By ALAN TECCHIO
With my snowsports column coming to an end for the season, it is once again time for my moto-writing season to start up in conjunction with our northeast moto-riding season. I always like to lead off with coverage of the most recent Progressive International Motorcycle Show that for us takes place at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in Manhattan each winter.
This show just keeps getting better and better in my opinion and this year was no exception. The convention center floor was laid out smarter than ever allowing better flow for entrants and exhibitors. I can recall a time when this show was so badly laid out that a huge cluster F of people were too jammed up on the floor to enjoy it. Thankfully those days are long gone.
This year, big highlights for me were the many revolutionary things HarleyDavidson has going on. Not just with their first, sweet electric bike The LiveWire, but especially with the introduction of their brand new 60 degree V-Twin fully liquidcooled powerplant. This engine will be powering a brand new adventure touring model– The Pan-America, a custom 1250 cruiser and a street fighter model called The Bronx. This is earth-shattering news for H-D. I mean, an adventure bike and a street fighter?! So cool. These new models will be seeing the light of day from this year through 2022 and the engine itself will be available in two sizes, a 975 (pictured) and a 1250. The Bronx and Pan-America can be partially seen here encased in glass with the actual engine displayed out front. Thanks go out to H-D’s Jenn Hoyer and Joe Gustafson for clearly explaining the new machinery to all the press that were in attendance. Learn more at www.harley-davidson.com.
Another memorable presentation was given by Italian E-Bike company Energica. Ironically, I was with my old high school buddy and fellow moto-head Antonio Rosciglione at the press intro. He and I attended Italian class together way back when and have a special appreciation for bikes from our familys’ homeland. Pictured here is Energica CEO Stefano Benatti with their Eva Ribelle model, (one of three in their 2020 line). Antonio and I were both hypnotized by the gorgeous, sexy lines of this electric beauty and the sheer linear power it exhibited (even while held captive on a stand). With Energica’s Marketing Director Lawrence Kuykendall alongside him, Stefano demonstrated the sick torque and power of the Eva Ribelle. It was enormously impressive. Man what I would do to get my gloves on one of these bad boys for a long term test! Of particular note is that Energica is the sole manufacturer of race bikes for the FIM Enel MotoE race series that runs in conjunction with the MotoGP roadracing series. You can find out more about this Italian, electric revolution at www.energicamotor.com.
Speaking of MotoGP… Alpinestars were also on hand to introduce their new, highly advanced Tech-Air air-bag jacket system which has its origins in the MotoGP roadracing world. Their technologically advanced air bag system is always evolving and is already famous for protecting racers from injury during ontrack crashes. It will cover your shoulders, chest, ribs and full back effectively and efficiently minimizing the risk of injury. This system also has a street rider version which is what they were demonstrating at the show. This is serious, sophisticated sensor-triggered stuff and though it’s not cheap, ($1,149.95 for the racing version and $799.95 for the street version) what’s your body’s well being worth? Check into it at www.Alpinestars.com.
Don’t miss this year’s Progressive International Motorcycle Show. To learn more go to www.motorcycleshows.com.