Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Hubless Monster

This has to one of the coolest concepts applied to a bike, the hubless wheel was originally invented by Franco Sbarro back in the late 80’s (believe me his name will be cropping up on here often) he applied it to a few bikes as well as a concept car. The basic design was taken on by Dominique Mottas, who simplified it. Amen Motorcycles then took this revised concept and created The Hubless Monster in 2004. It was the first bike to have both wheels hubless, it also had the world largest and fattest tyre ever fitted to a bike at 23”. The drive is via a friction drive in the rear wheel which I think also undertakes the braking, but don’t hold me to that. I think you’ll agree it’s been perfectly pulled off with the extreme out there look of the wheels really sitting well with the copper layout, a truly one-off futuristic bike-

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Friday, April 23, 2010

6 Wheeled F1 Cars

When you think of 6 wheeled Formula 1 cars the Tyrell P34 always comes to mind, with its iconic 4 up front wheel configuration. However a few other manufacturers had a go, but not with the front, but the rear wheels, here’s some pictures and links to a few, unfortunately the regulations in 1983 took all the fun out of it banning 4 wheel drive and soon after 6 wheeled cars-

1977 Ferrari 312T6-

1982 Williams FW08-6W-

1977 March 1-2-4-


Tyrell P34-

Unfortunately with the exception of the Tyrell the other cars seem to only have been prototypes and run only a few times as a result information on them is sketchy. They do however allow you to hark back to a time when motorsport was all about trying something outrageous and innovitive to push the boundaries of the sport, its a shame the regulations don't allow this any more.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Toyota Sera

In the early 1990’s Toyota produced the Sera for its domestic market of Japan. On the face of it it’s a run of the mill small 4 seater for commuting. But this cars unique selling point was its doors, not you conventional hinged ones here, oh no, butterfly one’s no less. That has to increase its coolness over the competition and deserves mention here for a manufacturer willing to try something different on a production model . This resulted in over 15000 being produced and many exported around the world, despite it only having a 1500cc engine and handling that didn’t sit with its sporting image.

Japan advert-

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Saturday, April 3, 2010

Y2K Super Turbine Bike

Well its about time I added a bike on these pages, and this has to be a good start, a bike powered by a jet turbine engine from a military helicopter. The Bell Jet Ranger’s Rolls Royce Allison Model 250 turbo shaft engine (think huey helicopter) to be precise!!!! producing the equivalent of 320bhp, the bike was capably of 250mph. The original engine ran on kerosene, fortunately the engine can be tweaked to run on diesel for the road. But its the sound of the thing its like nothing else on earth, just listen to it on the video below. A jet engine whine and its road legal if you can cough up the $185,000 for one!!!! That puts in the Guinness Book of Records for most powerful, fastest and expensive road bike. This is the original bike, MTT (Marine Turbine Technologies) who build this think also produce a 420bhp version!!!!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Volvo 262C

Volvo has broken its self made mould on a number of occasions with little credit, the 262C is another example of Volvo producing something that for some reason didn’t sit well with its image and therefore the press. Penned by Bertone and produced in Italy from parts supplied by Sweden the 262C took the basic 264 and turned it in to a 2 door low slung coupe. The press called it ugly, but the public, especially in the states continued to buy it. In total over 6600 were produced with 600 as right hand drive from 1977 to 1980. Originally meant to be the 50th anniversary car for Volvo, this accolade went to other models in the line up. For me its another example of Volvo being ahead of the game, in this case 20 years ahead!!! Just think of the current frenzy running though the car industry to produce low slung cars with high waist band for that sleeker more sporty look. Granted the 262C fell between a traditional coupe and a grand tourer that was out of Volvo’s league at the time.

The Volvo 264 which the 262C was based on-

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