Finally, a shaft-drive, sidecar-equipped minibike

The baddies will be going about stealing bikes three-up in Hackney now

Finally, a shaft-drive, sidecar-equipped minibike

IT'S A story as old as time. You go into a bike dealer looking for something simple like, for instance, a minibike sidecar outfit, only to find that they don’t have one with a reverse gear and shaft-drive. Typical.

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Well, at last those days are over, at least in China, where Jingang has launched exactly that. Its military-looking, Monkey-sized outfit – going by the catchy name YG150B-23 – has actually been around for a few years, but a new revamp sees it switching from chain to shaft final drive and adding the aforementioned reverse gear.

You might have thought that seemingly utilitarian name referred to its capacity, but you’d be wrong. The YG150B-23 actually has a 200cc air-cooled single, with a whopping 13.4hp at 7,000rpm and 11lbft of torque at 5500rpm. It’s an old-school motor, complete with a carburettor rather than injection, although an EFI version is being touted for the future.

While it’s not fast, topping out at around 45mph, the reverse system actually works on all five ratios in the conventional gearbox. That means, in theory at least, it will go just as quickly backwards as it does forwards…

You can even unbolt the chair and use it as a conventional two-wheeler, if you so desire.

In China the YG150B-23 is likely to cost around £1,500, and while we can’t imagine the bike will ever be sold outside the Chinese market, it looks like a lot of fun for the money.

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