Bimota is back! Tie-up with Kawasaki results in stunning new Tesi H2

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Meet the brand new, 2020 Bimota Tesi H2. Kawasaki have today confirmed they’ve purchased a 49.9% stake in legendary Italian firm Bimota, revealing this new supercharged, hub-steered monster based on the Japanese brand’s supercharged 227bhp Ninja H2.

The first new Bimota model since the BMW S1000RR-derived BB3 superbike in 2014, the new machine, finished in the traditional red and white, uses a striking hub-centre steering set-up, with what appears to be two semi-active Öhlins shocks at the rear of the bike, braced under the single seat.

Details remain scarce, however the front swingarm appears to be connected to its designated shock via a linkage running down the left side of its four-cylinder Kawasaki engine. Wires protruding from each of the suspension units would suggest some form of electronic damping, with remote adjusters also accessible for preload.  

Although unconventional, the advantages of including hub steering is that it provides a narrower front-end, as well as the ability to trail brake into a corner, with braking forces kept away from the front suspension, leaving it free to deal with bumps in the road. The disadvantage of this though is that with so many linkages, front-end feel can be reduced.

The brakes themselves are also neatly hidden within the front mudguard, with the front swingarm preventing the calipers from being positioned conventionally. 

Alongside revised suspension, the new machine also appears to use the Kawasaki engine as an integral part of the chassis, with the front swingarm mounted to a front frame, also housing the Kawasaki-derived clocks, via steel tubing.

The rear arm also appears to bolt directly to a pivot point towards the rear of engine, with the Bimota DB8-styled rear cowling held in place by a carbon fibre subframe.

Sources from Bimota at the Eicma show have told MCN that the bike is homologated to the same specs as the latest H2, meaning similar power and weight, with prices expected to sit in the region of €50,000 (around £43,000). Bikes are set to arrive in June 2020. Keep an eye out for the Bimota Tesi H2 review coming soon on MCN.

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Dan Sutherland

By Dan Sutherland

Senior Writer (motorcycling), sportsbike nut, currently riding a FireBlade