Honda Moto2 engine not ready until early March

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Honda will not deliver its highly-tuned new Moto2 600cc engine until the beginning of March, MCN has learned.

Delays in development of the Moto2 engine project has seen HRC scrap plans to make modified CBR600RR engines available by the end of November as was originally intended.

HRC boss Shuhei Nakamoto recently confirmed to MCN that while the new Moto2 engine was being dyno tested in Japan, the process has not been without some early reliability issues.

As a result, entrants in the 250cc two-stroke replacement class will not take delivery of the new motor until the first official Moto2 test in Valencia at the beginning of March.

Herve Poncharal, boss of the Tech 3 Yamaha MotoGP team, will run a Moto2 team in 2010 and he told MCN: “The Moto2 engine will only be delivered in March for the very first official test in Valencia. That engine is going to be very close to a kitted CBR600 engine so you don’t really need the official engine to test.

“The power curve will be a bit different and there might be a bit more torque and rpm, but it won’t be a massive difference so that is not a problem.”

Poncharal’s own project is currently moving ahead at a healthy pace with the Tech 3 team hoping to have a rolling chassis completed by the end of the month.

And the French team hopes to begin track testing shortly after the final race of the season in Valencia in November.

To allow teams to test new chassis and other components, Moto2 teams are not affected by the cost-saving MotoGP winter testing ban that runs from December 1 to January 31.

The official Moto2 tests will run in Valencia on March 1,2 and 3, followed by a double header in Jerez. The first Jerez session will run between March 6, 7 and 8, followed by another three-day test on March 27, 28 and 29.

Further details of the line-up for the new Moto2 class should be revealed during next weekend’s Estoril GP in Portugal.


Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt