Pastrana To Recreate Evel Knievel Jumps

Nitro Circus and Indian Motorcycle, America’s first motorcycle company, announced today that Travis Pastrana will be jumping an Indian Scout FTR750 when he looks to pay tribute to Evel Knievel, the founding father of motorcycle stunts, and surpass America’s most iconic daredevil.

“Evel Live”, an unprecedented three-hour live event premiering Sunday, July 8th at 8PM ET/ 5PM PT on HISTORY® in partnership with Nitro Circus, will see Travis Pastrana attempt three of Knievel’s most famed jumps on the Scout FTR750, including jumping the length of 52+ crushed cars, 16 Greyhound buses, and the ill-fated Caesars Palace fountain jump that left Knievel grasping for his life. If successful, Pastrana will be the first individual to complete all three jumps in one three-hour timespan and on a motorcycle similar to those Evel used.

The Indian Scout FTR750 is a flat track racing motorcycle designed to push the boundaries of speed and redefine control with two wheels firmly on the ground. Rewinding time, you find the motorcycles Evel jumped were designed for similar purposes. However, neither were intended for jumping.

“It was extremely important to use a motorcycle similar to the ones Evel jumped. The Indian Scout FTR 750 is just that, a modern-day evolution of the flat track motorcycles of the past,” said Pastrana. “It has the power I need and handles well, but I’m only going to have a few days to get comfortable on it, not to mention I’ve never jumped a V-twin before. I’ve got my work cut out, but we’re used to going big at Nitro Circus, so we’ll make it happen.”

The Indian Scout FTR750 is far different from the lightweight motocross bikes you would typically find Travis Pastrana jumping. The engine of the FTR750 features a powerful 750cc 53-degree V-Twin and utilizes 43mm conventional front suspension with an adjustable Ohlin’s mono-shock on the rear. Introduced in the American Flat Track racing series in 2017, the Indian Scout FTR750 secured 14 victories along with the manufacturer’s and rider’s championship in its first year of competition.

“We couldn’t be more excited for Travis to be piloting the Scout FTR750 as he looks to make history by recreating three of Evel Knievel’s most historic jumps in a single evening,” said Reid Wilson, Senior Director, Marketing and Product Development for Indian Motorcycle. “Evel Knievel is truly a global icon, and we’re proud to be a part of this incredible event that pays homage to his legacy in such grand fashion.”

Will Travis Pastrana successfully complete all three jumps on the Indian Scout FTR 750? Tune-in to HISTORY on Sunday, July 8th at 8PM ET/ 5PM PT to find out.

To learn more about the Indian Scout FTR750 and Travis Pastrana’s attempt to make history with it on “Evel Live,” as well as for periodic updates leading up to the event, visit or follow along on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram.

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Dunlop’s New Q4 High Performance Track Day Tire

Dunlop Expands Sportmax Line with the Addition of the Track-Day High-Performance Q4

Buffalo, NY: Here’s the first thing you need to know about Dunlop’s all-new Sportmax Q4®: This purpose-built track day tire achieves lean angles up to 62 degrees*, more than any other street-legal tire Dunlop has ever made.

Utilizing technology shared by Dunlop’s cutting-edge MotoAmerica road race tires, the Q4 is made in Dunlop’s Buffalo, New York, plant on the same proprietary equipment as the racing products. Only Dunlop makes sport tires in America.

The Q4 is not a replacement for Dunlop’s popular Q3+, but instead adds depth to the Sportmax family lineup to accommodate track-day-level riding like no other Dunlop DOT street tire has before.

The Sportmax Q4 will be sold through all Dunlop retailers, as well as race distributors, so it’s easily accessible to all riders.

At a glance, the all-new Q4 features:

  • Dunlop sportmax q4Bold on-tread branding that’s remarkably detailed.
  • New tread pattern with low groove density that puts down a massive footprint, especially during maximum lean angles.
  • Street-friendly performance—does not require tire warmers, and minimizes the need for chassis adjustments.
  • Designed in new sizes such as 180/60ZR17 and 200/55ZR17 to work on sport bikes with sophisticated electronics packages. These new sizes also offer a more aggressive profile option for track use for many sport bikes.
  • The rear tire features Dunlop’s Jointless Tread (JLT) technology, the same process used in Dunlop’s racing slicks. JLT applies a continuously wound tread strip over the carcass to achieve the ideal stability, flex, and grip across the tire’s tread profile.
  • Dunlop’s proprietary Carbon Fiber Technology (CFT) in the sidewalls for even greater stability.
  • Dunlop’s proprietary Intuitive Response Profile (IRP) for ultra-linear and responsive steering.

The Sportmax Q4 will be available in May 2018 in an expanded size range to cover a variety of Japanese and European sport bikes.

Sportmax Q4 Front
Size (Load Speed)
120/70ZR17 (58W)

Sportmax Q4 Rear
Size (Load Speed)
180/55ZR17 (73W)
180/60ZR17 (75W)
190/50ZR17 (73W)
190/55ZR17 (75W)
200/55ZR17 (78W)

*As tested by Dunlop on a 2017 Suzuki GSX-R 1000 RR on a closed track at Barber Motorsports Park.

About Dunlop Motorcycle Tires
Dunlop is the largest supplier and manufacturer of original equipment and replacement motorcycle tires in the U.S.A. For more information, visit

KTM Announces 300xc-w TPI and 150xc-w For 2019

KTM’s announces 2019 offroad lineup that will include the new 150xc-w and expansion of the TPI lineup. The 300xc-w will join last years revolutionary 250xc-w TPI.

2019 KTM 150xc-w


Thanks to a long history as part of the foundation of the company and with many milestones achieved in producing READY TO RACE, world-beating enduro machines, KTM’s strive for excellence has ensured the orange brand remains the market-leader in the segment with the KTM XC-W and EXC-F lineup. Last year the Austrian manufacturer announced the world’s first serial-production, fuel-injection 2-stroke offroad competition machines with the KTM 250 XC-W TPI and KTM 300 XC-W TPI models that have taken the possibilities of enduro to new heights, whilst complimenting the high-quality, high-performing 4-stroke models within the range.

2019 KTM 300xc-w TPI

However, the KTM R&D department in Mattighofen never rests; the latest generation of KTM XC-W enduros and EXC-F models receive updates for model year 2019 with improved WP fork settings, and a reworked WP shock absorber with a re-designed main piston and settings for improved, confidence-inspiring damping characteristics. A new seat cover, stronger battery and new graphics with a READY TO RACE factory-looking orange frame compliment the high-quality Brembo brakes, No-Dirt footpegs, NEKEN handlebar, CNC-milled hubs with high-end black Giant rims and more that comes as standard on these championship-winning machines.

For model year 2019, the KTM 150 XC-W 2-stroke, designed for closed-course use, receives a new cylinder with a machined exhaust port and a new power valve for high-end performance. An optimized kick-starter seat along with an ultra-compact, newly designed DS clutch with a new clutch cover reduces overall engine width over previous models. In addition, a re-worked 6-speed transmission offers better function and improved reliability.

2019 KTM 500exc

“The last two years have been incredibly exciting for our Enduro machine development here at KTM. A brand new ground-breaking generation for model year 2017 that had been re-designed from the ground up, followed by a world first for model year 2018 thanks to the serial-production fuel-injection 2-stroke offroad competition models with the KTM 250 XC-W TPI and KTM 300 XC-W TPI; it’s been an incredibly fast-moving but fruitful few years in terms of development for this segment in which we remain the market leaders. Model year 2019 sees some key adjustments across all models, along with more in-depth refinements for our KTM 150 XC-W machines. As we step into a new era of enduro as a whole, we are looking forward to the latest KTM XC-W models reaching dealer floor,” commented KTM Senior Product Manager Offroad,” Joachim Sauer.

New Yamaha NIKEN – First Look

The radical Yamaha NIKEN is on the way. Oddly reminiscent of the 1993 GTS1000, Yamaha ventures into uncharted territory with another head turner.

I am not quite sure what to make of it, but I sure want to ride one. Yamaha refers to it as a “leaning multi-wheeler” (LMW). NIKEN is equipped with LMW  technology to reduce the effects of changing ride environments and to deliver a high feeling of stability when cornering.

Yamaha NIKEN with leaning multi-wheel technology

It achieves excellent performance for spirited and sporty riding on various road surfaces and the capability to freely carve through the continuous corners of winding roads. The body design makes full use of the unprecedented front-end suspension mechanisms pairing 15-inch front wheels with dual-tube upside-down forks to visually accentuate the machine’s sporty performance.

The real question is – just who is the target market? Is this a three wheeler that should be classed alongside a Can-Am Spyder? Is it some kind of hyper scooter? The motorcycle market is notorious for clambering for new designs and technology that then languish on the shoowroom floor.

Will the NIKEN be a new direction for motorcycling or just another sidebar museum piece for history to look back on with amusement?


Here is a first look from Motorcyclist Magazine

Owensboro Statue For Nicky Hayden

Nicky Hayden Statue to Be Unveiled in Owensboro. The champion’s home city announces Nicky Hayden Day.

 Nicky Hayden celebrates USGP victory

The Hayden family—parents, siblings, and fiancée of the late Nicky Hayden, along with members of his extended family—are pleased to announce an unveiling ceremony for a sculpture honoring the late MotoGP World Champion. Created by George Lundeen of Lundeen Sculpture in Loveland, Colorado, the bronze statue was commissioned in partnership with the City of Owensboro, Kentucky, the Haydens’ hometown.

“Nicky left us just under a year ago, and we still miss him every day,” said Tommy Hayden, Nicky’s older brother. “We appreciate the support that his fans have given our family during the past 12 months, and we look forward to seeing many of them as we unveil this beautiful tribute to Nicky. We would like to thank the City of Owensboro for their support on this project. Nicky loved this city and took great pride in representing it in a positive way, so it’s appropriate that he’ll be memorialized here.”

The work recreates the popular racer’s celebratory lap of Monterey, California’s Laguna Seca Raceway following his championship-year victory there, and as Nicky did on July 23, 2006, his likeness will hold aloft an actual American flag. The sculpture will be unveiled on June 8 at 5:30 p.m. on the front lawn of the Owensboro Convention Center, at 501 W. 2nd Street.

The ceremony is being held in conjunction with Owensboro’s Friday After 5, a summer-long series of free outdoor concerts on the Ohio River waterfront. During the unveiling, Mayor Tom Watson will read a proclamation declaring the following day (June 9, or 6/9), Nicky Hayden Day, referencing Nicky’s racing number, 69.

“It is with great pride that we as a community have the opportunity to continue ‘The Kentucky Kid’s’ legacy in his hometown,” Mayor Watson said. “We will have a lasting memorial to commemorate his accomplishments to not only OBKY but to the world. I want to thank the Hayden family for allowing us to partner with them on this truly eventful day.” ABOUT THE HAYDEN FAMILY

The family of late 2006 MotoGP World Champion Nicky Hayden continues to reside in Owensboro, Kentucky. In his memory, they have set up the Nicky Hayden Memorial Fund, which helps local children in the community he loved so much. Nicky Hayden merchandise may be purchased at GP Racing Apparel. Hayden Brothers merchandise may be purchased at the Hayden Brothers General Store.


KTM Signs Johann Zarco To MotoGP Deal

KTM Signs Johann Zarco to two year MotoGP deal

Zarco leads the pack in this classic shot of the grace of MotoGP racing

If you have even a passing knowledge of the MotoGP paddock, you know that Johann Zarco is the hottest prospect in the class. In his rookie year he amazed everyone with his immediate speed on the Tech3 Yamaha, often putting the satellite team bike in front of the factory Yamahas of Valentio Rossi and Maverik Vinales. The 2015 Moto2 World Champion’s move to the premier class was seamless.

KTM RC16 MotoGP Bike

From the looks of things right now, Zarco may be the likeliest challenger to speeding Marc Marquez. With the move to KTM, one can only wonder if there will be a pause in his progress as the improving KTM certainly isn’t a front runner yet.

At Red bull KTM, Zarco will join Pol Espargaro who also resigned with KTM this week. Presumably that leaves Bradley Smith out.  The improvement is coming in the KTM RC16. But it would to characterized as slow and steady. Podium positions may still be a few years away. On the other hand, KTM has managed to dominate everywhere else when they put their collective mind to it.

Zarco – former Red Bull Rookies Champion

But nothing will get easier as the Suzuki now joins Yamaha, Ducati and Honda in podium battles. The suddenly competitive Suzuki should be a positive sign for others, showing that joining the top ranks is possible.

2016 KTM Teammates Espargaro and Smith at USGP

Here is what KTM has to say;


KTM’s READY TO RACE philosophy often means the creation of some special stories from the field of competition. The signature of 27 year old MotoGP sensation and double Moto2 World Champion (the most successful French rider in the history of Grand Prix racing) Johann Zarco for the next two years fills a standout narrative.

The Cannes-born athlete will return to KTM and the brand with which he made his first impression in the world of motorcycle racing when he claimed the 2007 Red Bull Rookies Cup; the KTM-supported series designed to filter the best young talent through to the world stage.

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing is thrilled to be able to bring Johann back to Orange. He will partner Pol Espargaro on the KTM RC16 for the next two years.

Pit Beirer (KTM Motorsports Director): “There has always been a good contact with Johann and since the Red Bull Rookies Cup. We supported the Moto2 project through WP and our Moto3 Team Manager Aki Ajo is a good friend of him. We also have a nice connection with his manager Laurent Fellon. It was a group effort to get this done. We had to trust in our capability to build a winning bike and Johann would not come over if he did not see and feel that trust. We feel very responsible now to get that package strong enough so that he can continue on the level where he is. It is our big target.”

“It is clear that we want to take another step in MotoGP. The first two years were about building up the project and to get everything running. You always want to get the best possible riders on board and it’s obvious with Johann beating the factory guys on satellite machinery and consistently qualifying on the front row means he is a strong fighter with a strong sprit. I’m convinced we can reach the next level with a rider like Johann with us.”

Zarco went on to win and grasp podium success in 125cc (now Moto3) Grands Prix and 15 victories in the Moto2 class where he enjoyed a fruitful collaboration with Red Bull KTM Ajo Team Manager Aki Ajo and WP Suspension technology on the way to his two world championships. Since coming into the MotoGP category in 2017 – where he gained the accolade of Best Rookie – Zarco has thrilled audiences with his speed, racecraft and attacking prowess. With 4 trophies and 3 Pole Positions his he has regularly upstaged rivals on factory machinery. His ability and potential marked his name as one of the most sought after for the coming seasons in MotoGP.

2018 AMA Supercross Season Finale

At the 2018 Supercross season finale in Las Vegas, Eli Tomac won the battle but could only watch as the more consistent Jason Anderson wrapped up the title. Right smack in the middle was Marvin Musquin taking second in both the race and the championship.

A few months ago at the start of the SX season I talked about who would step up to fill the void with Ryan Dungey retiring.  My main point was that while Dungey was often not the fastest rider on the track, he knew how to manage the race and himself.

Ricky Carmichael brings up this point frequently; it is on the bad days that champions are made. Championships are about amassing the most points, nothing else. Wins, podiums, fast lap, qualifying, all those things are secondary. The points are what matter.

As I prophetically pointed out a few months ago, Eli Tomac was once again the fastest rider on the track. But he had his bad days too and they derailed his chance at a championship. He is so close to running away from everyone, but the lack of consistency is out of step with his talent.

While Ken Roczen was not really a factor this season, he too showed the same kind of incredible speed at times. But I cannot help but wonder if he was trying too hard to make an impressive come back from injury.

The improvement in Marvin Musquin is perhaps the most impressive aspect of the season. By the midpoint he was consistently getting good starts and running at the front every race. He certainly had a couple of bobbles and lost some valuable points. But overall, he may be the steadiest rider in the field as they head outdoors.

What can you say about Jason Anderson? Well call him champion that is what will go in the record books. He had the good fortune to find himself in the position of last man standing in a few early season races and that launched him into the points lead. From there he was able to ride steady and manage his points lead for the rest of the season.

Certainly Anderson had a bit of luck on his side. But in the big picture I don’t think that is just by luck that the two Dungey protégés take the top steps on the box for the year. KTM and Aldon Baker have a winning program going.

I guess I should say Husqvarna too. No discredit, but let’s be honest, they are really white KTM’s. KTM executives take two shirts to the track, one orange and one black. So let’s paint a bigger picture and give the credit to Stephan Pierer who wins all the way around.

I am going to pat myself on the back, my Supercross prognostications were pretty accurate. As for outdoors, the real motocross, my picks are Tomac, Musquin, Baggett. Blake Baggett quietly worked his way into fourth place for the season. He has always been stronger outdoors. I think he is on a roll. Keep an eye on Benny Bloss too.

2018 Las Vegas Supercross Results

  1. Eli Tomac, Kawasaki
  2. Marvin Musquin, KTM
  3. Blake Baggett, KTM
  4. Christian Craig, Honda
  5. Jason Anderson, Husqvarna
  6. Benny Bloss, KTM
  7. Weston Peick, Suzuki
  8. Dean Wilson, Husqvarna
  9. Justin Barcia, Yamaha
  10. Vince Friese, Honda
  11. Chad Reed, Husqvarna
  12. Justin Brayton, Honda
  13. Malcolm Stewart, Suzuki
  14. Cedric Soubeyras, Suzuki
  15. Alex Ray, Yamaha
  16. Henry Miller, Suzuki
  17. Dakota Tedder, KTM
  18. Cade Autenrieth, KTM
  19. Josh Hill, Yamaha
  20. Tyler Bowers Kawasaki
  21. Austin Politelli, Honda
  22. Kyle Cunningham, Suzuki

2018 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Final Standings

  1. Jason Anderson, 356 points (4 wins)
  2. Marvin Musquin, 347 (4 wins)
  3. Eli Tomac, 318 (8 wins)
  4. Blake Baggett, 285
  5. Justin Brayton, 275 (1 win)
  6. Weston Peick, 251
  7. Dean Wilson, 208
  8. Broc Tickle, 184
  9. Cooper Webb, 181
  10. Justin Barcia, 177
  11. Malcolm Stewart, 169
  12. Vince Friese, 168
  13. Chad Reed, 159
  14. Tyler Bowers, 149
  15. Benny Bloss, 140
  16. Christian Craig, 134
  17. Cole Seely, 124
  18. Ken Roczen, 102
  19. Kyle Cunningham, 99
  20. Josh Grant, 83

12 Champions Inducted To Yamaha Racing Wall of Champions

The 2015 Yamaha Racing Wall of Champions inductees are reflective of the watershed year that Yamaha’s riders had, in winning multiple races and Championships aboard Yamaha motorcycles and ATVs. The road racing inductees included 2015 MotoAmerica Superbike Champion Cameron Beaubier, 2015 MotoAmerica Supersport Champion JD Beach, 2015 MotoAmerica Superstock 1000 Champion Jake Gagne, and 2015 MotoAmerica Superstock 600 Champion Joe Roberts. The motocross/supercross Champions inducted into the Wall of Champions were two-time and defending AMA 250cc Motocross Champion Jeremy Martin and 2015 AMA 250cc Supercross West Champion Cooper Webb. And the ATV racing inductees were four-time and defending AMA Pro ATV Motocross Champion Chad Wienen, and 2015 GNCC XC1 ATV Champion Walker Fowler.

From top left: 2015 ATV MX Champ Chad Wienen and 2015 MotoAmerica Supersport Champ JD Beach.
From bottom left: AMA 250cc SX West Champ Cooper Web and GNCC XC1 ATV Champ Walker Fowler.

Four Yamaha racing legends were also inducted, including 1978 AMA Formula One Road Racing Champion and AMA Hall of Fame Member Mike Baldwin; 1979 and 1980 AMA Formula One Road Racing Champion Rich Schlachter; 1984 AMA 250cc Motocross Champion and AMA Hall of Fame Member Rick Johnson; as well as 2007 AMA 450cc Motocross Champion Grant Langston.

“The Yamaha Racing Wall of Champions represents a commitment to excellence and a dedication to being the best, on race day and every day,” commented Keith McCarty, Motorsports Racing Division Manager for Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A. “Yamaha congratulates all of our 2015 Wall of Champions inductees, and we thank them for representing our company, our employees, our dealers, and the Yamaha brand like true professionals. It’s been an amazing year for Yamaha racing in the U.S., and we’re very proud of our riders and teams.”

About Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A.
Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A. (YMUS), is a recognized leader in the powersports market. The company’s ever-expanding product offerings include Motorcycles, ATVs and Side-By-Side Vehicles, Snowmobiles, Outboard Motors, Personal Watercraft, Boats, Outdoor Power Equipment, Race Kart Engines, Unmanned Helicopters, Accessories, Apparel, and much more. YMUS products are sold through a nationwide network of dealers in the United States. Headquartered in California since 1960, Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A., also has facilities in Wisconsin and Georgia, as well as factory operations in Tennessee and Georgia. For more information on Yamaha, visit ###

How Yamaha’s Massive R1 Recall Is an Opportunity in Disguise

Yamaha just recalled every unit of it’s new flagship superbike, the R1, due to major transmission problems – and this has a lot of owners very angry. Here’s how this recall could be a make-or-break moment for Yamaha.

yamaha 2015 r1 recall The 2015 R1 is a spectacular machine – but a major recall like this could give Yamaha’s reputation a black eye if they don’t handle it properly.

Last week, after a number of rumors that Yamaha was experiencing problems with the gearbox in it’s flagship superbike, a recall was finally announced – and it’s a big one. Yamaha is recalling every unit sold of the all-new R1 – over 3500 units – and replacing the entire transmission on all of them.

It’s going to be a big, expensive recall for Yamaha, and a headache for owners of the bike. But instead of being a black eye on Yamaha’s reputation, it could actually be an opportunity for them to enhance customer loyalty – if they handle it right.


Why Such a Big Recall?

Here’s the deal with the recall. The 2015 R1 and R1M have weaknesses in the gearbox – specifically, weak 2nd, 3rd, and 4th gears – that could cause them to break under extreme stress, making the transmission to lock up, and potentially cause injury or death. Sources say the cases that prompted the recall were from track and race bikes that are subject to extreme abuse, but Yamaha is recalling every unit to make sure they’ve done all their due diligence. In that respect, they are doing a good job getting out in front of the problem, and making it right as fast as possible.

But this recall will not be cheap for Yamaha. The procedure involves removing the engine from the bike, splitting open the engine cases, and completely removing and reinstalling a whole new gearbox – a job that Yamaha estimates will take at least 16 hours of labor, plus around $500 in parts.


yamaha 2015 r1 recall parts The parts kit Yamaha is providing for the repairs. As you can see, it’s not small.

The job will cost an average of $2100 which, when multiplied by 3500 affected units, will cost Yamaha at least a staggering $7,350,000 to carry out. When you consider gross dealer margin is right around $2000 per unit on the R1, and Yamaha’s margin is roughly in the same ballpark, that means this recall could completely wipe out any profit the new R1 might have generated for Yamaha this year. Ouch!


What It Means For Riders

Now as an owner of the 2015 Yamaha R1, I’m one of the ones affected. I didn’t buy what was supposed to be the greatest superbike on the planet this year to find out it was sent out with a half-baked transmission, will need the engine case to be cracked open and put back together in a way that will almost certainly not be as good as Yamaha did it at the factory, and I won’t even be able to ride it for a month or two. Needless to say, I’m not happy about the recall.


yamaha 2015 r1 recall r1 engine dropped What my bike will look like in a few weeks. This major recall requires removing the entire engine, cracking the case open and replacing the entire transmission – in other words, it’s gonna cost Yamaha some money.

But consider this: While the R1 recall is a big deal because of the high-profile nature of the bike and the expense of the repair, it’s far from the only recall in the news this year. Yamaha actually recalled 4900 units of 6 other 2015 models due to other gearbox problems, and Honda recalled 45,000 bikes this year due to faulty ignition switches that could cause the engine to stall unexpectedly.

But the king of recalls by far is Harley-Davidson, who recalled a staggering 312,000 models this year for a laundry list of assorted problems. The Motor Company has actually been plagued with recall-related woes the last few years; between 2012 and 2014, they spent a whopping $30 million on recall-related repairs!

So the truth is, recalls happen – all the time, in fact. And while the “idea” of a recall makes it sounds like a brand is cranking out crappy quality product, recalls are actually a good thing.


Why Recalls Are Actually Good

A recall is a manufacturer’s way of saying “listen everyone, we screwed up on something we sold you, and while there is only a tiny chance of it actually affecting you, we want to make sure there is no chance of that happening…so we’re going to make it right.” Recalls are costly – both in dollars and in reputation – so when a company gets out in front of a problem like this, it means they are taking their responsibility to their customers seriously.

In fact, not performing a recall when one is warranted ends up being a lot worse for a brand. Ducati found this out the hard way, when it had an issue with warping gas tanks on a number of 2008-2010 models (likely caused by ethanol in American fuel.) Complaints were widespread, but Ducati didn’t do anything about the problem – at least, not until a class-action lawsuit was filed against them in 2010, which they ultimately settled by extending the warranties on some 50,000 motorcycles.

It was a costly defeat for Ducati; but what may have been more costly was Ducati’s refusal to acknowledge the problem early and make its customers happy without being forced to do so.


ducati warped gas tanks The warped tank on a Ducati Streetfighter. Ducati finally repaired the warped tanks on tens of thousands of motorcycles – but they had to be forced to do it, which left a bad taste in many owners mouths.


How A Recall Can Be A Golden Opportunity

Beyond just doing a recall, a brand can also do it well. Consider the case of BMW’s recall of the R1200RT last year due to suspension problems, where BMW offered 3 options to owners to “make it right”:

  • Sit tight while BMW finds a solution to the problem and fixes it, and a $2500 check will be cut to the owner for the inconvenience
  • Ride a BMW loaner bike until the RT is fixed, and upon completion a $1000 credit will be given to the owner for BMW gear or accessories
  • The bike can be purchased back by BMW from the owner for full MSRP, no questions asked


bmw r1200rt recall The 2014 R1200RT, BMW’s most popular touring bike, was the subject of a massive recall last year that BMW used as an opportunity to show oustanding customer service.

Now that, my friends, is a recall done right. The repairs are going to be expensive no matter what. But the kind of brand loyalty a move like that instills in its owners is priceless, not to mention the fact that BMW bending over backwards in the case of the RT recall has now become legend in the riding community among riders of all brands. BMW saw the opportunity – and nailed it.


How Will Yamaha Handle It?

Will Yamaha do the same? So far, no indication has been made that Yamaha will be doing anything beyond replacing the gearboxes – but as I said before, that alone is “making it right” by most reasonable standards. While it is a big problem, and dealing with the recall will be a headache, knowing that I bought a bike from a brand that will go out of it’s way to fix potential problems as soon as they are discovered means a lot to me.


yamaha r1 recall instagram A line of R1s at the dealership awaiting parts, while a “stop ride” order prevents any R1 owners from riding in the mean time anyway. (Photo credit: my good friend iGoldeneye21 on Instagram)

How Yamaha ultimately handles this recall remains to be seen, but the fact that it is happening is not inherently a bad thing; it’s how they handle that’s most important, and what will leave a good or bad taste in owners mouths for years to come. I don’t like recalls. But I also don’t expect Yamaha or any other brand to be perfect all the time. I just expect them to make it right when they get it wrong. And we’ll see if they do.

And hey – at least I get a free oil change out of it.


How do you think manufacturers should handle recalls like this?

Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A., Raises More Than $31,373 For Feed The Children

Cypress, CA – December 18, 2015 – Thanks to the hard work and generosity of its employees, Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A., yesterday presented world-renowned charity Feed the Children with a check for $31,373 as part of its Ninth Annual Feed the Children Charity Day at the company’s Cypress, CA headquarters.

Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A., raises money for Feed the Children through employee donations, special dealer fundraising activities, and direct corporate donations from Yamaha’s customer satisfaction team. The company’s unique Customer Satisfaction Survey program makes a donation for each survey returned by a Yamaha Motorsports customer.

“Feed the Children is proud to partner with Yamaha Motor Corporation,” said Travis Arnold, Feed the Children Interim CEO/President and COO. “We know that, when we combine our efforts, we will have a greater impact on the lives of families who need us most–right here in America.”

Through employee donations, dealer fundraising and corporate contributions, Yamaha was able to raise over $31,000.00 for Feed The Children.

“Yamaha is very proud to make this donation to Feed the Children on behalf of our employees, dealers, and customers,” commented Bob Starr, General Manager of Communications for Yamaha’s U.S. Motorsports Group. “Also, thank you to all of the great Yamaha racers, and to Star Touring And Riding, for their support and participation in today’s Feed The Children Charity Day.”

Star Touring And Riding (S.T.A.R.) volunteers were on hand at the event to help deliver donated food and supplies to the local Feed the Children office at the end of the day.

Over the past 20 years, Yamaha U.S. has helped raise more than $5 million in cash and supplies for Feed the Children, which is an international and nonprofit relief organization that delivers food, medicine, clothing, and other necessities to individuals, children, and families who lack those essentials.

About Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A.
Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A. (YMUS), is a recognized leader in the powersports market. The company’s ever-expanding product offerings include Motorcycles, ATVs and Side-By-Side Vehicles, Snowmobiles, Outboard Motors, Personal Watercraft, Boats, Outdoor Power Equipment, Race Kart Engines, Unmanned Helicopters, Accessories, Apparel, and much more. YMUS products are sold through a nationwide network of dealers in the United States. Headquartered in California since 1960, Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A., also has facilities in Wisconsin and Georgia, as well as factory operations in Tennessee and Georgia. For more information on Yamaha, visit