Given the competitive nature of the electric racing realm, its rare to see the big high-power bikes without their fairings, as teams are reluctant to reveal their secret sauce. Debuting the Mugen Shinden San this past weekend in Tokyo though, Team Mugen did just that, giving us a glimpse into the inner workings of the team’s 2013 race bike, the Mugen Shinden Ni.
You don’t have to be an electron-head to get excited by these photos, as any race bike with a carbon fiber frame and swingarm is pretty drool-worthy, though the Shinden Ni’s carbon fiber battery enclosure does hide a great deal of the electric superbike’s geek factor. While the sheer size of the battery bike is impressive, it was expected when the Shinden was first announced.
Sitting next to the Shinden San, the Shinden Ni looks positively large, as its predecessor’s fairings are noticeably more streamlined and stylized — does anyone else thing the front fairing looks suspiciously like the Mission RS?
Mission Motors is of course helping Mugen with its powertrain tech, though whether that help is in software, hardware, or all of the above is left up to us for conjecture.
With 10hp more up top, and presumably denser batteries than last year, it is hoped that John McGuinness and Bruce Anstey will get a 115 mph lap from the Mugen Shinden San.
One big question for race day will be whether Mugen will run identical systems on both riders’ bikes, or if rumors about Honda’s involvement in the Mugen Shinden project will see internal OEM and external partner technologies pitted against each other on the electric superbike platform.
One thing is for sure though, with the electrics now approaching Lightweight TT lap times, the rate of progress in the TT Zero field has been quite impressive. Hopefully we will see some more competitive entries on the starting line not only this year, but in future years as well.
Photos of the Mugen Shinden Ni without Fairings:
Photos of the Mugen Shinden San Launch: