2008 Powersports Dealer
Expo - Motorcycle Accessories
World Exclusive! The webBikeWorld Live Report
From The 2008 Powersports Dealer Expo
- February 16-18, 2008
by Rick K. for webBikeWorld.com
We're now reporting live from the annual Powersports Dealer Expo, held this time each year in
This is our 5th annual report from the Dealer Expo,
and it's always quite a trip. This is the place where
all the U.S. dealers meet with the manufacturers and
distributors of motorcycle accessories, clothing,
helmets, gloves, boots and -- believe me -- just about
every other thing you can think of that fits, sits or
clicks on two wheels.
And guess what? You will have a front-row seat
and a live world exclusive to see all of this year's motorcycle
goodies as they are released by the
manufacturers for the very first time! If you want
a hint at what's in store, see the links in the
right-hand column to our reports on previous years'
The Dealer Expo is like the biggest birthday party ever
for me, because I have no idea what's on tap for 2008 --
everything there will be
just as much of a surprise to me as it will be to you.
I'll report back as often as I can starting Saturday
afternoon with some brief commentary on the show and the
goods along with photos and info.
Last year there were something like 24,000 visitors
at the show from all over the world, and there are
usually over 1,000 displays and exhibitors with cool
stuff to see and touch, which means there should be
plenty to talk about.
So here we go -- be the first on your
block to know what's cookin' for '08!
Thursday, February 21, 2008
- Final Report!
Christini All-Wheel Drive Motorcycle
Rev'it Apache Adventure Boots* |
Rev'it Freestyle Boots Updated*
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Motorcycle Helmet Photo Gallery -
Selection of Colors and Graphics from the
2008 Dealer Expo
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Vemar Helmets First Look
Vemar Jiano Review*
Monday, February 18, 2008
RKA Tank Bag
Hepco & Becker
Saturday, February 16,
2008 - This Page (Below)
* Extended reports; separate page.
Teknic Freeway Jacket
February 17, 2008 -
Teknic has been advertising the heck out of this
jacket, which is strange, considering it hasn't been in stock in any of the
retailers that we've contacted over the past couple of months. I guess
this happens sometimes; marketing gets ahead of production, or some
technical snag gums up the works.
It looks like a nice jacket and it comes
in high-visibility yellow. We wanted to compare it to the Firstgear
TPS 3/4-length jacket we have (review coming soon), but no dice. The
Freeway will have to wait for another day...
The Teknic Freeway has some pretty good specs, and guess what?
They're calling it a "2/3 length" jacket. Maybe they read
our review of the Teknic
Sprint, which we called a 5/8 length because it was the first jacket we
found in this style that wasn't 3/4 length?
The Freeway is claimed waterproof; it has an "Alufoil" removable liner;
the sleeves are rotated forward 15 degrees and it has the YKK waterproof
zippers, first used by Rev'it, as far as we know.
The jacket also has underarm vents, and although I didn't try them to
learn of their exact location, I wonder what took the manufacturers so long
to copy what I consider to be the best feature of the Aerostich Darien
It also has Knox CE-approved armor in the elbows and shoulders and a Knox
CE-approved Level 2 spine protector included. It has many other
features, including lots of reflective 3M piping and panels and more.
And the collar looks highly adjustable.
The jacket comes in sizes ranging from men's 40-54 in colors and black in
the U.S.; 40-50 in colors in Canada and 40-52 UK sizes. List price is
$329.99 USD; $499.99 CAD and £249.99, but these are usually discounted at
the retail level.
By the way, it's interesting to note that the 2008 Teknic catalog shows a
model wearing the jacket standing in front of two police motorcycles,
holding a police motorcycle helmet. Wouldn't it be nice for motor cops
to be allowed to wear 21st Century clothing, rather than the stuff that was
designed in the 1940's?
Teknic Women's Clothing
February 17, 2008 -
If there are two things I can take away
from this year's show, it's helmet graphics and women's clothing. I'll
have more on the helmets later -- the high-end manufacturers (and even some
of the low end) seem to be focusing on graphics, paint and style for 2008.
There are some pretty incredible looking helmets, and I took a bunch of
photos and I'm going to create a gallery.
But in the meantime, women's
motorcycle clothing is finally getting the attention it deserves.
We've always been promoting the use of safe riding apparel for women rather
than the good-looking stuff that isn't much more protective than street
clothing. The manufacturers have finally caught on, and more than one
told me how many women are getting into the sport. Hey folks --
where've you been? We've been telling you that for years!
Anyway, the big news here is protective clothing that looks great and has
style. I'm talking about jackets with full CE-approved armor, back
padding, boots and gloves. The real stuff, but designed by women to
look great -- and not necessarily just cruiser styling either. Really
nice-looking sportbike gear for women. It's about time...
This was repeated in many booths, with helmets (see the Akuma article
below), clothing and more. Unfortunately, I ran out of room in the
camera's memory card, so I only have a couple of photos from Teknic.
They always have a great big booth that's more like a showroom.
The Teknic Vogue 1.4 mm cowhide leather jacket (below) is very nice
looking and stylishly different. They have a pair of matching Vogue
pants also. The jacket has an offset zipper and cool asymmetrical
graphics. It has Knox CE-approved armor in the elbows and shoulders.
The Vogue jacket is available in sizes from 4-14 (US/CAN) or 8-18 (UK).
The matching Vogue pants run the same. The jacket list price is
$299.99 USD; $329.99 CAD; £199.99. The pants retail for $199.99 USD;
$229.99 CAD; £129.99.
The Teknic Venom 1.2 - 1.4 mm cowhide leather jacket (left) is a
sportbike jacket with pre-curved arms. It has Cordura stretch panels
and a removable liner. It also has Knox CE-approved armor in the
shoulders and elbows but includes a Knox CE Level 2 spine guard. The
Venom pants match; they're made from 1.2 - 1.4 mm goat skin with Spandex
stretch panels. The pants have Velcro for knee sliders.
The Venom jacket is available in sizes from 4-16 (US); 4-12 (CAN) or 8-18
(UK). The matching Venom pants run the same. The jacket list
price is $299.99 USD; $399.99 CAD; £199.99. The pants retail for
$219.99 USD; $349.99 CAD; £149.99. I'm told the price differences in
the three countries are due to tariffs on goat skin and Brazlian cowhide.
Also a couple of nice leather jackets for women from the Teknic cruiser
wear catalog; I don't know about the protective features of these jackets,
but they sure look nice:
February 17, 2008 -
Shock Doctor is probably one of the biggest
companies you never heard of. They have a huge catalog of safety gear
for just about every sport in the book and they make a wide range of
products, from mouth guards for hockey and football to padded and armored
clothing and they even have a line of luggage.
Their "Power Dry" helmet
bag is about the highest-tech helmet bag around. Open a zippered
compartment underneath and there's a door that slides on to the side of the
Power Dry unit, which blows hot air and ozone into the helmet while the
helmet is in the bag. This dries out the helmet and sanitizes it,
killing the bacteria.
By coincidence I had run into an ex-racer in the Scorpion booth and he
said he used to own 14 helmets at at time because he raced and practiced so
much on the weekends that he'd have to wear one helmet, put it aside when it
got sweaty and grab another for the next heat. Too bad he didn't have
a Power Dry.
The Power Dry also has a vent that fits on top and the helmet can be
placed on the tubes (photo below) when it's not in the helmet bag.
I've also included a photo of the Shock Doctor luggage below; the larger
bags have the Power Dry "door" also, so they can fit on the Power Dry fan
unit to get the treatment.
Shock Doctor is now also manufacturing the "Hats Off" helmet removal
system used by racers. This is an air bag that fits above the rider's
head with a tube that goes down through the helmet liner. The tube is
used to inflate the bag if the rider crashes, thus lifting off the helmet
without damaging the rider's neck. I'll write up a separate page on
that with photos later. Available from
Akuma Electrochromatic Visor
February 16, 2008 -
Akuma dudes have been super busy! The makers of the webBikeWorld 2006
Motorcycle Helmet of the Year and the Akuma Stealth are bringing us into the
future with -- get this -- an
and an electroluminescent helmet
! And they've also partnered with
Collett Communications with the Collett Bluetooth intercom that's powered
from the on-board Akuma rechargeable Integrated Power System! Top it
off with a new women's flip-up helmet that was completely designed by women
for Akuma and wow -- 2008 is going to be pretty special!
February 16, 2008 -
Floating Eyewear? You see all sorts
of weird stuff at the show. These are actually pretty interesting;
they come in many different shapes and colors and they have little blocks of
soft foam on the inside, placed near the junction of the temple pivot.
They float right-side up and the foam also blocks the wind from coming
around the side and causing tears.
The best part about them is they retail
for $12.95. And by the way, they're completely flexible; the sales rep
took a pair off the rack and pulled them apart and they stretched out
completely straight and then sprung right back into shape. Dealers can
order them through Parts Unlimited.
February 16, 2008 -
I just had to grab a shot of this -- have
you ever seen so many Mikuni carbs lined up in a row? Nice!
Roland Sands Designs and Jesse Rooke
February 16, 2008 -
I'm not much on some of the outrageous and
completely un-rideable customs going around that are basically eye candy for
the show ring. And does the world need yet another H-D clone with a
skull headlight and 300 mm rear tire?
So I pretty much ignore customs.
The craftsmanship and paint can be cool, sure -- but I want to see something
I can imagine riding. That's why I've really admired the work of
Roland Sands. The guy is a true motorcycle renaissance man. He
is so, so good at melding the technology of today with the essence of the
glory days of motorcycling; his art is a perfect icon for the 21st Century.
And he's not afraid to stand outside the cruiser world, which is
definitely admirable. Very cool bikes! Sands had a huge display
-- check out his take on the Hypermotard and the Jesse Rooke KTM below. Let's
just hope that fame doesn't ruin a good thing...
Jesse Rooke KTM
Trail Tech HID Lights
February 16, 2008 - New Exhibitor: Trail Tech has some
serious off-road gear, including this incredibly powerful light (left) with
three HIDs. It needs something like 100W of power from the alternator,
and they also sell replacement stators for off-road bikes that create DC
power for the light. It attaches to the fork tubes of the off-road
bike, and they had it on a KTM, but how cool would this thing be on a
They turned it on while I was standing in front of it about 10 feet away,
and I'll have to say it was retina-scorching. The guy standing behind
me could probably thought he was looking at an X-ray of my bones, it was
The also have these cool single HID lights and a rechargeable power pack;
the lights can be mounted on a helmet (right). They have a lot of
other cool stuff, including many different electronic LCD dash displays,
with time, distance, speed, miles, etc. And they make some interesting
water temperature sensors too. Interesting gear that could easily be
adapted for Adventure-Touring or all-around farkleing... From
February 16, 2008 - New Exhibitor: Here's a good
example of one of those interesting accessories found at the show.
It's called a "Muffler Slider", and it fits into the "Why didn't I think of
that?" category (like many products found at the show).
One or more of these colored plastic (or some type of polymer) rings fits
around the end of the muffler. Each ring is sold in a kit, which
includes a heat protection shield that fits under the ring. It
attaches with a type of hose-clamp underneath.
The Muffler Slider will help protect the exhaust canister from getting
scraped up in a crash. The company said the product has been
"thoroughly crash tested by the USA Factory Kawasaki Supermoto team".
Advanced Performance Accessories, price ranges from $24.95 to $32.95.
Brembo Radial Master Cylinder and New Brake Calipers
February 16, 2008 -
manufacturers use the Dealer Expo to announce new products, and Brembo
usually has something new and exciting.
This year they have
announced the availability of a revised radial brake and clutch master
cylinder and new brake calipers available for many Japanese and European
Hmmm...I bet these would be sweet on the
UPDATE: The Brembo rep says the radial master cylinder and clutch
cylinder should fit the Ducati SportClassics.
New photos just posted,
including a photo of the Brembo MotoGP brake system with carbon rotor.
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