Month: December 2015

Airbags – Dainese continues to challenge Alpinestars

The row over airbag supremacy rumbles on as Dainese has issued a statement responding to an earlier statement issued by Alpinestars over legal action between the two powerhouses regarding the ownership of airbag technology.
Dainese has now released its own statement, which insists that legal action was taken in the German market – the Court of Munich ultimately granting an injunction on the sale of Tech-Air products in Germany – and that legal action is underway in Italy.
Here is the statement in full: With respect to Alpinestars’ “Statement regarding press coverage of Patent Challenge,” and for the sake of clarity, Dainese deems it necessary to reply to the following claim:
“In Germany, Dainese did make a direct request to certain retailers, that they cease and desist from offering for sale the Alpinestars Tech-Air Street system, however, no legal action has been taken against Alpinestars.”
In fact:
  • In October 2015, the Court of Munich released two autonomous preliminary injunctions against a German Alpinestars dealer, confirming that the Alpinestars Tech-Air system infringes two Dainese patents in Europe.
  • Dainese has also recently filed, before a German Court, an additional lawsuit against Alpinestars, seeking compensatory damages for infringement of Dainese’s patents and the halting of commercialization of the Tech-Air system in Germany.
In addition, Dainese would like to clarify that:
  • Dainese has never received a cease-and-desist letter from Alpinestars.
  • Dainese has filed a lawsuit against Alpinestars before an Italian court, seeking compensatory damages for infringement of Dainese’s patents, as well as an urgent preliminary injunction for halting the commercialization of the Tech-Air system in Italy.
  • Dainese’s patents have been released by the European Patent Office following a long verification procedure, and are therefore registered and fully valid.
At this time, Dainese will not comment further on the merit of those lawsuits, instead preferring to discuss them in the appropriate venues.
Advocating and delivering safety to people exposed to traumatic injuries in dynamic sports has been the mission of Dainese since Lino Dainese founded the company in 1972. From the very first day, Dainese has been the innovator for protection in active sports, with major industry firsts including the back protector for motorcycle riding, skiing, mountain biking and equestrian use, as well as the D-air® airbag system, which Mr. Dainese conceived in 1995.
  • Dainese owns 26 patents on the D-air technology and has made extensive investments in the research, invention, development, manufacture and marketing of the first and most innovative airbag-protection platform for motorcyclists: the D-air systems for racetrack and road use.
  • In 2015, D-air for racetrack use became an open platform, as D-air Armor was integrated into the products of other motorcycle-garment manufacturers, enabling more riders to take advantage of the safety provided by the Dainese D-air system.
  • The D-air platform has also been used to develop D-air Ski, an innovative airbag system for use in skiing, as well as airbag systems for use in the automotive field.
The lawsuit is huge for both companies, and the winner will effectively own a monopoly on airbag technology.

Airbags – Italian powerhouses go head to head over airbag rights


Dainese has taken legal action against Alpinestars for an alleged infringement over its airbag technology.

The move is significant as the Italian powerhouses effectively own the airbag market and whoever wins would have a monopoly.

However, today Alpinestars has hit back at the claims and has issued the following statement:

With reference to recent articles published about Alpinestars and Dainese being in dispute over airbag technology, Alpinestars is issuing the following statement to clarify the current situation:

Alpinestars has been subjected to an allegation of patent infringement by Dainese on a specific part of its airbag construction used in the Tech-Air Street system.

The Alpinestars’ Tech-Air Street system was launched in November 2014 as the world’s first self-contained street airbag system that independently functions without the need for sensors to be installed on the bike and the subsequent need to link a specific motorcycle to the airbag system used by the rider.

The allegations made by Dainese S.p.A in proceedings launched in Italy against Alpinestars, refer to the assembly of the bag itself, the physical material piece that contains the gas in an inflation and not with any reference to any other parts or Alpinestars’ Tech-Air street system’s use of an algorithm for registering when the airbag deployment should occur.

Dainese instead make claims that the physical construction of the bag in the Tech-Air system infringes upon Dainese’s patents.

In Germany, Dainese did make a direct request to certain retailers, that they cease and desist from offering for sale the Alpinestars Tech-Air Street system, however, no legal action has been taken against Alpinestars and neither has Alpinestars withdrawn any of its products from the German market.

All claims made by Dainese against Alpinestars and/or its retailers are disputed and Alpinestars is taking the appropriate legal measures to ensure that any such unfounded allegations will not prevent distribution and sales of the Tech-Air Street system.

Given Alpinestars’ own research & development has been undertaken through Alpinestars’ in-house Advanced Technology Department since 2001, Alpinestars is contesting the allegations made. The Tech-Air Street system is based on Alpinestars’ technology creation and the physical bag used in the Tech-Air Street system is from known airbag technology, used within the Automotive industry and does not infringe upon third parties’ intellectual property rights.

Alpinestars continues to distribute Tech-Air technology for the benefit of all motorcyclists throughout Europe and the rest of the world and trusts that the allegations made will be proven to have no basis through appropriate legal jurisdiction.

Newsflash: Yamaha issues global recall for R1/R1M


Yamaha has issued a global recall for its 2015 R1 and R1M for replacement gearboxes after several bikes suffered complete failures.

Yamaha has begin contacting owners and is drawing up timetable to replace the transmission of every bike.

Yamaha UK hasn’t commented on the issue, but Yamaha USA has issued a letter to owners outlining what is being recalled, what actions Yamaha and its dealers are taking, and what owners should do going forward.

Here is the letter in full:

Dear Yamaha Owner:

This notice is sent to you in accordance with the requirements of the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act. Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A. has decided that a defect which relates to motor vehicle safety exists in all 2015 YZF‐R1 motorcycles. Our records indicate that you own the affected motorcycle shown above.

The reason for this recall:

In affected motorcycles, both second gear wheel and pinion gears in the transmission may break as a result of extremely high stress and/or improper shifting. This is due to inadequate component strength and stress concentration at the gear teeth bottom land. In addition, the third and fourth wheel gears may be deformed or break as a result of excessive stress caused by hard usage. This is due to inadequate component strength. If gears fail, the transmission could lock up, causing loss of control that could result in a crash with injury or death.

What Yamaha and your dealer will do:

To correct this defect, your authorized Yamaha dealer will replace the transmission assembly with one that includes gears of a different design. The procedure takes almost 16 hours to do but be aware that your Yamaha dealer may need to keep your motorcycle longer depending upon their current service schedule. There will be no charge to you for this procedure.

What you should do now:

Please call your Yamaha dealer to make a service appointment to have this procedure performed. At that same time, you can find out how long they expect to keep your motorcycle for this service. Remember to take this letter with you when you take in your motorcycle.

You should not ride your affected motorcycle shown above until this modification is performed.

If you are unable to return to the Yamaha dealer who sold you the motorcycle, this service will be performed by any authorized Yamaha motorcycle dealer. For the name of a dealer near you, call 1‐800‐88‐YAMAHA or visit the Yamaha web site at http://www.yamaha‐

If you have had this repair performed before you received this letter, you may be entitled to receive reimbursement for the cost of obtaining a pre‐notification remedy of the problem associated with this repair. For more information, contact Yamaha Customer Relations at 1‐800‐962‐7926.

Federal regulations require that any vehicle lessor receiving this recall notice must forward a copy of this notice to the lessee within 10 days.

If, after contacting your dealership, you have questions or concerns which the dealership is unable to answer, please write to:

Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A. Customer Relations Department P.O. Box 6555
Cypress, CA 90630

Or call: 1‐800‐962‐7926

If you need help:

If, after contacting Yamaha Customer Relations, you are still not satisfied that we have done our best to remedy the situation without charge and within a reasonable time, you may submit a written complaint to the Administrator, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590; or call the Auto Safety Hotline at 1‐888‐327‐4236 (TTY: 1‐800‐424‐9153); or go to Refer to campaign 15V802.

If you no longer own this Yamaha:

If you have sold your motorcycle to another party, please call us toll‐free at 1‐800‐962‐7926 with the name and address of the new owner, along with the serial number shown to the right of your name on the address label above.

We’re sorry to cause you any inconvenience, but we are sincerely concerned about your safety and continued satisfaction with our products. Thank you for giving your attention to this important matter.

BSB – Haslam returns to fight for domestic honours


Multiple World and British Superbike race-winner Leon Haslam believes he has ‘unfinished business’ in the MCE British Superbike Championship and now the Derbyshire rider is returning it home soil with the JG Speedfit Kawasaki team for an assault on the title that he has narrowly missed out on in the past.

The 32-year-old returns to the championship with a renewed desire to lift the coveted title after finishing runner-up to multiple title-winners Ryuichi Kiyonari and Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne during the 2006 and 2008 seasons. Haslam scored 16 race victories and a further 38 podium finishes in the British Championship before he moved to the World stage in 2008.

The ‘Pocket Rocket’ finished runner-up in the 2010 World Superbike title battle with Max Biaggi and most recently ended his 2015 campaign by claiming victory at the season finale in Qatar, taking his tally to five victories and a further 38 podium finishes in the championship, ending the year in fourth place in the overall standings.

He had an offer from Aprilia on the table to be the Italian factory’s MotoGP test rider, but the lure of securing a competitive fight and racing for a title proved to be too strong.

Haslam said: “I am really excited to be coming back to BSB because there is nothing like it and I want to be challenging to be number one every weekend – that is certainly my aim. I feel that I have unfinished business in the championship because I have just missed out on the title in the past and so I feel really motivated to try and change that next year with the JG Speedfit Kawasaki team.

“I feel that this is actually a step forward for me, because I am with one of the best teams in the paddock and riding one of the most competitive bikes with the new Kawasaki, because I am a racer and I want to be in a position to be fighting for race wins, which wouldn’t happen on an uncompetitive bike in the World Championship.

“I believe that one of the biggest new challenges for me coming back will be the difference in riding style because of the different technical regulations but I think that will be good for me because in BSB it is more down to the rider rather than if the electronics are not working right it just doesn’t work for you on track.

“I am excited to have a first ride of the new Kawasaki because there has already been so much positive feedback about it and if you look at the World Championship, that is the bike to beat and so to know we will be ready to come out fighting to win is a fantastic feeling. The first test is going to be about me adapting to the Kawasaki because we have lots to work on and develop, but fortunately the team have a great test programme so we will be ready to be pushing hard at the start of the season.

“The level of competition in BSB is really high, but at the same time when I was challenging for the title before I was up against riders like Johnny Rea, Leon Camier, Shakey, Tom Sykes and Cal Crutchlow – it was the best riders in Britain and the level is still exactly the same. For sure my list of things I want to achieve includes winning the BSB title and that is a new challenge for me next year.

“I have always been brought up by my dad to try everything you can to never be beaten, no matter what it takes. Every race I go out there and I want to win and so next year I intend to get the best out of myself and the whole JG Speedfit Kawasaki team to make that happen. I obviously want to be in the Showdown, and those final three rounds are at arguably my three favourite circuits on the calendar. I won’t be looking to be conservative though to get in that top six, I will be fighting all the way.”

New metal: Roland Sands ‘Faster Wasp’

We’ve been casting our eyes over the new metal at Motorcycle Live, and for us at Lincolnshire Biker, the standout bike is the ‘Faster Wasp’ by iconic custom builder Roland Sands.
The bike is the American’s fifth collaboration with Yamaha as part of its
 Yard Built series, and although there’s no official acknowledgment, the bike is clearly based on the popular Yamaha MT-09.
The “Faster Wasp’ is exquisitely finished and boasts a stunning yellow and black Speed Block paintjob, tipping its hat to Kenny Roberts’ TZ750.
Other neat touches include a handcrafted fuel tank and radiator covers, forged aluminium RSD Morris gold wheels, an Öhlins shock and an RSD can.
If you’re visiting Motorcycle Live at the NEC, hunt this bike out and marvel at its beauty. You won’t be disappointed.