Tuesday, 25 December 2012

My Kawasaki ER6F/Ninja 650R Looking For Good Home

Test Market : Kawasaki ER6F/Ninja 650R

Readers would know that I advertised Green Hornet for sale on 2/11/2012 and received a couple of offers, but ultimately decided that it was too much of a reluctance to let this lean, mean machine go.

A fellow reader has wrote to me to inform me that he is changing his Italian CBU bike in January 2013 and felt that it would be a pity to trade-in at the bike shop as he wanted a "good and responsible new owner" for his bike- and by that, he meant me (LOL).

Now this is a bike that I have been pretty keen too [Update : Some readers e-mailed what it was really so here goes- it was a Ducati 916 from the nineties] so if any fellow readers would like to take Green Hornet off my hands, I may just be getting the fellow reader's bike too.

To summarize, details of Green Hornet is as per the following :

Name and Model : Kawasaki ER6F/Ninja 650R
Colour : Kawasaki Lime Green
Mileage : circa 13,000 km
Status : Kenderaan Import Baru - can check from vehicle grant card
No plate : Wilayah 3-digit tendered no plate
Accessories :
1) MRA Germany windscreen (made in Germany) -RM550
2) Shogun sliders - RM500
3) Givi Italy side panniers colour-coded (made in Italy) - RM2,200
4) Givi Italy topbox colour-coded (made in Italy) - RM2,800
5) Akrapovic exhaust (made in Slovenia) - RM1,65(0 inc installation
6) Radiator protector - RM120
7) BMC Italy air filter (made in Italy) - RM400 inc installation
8 ) Acumen UK gear indicator (made in UK) - RM500 including installation
9) Caliper theft protector sets - RM180 including installation
10) Branded riding jacket and pants set, and matching leather gloves - RM1,000
11) BM horn - RM80
12) Sports rims reflective stickers - RM20
Bike is newly-serviced and runs like a dream. As good as new condition, and idling beats some newer ER6 engines even (well, that's what my mechanic said). If you get the above accessories, you would have to allocate more than RM10,000 (I bought some of them at really good prices but with risks of importing from overseas); but on Green Hornet, it's all complete and no further upgrades are necessary by my reckoning.

Viewing can be done at Mont Kiara/Sri Hartamas after working hours. 

So, feel free to make me an offer that I can't resist, to get yourself this dream bike. E-mail me with your offer and contact no. at toyotaharrier240g@gmail.com and I'd revert soonest possible.

Saturday, 22 December 2012

Late Night Ride after Beauty and The Beast, The Musical

There has been quite a few e-mails from fellow readers asking about this blog and the updates. My apologies on the delay as I have been rather busy with work and travels; and add in the rainy season and that meant that Green Hornet has been sitting pretty a fair bit.

This bike is not Wahab's Bee but it looks just like that. I gotta check with him if he's okay with me showing his bike to the world, sans the no. plate of course.
Having said that, Green Hornet now has a Yellow Bumblebee ER-6n counterpart to accompany it in the car park now. A fellow reader here and also my neighbour, Wahab, whom has been following this blog and chatted with me at times, had been intrigued by my adventures with ER6 and had been wanting to get his hands on an ER6. He must have scoured hard at the classifieds as he got a really handsome naked ER6 that looked like it just rolled out from the showroom. It came with a radiator protector and frame sliders, and a cash price of RM27k sealed the deal and got the Bee to Wahab's name. Wahab informed me that he's got lowering kits for his bike for the added confidence of having his feet fully-planted on the ground during stops- a good idea.

 I have no doubt that he'll be upgrading his Bee with nice upgrades soon. He's already asking me about Akrapovic exhausts- although for the 2012 model, he has to get a full system instead of a slip-on as per the system I have on my bike.

And if you're getting the Akra, may I suggest that you chuck away the asthmatic air filter and get a BMC race filter to. Makes all the difference and you gonna feel your Bee leaping with its sting ready, at the pull of the throttle.

Anyway, I was out this evening for the Beauty and the Beast musical at Sunway Amphitheatre, and a jolly good show it was too. I used to catch musicals with my wife (then girlfriend) when we were working in London a couple of years ago; and since coming back to Malaysia, this is only our third musical in the last three years. This musical was a modern take on the old story, with more modern interpretations including Opal Gangnam Style, I'm Sexy and I Know It, and Ghostbuster in its performance. It was simply hilarious- and well-worth the PS1 ticket prices.

The last one that we caught in Malaysia was London the Summer Musical, and that was just alright (nothing much to shout about).

Anyway, after the musical ended at 10.30 pm, we had a late dinner at Sunway and thereafter sending my niece back to her place at Puchong before driving back to Hartamas. My wife and lil' Alex were bushed and were soon snoring gently away.


Me? Well, the sky's clear for the night and Green Hornet has been resting for a long while; so I took the chance to let it stretch its legs a lil' bit and went on a ride to KLIA and back. With a smooth night road and minimal traffic, it took only slightly more than an hour to have both man and machine in top form again.


After coming back, I dug out one of the Xena XX6 alarms that I bought a while back, to change a new battery. With so many caliper theft reportings of late, I had previously bought two for the front and rear discs; but found it a lil' troublesome to put on and off each time so the one for the rear has been kept aside after just a week or so. Wahab was telling me that he was looking for one, so I offered him mine at RM180 with a new set of Energizer Lithium battery. He agreed so I retrieved it from my storeroom earlier and changed the new battery. There was a battery provided with the alarm, but my guess was that it's more of a tester unit as the juice ran out very quickly.

Let's see if I get the chance to stretch Green Hornet's legs again later the day- if only the weather holds...

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Thought : Malaysia Boleh!

Malaysians are a creative lot! And since superbikes in Malaysia remain pretty highly-priced and out of the-everyday-Joe's affordability, most Joe whom wants a shortcut would do one of the following :

1) Purchase a Singapore- or Thailand-registered superbike for use in Malaysia (but be prepared for any legal eventualities though);

2) Convert the ride into something else altogether. Now, we are not talking about converting look-alike bikes like Kwek Vulcan 1500 into a Harley-Davidson clone; but something like the below examples :

The police and JPJ would have a field day during road block operasi days.

Thought : Buying a Kwek 650cc this year? Hold your horses!

Because there would be quite a few options coming your way. The ER6 started the ball rolling and till todate, remains the best-selling parallel twin engine motorbike locally.

Then CFMoto's renditions (some called 'em as clones) of ER6 came along, with almost similar design, features and the same displacement as the ER6- supposedly let down only by its quality. But at its price-tag of below RM30k, it's bound to find interests amongst buyers who are ready to take on the unknown and disregard its lack of brand name and unknown support standards as yet in Malaysia.

CFMoto's answer to the ER6N.

CFMoto's answer to the ER6F/Ninja 650R.

Now a more established brand ie Honda is joining in the foray to have its share of the parallel twin engine market. As reported by Cycle World, Honda has made available 3-designs utilising the same parallel twin 500 cc engine ie CBR500R (to match ER6F/Ninja 650R), CBR500F (to match ER6N) and CBR500X (to match Versys 650).

1) CBR500R

If there’s any question about Honda’s new market focus, it should be crystal clear now that Big Red has unveiled multiple new 2013 products. Joining the efficient and inexpensive CRB250R and paradigm-bending NC700X are a trio of budget-friendly, 500cc parallel-Twins: the CBR500R, CB500X and CB500F. This trio proves that Honda is committed to bringing in new riders and welcoming back those who have fallen off the motorcycling wagon. The jewel among the three is the CBR500R, a fully faired sportbike with a strong resemblance to the rest of the CBR family. Which is a good thing, because as American Honda’s Motorcycle Press Manager Bill Savino so accurately puts it, “Nobody wants a beginner bike that looks like a beginner bike.”

You have to flash back to the V-Four-powered VF500 Interceptor to find the last multi-cylinder Honda sportbike with a half-liter engine capacity. Although Honda produced a European 500cc parallel-Twin called the CBF500 until 2003, this new model has little in common with that naked standard.

An all-new liquid-cooled dohc engine is counter-balanced and features a 180-degree crank for reduced vibration and good torque production. Bore diameter is identical to the CBR600RR’s 67.0mm, but stroke is a much longer 66.8.mm. The cylinder head has four valves per barrel, actuated by twin cams with lightweight rocker arms. Fuel mixture is delivered via Programmed Fuel Injection (PGM-FI) with 34mm throttle bodies.

Excellent handling was at the top of the engineer’s list, so a lightweight but rigid steel-tube frame is used for sporty response. Pro-Link rear suspension with a preload-adjustable shock and a conventional 41mm fork are hung at each end. The braking system consists of 320mm wave-style disc with a twin-piston caliper up front and a 240mm disc and single-piston caliper out back.
Optional ABS braking is available but Honda hasn’t released the price—if the CBR250R is any indication, we expect anti-lock will be a $500 premium. The 500R rolls on 17-inch cast-aluminum wheels in 120/70 and 160/60 sizes front and rear, respectively. Seat height is set at a smart 30.9 in.

Full-coverage aerodynamic bodywork is patterned after its CBR600RR and CBR1000RR siblings. Colors include red, black or Pearl White/blue/red. The ABS model is only available in red. The cockpit has a full array of instrumentation within its LCD display, including speedometer, tachometer, odometer, twin tripmeters, fuel gauge, clock, average fuel consumption and current fuel consumption. Pricing for the standard model is $5999.

2) CBR500F

We used to call bikes like the new 2013 Honda CB500F just “motorcycles.” Then the market evolved and got really specialized with sportbikes, adventure bikes, cruisers, etc., to the point that we started calling the plain old all-rounder a “standard,” which then evolved into “naked,” honoring the stripped-fairing sportbike.

Let’s call the CB500F a standard naked, since Honda has segmented its own new parallel-Twin lineup by introducing the CBR500R and CB500X, and the F is a stripped version of the R. The bodywork removal makes the CB500F the least expensive of the trio.

Like its brethren, the CB500F is propelled by a brand-new liquid-cooled, dohc, four valve-per-cylinder, counterbalanced 500cc parallel-Twin with 180-degree crank. Bore and stroke dimensions are nearly square at 67.0 x 66.8mm. Honda’s Programmed Fuel Injection (PGM-FI) delivers fuel through a pair of 34mm throttle bodies. Honda wasn’t talking horsepower, but expect it to be in the 50-at-the-wheel range.

The CBR500F’s steel-tube frame is shared with the CBR500R and CB500X. Suspension consists of a non-adjustable conventional 41mm fork and a Pro-Link single shock with nine stages of preload damping. Chassis geometry is identical to the CBR500R’s: 55.5-inch wheelbase, 25.5-degree rake and 4.05-in. trail. Cast aluminum wheels are wrapped in a 120/70-17 front and 160/60-17 rear tire. A 320mm wave-style front brake disc is pinched by a twin-piston caliper, while out back is a 240mm disc/single-piston-caliper setup. Like the other two models in the five-hundie lineup, an ABS model will be available but price has not been announced (we expect it to be a $500 premium).

A low 30.9-in. seat height should be inviting for a wide range of riders, and the F’s light 420-pound curb weight (with a full tank of fuel) should make it quite manageable. Honda hasn’t released fuel-economy figures for and of the three new 500s, but you can bet mpg will be emphasized as it has been on recent models like the NC700X and CBR250R.

Two colors will be available on the $5499 standard CB500F: Black or Pearl White. The ABS model will only be available in Black.

3) CBR500X

Adventure-style bikes are clearly hot, but Honda has decided to pursue the more street-oriented end of that broad class of motorcycle. The NC700X was the first of Honda’s new 2013 motorcycles to shake up the establishment, and its styling fits right into that urban-adventure genre. But Honda has one more X-style bike up its sleeve in the brand-new CB500X, which was recently unveiled along with two other parallel-Twins for 2013: the CBR500R and CB500F.

Like the rest of the trio, the CB500X—which looks eerily similar to the NC700X—has the same new liquid-cooled engine, a counter-balanced 500cc dohc parallel-Twin with a 67.0mm bore and a 66.8mm stroke. The valves, four per cylinder, are actuated by twin cams with lightweight rocker arms, and the intake mixture is delivered via Programmed Fuel Injection (PGM-FI) with 34mm throttle bodies.

A diamond-shaped steel tube frame is shared with the CB500R and CB500F. The key difference is the X’s added front suspension travel, and revised geometry. The same conventional 41mm fork is used, but it offers 4.9 inches of travel compared to 4.3 in the others. Out back, the same Pro-Link single-shock suspension system has 4.7 in. of travel, identical to its stable mates. A slightly more relaxed 26.5-degree rake angle (compared to the R’s 25.5) and a touch more trail (4.29 in. compared to 4.05 on the R) and a longer 55.9 in. wheelbase (CBR500R: 55.5), should provide stable handling on any type of road.

The 17-in. wheels, shod with a 120/70 front tire and a 160/60 rear, give a good indication of the bike’s asphalt intent. But that’s not to say dirt roads are out of the question. Braking is handled by a 320mm wave-style disc with a twin-piston caliper up front and a 240mm disc and single-piston caliper out back. Optional ABS braking is available, but we don’t know the price. We suspect it will be a $500 premium.

What really sets the CB500X apart visually and functionally, is the upright and relaxed adventure-style riding position. The comfortable ergonomics should make the X an ideal commuter, weekend explorer or errand runner. A wide and upright handlebar, adjustable windscreen and larger-capacity fuel tank (4.5 gallon compared to 4.1) make touring a definite possibility. Optional accessories include sidecases, a 35-liter top box, hand guards, heated grips, centerstand and a taller windscreen in addition to a bunch of bolt-on pieces with the look of carbon fiber.

You probably won’t be attacking single-track dirt trails on the new CB500X, but this urbanite should make adventure touring a whole lot more affordable as Honda hopes to sell the bike for right around $6000, although the official price has yet to be announced. Expect the new CB500X, only available in Matte Black Metallic, to hit dealerships early next summer.