AMA News & Notes: August 2018

National and regional news for motorcyclists

AMA News Author (no byline)

National and Regional News

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The AMA joined representatives from the Motorcycle Riders Foundation and the marine and outdoor power equipment industries to outline concerns over E15 fuel (15 percent ethanol by volume) to the Congressional Motorcycle and Boating caucuses and to raise concerns about a lack of consumer education regarding the risks associated with increasing levels of ethanol in fuels. The AMA also signed a joint letter that went to each member of the U.S. House and Senate in support of the Consumer Protection and Fuel Transparency Act of 2018 (H.R. 5855), which would require the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to revise labeling requirements for E15 fuel pumps and initiate a consumer education program about the risks of using fuel containing more than 10 percent ethanol by volume in vehicles and machinery not designed for it.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Wayne Allard, AMA vice president of government relations, addressed the Congressional Motorsports Caucus on July 25, along with other representatives from the motorsports world. Allard discussed the importance of passing the Recognizing the Protection of Motorsports (RPM) Act, which clarifies that it is legal under federal law to modify the emissions system of a motor vehicle that is converted for race-use only. Joining Allard were motorsports facility owners, automotive racing team owners, SEMA, NHRA Pro Stock racer Alex Laughlin and Feld Entertainment. The event was moderated by Tim Frost, the publisher of National Speedway Directory.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Trump Administration has announced plans to end a special waiver that allows California to regulate vehicle emissions. Reports from Bloomberg and Reuters said ending the waiver would eliminate California's stricter vehicle-emissions standards and cap federal fuel economy requirements at 35 mpg, rather than allowing them to rise to 50 mpg by 2025. The EPA and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also are expected to propose barring California from setting its own fuel economy rules. Thirteen states and the District of Columbia have adopted California's stricter emissions standards, accounting for nearly 40 percent of U.S. car and truck sales.

State News

TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif. — The U.S. Marine Corps will not be closing the Johnson Valley Shared Use Area in California during August, as previously announced. The Marines reduced the scope of their planned exercises, so they will confine their August training to the Exclusive Military Use Area. The Marine Corps said it plans to use the Shared Use Area for military training during August 2019. Those with questions may call (760) 830-3737 or email smbplmsjohnsonvalley@usmc.mil. Additional information is available at www.29palms.marines.mil/Staff-Offices/Government-and-External-Affairs/Johnson-Valley or at www.blm.gov/visit/johnson-valley-ohv-area.

LISBON, Maine — Town officials are considering whether to allow ATV riders access to some public roads for use as trail connectors. The owner of some property used by the riders to get from one trail to another has cut off access. So, the Town Council may amend its ATV ordinance to allow riders to travel Wing Street, State Route 9 and State Route 196.

LANSING, Mich. — The state is opening 6,300 miles of forest roads to off-road vehicles this year under a plan announced in late 2017. The state Department of Natural Resources Forest Resources Division said the plan strikes a balance between resource protection and motorized vehicle access to public lands. About 1,200 miles of forest roads will remain closed to off-road vehicles.

CARSON CITY, Nev. — The Nevada Commission on Off-Highway Vehicles has about $950,000 available for grants for OHV projects. The application and instructions are available online at ohv.nv.gov/grant-program. Applications are due by Nov. 1. Grant awards will be made in December. The State’s grant funding is generated by the registration fees of OHVs. Administered by the Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, the Nevada Off-Highway Vehicles Program promotes safe and responsible use of the state's outstanding opportunities for off-road recreation, with grants to fund OHV related projects including trail improvements, mapping, signage, law enforcement, education, safety training, restoration and more. Previous OHV grant projects include the Logandale Trails trailhead facilities, Nevada Outdoor School OHV education, Kokopelli ATV Club trail marking, maintenance of the Shoshone, Peavine Mountain, and Ranger Trail and the new Nevada Trail Maps Collaborative. To view video clips highlighting previous OHV grant projects, please visit ohv.nv.gov/grant-recipients. For more information, contact Jenny Scanland at (775) 684-2794 or jscanland@ohv.nv.gov.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Motorcycle Ohio, the state's rider training program, has become part of the state Bureau of Motor Vehicles. The agency previously was part of the Ohio Department of Public Safety. Officials said the program will continue with "business as usual," with all funding following Motorcycle Ohio and all staff members remaining in place.

SUPERIOR, Wis. — City officials are accepting public input on a plan to allow year-round access to city streets by ATV and UTV riders. The proposal, approved by the city Public Safety Commission, would allow riders on certain streets. The City Council plans to vote on the issue Aug. 7. A map of the proposed routes can be found at ci.superior.wi.us/879/ATVUTV-Route-Proposal.

Industry News

AZUSA, Calif. — CSC Motorcycles has announced a new electric motorcycle, the City Slicker, to be initially offered at $1,995 under CSC’s introductory “Don’t Miss The Boat” program. The all-electric City Slicker motorcycle is approved for all 50 states. Like CSC’s other offerings, the City Slicker is manufactured by Zongshen, one of the world’s largest motorcycle manufacturers, based in China. The electric motorcycle uses a non-hub motor and the final drive is a belt, which eliminates the chain noise, the company said. The City Slicker requires 6 to 8 hours to recharge a fully-discharged battery using a standard 110VAC outlet. CSC sells directly to its customers, with no dealers. More information is available at www.cscmotorcycles.com.

TOKYO — Honda Motorcycles UK is working with Datatool to fit tracking devices to its motorcycles. The equipment will be installed free on all new Hondas, while owners of older Hondas receive a discount on the tracker and installation. There is an ongoing subscription cost. The Datatool TrakKING Adventure offers theft monitoring and instant notification, as well as detailed trip information that is automatically uploaded to a cloud service. The mapping technology and tracking capability covers all of Western Europe.

TOKYO — Honda Motor Co. and Yamaha Motor Co. plan to introduce hybrid scooters in Thailand. Honda plans to launch the PCX Hybrid in August, while Yamaha released its Grand Filano Hybrid in July. Each model represents the first hybrid motorcycle for the respective company. The motorcycles feature a lithium-ion battery in addition to a 150cc engine.

MINAMI-KU, HAMAMATSU, Japan — Suzuki Motorcycle India, a subsidiary of automaker Suzuki Motor Corp., is planning to bring in electric two-wheelers to the Indian market by 2020. A report at IndiaTimes.com said the two-wheelers will be introduced about the same time Suzuki launches an electric car in India. Plans call for an electric scooter and an electric motorcycle.

International News

TORONTO — The City Council is considering allowing motorcycles to filter to the front when traffic is stopped. In addition, the city is considering an increase in the number of motorcycle parking zones and allowing motorcycles to use reserved lanes on some streets. The ideas were submitted as ways to reduce traffic congestion in the city.

AMA News

PICKERINGTON, Ohio — AMA members will receive discount pricing and special access at the eighth round of the 2018 MotoAmerica Series, home of the AMA Superbike Championship, on Aug. 24-26 at the Pittsburgh International Race Complex in Pittsburgh, Pa. In addition to a 15 percent discount on a three-day ticket to the Championship of Pittsburgh, AMA members who use the exclusive promotion code available at www.americanmotorcyclist.com/For-Members/Member-Discount-Codes will receive an automatic upgrade to the AMA VIP Experience, which includes access to the AMA Parking Corral with free gear check, hot pit access during Friday's Motul Superbike practice, hot grid access during Saturday's Motul Superbike practice, premier podium viewing access during podium celebrations and Sunday fan lap of the track (motorcycles only; safety gear required). MotoAmerica is the professional road racing series sanctioned by the AMA. Its class champions are recognized by both the AMA and FIM North America, the FIM Continental Union that is made up of both the AMA and the Canadian Motorcyclist Association.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio — AMA Charter Life Member Don L. Harms was the winning name drawn at 2018 AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, featuring Royal Enfield, in the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame raffle. Harms' name was drawn by AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame inductee Scot Harden, who served as the 2018 AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days grand marshal. Harms, 81, of Kirkland, Wash., won a 1941 Harley-Davidson WL, the civilian version of the WLA (the "A" refers to "Army") produced for the U.S. Army for use during World War II. The WL is built around a high-compression flathead 45 cubic inch V-twin pumping out over 23 horsepower. Known in its day for reliability, the 750cc WLs were workhorses, whether in "A" trim or the civilian model. The WL is ready to ride with fresh paint and a tune-up from noted Harley-Davidson restorer Mike Wells of C&S Cycle Service in Mount Victory, Ohio. All raffle proceeds go to the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio — Anthony Cox, of Jersey Mills, Pa., was selected as the winner of a 1975 Yamaha DT100 enduro in the "Ran When Parked" Raffle Bike Challenge at AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, featuring Royal Enfield. The “Ran When Parked” Raffle Bike Challenge provided an opportunity for the AMA and the Skidmark Garage in Cleveland, Ohio, to demonstrate how to take a relatively inexpensive vintage motorcycle and get it into operating condition, while learning basic motorcycle mechanic skills along the way. The project also demonstrated the value of community garages, where motorcyclists can rent space and tools and tap the expertise of seasoned riders and wrenchers. The Skidmark Garage crew got the motorcycle running during AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days during the first weekend in July. All of the proceeds from the raffle will go to support the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. More information about the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame and other raffle bikes can be found at www.motorcyclemuseum.org.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio — Plan now to attend the 2018 AMA Legends & Champions Weekend, Dec. 7-9. This event celebrates the past, honors the present and builds for the future. The event at the Hilton Columbus/Polaris in Columbus, Ohio, includes the 2018 AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, the 2018 AMA Championship Banquet and the annual AMA Congress. Also during the weekend, the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in Pickerington, Ohio, will host an open house in honor of the Class of 2018 and to install their Hall of Fame nameplates and representative motorcycles or memorabilia in the Hall of Fame museum. Tickets for the 2018 AMA Legends & Champions weekend will be available soon. Reservations at the Columbus Hilton/Polaris are available now at a special group rate at the following link: www.hilton.com/en/hi/groups/personalized/C/CMHPOHF-AMOTOA-20181205/index.jhtml. Guests also can call (614) 310-2229 and reference the group "American Motorcyclist Association" or "AMOTOA."

PICKERINGTON, Ohio — The American Motorcyclist Association offers its condolences to the family and friends of AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame inductee Gavin Trippe, who passed away July 2 at the age of 78. Mr. Trippe is perhaps best remembered for his involvement in 1979 with ABC Sports in creating and promoting "Superbikers" for the television network's Wide World of Sports. Superbikers was the first motorcycle competition to bring together the stars of various specialties of racing to compete head to head on such a prominent stage. The Superbikers concept spawned Supermoto racing, which became a popular national and world championship division by the early 2000s. Mr. Trippe's company, Trippe/Cox Productions, also produced the first U.S. Motocross Grand Prix in Carlsbad, Calif., in 1973. He promoted the first AMA national road races at Ontario (California) Motor Speedway, the Champion Spark Plug 200. After the demise of the Speedway, he took that event to Laguna Seca Raceway to launch the current history of motorcycle racing in Monterey. Gavin Trippe was inducted into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 2005.

* * * * *

AMA News & Notes is a monthly publication compiled and edited by the American Motorcyclist Association. Designed to inform motorcyclists of rights-related issues and events in the United States and around the world, AMA News & Notes welcomes your input. Suggestions and editorial contributions can be sent to AMA Managing Editor Jim Witters at jwitters@amacycle.org.

Sign up and stay informed: AMA News & Notes keeps motorcyclists up-to-date on hot topics, news affecting the motorcycling community and opportunities to communicate with elected officials. Click here to check the “Sign me up for News & Notes” box.

AMA Action Alerts notify motorcyclists when and how to make a difference on important issues. Click here to see the most recent AMA Action Alerts, or to sign up and receive them.

Readers also may sign up to receive AMA e-newsletters: AMA Extra includes a summary of AMA news, ATV E-News includes a summary of ATV-related news and Hall of Fame Insider focuses on the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. To subscribe to one or more, click here.

Protect your right to ride! Volunteering is easy, and it’s rewarding. To learn how you can help, visit us online.

Follow the AMA on Facebook at www.facebook.com/americanmotorcyclist, on Twitter @ama_riding and @ama_rights and on Instagram at @ama_riding.