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Monday 19 April 2021

News Briefs


As the organizers of EICMA in Milan continue to seek to reassure its exhibitor community about the status of the 78th staging of the show, following BMW's decision to withdraw permanently, the latest news includes confirmation that Honda Motor is among the OEMs who will display their wares in November (24-28).

After ADV events in Norway (2017) and South Africa (2019), Honda Motor Europe has postponed the 2021 edition of the Honda Adventure Roads experience that was slated for 30 CRF1100L Africa Twin riders for Iceland this year - new dates for 2022 are June 24 to July 4. With BMW taking GS Adventure riders to Albania this summer, and KTM planning to tear up Western Greece, now that it hopes to be a player in the ADV space, it will be interesting to see if Harley raids its depleted marketing budgets to play the "us too" game for such an undertaking in the future.

NBC Sports has announced that it will again be showing Progressive AFT this year, with all 17 races to be screened on NBCSN, with TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold to livestream every race of the 2021 season.

In what has been described as a "shock finding", a French risk-assessment study has said that a five-year lane-splitting trial caused a 12% increase in motorcycle crashes, so the French authorities have not legalized filtering. The study found that while riders were less likely to be rear-ended, there was an increase in motorbikes running into the backs of other vehicles.

Despite the alarming findings of a road safety survey into lane splitting in Europe, the momentum towards it as a congestion busting solution appears to still be behind it - Montana being the latest U.S. state to pass motorcycle lane-filtering legislation, making it the third state to do so (California and Utah are the other two). Contrary to the research findings in Europe (entirely different riding conditions and street architecture), the AMA endorses lane splitting, given the long-term success in California and a University of California-Berkeley research study showing that the practice enhances motorcycle safety.

One of the many concoctions of the Wall Street financial community, the SPAC or Special Purpose Acquisition Company has now made its way into the powersports industry. Canadian electric PWC and snowmobile manufacturer Taiga Motors is set to sidestep the conventional IPO route to achieving a stock exchange listing and acquiring capital resources. They will do so by 'merging' with a 'Blank Cheque Company' (Canaccord Genuity Group Inc.), established for the specific purpose of allowing privately held businesses to access investor capital and achieve a listing without the costs, regulatory requirements and needed time scales of the conventional Initial Public Offering process.

As many custom bike shows in Europe continue to postpone or still await opportunity, the Devitt Insurance backed 'Kickback Custom and Retro Bike Show' in the UK has announced May 23 for a 2021 one-day event in the upscale spa town of Cheltenham, England. As an innovative way of maximizing attendance under COVID protocols, the organizers will allow the public to attend in two 3.5-hour sessions between 10:00 to 12:30 and 12:30 to 17:00.

Industry veteran and former Chairman Larry Little has been given the MIC Chairman's Award by present Chairman Paul Vitrano, in recognition of a 40-year career that included 30 years as publisher of Cycle World, 16 years on the MIC Board, 10 as Chairman. Little was also the co-founder of the MICExpo at Market Place Events - now owned and operated by MIC Events.

Will Pan America buyers be getting automatic no cost first year enrolment into dealership H.O.G. Chapters? If so, will H.O.G. Road Captains start catering to ADV buyers in their ride-out programs? If not, what incentive(s) can ADV riders expect instead? Or is theirs a future of being a perennially oppressed minority, subjected to prejudice and discrimination?

Having gotten its Cruisetec tire onto an Indian Motorcycle model for the first time in 2019 (as OE fitment for the 2020 Challenger), Metzeler has announced that Indian is to use Cruisetec on the Roadmaster, Chieftain, Springfield and Vintage. On the FTR (including the S and R Carbon), Indian is using the Metzeler Sportec (M9 RR; 120/70 ZR 17 front, 180/55 ZR 17 rear).

Sources: AMD, IDN, FT, Reuters, PSB, MPN, BDN, MCN, AP, Bloomberg, MSNW, Electrek,,,, Cycle World,