Motorcycles

Vins' carbon-forked, two-stroke Duecinquanta sportsbike is the new definition of lightweight

Vins' carbon-forked, two-strok...
The Vins Duecinquanta ushers in a new generation of ultra-lightweight two-stroke street sportsbikes
The Vins Duecinquanta ushers in a new generation of ultra-lightweight two-stroke street sportsbikes
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Vins Duecinquanta: with a curb weight of just 95 kg, this thing will dance through the corners
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Vins Duecinquanta: with a curb weight of just 95 kg, this thing will dance through the corners
Vins Duecinquanta: headlights built into the air intakes
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Vins Duecinquanta: headlights built into the air intakes
Vins Duecinquanta: ultra-light weight and aerodynamics are the focus here
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Vins Duecinquanta: ultra-light weight and aerodynamics are the focus here
Vins Duecinquanta: distinctive face
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Vins Duecinquanta: distinctive face
Vins Duecinquanta: carbon rims
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Vins Duecinquanta: carbon rims
Vins Duecinquanta: a unique profile
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Vins Duecinquanta: a unique profile
Vins Duecinquanta: absolutely tiny
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Vins Duecinquanta: absolutely tiny
Vins Duecinquanta: twin exhausts
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Vins Duecinquanta: twin exhausts
Vins Duecinquanta: lighter than a grom, but with fuel injected 2-stroke power
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Vins Duecinquanta: lighter than a grom, but with fuel injected 2-stroke power
Vins Duecinquanta: carbon monocoque frame gives it a unique shape
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Vins Duecinquanta: carbon monocoque frame gives it a unique shape
Vins Duecinquanta: you could lose it between the cushions on the sofa
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Vins Duecinquanta: you could lose it between the cushions on the sofa
Vins Duecinquanta: €40,000 price tag will keep this in the hands of a very select few
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Vins Duecinquanta: €40,000 price tag will keep this in the hands of a very select few
Vins Duecinquanta: rear shock lies horizontal and sideways
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Vins Duecinquanta: rear shock lies horizontal and sideways
Vins Duecinquanta: forks are carbon blades suspended by a paralellogram-style arrangement near the steering head
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Vins Duecinquanta: forks are carbon blades suspended by a paralellogram-style arrangement near the steering head
The Vins Duecinquanta ushers in a new generation of ultra-lightweight two-stroke street sportsbikes
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The Vins Duecinquanta ushers in a new generation of ultra-lightweight two-stroke street sportsbikes
Vins Duecinquanta: carbon rims
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Vins Duecinquanta: carbon rims
Vins Duecinquanta: carbon hubs
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Vins Duecinquanta: carbon hubs
Vins Duecinquanta: tank section with integrated air intakes. Also houses the radiator
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Vins Duecinquanta: tank section with integrated air intakes. Also houses the radiator
Vins Duecinquanta: tasty machined parts
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Vins Duecinquanta: tasty machined parts
Vins Duecinquanta: tasty machined parts
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Vins Duecinquanta: tasty machined parts
Vins Duecinquanta: lightweight exhaust system
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Vins Duecinquanta: lightweight exhaust system
Vins Duecinquanta: J-Juan brake system is a bit of a surprise, but then you're not hauling up 200 kg of superbike.
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Vins Duecinquanta: J-Juan brake system is a bit of a surprise, but then you're not hauling up 200 kg of superbike.
Vins Duecinquanta Competizione: cockpit
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Vins Duecinquanta Competizione: cockpit
Vins Duecinquanta Competizione: takes things to another level with a curb weight of just 85 kg
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Vins Duecinquanta Competizione: takes things to another level with a curb weight of just 85 kg
Vins Duecinquanta Competizione: even lighter, and more powerful with a displacement of 288cc and a claimed 80 horsepower
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Vins Duecinquanta Competizione: even lighter, and more powerful with a displacement of 288cc and a claimed 80 horsepower
Vins Duecinquanta Competizione: side view
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Vins Duecinquanta Competizione: side view
Vins Duecinquanta Competizione: takes lightweighting to the absolute extreme
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Vins Duecinquanta Competizione: takes lightweighting to the absolute extreme

Back in 2004, Mike Hanlon did a wonderful road test on the final Aprilia RS250 – "the last of the fire-breathing two-stroke roadsters" – that has stuck in my mind to this day. I never rode one of these 140-kg (309-lb), 60-hp, ultra-lightweight track scalpels, and I feel like my life's been the poorer for it.

I can't even imagine how quickly something that small might turn, how precisely it might handle or the challenge of keeping both wheels on the deck under hard acceleration and braking on a bike so light. Because, at the end of the day, there's no place for two-stroke roadbikes in a modern world that recognizes the effect a filthy tailpipe can have on our environment and health. We get it. Mike kissed an extraordinary class of bikes goodbye with "I think I'll go and have a good cry."

Well, Mike might need to keep some tissues handy for a different reason now. An Italian company called Vins Motors reckons it's bringing back the two-stroke bad boy, and by golly has material science come a long way in the last 13 years.

Vins Duecinquanta: a unique profile
Vins Duecinquanta: a unique profile

The Vins Duecinquanta (250) is focused on weight reduction to a degree we've never seen before in a road bike. If the RS250 was a featherweight at 140 kg (309 lb), how does a curb weight of around 95 kg (209 lb) sound? To get down to that magical figure, the Duecinquanta uses a carbon fiber monocoque frame, as well as carbon rims and bodywork. The forks are carbon blades, too, using an "overlapping triangle" suspension system with a tiny monoshock up near the steering head.

And of course, there's the tiny motor. The compact two-stroke 90-degree V-twin engine is electronically injected, and the company claims it will meet Euro IV emissions standards to make it road legal. The company isn't giving power figures yet, but it's claiming a top speed around 200 km/h (120 mph), so somewhere in the vicinity of 60 horses is certainly possible.

Vins Duecinquanta: tank section with integrated air intakes. Also houses the radiator
Vins Duecinquanta: tank section with integrated air intakes. Also houses the radiator

The custom-built radiator is integrated into the aerodynamics system on top of the engine and in front of the fuel tank, so that incoming air through the front vents flows over it and back through the hollow frame where it can exit through the tail and swingarm. This is a truly remarkable machine.

Vins Duecinquanta Competizione: side view
Vins Duecinquanta Competizione: side view

Not as remarkabe, however, as its race-focused track-only brother, the Duecinquanta Competizione. Despite the fact that its name literally means "250 competition," this one gets a capacity boost to 288cc. And this time, Vins is happy to tell us the motor will make a blistering 80 horses for a top speed around 240 km/h (149 mph).

Ditching the road gear also helps the Competizione shed around 10 kg (22 lb) off its curb weight, giving you a bike that weighs an incomprehensible 85 kg (187 lb). What a superb joy that could be on a racetrack – as long as it doesn't have that famous two-stroke tendency to highside the brave into the weeds.

I hope Mike has saved some Kleenex for the price tag, though, because at €50,000 (US$59,720) for the Competizione and €40,000 (US$47,780), these are top-shelf specials the average New Atlas writer has little to no chance of ever throwing a leg over. Still, maybe if Vins can demonstrate the market has an appetite for a two-stroke road sportsbike, maybe somebody can swoop in with something a touch less extreme and exotic that the rest of us can ride.

A production video for the Competizione can be seen below.

Source: Vins via Visordown

VINS Duecinquanta Competizione [OFFICIAL VIDEO]

3 comments
VincentWolf
It's the definition of extinct.
toddzrx
Yes, 209 pounds is light, but it's not quite as life-altering as the author suggests, given the power output of the motor. Your standard superbike has a similar or better weight to power ratio. The lack of weight will primarily benefit turning and braking. Will it be fast on the track? Maybe. Corner speed is your friend. The problem for high revving 2 strokes is that if you slip out of the powerband through a turn, it's an eternity to get back into it, all while the torquey 4-stroke blows on by.
DavidRogerBrown
What a beauty-a amazing work of engineering & art. My first street legal motorcycles were 2 stroke dual purpose & street over 50 years ago. Like Mike,I also shed tears when they stopped building'em. Nothing like the sound & smell of a pack of TZ 750's around a race track. One gets tired of the critic replies in every article by those that have never created anything? A street legal 250.cc. with 60 h.p. at 209 lbs. wet is the lightest/strongest that I've ever read of. The lighter track bike would kick butt on anything out there (and should at that price:-). Keep on writing Loz (& Boss Mike). You're both the best.