The production racer version of Honda’s RC213V is another step closer to reality. At Sepang, HRC Vice President Shuhei Nakamoto spoke to reporters and the MotoGP.com website about the new bike, and the progress being made on the machine, which will take the place of the CRT machines from 2014 onwards. The bike is delayed, Nakamoto said, but it will be ready in time for the tests at Valencia, after the final race of the season in November.

Nakamoto gave a brief rundown of the specifications of the production RC213V – a bike which, given the amount of publicity it is going to be generating over the next few months, badly needs a new name – though the list contained few surprises.

The bike will have conventional valve springs, as opposed to pneumatic valves on the factory machine. It will not have the seamless gearbox used by the prototypes – again, not a surprise, as maintenance on the gearbox is still an HRC-only affair. This was not a matter of cost, Nakamoto said, claiming the seamless gearbox now costs almost the same as a standard unit.

The bike will use the spec Magneti Marelli electronics, and the spec Dorna software, which will mean the bike will be allowed to run 24 liters of fuel, rather than the 20 liters factory prototypes will have at their disposal from 2014.

To this end, HRC engineers have spent time in Italy, at the Magneti Marelli plant, learning about the ECU. The engine was already being tested on Honda’s dynos, though with an HRC ECU, as the Marelli unit was still having the bugs ironed out, as the CRT machines demonstrated at Sepang.

While progress on the engine-side was promising, what was rather surprising was the area which was causing HRC the most problems. The bike will cost a million euros, as requested by Dorna, and producing the bike to this price was difficult. The hardest part, he Nakamoto MotoGP.com, was producing the chassis at low cost, without compromising performance.

“It is not easy building a Grand Prix bike for a price of one million euros,” Nakamoto said. Anyone wishing to get their hands on one will be sorely disappointed. Only ten will be built – sufficient to supply five riders – and they will only be available in the MotoGP paddock.

The problems HRC were having building the bike down to a price were one of the factors causing the delay. Honda had originally planned to have the bikes ready to hand to the teams for testing at Brno in August, but that was now off the cards.

Instead, the bikes will be ready at Valencia, for the test directly after the last race of the year in November, and not before then. Which teams would get the bike has still not been settled, Nakamoto said. The bike would be sold directly by HRC, but so far, they had not started negotiations with any of the teams.

Source: MotoGP.com & GPone; Photo: © 2012 Scott Jones / Scott Jones Photography – All Rights Reserved

This article was originally published on MotoMatters, and is republished here on Asphalt & Rubber with permission by the author.

  • CTK

    So just to clarify, this is basically a bargain basement MotoGP bike… only for MotoGP teams? I see Honda’s cancer of disappointment is spreading to their motorcycle division.

  • Yes. Not to be confused with the V4 sport bike Honda is working on as well.

  • AlexOnTwoWheels

    Thanks for clarifying Jensen, I’m very eager to find out more about the V4 Sport bike we’ve been hearing about for almost 18 months now. Any idea when they’ll spill more of the beans on that?

  • Nope. Honda is the worst at spilling the beans on stuff like that.

  • Beinggodisgreat

    Thats a joke right?

  • Joe

    Should be faster then the Ducati’s.

  • SuryaD

    Err so why do we have the CRTs in the first place again?

  • MotoBell

    I DON’T GET IT – if wsbk machines are very close to factory prototype motogp bikes, why create artificially something that is more expensive and will be slower. wsbk is faster than every CRT out there my miles (yes some CRTs are thinly weiled wsbks). So the five riders getting this bike already know they will not have any shout of challenging factory bikes and may be even satellite but could be faster than CRTs they ride – that is very sad. they fucked motogp when they went 800, had they stayed with 990/1000 there would have been stability to attract more teams.. may be prototype racing doesn’t make sense anymore (from a machinery perspective)

  • smiler

    With Honda supplying engines & bikes to Moto2, MotoGP front & back of grid & WSBK presence as well. Why don’t they just purchase Dorna? And be done with it. Welcome to the Honda Cup.
    I love Honda but this is getting stupid. Surprised Denso are not supplying the ECU.

    The fact that they have changed the spec for MotoGp from 500 oilers , to 990, 800, 1000 & now CRT’s, since 2003. No wonder most motorcycles companies are having trouble. I really fail to see who this was supposed to keep costs down & competition up…..

  • TexusTim

    no way is that bike worth 1.6 million us..cmon no matter the materials no matter what that is way overpriced…they build ten for 5 riders and that is 16 million no extras no rider no tires no nothing else…and this is supposed to help drive down gp racing…and he say’s it was”difficult” to keep under 1.6 million us ea….wow that takes big balls…and I dont believe it cost that much.

  • @ SuryaD CRT’s were created by Dorna cause private teams could no longer afford a full prototype bike and the manufacture’s refuse to make them more affordable. So CRT’s were born and now Honda is willing to make a lower spec bike for 1 million Euro’s. Also Yami is now leasing engines so teams can use them in there own chassis .. Game of chicken played by Dorna and the Man. Dorna won cause all of sudden Honda/Yamaha can make a good package for 1 million Euro’s or less. Doubt these bikes will beat any full prototype though…….

  • Superlight

    Yes, the price of this bike will be high, but that’s because they’re only making 10 of them. Mass production is what keeps pricing down and this isn’t that.

  • Ken C.

    I understand that the cost of a MotoGP bike is mostly in research and development, but still, it’s hard to believe that Honda has a hard time building 10 bikes for €1 million each. I would love to see cost of materials and R&D, and see what kind of margins Honda is making on this.

  • CTK

    I mean they are decontenting the bikes heavily, and not really using them as testbeds. The price does seem pretty ridiculous. 1 million euros, Joe Schmoe could probably have a competitive MotoGP bike built from scratch

  • As stated here, making frames is the most expensive part.

  • Lots of “fragile” economies out there right now. MotoGP and/or WSBK may be a “mute” point if China, Korea or both get into a “scuffle” with Japan. We can probably forget 2-wheeled action if..

  • Brad West

    Honda is shipping mine as soon as the check clears.

  • tony

    i agree w/ texastim, as usual…and here’s something i wouldn’t think to see on a 1.6 million euro bike- zipties!

  • Mikeg81

    1 million? Could buy 10 NS500V’s or lease an NSR500 for that.

  • I don’t know why everyone is bitching about the price. A Honda RC213V costs several million euros TO LEASE each year. This is a watered-down RC213V with a million dollar price tag for GP teams to own. Seems like a pretty good deal, considering the marketplace for machines in the MotoGP paddock.

  • moto4

    As others have noted not sure how it can be difficult to build for $1.6m? Particularly odd that there’s the suggestion that financially dependent to nly build five. After r&d (surely the single biggest cost) there is no way materials and production cost so much. I can only assume what Nakamoto means is that hard to build for £1m AND make a whopping profit (and still not give away and secrets, presumably).

  • JT

    How does the £1m price tag compare to the best guesstimate cost of current CRT bikes?

  • TexusTim

    look it’s this simple…do the math ! add all the components together, give high values to all the items.motor,tranmission chassis,forks,shock,swingarm so on…you cant get it to 500,.000 U.S. let alone 1.5 million U.S….listen guys there talking eros here..I million eu is 1..5 million U.S. so there saying one bike without all the moto gp super parts like seamless trans and computer will cost 1.5 million…..so I would say there making more than 60% profit or somthing like 800.00 us in profit on every bike !
    and they cant give the 08 honda cbr 1000 rr any sort of meaningfull upgrade in over 6 years and this is supposed to hold down cost ?…I think honda is the one driving up cost to race moto gp so it takes big bucks to defeat them…outspending your compettition is just another way to win..drive up cost to compete is one of hondas strategy’s here..giving everyone an uncompetitve bike for such big money insuers there domination….THEY ACT LIKE THE SPOILED KID WITH ALL THE BASBALL GEAR ON SUNDAY…IF HE CANT PITCH AND WIN ALL THE TIME HE WILL TAKE HIS BAT AND BALL AND GO HOME…CALL THERE BLUFF HERE AS THERE IS NO WERE ELSE TO GO !