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MD First Look: Motus MST Sport-Tourer

When I hear the phrase “new American motorcycle,” I usually roll my eyes and groan—how many chrome-laden, raked-out customs does the world really need? But when I saw pictures of the new Motus MST I knew there would be no eye-rolling here—unless it was from the ecstasy of being punched back in my seat by the 161 horsepower and 122 ft.-lbs. of torque promised by its unique V-Four powerplant.

Katech Engineering, a supplier of top-shelf racing engines, designed the KMV4 motor. It uses pushrods and a V configuration, but that’s where similarities between this bike and any other motorcycle built in the USA end. Sure, it’s dripping with good ol’ USA traditions—it’s essentially a scaled-down (and chopped in half) version of the famous LS7R motor from the GT1 Corvette, complete with two-valve per cylinder heads with hydraulically adjusted lifters and the aforementioned pushrods—but it’s also packed with 21st-Century high tech. Fueling is by direct injection—something becoming more common in cars but not seen before on a production motorcycle—which means fuel is sprayed directly into the cylinder head for optimum power and efficiency. Displacement is 1650cc, and the very compact mill weighs in at just 130 pounds. The power peak is at 8000 rpm (blame the pushrods and hydraulic adjusters, but with that much torque, who’s complaining?) and I’m going to go out on a limb and predict a particularly orgasmic exhaust note.

The chassis is also something not often (okay, ever) seen on American bikes. Developed by the uber-engineers at Pratt and Miller (developer of many winning racecars and engineers to aerospace and military clients), it’s a Ducati-ish chromoly steel trellis design that uses the KMV4 as a stressed member. With dual counterbalancers to smooth out secondary vibrations, it should be smooth as butter pudding, which means a lighter frame, which means a lighter bike. In fact, the bike should be around 550 pounds with its six-gallon fuel tank topped off. The wheelbase is a sporty 58 inches, and final drive is by a good ol’ chain. Suspension is fully adjustable, and brakes are monstrous rotors with radial-mount, four-piston calipers. An MST-R will also be available with full Öhlins suspenders and Brembo brakes. And carbon-fiber bodywork, of course.

Speaking of bodywork, the Motus’ is minimalistic, but functional. It’s enough to keep the wind off the rider, but not enough to conceal what may arguably be the coolest motorcycle powerplant ever made (suck it, Morbidelli!). There’s also a pair of big Givi sidecases and a wide, scooped-out saddle that’s extra-narrow at the front to let any rider firmly put both feet down.

So this looks like good news and bad news. The good news is it may be the ultimate sport-tourer for all us aging gearheads. Smooth, torquey, good-handling and packed with cool details. It’s the kind of motorcycle I’d imagine airline pilots would ride. With ergonomics “almost identical to Yamaha’s FZ-1,” according to  Motus co-founder Brian Case and that giant gas tank (which should provide a genuine 300 mile range, if the claims of great efficiency are to be believed), the MST may be hard to beat as a sport-tourer.

The bad news is that it’s not really a mass-market bike. According to a New York Times blog post about the bike, Case says Motus will build just “hundreds of bikes per year, not thousands.” Bad news for those of us looking for performance and comfort. I’m guessing the bikes won’t be cheap, either. Nor should they be. It’s pretty clear that demand for a truly American sportbike is small, which means small numbers and big prices—just look at Erik Buell Racing, Roher and Fischer.

Case and Motus President Lee Conn will now be taking the bikes around the country to drum up public support and possibly some dealers. Let’s hope MD gets offered some seat time when they reach the West Coast.

155 Comments

  1. denny says:

    Not to be critical but: why not shaft drive? Layout is prepared for it. Chain does not make sense in this case, not to mention with this size of engine.

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  2. Denver says:

    As an avid touring rider who likes to ride “spirited”, I’m holding my support until I see a price tag. I can get an equally attractive BMW R1200RT with ABS, electronic cruise and windshield, and heated seats and grips for around $20k. This better be in line with that, or I’ll still be an avid BMW fan…with fondness for a bunch of other equally attractive makes including this one.

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  3. Chris #2 says:

    I hope they ride their prototypes enough to work out the bugs before going into production. If this bike can attain near Japanese reliability, and not cost too much more than the Honda ST, then they’ll be very successful. With the dollar crashing in value, this could be a major success in Europe I’d think.

    How much do you guys think is a fair price for this? $20k? I sure hope they don’t go the boutique, ultra limited production route- follow Buell’s model Motus- don’t woos out.

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  4. MadMax says:

    The brilliance is that it uses regular fuel, has hydraulic lifters, and the absence of the lower fairing will (hopefully) solve heat issues. I’d forgo the euro 6cylinder, and trade my ST13 for one.

    Less is more.

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  5. Charlie says:

    “what may arguably be the coolest motorcycle powerplant ever made (suck it, Morbidelli!)”

    I’ll argue with that – the Morbidelli is still way cooler – DOHC, 4 vpc, V8! And then there’s the Guzzi V8 which is cooler than either.

  6. pportbruce@gmail.com says:

    They missed the chance to call it the Motus Operand i (for injection!)

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  7. Grafight says:

    We need more American bike choices. Harley and Victory plus a few customs is just not enough!
    This looks like a nice beginning. Sadly (or fortunately?) its competition is fierce. There is the Kawasaki Concours with its amazing 1400 engine and all the comforts, or the new BMW K1600GTL. Yamaha is due for a revision of the once-best sport-tourer, the FJR. Honda has no problem selling STs and Goldwings. Suzuki may finally decide to listen to customers and stick a ‘busa engine into a bike in this category. In Europe you also have the Norge and Triumph Sprint ST. Plus BMW itself has several other excellent tourers.

    With so many options it may be difficult to find a niche for this bike, even if it turns out to be fantastic. It will, no doubt, be expensive, and when it comes down to spending the cash, there are many formidable, tried-and-true as well as brand new exciting options for a lot less. And lastly, people who buy “only American” tend to be cruiser, rather than sport-tourer riders.

    I do wish them luck, despite all the competition. This Motus better be fantastic!

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    • sliphorn says:

      There are a lot of sport touring riders that would love to buy American but your choices are, well, you know the choices. There Ain’t any!!

      The Motus will change that.

  8. Old town hick says:

    An interesting and tantalizing proposition, this bike. Hard to imagine, however, that meaningful production numbers could ever see the light of day given the economic climate.

    Querry: Since a chain and sprockets seem anachronistic for its mission, yet there is clearly some anti-shaft sentiment lurking out there, would a belt-drive be appropriate/possible on a machine like this?

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  9. Nick says:

    I think it’s terrific. I hope it is successful, and I hope I get to ride one one day. That said, I prefer the red valve covers to the carbon fiber ones.

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  10. PN says:

    I like it, but I’m guessing it will be closer to 30 grand than the 15 I would like. It’s interesting that this is a design Honda already used in its ST1300. If only the ST1300 looked like this, with its Guzzi-like engine heads and Ducati-like frame and Ninja-like snout, wow!

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  11. aussie mike says:

    Beautiful. The designers at Moto Guzzi should look at this bike and then look at the Norge. Then they can redesign it. Shame this bike won’t make it to Oz. We do get HD and Victory as well as Fischer.

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  12. Craig G says:

    Love it! Now if someone will mass produce it, bring the price down and get something American other than Harley out there…

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  13. odd comment time: too bad no bash plate. Ya know? Just add a bash plate so it can go down a gravel road with some protection. That’s all I ask. I don’t want a GS or KLR, just this bike as it is. What a cool ride. I’m about to sell a vintage bike and if I get enough I may go this route. I can always fab a bash plate I guess.

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  14. Dean says:

    Come on Lottery ticket!!! Looks like a good start to me… Sure some things may need to be tweaked, but on paper it sure sounds like a fun ride! Guzzi meets ST meets Corvette… Mmmmm.

    Chain drive is capable, and easier to design that to come out of the gate with a shaft drive design. Serious (comfort) touring, maybe it is not… SPORT touring… I think so!

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  15. Jason B says:

    As stated, it’s nice to see an American motorcycle manufacturer do something besides the crap that HD churns out. The problem I see is that these guys made the same mistake Motoczysz did, they built their dream bike first. The cost of this unit is going to be a big issue in this segment, especially when you look at what the more established competition are currently offering. A high MSRP will mean limited sales and thus limited capital to reinvest into new product. I hope the venture pans out but they’ve got a long, hard road ahead of them with this first entry into the market. Personally, give me the new Ninja 1000 with Givi bags and put the rest on a few epic road trips over the next two to three years.

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  16. RedFZ1 says:

    Wow….the riding position of an FZ1….the motor of a ST1300 re-do….and the price of a Goldwing. My prediction: You won’t see one of these on the street.Wake up Motus….the bubble burst.

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  17. Kjazz says:

    Why no shaft drive?? Too heavy…..? Naw they’re using push rods, so ultimate performance isn’t the issue. The shaft would have been a real maintenance saver. And when it tips, will it crimp those pipes so you cant ride it home? I hope the mirrors are effective, ‘cuz they sure are ugly. Still, I’m quite glad to see this come to reality. Now start correcting a bunch of stuff…..

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    • Kagato says:

      I used to feel the same way about the shafties versus chain until I had to change a tire on my shaft drive V Star–what a pain. Modern chains are just about zero maintenance, especially if you pay a bit more and get the good ones.

      • Kjazz says:

        That’s true about chains. But they can still be messy. My Concours’ comes off pretty quickly, but the designers must have given some thought to maintenance ease.

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        • J$ says:

          Get a high quality chain and wipe it down with a dry rag very few weeks and hit it with some of the Dupont brand teflon dry lube. Absolutely clean, simple, and effective solution. And you still get to choose your final gearing. I just went down 2 teeth on my rear and couldn’t be happier.

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          • Mickey says:

            I’ll agree that neither system is totally maintenance free, but a shaft system is less maintenance by a bunch. My ST 1300 is at 25,000 miles and I’ve changed the 5.2 oz of rear end oil twice which is more than the factory recommends for a total of $6.00. My FZ-1 is also at 25,000 miles and has been cleaned and adjusted a bunch of times. At this point it is due for a new chain and sprockets to the tune of $250. In another 25,000 miles I’ll most likely have spent $12 on the shaft driven ST and $500 on the chain driven FZ. Many ST 1100/1300 enthusiasts have over 200,000 miles on their bikes and have never done a thing to their shafts other than change fluid. How many chain and sprocket sets would you replace in 200,000 miles on a chain drive bike? 8 sets costing maybe $2000.00

            It’s be nice if chain maintenance were as simple as you make it sound, but if you truly tour then you know in a one week tour you’re going to get 2 days of hard rain and on a 2 week tour at least 4 days of rain. You may get caught in a lot more. After each day in the rain that chain must be wiped down and relubed. Nada for the shafty.

            Chain systems are initially cheaper to design and produce which is why they are usedon so many motorcycles

            FWIW I personally have never, in 45 years of riding, altered the gear ratio on a bike I have ridden. Just never had a problem with them as they come from the factory.

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  18. bikerrandy says:

    Daytona James, apparently you have not ridden a newer, well sorted shaftie. What your concerned about is no longer an issue. Even my shaft driven `91 VX800 Suzuki has none of the drawbacks you’re concerned about.

    How this Motus handles, none of us know yet. I read in a video the Motus bike owners are riding 2 prototypes all over the USA starting right now @ Daytona. That’s good. They’ll be able to see what needs to be improved along the way(if anything).

    I have a chain driven bike and have taken it 1,900 miles on a cross state trip. I use chain wax for lubrication, which is fine for day trips. But when you put in over 400 mile days, the chain shows it’s limitations. All my other rigs are either shaft or belt driven.

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    • sliphorn says:

      I’d like to know what “chain limitations” you’re referring to. I do 15 to 20 K a year on my Triumph Sprint ST (chain drive) and there are no limitations whatsoever. Modern chains are easy to care for with minimal fuss.

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      • Mickey says:

        Not so much a limitation but an inconvenience. I too own shaft drive and chain drive sport tourers. I like the shaft better becuase I don’t have to carry wrenches for adjusting the chain, (the FZ-1 calls for 108 ft lb of torque, so you need a BIG wrench plus one to hold the other side, plus 2 for the chain adjuster nuts) and chain lube for lubing the chain which slings all over the wheel and the bottom of your luggage. The shaft is just a non maintenance, not worry way to travel. Why do you think they put them on cars? Honda used to have a chain drive sports car, but I don’t think you’ll find a chain on one these days.

        And even though modern chains are superior in every way to the chains of old, most are endless these days so if there is trouble you would need to either take off the mufflers, shock, swingarm etc (I know beause we just replaced the chain on mt brothers Triumph) or carry a chain breaker and rivet tool. Although chains are superior on a race bike, they are inferior on asport touring bike.

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        • sliphorn says:

          Shaft drives are not maintenance free! A chain breaking is an extremely rare occurrence whereas a shaft drive system developing a problem is more common.
          My single sided swingarm Triumph Sprint is easy as pie to adjust the chain.

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        • Tom Barber says:

          You need those big wrenches only in the case of chain-driven bikes that do not have concentric adjusters. Look closely at the pictures and you’ll see that this bike has concentric adjusters. You probably only need one little baby wrench.

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          • Mickey says:

            Being unfamiliar with concentric chain adjusters I looked up the procedure for adjusting the chain with these:

            Best Answer – Chosen by Asker
            Loosen the axle nut.
            Loosen the swingarm pinch bolts.
            Put an allen wrench or socket wrench in each adjuster.
            Turn both wrenches and rotate the 2 adjusters at the same time.
            Tighten the pinch bolts.
            Tighten the axle nut.
            Install a new cotter pin.

            it appears you need wrenches for loosening the axle nut and the pinch bolts. Can this be done with the allen wrench or do you need to carry other wrenches to perform those duties?

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          • Tom Barber says:

            If this procedure is correct in general for concentric adjusters then what I wrote is incorrect, because this procedure says that you still have to loosen “the axle nut”. I have not actually owned a bike with concentric adjusters, but when I look at the pictures, it looks dead simple to me. There probably is a nut that has to be loosened or removed if you want to remove the axle from the concentric adjusters. But it is apparent that adjustment of the fore/aft location of the axle involves only the rotation of the concentric adjuster, i.e., the round part that is clamped within the swingarm ends. And it looks to me that this only involves loosening one, maybe two pinch bolts on each side and then rotating the thing. If you rotate one side, the other side will probably rotate along with it since otherwise the axle would have to twist and bend. But it might be necessary to apply force to both sides simultaneously to get it to turn, depending on whether you have loosened both sides adequately. I think that if you have loosened both sides adequately it should not be necessary to turn both sides at once, but I may be naive on this. And even the likes of a allen wrench is needed to turn the thing, that is a small tool, and the only tool of any significance that should be needed is the wrench sufficient to loosen and tighten the pinch bolts, assuming again that it is not necessary to loosen any axle nut. If that were necessary, the whole thing would really not offer very much advantage at all over the old style adjuster where you turn a screw that enters the fork from the end and that sets the fore/aft location of the axle.

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  19. sliphorn says:

    I really like it. It’s a brilliant design and it kind of looks like a pissed off locust. Go Motus!!!

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  20. mike's bikes says:

    I belive the hydraulic lifters will be in the engine v, not in the heads if it is modeled after the LS chevy engine.

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  21. WillieE says:

    Looks like it may be a leg toaster!

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  22. DaytonaJames says:

    Interesting yet odd choice of final drive. You already lose some efficiency by changing the drive axis before the countershaft sprocket so it would be equally efficient to put a shaft on this bike and you wouldn’t have the mess issue. Don’t get me wrong… I’m a chain guy through and through but in this instance, it makes no sense.
    Also, no offence to you Moto Guzzi guys… or BMW boxer guys for that matter but the through-chassis wind-up torque is an odd thing to have to come to terms with. You can bet that the flywheel effect coupled with a 1600cc capacity in a transverse crank configuration will have an enormous wind-up to contend with. This point may be less of an issue for sport-tour guys but strictly from a functional perspective, it is something to be considered. My advise… ride it first… then check your wallet.

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    • Tom Barber says:

      Someone else (Goose) said much the same thing and I choked on it as well. Yeah, the transmission shafts are rotated 90 degrees from the crankshaft. But the transmission is transverse, and given that it is, a chain is more efficient. For a shaft to be more efficient, you talking not just about replacing the chain with a shaft, but rotating the transmission so that it is oriented longitudinally, like the crankshaft. And even if you did that, you’d still have the 90-degree turn in the wheel hub, which you do not have with the chain.

      I had difficulty at first understanding what you were saying in the rest of it. By scratching my head, I was able to realize that you’re talking about counter-torque. Yeah, this is certainly an issue with all bikes that have the engine oriented longitudinally. The net angular momentum of the bike, about the roll axis, wants not to change. In fact, an externally applied force is needed for it to change. When the engine spins up, its angular momentum increases, and has to be compensated either by an equivalent change in the opposite angular direction by the chassis, or else opposed through the application of an external force.

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      • sliphorn says:

        A shaft drive would also increase the 58 inch wheelbase beyond 60 inches on the Motus. That would make it a sport TOURER instead of the SPORT tourer that it is intended to be.

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        • Tom Barber says:

          Yes, it would get a lot longer, not so much because of the shaft per se, but because rotating the transmission would cause the driven end of the shaft to move further the rear.

          The point is that the logic that was presented here and previously by Goose does not make sense. Granted there are losses in the 90-bend between the engine and tranny, but you can’t make that go away unless you rotate the tranny, and unless you do that, replacing the chain with a shaft will only add another 90-degree bend, as opposed to eliminating the one that is already there. Not only will it not eliminate the 90-degree bend that is there, but it will add two more 90-degree bends, on at each end of the shaft. So it just doesn’t make sense unless you are talking about turning the tranny the other direction. Then it is a completely different ball game.

          The thing that I would criticize, were I inclined to do so, is the way that there is so much additional package under the crankshaft. Perhaps the shaft with the cams that drive the pushrods is located below the crank. If so, that is really, really dumb. Whatever reason, this is obviously a handicap in the design of this bike, and is what I would point to if I wanted to identify its inherent compromises.

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  23. Hitcher says:

    Shame about the chain drive. Otherwise this looks like something Honda should have done with the dreaded ST1300.

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    • sliphorn says:

      All you anti-chain guys make me laugh. There’s nothing shameful about a chain driven long distance sport tourer. Modern chains will easily last 20 to 25 thousand miles with MINIMAL maintenance. It takes all of 60 seconds for me to wipe down my chain and hit it with a quick blast of Dupont dry lube. No fuss, no muss, no mess.

      You can also change the gearing by swapping out a front sprocket for one with more or less teeth. I’ll take the simplicity, lightweight, and strength of a chain any day over a HEAVY shaft drive bike. Shafts are for cars.

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      • Tom Barber says:

        I’ve changed my mind about this a couple of times, preferring shaft shortly after I stated riding back in the early ’80s, then preferring chain for a period, but more recently developing a preference for shaft once again. The maintenance for a chain is indeed minimal. But most manufacturers recommend adjusting the chain once every few hundred miles. Based on my experience this interval is appropriate. For many touring riders it means adjusting the chain at least daily, and for some, more often than that. It is not a big deal on a bike that has concentric adjusters, since that avoids the need to loosen the axle. On a bike without concentric adjusters, it becomes necessary to carry along a big long wrench for loosening and tightening the axle nut. I’ve decided that any chain-driven bike should have concentric adjusters, and if it doesn’t, that’s a big strike against that bike as far as I’m concerned.

        Lo and behold, it is apparent in the pictures that this bike has concentric chain adjusters. It would seem that they thought of just about everything.

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        • sliphorn says:

          My chain rarely needs an adjustment. About 500 miles after putting on a new one and then it’s good for thousands of miles. Again, chains are easy.

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          • Tom Barber says:

            Your chain is magical. Or maybe it is an unusually strong chain in relation to the tension that it has to withstand. On bikes that do not provide prodigious amounts of power, where the wheel torque and chain tension is correspondingly smaller, then as long as the chain is heavy, it would not surprise me for a chain to go a few thousand miles with no need for readjustment. But on my CBT1100XX, chain adjustment was needed about every 500 miles, and I expect the same is true for most bike with similar, high levels of power and wheel torque.

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  24. Robbo says:

    I love the look of this thing. Motor, fairing, it’s all good to me.

    Concerns:

    They need to at least throw on ABS as an option to compete with the other sport tourers though. And a sport tourer has to be reliable and have a network to back it up so that you’re not stuck for parts on a road trip. This could be an obstacle. Rich guys who buy full-bling Ducatis for track days and coffee runs can wait around but if you’re on the road trip of your life you need to keep it moving. An exotic, expensive sport tourer, with questionable parts availability just doesn’t compute for anybody.

    IF they can do this bike for the price of a MultiStrada (which I’m considering) and assure support, then I would definitely be interested.

    Bring on the naked! Now that would rock…

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  25. blackcayman says:

    New performance figures at company site pushes horsepower up to:

    “Minumum 161bhp @ 7800rpm; 165Nm (122lb-ft) @ 4500rpm; 8000rpm redline”

    Some of the beauty is in the way it will perform. Take the fairing – a little blunt/steep like the KTM Adventure Bikes – But it will give you a calm place for your upper body and HEAD. Form follows function, its an ST. If you want a street legal one liter race bike there are five great choices all for 13-15K – this isn’t trying to be that or look like that.

    I love the look / design of the motor. By the way, have you heard the thing yet?? Youtube the motor before you talk about it. Makes all the Moto Guzzi dudes smile.

    Light weight and all the “ST” comforts = all day riding with near Sport Bike performance in a comfy ST package. I must be the target demo because I am starting a planning process of owning one – maybe a second or third year model.

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  26. Ron says:

    It is indeed a very nice motorcycle. I hope it does well and gets some of the aftermarket support that it will need.

    At 1650cc’s, I am curious what kind of mileage this machine gets. I have a first generation 2005 FZ1 and I have rolled off 225 miles and not gotten a reserve light. That equates to better than 55mpg.

    Would love to see a price and a spec sheet for this.

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  27. Martin says:

    Katech are an Indy racer engine company, and know all about high end horse power. Luckily, they also know about mid range torque, which is where traveling bikes spend 90% of their time. Two valves and low maintenance pushrods will do fine here. The displacement provides the power, the tight design provides the lightness, the high tech direct injection ensures smooth reliable performance with maximum economy on a long haul. The wind protection should ensure rider comfort, even the seat is smart.

    This is the best American design I have EVER seen.

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    • sliphorn says:

      +1, and I’ll add that they were very wise to go with Katech because they are as good as it gets.

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    • Tom Barber says:

      I sometimes think it is lamentable that when James measured the rate as which that horse was able to perform work, that he did not use a mule instead. That way, instead of seeing the word “horse” tossed in for no apparent reason every time just about anyone on any automotive or motorcycling forum refers to power, we would see the word “mule” tossed in for no apparent reason instead. Just imagine. Everywhere you look, people are talking about how much mule power they have. Or he could have done it with a dog, in which case people everywhere would be talking about dogpower. But this would only apply to the peak performance of an engine, because as is surely obvious to everyone, its midrange performance has nothing at all to do with dogpower, but only with torque.

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  28. Jaded1 says:

    Oh boy, another uber-trick hand-built motorcycle with dreams of finding investment so it can sell a handful of crazy-expensive bikes in a niche market segment. *rolling eyes*

    Looks like an older KTM Adventure w/ Ducati-ish lines and the obvious Guzzi-inspired transverse engine.

    If I had a nickel for every fantasy bike idea like this I’ve seen in the past 20 years….

    Yuck & Dream on!

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  29. Goose says:

    Wow, even less efficient then a shaft (the 90 degree turn between the engine and transmission) but a touring bike with all the mess of a chain drive. All the cost and limitations of a push-rod valve train but two valves per cylinder. Direct injection is interesting but it will be very expensive and it is here to solve what problem? I have to wonder what they are thinking.

    I love the idea and I wish them well. However, the engine seems like a mess of unrelated parts thrown together after a long herbal smoking binge. Add a slowly recovering economy to what will be a very high price and I fear this will join the long list of failed motorcycle companies. I really hope I’m wrong but I will not be buying any stock.

    JMHO,

    Goose

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    • Norm G. says:

      smells like teen spirit. after watching the youtube video (though i could be wrong), i get the impression the people involved with this project are car guys (who happen to ride motorcycles)…? rather than the other way ’round…? not that that’s bad, but the end result of pure motorcyclist thinking rarely results in such “mechanical gumbo”. though far from the worst design i’ve ever seen. they appear to have labored to produce a boss hoss without the weight penalty… a “mini-hoss” if you will. :) they’re based in birmingham, so it’s not unreasonable to think they have paid MANY-a-visit to barber for muse/inspiration. works for me, been there 4x myself.

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      • sliphorn says:

        Actually, the president and vice president of Motus (founders) are hard core sport touring riders, NOT car guys. They went to P&M and Katech because they’re the best there is and were willing and able to see it through.

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  30. Jay Mack says:

    I guarantee it’s going to be $45K-$65K.

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  31. Jason says:

    I believe this motor is actually putting out more like 160hp, if I remember right. With the benefits of super low maintenance and some serious engineering firms behind this whole project, it seems like a real winner. Glad to see publications are picking up on this story and the response to the bike seems positive. I mean, huge torque and power, 550lbs soaking wet, lightweight sport wheels and chain drive, and that gorgeous looking engine and chromoly tube frame. Love the conservative, sophisticated looks of the fairing and high-tech hotrod looking engine and headers. Oh, and look up the teaser film on Youtube. The sound is UNBELIEVABLE. That’s the main reason I want it

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  32. jasonvoorhees says:

    If I see one of these I’m gonna steal it.

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    • kpaul says:

      Push rod engines are simpler and more compact but can’t rev as high as overhead cam engines and suffer from valve float. But for a sports tourer it’s a good design. No valve adjustments and good reliability. Torque is what’s really important and the specs look great for this bike. Corvette use the LS series of push rod V-8s. The popular and high performance Chrysler Hemi engine is also push rod. So old technology is not necessarily a bad thing.

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      • todd says:

        Yeah, torque is great. I can crank out well over 120 ft-lb on my bicycle and it scoots me along real quick like.

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      • Tom Barber says:

        The oft-heard advisement that “torque is what’s really important”. On various occasions I have asked people to explain precisely what they mean by this, i.e., whether they mean that (a) peak torque per se is perfectly correlated with low-rpm performance notwithstanding that it often occurs above the midpoint of the operating range, or (b) performance at a particular rpm is represented in a linear manner by actual torque at that rpm rather than actual power at that rpm even though the genuine facts say that the reverse is true, or (c) me likes mid-range performance and me likes to call it torque.

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        • Tom Barber says:

          I inadvertently left out choice (d): I read in some lame-brained article that I found on the Internet that owing to the mundane fact that within a given gear acceleration remains in a fixed ratio with engine torque, that power is just some sort of mathematical abstraction of torque that isn’t meaningful and doesn’t have anything to do with what a driver feels, blah blah blah.

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          • kpaul says:

            “We didn’t focus on maximum horsepower; we focused on heightening the rider experience. To us, that means tons of torque over a wide RPM range, low vibes, high efficiency and bulletproof durability. Enter the KMV4, a liquid cooled V4 with DI,” said Brian Case, Vice President / Design Director at Motus. .”

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          • Tom Barber says:

            But why not “tons of power over a wide rpm range”? Given that the actual measurable performance at any rpm is in proportion with power and that this proportionality is the same at any instant no matter which gear is selected, whereas the proportionality between acceleration and torque at a given instant is different for each given gear, what sense does it make to attribute actual performance at some given, actual rpm to torque expressly, in lieu of power? And why does it have to be “horsepower”? Why can’t it just be “power”?

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  33. Bud says:

    I hope this bike is successful beyond their expectations. It looks like a terrific package.

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  34. Greg says:

    Very nice. I likey. Good to see a company putting real effort into a platform like this. We all win. Even Sheen is a winner.

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  35. BillBillBill says:

    Gosh another great looking ride few will be able to afford….just what we need !

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  36. Dennis says:

    That’s one very interesting looking machine. If they can bring it to market at a competitive price, along with dealer support, it would be a great bike to have.
    But that’s a tall order.
    I sure wish them luck in this.

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  37. kpaul says:

    I’m in love. Everyone knows the V-4 is God’s favorite engine configuration ;) Seriously, I love the looks and the V-4 is mounted Moto Guzi style. This bike won’t have the expensive valve adjustments right? Thanks for the eye candy Gabe! Me like.

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  38. mikedard says:

    Sweep the exhaust back at the engine instead of that forward cant, add and drop the bottom of the faring down more-don’t cover that engine, little bit larger windshield. Hang the sidecases lower helping with the center gravity and so you don”t kick them with your foot. I’ll take mine in any color! Let’s get a price and order form.

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  39. Bocker says:

    That is one butt-ugly front fairing, I don’t care what anyone else says. From that point back the bike looks great. It’s truly inspiring to see such an innovative engine, but I don’t anticipate much longevity for a niche bike sold at very high prices in exclusive numbers. Perhaps I’ll be proven wrong.

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  40. Jose Barreira says:

    Hi America

    GO FOR IT! That’s a GOOD looking bike and there’s no reason why you can’t built something diferent from cruisers. GO FOR IT and sell it to Europe too!

    Joe

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  41. bikerrandy says:

    Now all it needs is crashbars and a belt or shaft drive. I’ve been riding Guzzis for over 20 years.

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  42. Tommy See says:

    Cross of Ducati, Moto Guzzi and a KTM nose! Plus liquid cooling! Built in America by Americans. Yes!
    I want this ride if it could be no more than 20 to 25 Gees wish-full thinking.
    Good luck Motus and GB America.

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  43. Syt says:

    Easily the most beautiful sport tourer I’ve ever seen. If it were even nearly affordable, I would be gaining a debt. I second Roxx’s “Wow!Just Wow!”

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  44. Jake R says:

    Have a silver ST 1300; Honda, are you looking at this? Awesome bike. Makes my 700+ pound ST seem a little porky . . . and, with the engine, a little pokey too.

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  45. ROXX says:

    550 pounds wet.
    120 ft. ilbs of torque.
    58 inch wheelbase.

    Wow! Just Wow!
    God Bless America and shove your e-bikes!

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  46. Mickey says:

    wow to think my ST 1300 could look something like that. That would be awesome.

    Nice looking motorcycle. Reminds me of a Guzzi in many ways.

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