May 2016

Bike magazine May 2016 issue

Obviously we are very excited about new bikes in this issue because there are a lot of new bikes to get very excited about. The jammy journalists at Bike have been to nine foreign launches. It’s a tough job (he lied).

But it’s not just foreign launches; Bike got the first UK ride on a Triumph Tiger Explorer, and we watched one being put together in the Hinckley factory. At Bruntingthorpe Proving Ground we conducted the first independent performance and power tests of the upgraded Kawasaki ZX-10R.

On the roads (and runways) around Peterborough we did a group test that included the brand new Triumph Speed Triple and KTM 1290 Super Duke SE and in Lincolnshire and Rutland we got a sunny ride on the BMW R nineT Sport. The astonishing diversity of bikes in this issue, from Yamaha FJR to Montesa 4Ride, underlines the rise of the retro and the astonishing control afforded by modern electronics, but also the joy of a well engineered package; it’s nice to see the cuddly Suzuki SV650 being given some love again.

But in truth, for all the fact that I’m excited about the new bikes and I can’t wait to ride a Triumph Thruxton R and KTM 1290 GT for myself, the best thing about last month was getting out for a ride. A day on Portuguese trails was fantastic, but the low spring sun on the B676 between Colsterworth and Melton Mowbray was even better. New bikes are great, but you don’t need this year’s model to enjoy a brilliant ride. Sunshine is handy though.

Enjoy the issue!

Inside this issue...

A ride with : Ulrich Ast

BMW product manager Ulrich Ast swaps the Bavarian winter for Portuguese sunshine. Bike went along to ride the 2016 F-series GS models, and talk out about Star Wars hover bikes.

The most important British bikes ever...

Still unmistakably Hinckley’s baby, yet built in Thailand, the new Bonneville was a long time coming – but well worth the wait.

So what’s it do, mister?

Don’t let looks fool you – the 2016 Kawasaki ZX-10R is heavily updated. How does it compare to the old one, and to the opposition? Bike’s dyno and test strip tell all.