Sportsbikes on the slow track to re­cov­ery

Motorcycle News (UK) - - Comment -

I wait un­til I am well and truly out of the cor­ner, both wheels in a very straight line be­fore ten­ta­tively open­ing the throt­tle.

The mo­tor mo­men­tar­ily bogs down a lit­tle as I’m go­ing so piti­fully slowly in third gear. Then, as the revs creep up­wards, the 999cc in­line four mo­tor clears its throat and my pe­riph­eral vi­sion blurs.

The BMW S1000RR is get­ting into its stride now. Two gears later and the speed is build­ing as are my adrenalin lev­els. De­ter­mined to get into top, I kick in one fi­nal gear and give the throt­tle one more twist be­fore I bot­tle it. A glance down at the speedo sug­gests I should have bot­tled it a bit sooner!

I am mas­sively im­pressed by the su­per­sonic Ger­man sports­bike and com­pletely un­der­stand how it – and its sharply-fo­cused brethren at­tract so many thrill-seek­ers. A mod­ern-day sports­bike is an in­cred­i­ble thing to be­hold, to ride even. To own? Not for me. And yet I get the ap­peal... and the world of mo­tor­cy­cling would be a much duller place with­out bikes like this. With the sports­bike re­nais­sance in full swing it looks like there is a place for the world-blur­rers af­ter all. Our sports­bike shootout (see page 16) also gives a clear in­di­ca­tion of just how good the cur­rent crop are.

Af­ter years of de­cline, new bike sales in the su­pers­ports class in­creased by nearly 12% in 2015. Now, only the naked, scooter and ad­ven­ture cat­e­gories sell more new bikes. And that’s just the num­ber of bikes shifted. The av­er­age profit made by each su­pers­ports bike is likely to be higher than the av­er­age of the naked or scooter class, mak­ing su­pers­ports sales hugely sig­nif­i­cant to the man­u­fac­tur­ers. And with most tech­no­log­i­cal ad­vances be­ing made on th­ese cut­ting-edge ma­chines, it’s cru­cial that th­ese road rock­ets con­tinue to play a part in the rich fab­ric of mo­tor­cy­cling.

Plus, there’s the rac­ing. With­out awe­some 600 and 1000cc road mis­siles, we would not have the spec­tac­u­lar do­mes­tic se­ries we en­joy or the dra­matic, high-speed du­els at the TT. Now we just need Suzuki and Honda to join the fun and games.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.