Wednesday, December 17, 2014

AJP Motorcycles Introduces its Rally Bike... LOOKS like it belongs at the Dakar...

As with SUVs in the 90's and early '00s motorcycles are appearing to go through a period of expanding "adventure" models.  As every SUV was marketed as being tough and ready to go mountain climbing at one time so it is that motorcycle manufacturers are pumping out ADV models left and right.  Not to make you think that suddenly the US consumer is interested in the Dakar or other Rally-Raid events.  No...but the ADV market (generally larger bikes that can be used both on and off road for long distances) is motorcycling's fastest growing in terms of unit percentages.
Many companies though are putting some extra plastic cladding, some bigger lights and one inch more suspension travel and call it a day.

AJP at least has a history in producing Enduro bikes and exclusively Enduro bikes so their move into the ADV segment makes sense.  They bring some interesting ideas to the table with the newly introduced PR7 660.  On the "small" side for an ADV or Dakar bike it should be exceedingly agile, particularly given their Enduro heritage where their bikes are more designed to maneuver single track through the woods vs. wide open desert terrain.  The bike is also really light.  Listed at 155 kg this is only 341 lbs.

That said some concerns have been brought up as to the size of the gas tank which at only about 4 1/2 gallons is not likely to cut it for more than the shortest of rally-raid stages.  Furthermore, while the positioning of the gas tank under the seat makes the bike's center of gravity nice and centered and low, it also means you have to get off the bike and lift up the seat to refill it.  For quick refills you don't want to be getting off the bike, releasing the seat, undoing the fuel cap and then repeating the process in reverse--not conducive to fast times, ease of access and ability to mount items on or around the seat.

The bike will be available in late '15 via your local AJP distributor and imported from Portugal where they are made.  Their US distributor is a bunch of great Vermont based check them out.

AJP USA website...

AJP Worldwide website...

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