No, it’s not a digitally-generated two-wheeled pod from an upcoming post-apocalyptic sci-fi film. This is an actual motorcycle that you can buy… of course only if you have deep pockets of course. A boutique Italian company called ‘Vyrus’ has released a Ducati machine that looks like it idles at the speed of sound and travels at the speed of light.
Vyrus is renowned for building eccentric and otherworldly looking custom motorcycles over the last two decades and this is their latest creation. It’s called the Virus Alyen 988 and it is powered by a 1,285cc, L-Twin engine sourced from the previous generation Ducati Panigale superbike. This engine is tuned to develop 205hp at a staggering 10,500rpm. The engine is mated to transmission is a 6-speed unit that uses a wet-clutch system.The frame on which everything is bolted onto is made from strong but light magnesium that is bespoke to the Alyen 988.
The bike has a wheelbase of 1,575mm, a whole 140mm longer than the Panigale. The bodywork on the bike is something to behold. Everything that is visible is built from carbon-fibre. Its sharply designed carbon body is complemented by the carbon-fibre wheels and the carbon-ceramic brakes.
But that’s not unusual enough, so Vyrus has used a swing-arm setup at the front instead of tradition fork-type suspension with a hub-centre steering setup and the steering is controlled by a set of steel cables. While most motorcycle makers have toyed with such an idea in the past, the design was only left on the drawing board and it never really took off. But Vyrus is determined to make it work. The handlebars are also machined from a solid block of Ergal which is essentially a 7075 aluminium alloy.
The Vyrus Alyen 988 is more of a collector’s item and what an item it is. Vyrus has not hinted at how much the bike would cost, but by seeing its past designs, some say it would be around the US$100,000 (~Rs 76 lakh INR) mark.
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