Tuesday, November 17, 2009
The Buell Barracuda - The Buell that never was
What you're looking at is a photo making the rounds of the internet of what appears to be a new Buell model that will never see production, thanks to H-D pulling the plug.
I remember talking with some people at Buell (including Erik) who dropped hints of something really great to come in 2010. Now it appears we know what that would have been.
Though clearly based on the 1125R, some refinements are clear. There's a more angular look to the opening in the upper fairing. The radiators are faired with nice, trapezoidal openings that look great. The seat/tail is just plain sexy. Looking at the front wheel you can see the ZTL braking system, but the spokes appear to have been milled to remove additional material from the center of each spoke, leaving a triangular opening. An all-around great-looking machine.
Those in the know say the Barracuda had a 1199cc Rotax engine, qualifying for WSBK, chain-drive and was lighter all around than the 1125R. The wheels in particular were said to be extremely light and strong, a clear refinement of the Buell philosophy of low unsprung weight.
I'm sorry I'll never get the chance to ride the Barracuda, and wonder if there are any shops out there who'll take inspiration from this to build one from a stock 1125R.