News 8 Nov 2009

MotoGP: 1000cc engines to return for 2012 world championship

The MotoGP field will likely be 1000cc-mounted in 2012.

The MotoGP field will likely be 1000cc-mounted in 2012.

The 2012 MotoGP World Championship is set to feature motorcycles with an engine capacity of 1000cc once again, the series abandoning the 800cc technical regulations that were introduced just two years ago in 2007.

A proposal submitted to the Grand Prix Commission at the Valencia finale in Spain over the weekend is set to see the premier class revert to 1000cc engines in 2012, which is when the current agreement between Dorna, the FIM and the MSMA manufacturer’s association expires for the current 800cc regulations.

The MotoGP category originally commenced with 990cc engines in 2002 when the four-strokes were first introduced to replace the 500cc two-strokes, but those regulations were changed to 800cc for 2007 in a bid to slow the top-speed of the bikes.

Since then, corner speeds have been largely increased and braking markers dramatically reduced, equalling lap times faster than ever before, and expenses that have been threatening the sport as teams pour money into developing motors with more power.

Kawasaki pulled out of the MotoGP category before this season, with Suzuki now said to be on the brink of collapse after a miserable season unless the rules are made more cost-effective.

It is expected that the new 1000cc regulations could be a set similar to the new 600cc Moto2 class to be introduced next year, where production-based engines are slotted into purpose-built prototype grand prix racing chassis.

Confirmation on the move is yet to be announced, but inside sources in Europe are already suggesting that the revised regulations have already been pencilled in for the 2012 season.