EICMA 2013: Brough Superior SS100
Brough Superior, the legendary British motorcycle company, is under new ownership and is poised to make a comeback with this, the next generation Brough Superior SS100.
Designed and built by French firm Boxer Design, right away we can see the new SS100 takes much of its design inspiration from the company’s past, specifically the 1926 Brough of the same name. From the shape of the gas tank to the girder fork setup, the SS100 pays tribute to its forefathers with a distinctly modern approach.
While the look might be old, motivation is all new. Brough released a small specification sheet on its website detailing the basics. Powering the Brough is a 997cc, 88-degree V-Twin. It’s liquid-cooled with a total of eight valves and bore and stroke measurements of 94mm x 71.8mm. Combined with its 11:1 compression ratio, Brough says the unit makes up to 140 hp and 92 ft.-lbs. of torque, indicating the bike could feature an electronics package that includes riding modes.
Housing this engine is a steel and titanium tubular trellis frame. The front double wishbone suspension uses an Ohlins shock and has 4.72 inches of travel. Rear suspension is a more conventional linkage setup, with an Ohlins shock providing 5.11 inches of travel.
Look closely at the front brakes and you’ll notice something peculiar. There’s a total of four floating front brake discs, measuring 230mm each. Each disc is an aluminum-ceramic composite developed by Beringer to increase stopping power and reduce unsprung mass. Two radial-mount four-piston calipers sit on each side, fitted with sintered pads. A central pad sits between the two discs and remains fixed. Upon application of the brakes, the caliper squeezes on the two outer pads as normal, so all braking surfaces are acting to slow the vehicle. Is it actually effective? Who knows, but at least it looks trick! Rear disc is a single 230mm aluminum-ceramic composite mated to a twin-piston caliper with sintered pads.
Strangely, Brough decided to fit the SS100 with 18-inch wheels. While the 18-spoke design looks impressive, it limits tire choices compared to the more popular 17-inch hoops that are more widely available. It sits on 120/70-18 front and 160/60-18 rear tires.
Unveiled at EICMA today, new owner, Mark Upham, spoke briefly about the project, saying four million euros were spent designing the completely new engine, and he has been in talks with Prime Minister David Cameron “for possible support of what we see as a major project.” Upham has lofty goals, seeking to become “the number two motorcycle manufacturer in Britain.” He continued, “our price range will be under 100k euros, and we expect to build perhaps 20 per year of these totally bespoke machines.”