If you’ve been keeping tabs on the evolution of aerodynamics in MotoGP, you’ll notice that the newest superbike offerings for big brands like Ducati are now sporting new additions to cut wind better than the last design, with the concept trickling down to production bikes such as Ducati’s Streetfighter V4S and Aprilia’s Tuono V4.
These are just two examples of many ongoing experiments, which begs us to ask the obvious of the industry:
What is next in store for our own production bikes when it comes to aerodynamics?
Based on a report from MCN, the next challenge is going to be dealing with cutting the turbulence caused by motorcycle forks.
“The problem [big brands are] all trying to solve is that forks, by their very nature, have a round cross-section,” explains the report.
“As well as giving a blunt front edge facing the wind, they also create turbulence as the air rushes in to fill the space behind them.”
Yamaha has been tackling this problem since last year, where they were seen testing out their new front fork aerodynamic kit at a Jerez test in November, with other MotoGP bikes picking up on a similar concept (Ducati’s have only covered the upper section, while Aprilia’s and Suzuki’s bikes have the entire fork encased).
“It’s not just about pushing the forks themselves through the air,” continues the report.
“That turbulence has a knock-on impact on everything behind the forks, notably the radiator and oil cooler on a MotoGP bike or on a modern sportsbike. Making air pass the forks more smoothly should let the bike’s cooling system work more effectively, potentially allowing smaller, lighter radiators and a smaller cooling intake.”
With this year showing off more and more superbike renditions of aerodynamic efficiency, we will be waiting to see whose production fleet gets the next upgrade.
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Drop a comment below letting us know what you think, and as always – stay safe on the twisties.