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Old 02-01-2009, 03:17 PM   #76
UnderNewOwnership
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jody H
Aprilia Mana
850cc V-twin, 76hp - 54 ft# torque, CVT transmission with 7 speed paddle shifters or fully automatic shifting

There's also an ABS version in the pipes.
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Old 02-01-2009, 05:01 PM   #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ray_rev
If I were still riding year-round I would have seriously considered one for the commute and daily chores. It's like a sci-fi Honda Deauville..

I've seen a couple of guys playing on them though, they do look fun.
Love my 250. Absolutely awesome commuter and a complete hoot in the corners. Piaggio knocked it out of the park.

If I had the 500 I'd probably be in jail by now and lacking a license.
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Old 02-01-2009, 07:12 PM   #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jody H
Aprilia Mana
850cc V-twin, 76hp - 54 ft# torque, CVT transmission with 7 speed paddle shifters or fully automatic shifting

I've never ridden one, but I this looks like a very nice bike on paper. But I'm still skeptical that a CVT (even with a fixed ratio mode) is the way to go for a performance bike though. I believe we need a conventional transmission and conventional clutch (wet or dry - preferably dual-clutch) controlled by a computer with paddle shifters.

IOW, we need a motorcycle equivalent of the VW/Audi DSG.

- Mark
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Old 02-01-2009, 07:34 PM   #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markjenn
IOW, we need a motorcycle equivalent of the VW/Audi DSG.

- Mark
Would you pay an extra $4k on top of what a conventional bike would cost?
To me one of the things that make motorcycles enjoyable is the minimalist pure operation that's missing in almost all new automobiles.

If you want to be insulated to that degree, why not just buy a convertible with all the bells & whistles?
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Old 02-01-2009, 10:07 PM   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dilligaf0220
Would you pay an extra $4k on top of what a conventional bike would cost?
No, but some would. An in any event, the cost of the six-speed DSG option on a GTI is $1,100, not $4K, and this is for a system designed to handle triple the torque of even the more powerful motorcycle engines. Obviously, the R&D would have to be absorbed over some production numbers, but I see no reason that a sophisticated auto tranny on a bike shouldn't be priced about where it is priced for automobiles (~$1K).

Quote:
To me one of the things that make motorcycles enjoyable is the minimalist pure operation that's missing in almost all new automobiles.
Fine, but some want the two-wheeled experience with sophistication. Just like in cars, there's room for both styles of shifting.

- Mark
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Old 02-02-2009, 03:32 AM   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markjenn
But I'm still skeptical that a CVT (even with a fixed ratio mode) is the way to go for a performance bike though.

- Mark
A magazine tested it on a track and it was faster (in the reviewer's hands) than the SL750 (Shiver) they pitted it against.

Then again, that's not extremely surprising, since F1 banned CVTs in the '90s for being a bit too good.
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Old 02-02-2009, 08:38 AM   #82
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what the hey?

I being a Pacific Coast owner was looking forward to Honda coming out with something to replace my trusty steed and they failed. Its too expensive and too George Jetson. I know my bike is butt ugly and slow but its basicly a two wheel mini van anyway. Thankfully they last forever. Dang!
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Old 02-02-2009, 08:47 AM   #83
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I took a test ride on a Mana. It worked surprisingly well.

I'd still rather shift the old fashioned way, but there are people out there who prefer automatics. Probably great for a disabled person, too.

The bike actually slows down when you close the throttle. That was nice. I thought it would be a runaway going downhill, like an automatic car, but they've programmed the transmission quite nicely.
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Old 02-02-2009, 10:41 AM   #84
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Forgive me for saying so, but I hope automatic transmissions never ever catch on in motorcycles. I'm already watching my beloved manual transmission quickly become extinct in automobiles.

In my mind, motorcycles are in some ways for enthusiasts. People who actually ENJOY driving/riding, with all that entails, including being in absolute control of their machine. Besides all that, it's just so much FUN to shift! If people who are too lazy or uncoordinated to drive a manual are barred from motorcycles due to the absence of automatic bikes, all the better. The number of people who really want to ride and can't due to a physical disability is relatively small. For the most part it's laziness or fear. In both cases, I say stick with your slushbox SUV and leave the fun to us.

Doesn't anyone at all agree with me out of principle? I feel like I'm the only vehicular tradionalist left on this planet.

Paul
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Old 02-02-2009, 11:00 AM   #85
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FutureBoxer
If people who are too lazy or uncoordinated to drive a manual are barred from motorcycles due to the absence of automatic bikes, all the better. The number of people who really want to ride and can't due to a physical disability is relatively small. For the most part it's laziness or fear....Doesn't anyone at all agree with me out of principle?
I don't agree because I think the "principle" you're exposing is basically elitist.

Our sport needs all hands on deck and if an automatic helps some folks with disabilities, coordination difficulties, or just preference to be able to enjoy our sport, why not be inclusive? There's some folks out there who feel no motorcycle should have an electric starter either because a "real motorcyclist" should be able to kick over any motorcycle and they'd use this as a litmus test to be exclude riders from the sport. What you're saying is basically no different.

And one of the huge issues with our sport is that, at least in the US, it's almost totally a recreational sport, not something that people use for practical transportation. Part of broadening the appeal is to product more practical bikes that are used for basic day-to-day transportation - that's the reason scooters are so popular. And a big reason for scooters popularity is the no-shifting. I think it is a positive thing for practical features to trickle down to conventional motorcycles and make our bikes more than weekend toys.

As to your worry that somehow automatics will 'take over" like in cars, I'll point out that there are: 1) still a LARGE number of manual transmission cars being produced, and 2) the mfgs will build what we'll buy and if the majority of folks agree with you that manuals are preferable, then certainly they'll continue building them. IOW, I think you're being overly paranoid to be worried that a few auto models might take away your choice to continue shifting.

- Mark
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Old 02-02-2009, 11:24 AM   #86
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I gotta think that Honda is hoping that it will catch on this time, unlike its last attempt at auto trans back in the early 80s(?).

It doesn't look much worse than the chrome slathered behemoths that people think they need.
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Old 02-02-2009, 11:35 AM   #87
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Quote:
Originally Posted by exoff-roadgoat
I being a Pacific Coast owner was looking forward to Honda coming out with something to replace my trusty steed and they failed.
I think Honda Deauville is pretty much the replacement for Pacific Coast and it's been available for years. They just failed to import it to your parts of the world.
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Old 02-02-2009, 01:09 PM   #88
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Hi Mark,

I don't think it's an unfounded fear. I don't know why you would argue that manuals aren't on the way out when it comes to cars, with a few notable exceptions. As the DSG's continue to improve and become cheaper this trend will continue.

The enthusiast's preferences always get overwhelmed simply because the general consumer outnumbers him. I worry that the same thing could happen with bikes. If a bike is used as every day transportation just as a car is, tell me why the same thing wouldn't happen with motorcycle transmissions. I don't mean overnight of course.

This all being said, I'm not against people having the choice, as long as manual transmissions are always available. I just don't have much faith considering what I see happnening with cars and countless disscusions/arguements with people on this topic with cars (99% of whom don't agree with me).

Paul
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Old 02-02-2009, 01:20 PM   #89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FutureBoxer
This all being said, I'm not against people having the choice, as long as manual transmissions are always available. I just don't have much faith considering what I see happnening with cars and countless disscusions/arguements with people on this topic with cars (99% of whom don't agree with me).
I wish there were more manual availability in cars too, but there ARE a lot of manual cars out there, so I don't think the doomsday scenario of everything being automatic is happening nor likely. I don't have any data, but it appears to me that the manual availability with cars has more or less stabilized at its current level. All the cars I'd be interested in driving (and can afford!) are available with manuals.

On motorcycles, I don't think the "once we open the door, the automatics will take over" scenario seems remotely likely and this seems like a overly defensive position against new technology. But who knows.

Didn't mean to climb down on you, but you did state your position as one of "principle" and I think on principle our sport needs to be inclusive not exclusive. Variety and choice is healthy for everyone.

- Mark
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Old 02-02-2009, 01:56 PM   #90
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Hi Mark,

I really hope you're right.
Actually, if you really want to know, I would indeed strongly prefer automatics to be scooter only. Yes, out of principle. If that makes me an elitist (when it comes to motorcycles) then that's fine with me.

As I said, disabled persons that are clamoring to get onto motorcycles instead of scooters are relatively few in number. Uncoordinated people should look elsewhere for fun times. Some people should just not participate in certain activities, period. Lazy people, I have no respect for. I also don't see what they're missing that they can't get out of the latest maxi scooters.

I don't have any actual data either, but I was under the impression that motorcycle ridership is actually doing pretty well now. Why do we need such a huge influx of new uncoordinated lazy riders who can't be bothered to learn a new skill and then squeeze a lever and push a pedal from time to time.

By the way, I'm not angry or offended and hope you're not either. I just have somewhat strong opinions and am passionate about this topic.
Thanks,
Paul
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