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World First Ride: Evaproducts Track T800CDI diesel motorcycle

Published: 04 June 2009

Updated: 19 November 2014

Evaproducts Track T800CDI is the most advanced diesel production bike built yet and MCN has exclusively tested it.

The Track T800CDI is a new adventure-style motorcycle from Dutch manufacturer Evaproducts using a turbo-charged 800cc triple-cylinder from a Smart car, mated with CVT transmission and shaft drive to keep the engine at peak torque.

The engine gives a claimed 45bhp and 78lb-ft of torque, but more significantly fuel consumption up to 140mpg for general riding – twice the economy of the most efficient large capacity petrol motorcycles.

The chassis is designed to compete directly with the KTM 990 Adventure and BMW R1200GS, so it has WP suspension, Brembo brakes and a modern trellis frame.

Reporter Chris Newbigging is the first journalist who has been permitted to ride the prototype on a short ride -here’s our first impression:

Bizarre
Starting the Track T800CDI  gives an unusual experience – it clatters into life like a tractor giving rumbling vibration and the disgusting-smelling exhaust gases rising from the small forward-facing silencer in front of the right footpeg will be familiar to anyone who’s ever got stuck behind an old school bus. You can’t blip the throttle either – doing so will engage drive and send you shooting forward.

Lazy
Open the throttle to pull away and the feeling is like a CVT scooter – the drive itself takes up smoothly but the rising revs are accompanied by rising vibration. The shaft drive has no anti-rising mechanism, so you can feel the torque reaction cause the back end to rise slightly. It’s not a problem, but it adds to the unusual feel.
Opening the throttle hard doesn’t give the rush of drive you’d get with a turbo charged car – acceleration is leisurely even though the engine responds quickly to throttle input. 45bhp still isn’t much despite the respectable torque.

Crude
It doesn’t get better with speed – vibration subsides a little but it’s still enough to be intrusive, and the CVT means the engine is always at the same revs giving a monotous tractor-like noise, which even on MCN’s short test ride became tiresome. Even with an open mind there’s no getting away from the fact is just isn’t quick or refined enough to be compared with petrol rivals on riding enjoyment.

Well-designed
It’s a shame the engine isn’t much cop – the rest of the bike is built to a high standard, and the chassis is as good as any major manufacturer. The look is distinctive too, and the riding position is adjustable so it should prove comfortable over distance.

Tough
The reason for the bike’s low power output is Evaproduct’s desire to make it last– an engine life of 250,000 miles is claimed – and give excellent fuel consumption. Those qualities only appeal to a limited number of people – for the rest of the world, they’re attributes of limited use that come as the expense of riding enjoyment, so until diesel bikes tune in to the needs to the wider biking public, it’ll stay as a niche machine.

THE FACTS

Track T800CDI
£15,000
Engine: 799cc, six-valves, liquid-cooled three cylinder turbo-charged diesel, common rail fuel injection, constantly-variable transmission.
Power (claimed): 45bhp
Weight: 220kg (fluids, no fuel)
Colours: Silver, black or white
Contact: http://www.dieselmotorcycles.eu/

Pics courtesy of Phil Masters

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