Tuesday, September 16, 2008

APRILIA MOTORCYCLE leonardo 500 ditech

Aprilia has shown a new prototype at the Milan Show which demonstrates that they are getting some significant gains from their Direct Injection 2-stroke technology that, until now, we've only seen in a 50cc scooter.

Not so long ago, ever tightening noise and emission laws looked as if they spelt the end of the 2-stroke on our roads. The legendary Aprilia RS250 has already ceased production. However, Aprilia have been fighting back with their DiTech system that produces significantly more power, better fuel economy and better emissions than the equivalent 4-stroke.

It appears that Aprilia have now succeeded in leveraging their DiTech techno into a light and compact 500cc 2-stroke single-cylinder engine producing some stunning performance figures:
- power of 50bhp at 6,500rpm,
- torque of 65Nm at 6,000rpm,
- fuel consumption at 107mpg for the ECE 40 cycle, and 96mpg at 70mph!
And it'll meet the Euro 3 emission laws due in 2006.

It seems the 2-stroke is far from dead.

The prototype on show was a good looking 500cc ultra-light sports scooter that illustrates the increasing convergence of the scooter and motorcycle worlds. It has:
- belt driven Continuously Variable Transmission plus button selected sequential manual,
- frame mounted engine (for less unsprung weight),
- rigid aluminum frame,
- mono shock, single sided swingarm with belt final drive,
- disc brakes front (double) and rear (single),
- front lights from the new RSV Mille, rear LEDs.
- promised luggage, satellite navigation and ABS (anti-lock brake system) options.
- tank range of up to 450 miles,
- top speed of 105mph,
- Standing 1/4 mile in 12.5 seconds (An '02 Yamaha R1 only does it in 11.1 seconds)
- dry weight of only 175kg.

Does all this sound too good to be true? Well, it is only a prototype, but if a production version came anywhere close to these figures, it'll clearly make the opposition obsolete at a stroke (2-stroke at that).

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