Hy­brid op­tion

Motorcycle News (UK) - - This Week -

While there will still be a flat-six-pow­ered Gold Wing in the next gen­er­a­tion – vir­tu­ally ev­ery patent re­lat­ing to the bike in­cor­po­rates this familiar en­gine lay­out – Honda’s en­gi­neers have also de­vel­oped a four-cylin­der hy­brid al­ter­na­tive.

The hy­brid ver­sion re­moves the front two cylin­ders from the en­gine, leav­ing a 1200cc flat-four, and in their place puts a large gen­er­a­tor unit, bolted straight to the crank­shaft.

This unit har­vests elec­tric­ity when the en­gine is on the over­run or the bike is slow­ing down, stor­ing it in rel­a­tively small bat­ter­ies and then reusing it when it’s needed for ac­cel­er­a­tion. The over­all length of the en­gine and gen­er­a­tor is vir­tu­ally the same as the nor­mal six-cylin­der unit, al­low­ing it to be fit­ted into the same chas­sis, and should pro­vide sim­i­lar per­for­mance while of­fer­ing in­creases in econ­omy and fuel range.

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