Yes, I’m getting on in my years, and superbikes, for obvious reasons, become less appealing as the calendar pages are discarded. Sure, in my early years, the only thing I desired was this type of motorcycle, because they’re very sexy and insanely fast, right? All well and good but the ‘racy’ riding position does tend to take its toll on the arms, back and neck when one is in the Autumn years of their lives.
Like most bikes of today the new BMW F 900 R is an expansion over their previous 853cc, DOHC, parallel-twin. Not a bad thing because all the other manufacturers seem to be treading up the same path. So obviously this new F 900 R is the replacement for their earlier and slightly boring F 800 R naked bike.
When the 790 Duke appeared in 2018, I was more than impressed with KTM. They’d taken the bold move to ‘invent’ a new engine after years of single cylinder units and, of course, their vibrant V-twins. A very expensive operation on all counts and quite a controversial one seeing as the ‘parallel twin’ tends to be as exciting as a R50 Woolworth’s gift voucher. But that all changed with this engine layout as the 790 spat out 95hp on the dyno and then spawned into their superb Adventure range. Job done then I suppose, well not really.
This capacity of a motorcycle is arguably the most competitive arena to be associated with, for all brands. Around the world, the 300/400cc market is the becoming the one to watch as sales grow every year, but not necessarily here in South Africa, which is a shame.