Have you ever ridden a dirt bike and wondered, wouldn’t it be great if this was two wheel drive? The way the back wheel spins is great for spinning dirt and slinging mud, but it just isn’t practical. Many 4-wheelers have 4 wheel drive, such as Polaris and Honda, but why not the dirt bikes?
Practicality has made it nearly impossible to design such a vehicle without losing torque and controllability. The front wheel spinning tends to make it yank to one side or the other. That’s where Steve Christini comes in. After six patents, and a few million dollars in funding, the dream of the all wheel dirt bike has been realized.
This amazing new technology has brought the dirt bike market to its knees. This design isn’t limited to a new brand of dirt bike either. It is sold as a kit that can be retro-fitted to a Honda dirt bike and still make the original bike (such as the Honda CRF250 and the CRF450) feel just like the stock version, only with more control and climbing capability.
The advantage to this unique design is safety and traction. According to Christini, it will improve traction, stability, performance, and cornering. When you’re riding over obstacles such as a wet rock or through a mud hole, it will be like no other dirt bike you’ve ever ridden before.
To offset the lateral torque in the front wheel, Christini’s unique design uses two counter rotating clutches in the front drive train, one on each side of the fork. It delivers a controlled amount of power to the front wheel, just like posi-traction in most 4-wheel drive vehicles, so as the rear wheel slips the front wheel grips and vise versa.
With a weight of just 15 pounds, it adds a small amount of weight but makes up for it in driving torque when you get stuck on those muddy hills or steep embankments. I can’t say that’s it’s priced modestly ($6,800) but what new invention is?
The fact that most of its parts are OEM makes it a versatile design, and it has only 7 custom machine parts that are needed to assemble it to your bike. Since this design hardly interferes with existing parts, such as the engine or rear suspension, it allows for a feel that is similar to the original.
Christini’s AWD is a big hit with professional riders, and recreational riders alike. It recently did very well in the Moose Racing Unadilla GNCC, winning the industry class and taking 3rd in the four stroke class. With impressive results like this, it’s sure to make a big mark in the future for all moto-cross riders and teams alike.
Another great feature that this system has is that it can be turned on or off. A switch mounted on the handlebars, engages the all wheel drive system. It makes for a great feature to an already great invention.
Although the system is not out yet, it is to be released in January of 2007. They are accepting deposits for pre-orders and the list is sure to be long. The web site (christini.com) is where you need to pre-order, but the price and availability is subject to change.
So if you’ve got a few grand to spare, and you’re a dirt bike nut, then it’s probably something you’ll want to look into, because at this rate, it’s sure to be one of the greatest inventions for dirt bikes for years to come.