New Bikes

EBR announces two new models on the way

To arrive over the next two years

OVER THE weekend, convalescent US manufacturer Erik Buell Racing (EBR) announced in a press release that it’s got two new bikes in the pipeline.

Bill Melvin, CEO of EBR’s owner Liquid Asset Partners, and the man ultimately in control of EBR’s revival, said that the frist of the two new offerings will arrive this autumn.

Although the new bike will likely be based on the firm’s existing 1190 platform, which EBR is working to expand, it will be the first expansion of EBR’s range since the firm was rescued from near-fatal financial difficulties at the start of the year.

Melvin said the new bike would be ‘Quick, dark and low’ and that it would be ‘exciting for urban street riders'.

More significantly, the company is also working on creating a ‘sub-$10k platform’ for 2018 – a domestic alternative for US buyers of cheap Japanese bikes, and a model that could give a EBR a substantial shot in the arm if successful. 

EBR also said that it’ll be attending various motorcycle shows in the US, where it will be showing prototypes of its forthcoming models.


dudeofrude's picture

This is great and all but the problem is they are stuck in a catch 22. Nobody is going to trust them enough to buy one given they're history of folding, then they won't make enough money to stay a float, then they'll fold again and the 2 people that own an ebr will be screwed again. No parts, no dealer support.
They're only real chance is if they pull off a Yamaha MT moment and make something that everyone instantly loves?

Keith2's picture

I admire their persistence, but it's become painful to watch.

BubbaDaytona's picture

Is to be bought out by a larger company with a large dealer network. But, Buell is toxic to work with and such a PITA that Harley just cut him loose.
The reality is there are too many supersport companies for the current sales and the supersport segment is in retraction.

You say that "Buell is toxic to work with and such a PITA that Harley just cut him loose."

And just where did you get that "information"? I ask only because it does not seem at all based in reality.

Erik Buell first went to work as an employee of HD in 1979. He was an engineer on the FXR Super Glide II and was largely responsible for the chassis. Many still consider that the best handling Harley ever made.

Buell parted amicably with HD shortly thereafter so the he could continue to develop sport bikes. After leaving, people he'd worked with at HD helped arrange to sell him dozens of unused XR1000 racing engines for use in the Buell RR1000. In the 1990s, Erik Buell re-formed the 'Buell Motorcycle Company' in which Harley-Davidson invested a 51 percent interest from the company's onset. Harley-Davidson bought complete control of Buell Motorcycle in 2003, and distributed all Buell motorcycles through HD dealerships. HD kept Erik Buell responsible for the engineering and design of all Buell motorcycles.

After HD shut down Buell motorcycles, they offered Erik Buell continuing employment at Harley Davidson, which Buell turned down.

None of that sounds like the story of someone who is "toxic to work with and...a PITA" Were that the case, HD would have permanently severed their relationship with him in the early 1980s. Instead, they chose to work with him for many years.

Further, the loyalty of his Erik Buell's employees, many of whom would eagerly work for him again in a heartbeat, speaks volumes. Not a one of them interviewed by the news media after Buell was shut down had a bad word to say about Erik Buell.

Also, EBR never made a Supersport bike, which is the 600cc class. All of their bikes are 1190cc displacement twins, like KTM RC8s. That puts them squarely in the Superbike class.

Who have you talked with who said the Erik Buell was "toxic to work with" or "a PITA"? Every person I've ever met who knows Erik Buell has had nothing but good things to say about him.

BubbaDaytona's picture

Some sycophant with a tie to EBR responds with the typical PR "Eric is a great guy genius". Facts:
1. Harley gave up on Buell. They shut it all down and dismantled the factory to never be seen again, the rest is just PR stories.
2. Harley argued with Buell constantly, to the point that Buell took his Blast single he sold with Harley for years, which was arguably a horribly designed bike, and posted videos of the Buell factory crushing them. Look it up.
Great business acumen there Eric. Blast customers must have felt proud.
3. Same thing with Hero, they gave up.
4. First tests of the new EBRs with Hero the media complained of the same quality issues they saw with Buell. One report even had blowing oil at the end of a test. Gee..wonder why no one bought them?
5. In the early days, Buell had to recall every bike he made for major frame failures. The list of major safety recalls for this brand is scary. It's public record.
6. Talk to Buell customers and see what they say about him, and then guess why sales went to zero, before Hero.
7. Look up the first days of the Rotax 1125R motor, Buell completely fabricated numbers and the press called him out on his lies. He claimed 160hp+, no one ever saw over 130. Harley did not like him sourcing this motor, and Buell wanted a proper sport bike motor but they did not want to invest.
8. We won't even talk about "innovations" like storing gas in an aluminum frame, then seeing complaints about boiling gas on warm days, which is exactly why this concept was abandoned in the 60s.
9. Of course his employees won't say bad things about him, it's small industry in the US and I'm sure they think those crap bikes were awesome.

I could go on...

I wish there was a viable US sport bike company, right now the only real option could be Victory, who is making great motors HD could never seem to afford, despite a ridiculous market share and profits.

Some Internet troll with a chip on his shoulder and no knowledge about EBR has to chime in every time there is an article about EBR.

I have no ties to EBR. I don't know Erik Buell or anyone who works, or worked, at EBR. Like almost everything that followed, your claim that I had a "tie to EBR" was demonstrating your real talent: Writing fiction. The big difference between us is that I know what I'm talking about and I will proceed to correct you point-by-point:


1. Harley dumped MV Agusta and Buell at the same time because they know nothing about sport bikes and have no idea of how to market real motorcycles -- just the Harley fantasy biker badass "lifestyle."

2. Harley forced Erik Buell to create the Blast under the Buell brand so that the Harley name would not be on a beginner bike. So they screwed Buell over by making them sell a beginner bike which had nothing to do with their focus, which was sport bikes. The main problem with the "horribly designed" Blast was the engine that Harley created and forced Erik Buell to use. That's why Erik Buell was thrilled to get rid of that albatross.

3. Hero didn't "give up." They contracted with EBR to do engineering and design work and then stiffed EBR, forcing them into receivership. Then they paid $2.8 million to acquire the work product that EBR had done. From "Insiders say that Hero has not paid EBR about $20 million owed for engineering and design work EBR did on 13 new Hero models for the Indian market. EBR bore the expense of the engineering and design work, then ran out of operating capital while waiting to be paid for that work, those insiders said."

4. Cycle World name the EBR 1190RS as the Best Superbike in its ten best bikes of 2011 list.

5. It was a swingarm, not frame, recall on 1995-1998 Buells. Here's a list of Harley and Buell major safety recalls. You'll see that the list is almost all Harley:

6. I am a Buell customer. I own two of them, an XB12Ss and an 1125CR. The only problem I've had is a stator failure on the 1125CR, which was replaced under warranty.

7. It wasn't a Rotax 1125R motor. The design was jointly done by Buell and Rotax. Buell rated the motor at 146hp at the crank, not 160hp. Cycle World measured 134hp at the rear wheel. Of course Harley didn't like Buell sourcing the motor elsewhere, because it made it obvious that Harley lacked the engineering talent to produce a decent motor.

8. Storing the fuel in the frame was brilliant and lead to some of the finest handling motorcycles ever. The problem with the fuel boiling on brutally hot days in gridlocked, rush hour traffic was easily fixed with insulating material on the inside of the frame rails. Stop being a drama queen.

9. You are not qualified to judge the quality of Buell motorcycles, or Erik Buell. That's obvious when you contrast your claims with these awards and accolades:

Cycle World named the EBR 1190RS as the Best Superbike of 2011.

In 2009, Motorcycle News readers named the Buell XB12S Lightning the best handling motorcycle available. The editors wrote "Superb handling. Buell were talking about (and using) mass centralisation years before the Japanese motorcycle manufacturers cottoned on. The Buell XB12S Lightning's rim mounted disc brake works well plus lets the wheel be lighter for lower unsprung mass. Fuel in frame and oil in the swing arm aren’t rocket science but help keep the motorcycle's weight where it’s best carried and the Buell XB12S Lightning corners with aplomb."

In 2005, BIKE magazine named the ten best cornering bikes of all time. The Buell XB12R was number 1 and the XB12S was number 8.

The AMA named Erik Buell to the Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 2002. See:

Motorcyclist magazine named him Motorcyclist Of The Year in 2011.

So slink back to your basement and keep pounding out your angry, misinformed screeds.

Cycle World - It's US mag, they're just back slapping their own. No one took that review seriously.

Motorcycle News readers named the Buell XB12S Lightning the best handling motorcycle available - Really??? so a few readers of MCN said their bike was the best. If you asked Honda, Suzi, Kawa, etc etc owners they'd all say the same about their bikes.

The AMA named Erik Buell to the Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 2002. See:

So - another US group of yanks said USA, USA, USA and voted one of their own as the best.

None of these are accolades worth at sh1t.

victory needs to make a proper two stroke street bike with the direct injection tech from their polaris snowmobile division, not more harley wannabe old man bikes.

The problem with Victory making performance bikes is that the younger people who ride them generally have less money. That's why you read sport bike comparisons that make such a big deal about one bike costing $500 more than another one.

I had a Buell, bought it new and sold it three months later. What a proper piece of sh1t it was. Drank oil like it was gas, was slow as a crap on a bed sheet and didn't handle for piss.

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