be content with the rest of your life, whatever it may bring. You are the definition of lucky.

Seriously, just look at it. What an absolute stunner. The SP models are much more rare and difficult to find that the standard NSR and was also the most advanced at the time in terms of being a refined two-stroke street bike. It’s powered by a 40bhp V-twin that only had to propel approximately 300 pounds dry and its dry clutch and adjustable suspension made it truly one of the great two-stroke race replicas.

Here’s information from the seller-

The NSR is a real 94 Rothmans, has correct vin and number tag on subframe. Fresh motor, about 800 miles, new crank, new cylinders, used cases but almost everything else new including clutch.

Has new OEM Honda:

Upper and lower forks $$$$

Fuel Tank $$$$

Triple Clamps $$$

PGM 4 unit and gauges $$$

Every seal, or bushing greased/replaced etc etc in the last year.

Has some Chinese plastic on it and some factory, have all factory pieces except left lower and upper, that is all it really needs to be fully original. Has all correct SP parts like magteks, dry clutch adj suspension etc.

Runs excellent.

And more pics of this beauty-

The seller highlights the maintenance which includes lots of engine overhaul that should address any concerns about the motor, especially important for a two-stroke. Sounds like all the other maintenance has been done too and the seller says the bike runs excellent. Only issue really is replacement plastic which the seller also highlights letting you know what it would take to make the bike 100%.

The seller is asking $10,800. It’s not cheap, but don’t forget it’s a Rothmans edition SP, making this an extremely rare bike. And considering the work put in, then it gets even more attractive.

So if you’ve been searching for one of these, collector or rider, or both, you should give this bike a good look. They don’t pop up all that often. Contact Glenn via email.


Ducati October 29, 2011 posted by

King Carls’ Replica: 1998 Ducati 916SPS Foggy Replica

King Carls’ Replica:  1998 Ducati 916SPS Foggy Replica

I admit, I kind of get overwhelmed by all the different Ducati variants: SP’s, SPS’s, 916’s that aren’t 916’s and on it goes.  All the red starts to blur together.  I will also admit I didn’t even know these replicas were built but what a cool story led to their manufacture.

The story floating around the internets is that Ducati wanted to modify the frame on the 916 factory bikes for racing.  Well,  rules are rules and they had to make 200 available to the public.   I guess the public just meant Britain as they got all 200.  The story I read also claimed 202 were actually built, one for Carl himself and one for the Ducati museum.

One of the bonuses of the new frame was increased area for a larger air box.  More air=more HP.  Air boxes are boring, what else do I get?  A full titanium exhaust system, altered fuel injection mapping,  Marchesini wheels, carbon-fibre seat unit, carbon swing arm protector and color matched mirrors.  Thank God it has color matched mirrors!  Guess you also get bragging rights over your “mates” with just a boring SPS.

Sorry to say, this bike is still in the UK for you U.S. based Ducati men.  She sports 6,500 miles and the seller says the limited edition cover and stand is included.  Asking price is 13,999 British Pounds.

I read a few threads debating if a Foggy replica is worth the extra money.  Stickers are easy to put on and most of the extras can be purchased.  To a loyal Ducati fan though nothing can replace the real thing.  Number “2” that was meant for Carl himself went up for auction back in April and sold for 27,000 British Pounds.

The bike is listed as a classified ad so it is ready for an impulse purchase, click carefully.  If you want to display it for yourself you better click here.


Yamaha September 6, 2011 posted by

More Than A ” R” Or “SP”: 1993 Yamaha FZR400RR SP

More Than A ” R” Or “SP”:  1993 Yamaha FZR400RR SP

Ah, some UK eye candy.  I’ve seen “R’s”, I’ve seen double “R’s” and I’ve seen “SP’s”.  Yamaha takes the cake though with the ” RR SP”.  Ah to be a fly on the wall in the meeting when they came up with all that.  The reality is though, these were bad ass little bikes.  Yamaha really packed them with the most wiz bang tech of the time.  I’ve read more than one review that said pound for pound the little FZR400RR SP packed more punch than the OWO1.

As with the 250 two strokes of the time, there was an all out war between the manufactures to produce a bike with the most technical innovations.  Looks like it might have a ram air/pressurized air box from the looks of the brochure.

As the brochure says, “Have a nice ride!”  I was making light of the SP’s name but it does make sense.  There is a FZR400RR.  It is a more road friendly version of this bike.

It sure makes the FZR400 look pedestrian.  Yamaha wasn’t messing around with this one.  She comes complete with a close ratio  gearbox, flat side carbs and multi adjustable suspension.  I’m sure there were some tasty race kit items to be had as well.  As with most 250s and 400’s,  comfort isn’t one of the included features.

Striking from the front.  Can any of our UK readers confirm these were UK market bikes and not grey market imports?  I’ve never seen a sales brochure not in Japanese.  Once Japan relaxed their licensing laws the 400’s days were numbered.  I believe 1994 was the last year they were produced.  I can’t confirm these numbers but after an initial run of almost 7,000 units in 1990, only 500 a year were produced until being discontinued.

You are going solo my friend.  Yamaha didn’t even waste time with a wafer thin passenger seat or pegs like the other manufacturers.  If you’d like to take home some of Yamaha’s 90’s tech click here.


Suzuki June 2, 2011 posted by

Putting the “SP” In Special: 1991 RGV250SP Gamma

Putting the “SP” In Special: 1991 RGV250SP Gamma

Wow!  A RGV buyers dream is hiding in Oregon.  Being an RGV guy this one immediately caught my eye.  How does 1,450 miles, titled and SP sound together?  Sounds like time to write a check to me.

Plain and simple, this is the sort of RGV you hold out for.  It has super low miles, it has a title and it is an SP.  It also has one of the best color schemes to come out of Hammamatsu.  The owner knows what he has too, so hopefully the price is not in the stratosphere.  It looks close to stock as well.  I’m only noticing the bar ends, the windscreen and maybe braided brake lines.  Of course the pipes catch your eye.  They are not the traditional stacked RGV pipes but rather Tyga side by sides.  They give the bike a more modern look but maybe loose a little of  the classic RGV lines.  I can’t quite make out if they are stainless or mild steel.  If they are mild steel remember they require regular up keep to keep them looking good.  Keep them bathed in WD40 and it will help keep the rust away.

Looks just as good from the back.  The old VJ22’s have held up well with time.  The barely look dated to me.  If you don’t keep up with RGV’s, the SP gives you the usual sort of upgrades.  More adjustable suspension front and rear.  A close ratio gear box with dry clutch (which have been fetching close to $1,000).  A different CDI and straight plug heads are also included.  It might be worth finding out if it was a domestic market SP or and export model SP.  I believe they would differ in CDI and carb size.  Can’t remember for sure though.  SP’s in Japan were still covered under the 45hp limit.  Remember, if you ever need info on RGV’s head over the RGV forum, it is a library of RGV info.

What would you pay for it?  If it looks as good in person as it does in the photos I would think the price would be pretty darn steep.  I wouldn’t be surprised if the owner is seeking close to $10,000 considering everything it has going for it.  I know it is a buyers market right now but considering the model and condition I wouldn’t let it go for much less than that.  I know I’d sure like to have it hanging out it my garage.  !


Gilera May 6, 2011 posted by

More UK Teasers: 1989 Kawasaki KR-1R And 1993 Gilera GFR125 SP

More UK Teasers:  1989 Kawasaki KR-1R And 1993 Gilera GFR125 SP


I know it is a tease for those of us in the U.S., but I couldn’t resist posting these two beauties.  I bet you could count the number of these bikes in the U.S. on one hand.  So sit back, dream and enjoy the pictures.

First up is an ubber rare KR-1R.  Yep, not an “S” but  an  “R”.  I couldn’t verify the number but the seller claims less than 200 were produced.  If you’ve followed some of our posts on the KR-1 you know that even though it is possibly the most dated 250 stroker, it is also has possibly the strongest engine out of the bunch.

You know if it came from Japan in the late 80’s to the early 90’s and said “Sports Production” on it you got some extra goodies.  Kawasaki gave you larger carbs and a close raito gearbox with the “R”.  The rest of the specs are shared with the KR-1S.

Just a generic picture but sure demonstrates someone has taken good care of the bike.  It only has 6300 miles on it.

The business end.  Any other two stroke owners had someone pull up next to them and yell at them that something is wrong with their bike because it is smoking? 

This would sure go nicely in someones two stroke or Kawi collection.  The asking price is close to $15,000 in our depressed dollars. 


Maybe I’m off on my numbers, while trying to find some info on the GFR I came across a post by an owner here in the States that claimed 100 of these bikes were imported here.  I’m pretty sure I saw one at the Barber Museum, 99 to go.  A reply from someone in the UK claimed they are rare even there.

Claimed horespower is 31hp.  Riders claim a little more pep than an Aprilia RS125 of similar age.

This is what the teenagers that purchased the GFR were dreaming about: this was Gilera’s 250GP bike in the early 90’s.  Ridden by the like of Jean Phillipe Ruggia and Carlos Lavado.

The little Gilera packs a few surprises.  Can’t say I was expecting a single sided swing arm.

Hmmm, what do we have here?  Is one for a reserve?

I wonder what parts are like to track down.  Gilera is owned by Piaggio but  I couldn’t find much (meaning any) info on the status of the company itself.  The mileage is low, less than 10,000, the price is high, almost $5,000.  I like it though, its’ lines are modern and it really doesn’t look its’ age. 


Sport Bikes For Sale April 18, 2011 posted by

My Current Love Is Back: 1991 Suzuki GSXR400R

My Current Love Is Back:  1991 Suzuki GSXR400R

Update 5.1.2011: Sold!

Oh she is back!  You may remember this bike from a few months ago.  Well it has surfaced again from that well stocked garage in Cali and still needs a new garage to call home.  GSXR400R’s are my current passion, as I am rebuilding a basket case and when I see this one I get jealous.  I’ll get straight to the point.  It is extremely clean, it is titled, it has low miles, it hasn’t been modified, it is a very rare bike and it is for sale! 

Did I tell you they red line at 14,500?  How about only 10,700 miles for a bike built in 1991?  In all honesty this is a very telling photo of the condition of the bike.  GSXR400R’s are notorious for corrosion around the instrument cluster.  Mine looked like it came off a bike that had been sitting in the rain since 1950.  This one obviously looks great:  as does the rest of the bike.

Remember when shopping for a GSXR400R you want the earlier (90,91,92) model years as they were not restricted.  It is not a big thing but the after market muffler is a nice touch.  Aftermarket parts for these are extremely rare.  I’ve been shopping for a full system for mine and I can tell you it is ten times easier finding RGV250 parts than parts for these.  One the plus side, quite a few engine parts cross reference with the Bandit 400 which was sold here.  Most ordinary parts like brakes, bearings etc are standard Suzuki stuff and easy to get.


One bugaboo on any GSXR400R of this age is the carbs.  These carbs are famous for giving owners issues due to about 4 rubber washers in each carb rotting.  It’s an easy problem to solve as long as you know it is an issue.  If you buy one and it starts running funny that would be the first place I’d check.

Hey, there is no reason not to buy this one if you want a little Gixxer.  You say you want an SP?  I’ve had multiple people say they aren’t worth it for the street.  They say the SP gearbox is a real bear with the tall first gear.  You say you want to hold out for an SPII with SP features but better gear ratios?  You might be using a walker before finding one.  I’ve never seen one in the United States and actually never seen one for sale in Japan either.  and see if you and the seller can come to an agreement.