In recent years Honda has been pioneering various different powertrain technologies, one of the most notable feats being the hydrogen fuel-based engine from the Honda Clarity.
Next on the list for Honda is a supercharged V-twin engine that they say will power a range of upcoming motorcycles in the future. The power boosting blower will be mounted on the left side of the engine, forcing induction and hugely increasing power.
Back in the 30’s BMW bought out the Type 255 Kompressor, a bike that had a Zoller sliding vane supercharger bolted to it. For many decades after that, manufacturers steered well clear of using supercharged power units on their bikes. The MO when building a bike soon steered towards efficiency and reliability, something for the everyday people.
70 years down the line, Peugeot released their JetForce scooter, featuring a 250cc supercharged engine which didn’t get much traction. Turbochargers had more luck on the market with bikes like the Kawasaki H2R ninja taking the world by storm. Although it wasn’t smooth sailing for forced induction turbo engines either, with manufacturers failing various experiments back in the 80’s.
Now its Honda’s turn to step up to the plate. New patent designs show that Honda are in the lab, breeding a new type of motorcycle using the method of forced induction which has been popular with car manufacturers since the 1920’s. Once the tech has been perfected, we can expect to see it on engines from 250cc right up to and over 1000c.
We all know that patents are filled all the time, with some coming to fruition and some fading into history. As always, we’ll have to wait until the next major motorcycle show to find out.