2014 Honda RCV1000R First Look

November 7, 2013
Adam Waheed
By Adam Waheed
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His insatiable thirst for life is only surpassed by his monthly fuel bill. Whether rocketing on land, flying through the air, or jumping the seas, our Road Test Editor does it all and has the scars to prove it.

The racing arm of Honda unveiled next year’s customer prototype racer that racing teams can purchase for competition in the 2014 MotoGP World Championship. Named the RCV1000R, the purpose-built racing machine is based off of this year’s RC213V as ridden by official factory racers Dani Pedrosa and Marc Marquez.

The motorcycle is powered by a water-cooled 90-degree V-Four displacing one liter. It employs more traditional eight-valve heads with metal spring-actuated valves instead of the more costly pneumatic set-up used to achieve higher engine speeds. Other differences from the full factory machines are the manual six-speed gearbox compared to Honda’s high-tech seamless-shift transmission. Honda claims that this engine specification produces 234 horsepower at 16,000 rpm. The bike will also come outfitted with Ohlins suspension and full-carbon braking hard hardware from Nissin, although it’s unclear of the exact type.
The RCV1000R will guzzle fuel from a larger 24-liter fuel cell (6.34-gallon) as compared to the 20-liter tanks allowed by full factory machines. Another benefit for teams competing with this platform is the ability to use a total of 12 engines during the course of the season (compared to only five allowed on official factory bikes) however team’s must utilize spec-traction control and engine management software developed by Magneti Marelli.

According to recent testing data from Motegi, the RCV1000R was 0.3 second slower than the full factory prototype at the hands of retired two-time World Champ, Case Stoner. As of now three teams will be purchasing the equipment for next season including the Aspar Team (Nicky Hayden and one other rider, to-determined), Cardion AB Team (Karel Abraham), and the Honda Gresini Team with Scott Redding.

The teams will get their first laps on the new RCV1000R during the official post-season test next week at Valencia, Spain. HRC hasn’t publically announced what the motorcycle is priced at.

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