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The Future of Two-Stroke Engines

I am not an engineer, but I can usually make sense out of technology trends. One thing certainly has me baffled.

Why isn’t clean-burning, two-stroke technology being applied to motorcycles? With the exception of Bimota’s V-due, and some Aprilia, small displacement street bikes currently planned for introduction, I am unaware of any manufacturer producing street legal two-strokes with the latest technology. On the other hand, you can readily find outboard motors with this technology (ever heard of Ficht?), as well as other applications.

Honda is introducing a line of watercraft employing four-strokes, while most competitors are using two strokes. Why isn’t Honda applying the “clean” technology to a new two-stroke design?

Perhaps Honda and the other major manufacturers are required to license two-stroke technology from other companies. I believe that Aprilia is licensing technology from Orbital of Australia, for instance.

In any event, I am sure we have readers who are knowledgeable in this area, and informative e-mail will be used for a follow up article. Will those of you in the know, shed some light on this issue for MD and other readers?