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Something from a Nightmare or a Brave New World for Motorcycling? I'm Conflicted....

November 6, 2017


Being of a slightly nerdish nature, I'm all about tech and engineering, but a significant part of my motorbiking kicks are derived from their (mostly) incomparable aesthetics and unique status as 'functional art' (as designated by...well, me). A motorcycle represents one of the few instances I can think of where 'function' compliments 'form' - one is not overly compromised or dictated to by the other. 

In the Niken's case (pictured above), function dictates form and in my eyes the result is, well, a solid 9 on the 'pleasant dreaming' to 'running screaming'  scale. The bike it is based on - the MT09 - already looked a little 'Transformers' for my taste but hells teeth, could anyone really love a face like this? A miniature one of these crawling across the floor would have me trying to bash it with the heel of my shoe, but a full size one...

Having said all that, the tech involved is brilliant and if it can serve to pull more people into the biking universe that is obviously a great thing. Three wheel 'motorbikes' are big business in Europe too, if what I saw in Paris over the summer was any indication. 

I'd love to see one of these with an extra wheel at the back, perhaps with the drive reaching the back axle between the two leaning wheels. That would really allow the full fat 'leaning into corners' motorbike experience, while providing amazing levels of lateral grip. I can't help feeling that the 9WT9's arrangement of having the front wheels doubled up but the back as a standard single would create an imbalance when G forces are bring literally applied through a corner. 

With that last thought in mind, I've been mentally refining  my own design in the evening these past few months ...(Little wonder I can't sleep at night)...

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