FIM President Vito Ippolito and Dorna Sports CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta confirm today that MotoGP will run to a new 1000cc engine capacity for the 2012 season.
Following talks between MotoGP’s governing body the FIM, series rights holder Dorna Sports and the MSMA in Geneva, the Commission agreed to change the maximum engine capacity of the MotoGP class to 1000cc for the 2012 season – with a limit of four cylinders and a maximum cylinder bore measurement of 81 mm.
It means there will be two World Championships in 2012 – both running to 1000cc top limit for four-cylinder engines. The brief outline of the new MotoGP regulations (the full rules will be released later)contain no mention of the word ‘prototype’ and the chosen bore size would allow current superbike engine configurations like Honda (76mm bore), Yamaha 78mm bore) and even BMW (at 80mm bore – currently the biggest four-cylinder bore size in WSB), though it would rule out the Desmosedici (86mm bore).
The MotoGP weight limit has also been raised by two kilos to150kg compared to the current four-cylinder WSB limit for four-cylinder bikes of 162kg.
Ippolito said: “The main changes we have decided on are new rules for the MotoGP class. We will have four cylinder engines, four-stroke of course, with a 1000cc maximum, and the bore of the cylinders will be 81mm. This base will give all the manufacturers the opportunity to start work.
At the beginning of next year we will produce the new rules in a more complete format, but that is the basis; 2012 will be the year of a new era of MotoGP.”
Ezpeleta added: “It was a very important meeting to decide the future of the MotoGP class. From 2012 the bikes will have an engine capacity of up to 1000cc, have up to four cylinders and the maximum bore will be 81mm. It’s a very important measurement because with this we can have all the characteristics of the engine. This has been approved and between now and the start of the 2010 season we will have another two meetings to define the rest of the specifications for this new class.”
Timeline of engine changes in recent years:
2002 - Introduction of 990cc 4-stroke MotoGP (instead of 2-stroke 500cc).
2007 - Maximum engine capacity reduction from 990cc to 800cc.
2009-2010 – Maximum engine usage (6 engines per rider in 2010).
2012 - Maximum engine capacity increased to 1000cc, with a limit of 4 cylinders and a maximum 81mm cylinder bore.