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How much Horsepower do you Really Need??

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' at netrider.net.au started by rc36, Sep 20, 2005.

  1. Given that Kawasaki has just announced the new ZZR1400 with 192 horsepower, I am wondering, how much horsepower do you really need?

    We always WANT more power, that's why we buy more powerful bikes each time and/or modify the ones we have, but how much do we need?

    A good 500cc bike will out-accelerate most cars and anything over 750 (more or less) will blow any common car into the weeds. Touring and luggage-carrying capacity of modern bikes makes them a weapon on the highway and overtaking manoeuvers can be accomplishe with ease in almost every situation.

    Acceleration in a roll-on situation is awesome as well, so how much power do we need, and do we need a 200 bhp bike at all?

    Leaving aside bikes for track days where you could ALWAYS do with more....

  2. Let's face it you only NEED enough power to get the bike safely up to the legal maximum speed (110kph). It's really a question of how much power to people WANT, and whether they are willing to pay for it. Bikes like the Rocket III and perhaps the MT-01 show that there is always people willing to buy powerful bikes so no doubt they'll keep making them. Remember that the Government once banned "high-powered" cars like the GT-HO Falcon, now the average family sedan puts out more power.
  3. I'm happy with the hp I have now - there isn't any need for me to have more. With that said my next bike is probably going to be a 1000 because I want one that is a bit better/comfortable touring (though still sporty), and don't want a vfr for various reasons. If there is another mid-bore (750+) sports tourer that becomes available I may consider it.
  4. I could be wrong, but I was pretty sure the Govt never actually banned the super sedans, they just strongly hinted to manufacturers that if they didn't pull their head in, then the Govt would legislate, and the results wouldn't be pretty. Hence Ford had the Phase IV GT in development before getting the hint from on high to can it.

    It wouldn't surprise me if a similar thing happened in bikes - remember the murmurs when the 300 kph bikes (e.g. Hayabusa) started getting noticed by the mainstream press/Govt? Again, correct me if I am wrong, but wasn't the new 'busa actually slightly slower than the old one, and their advertising stopped giving such prominence to the fact that you could crack 300?
  5. i know my uncle actually owns a rocket, and he bought that purely for touring reasons.

    Quote "the harley is nice for touring but when you hit a hill with the bike trailer on and a pillion, you have to kick it back a gear, now i just roll the wrist a bit further"

    so yes there are people out there, that just also don't use it for the outright speed
  6. Actually the Government suggested that if either Ford or Holden (think they were working on a high-powered Torana) built such vehicles then the Government would cease buying vehicles from them which would have crippled their sales. So yeah not technically a ban but still effective at the time. Don't think the Government really cares enough about bikes to even be aware of what HP they are producing but I do know that Japanese bikes are restricted in the amount of power they can produce based on their displacement.

  7. Ford had gearbox problems with the phase IV GT it had nothing to do with government threats. It kept destroying them.
    The power of the car meant the gearbox could not match it and despite several attempts at fixing it Ford thought it would cost too much in R&D to justify the small volume of sales the phase IV would sell.

    As for the hyabusa being made slower that has nothing to do with Australia but rather European standards where the bike has had restrictors added to it in order to not surpass 300 kmh.
  8. Yes, and I'll stand corrected but I think their restrictions are even more stringent than the European ones that smee mentioned above.

    When ?

    would stepping off the ZZR250 onto a ZZR1400 be too much of a jump ?
  10. Reasonably?
    As in... real world stuff?
    Somewhere between 40-100hp.
    Given the engine size (cc's) according to the TYPE of bike, that is...
    A 1000-1500cc/350kg cruiser or Dress-tourer with 100hp is fine, as is a 600cc/ 160kg sportie.
    Or a 900-1200cc/220kg chookie with 80hp
    Or a 650cc single/ 140kg Supermotard on 50hp.
    Or Chairmans 34/ 37?hp SR500 for that matter.... :D :D
    In the end, most real-world riding is on grunt, not hp or speed.
    And ultimately it ain't the hp but what the individual can do with it.
    Again, Chairman is the glowing example here...
  11. Any simple comparison of speed versus horsepower is fundamentally flawed. Horsepower in isolation has no relationship to speed. A look at the speeds achieved by a bike like the Hyabusa with its high power output can be put in perspective by what can be achieved with less than one horsepower. eg The highest speed ever achieved on a bicycle is 268.831 km/h (167.043 mph), by Fred Rompelberg (The Netherlands) at Bonneville Salt Flats, Utah, USA, on October 3, 1995)
  12. Naaaaaaaaaaw, it's the same bike, innit?
    Just different paint...
  13. Very poor example. This was assisted by an extremely large amount of horsepower to pierce the air and create a false slipstream. A very large amount of horsepower was required to create an environment where such speed could be achieved.
  14. Probably fair comment. How about 121.700MPH from 50CC, no slipstream ? (H. Muller NSU August 1956)
  15. 12 more please.

    That will be more than adequate for my track day fun. :D
  16. Ignoring gear ratios top speed is simply a product of horsepower divided by the total frictional losses - rolling resistance, mechanical losses and most importantly wind resistance. So assuming the vehicle is geared appropriately all you need to do to go faster is increase power and/or decrease wind resistance.
  17. actually there were 5 bought by private owners, 3 red ones. i think the other 2 were green and black. one guy in sydney owns three of them, one was crashed and someone else owns one.

    and the deal was Ford and Holden won't produce cars of 300kw. as you might notice that the gt etc have been greatly tuned down to 290kw. and the clubsports and other holdens only go to 295kw.

    nothing over 300kw
  18. oh and how much horsepower do you need?

    as much as you can possibly get, adjust driving technique to suit horsepower as to not break chasis
  19. The actual amount of horsepower is not really relevent to street bike application, more the way that it is delivered.
    A two stroke race rep may only have a fraction of the horesepower of the new Kwaka, but because of the power delivery characteristics will be a lot more risky to ride on the road in certain situations.