When it comes to motorcycle racing, there are few events that can match the excitement of the MotoGP and Superbike World Championships. Both competitions feature the world’s most skilled riders and the most advanced machines, but which one is faster? In this article, we will take a closer look at MotoGP bikes and Superbikes and try to answer the question – are MotoGP bikes faster than Superbikes?
Before we dive deeper into this topic, it’s important to understand what makes a MotoGP bike and a Superbike different.
MotoGP bikes are custom-built racing machines designed for speed and agility. They are essentially prototypes purpose-built from scratch, with no compromises made for comfort or everyday use. They feature powerful engines, advanced electronics, and lightweight materials such as carbon fibre, magnesium, titanium etc etc all designed to push the limits of what’s possible on a motorcycle.
Superbikes, used in the WSBK aka superbike world championship on the other hand, are based on production motorcycles that have been modified for racing. They are still high-performance machines, but they retain many of the features and components found on their road-going counterparts. This means they are slightly heavier and less powerful than MotoGP bikes used in a MotoGP race, but they are still capable of incredible speeds and lap times.
So, which one is the fastest? To answer that question, we need to take a closer look at the performance of each type of bike.
MotoGP Bikes are the fastest motorcycles in the world.
The current MotoGP engine displacement is of 1000cc. These four-strokes are capable of producing close to 300 horsepower. They are incredibly powerful but also very lightweight, with the bikes weighing in at 157kg (346 lbs) without the rider.
The aerodynamics of the bikes are also optimised for speed. They have a large front fairing that helps reduce wind resistance, and in recent years wings have appeared to help the bikes be more stable under braking and cornering, the rear of the bike is designed to create downforce, improving stability and performance. The suspension is also very advanced, with adjustable shock absorbers and telescopic forks that can be adjusted according to rider preference and track characteristics. In addition, a system that lowers the bike ensures better acceleration, especially at the start.
All of these features come together to create a machine that is capable of incredible speed and agility. MotoGP bikes can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in less than three seconds and reach top speeds of over 220 mph. They can also achieve incredibly fast lap times, with the current lap record at the Circuit of the Americas set by Marc Marquez in 2014 at 2:02.135.
Superbikes are slightly slower than MotoGP bikes, but they are still incredibly fast.
They feature four-stroke engines with a displacement of 1000cc or 1200cc, capable of producing up to 230 horsepower. They are slightly heavier than MotoGP bikes, weighing in at around 170kg (375lbs) without the rider.
World superbikes machine are race tuned version of the most advanced production bikes and among the quickest bikes in motorbike racing. The starting point being a sophisticated piece of mechanical and electronical engineering produced by some of the most prestigious brands in the sector: Ducati, BMW, Kawasaki, Honda, Yamaha.
The aerodynamics of Superbikes are also optimized for speed, but they are not as extreme as MotoGP bikes. They feature a fairing that provides some wind resistance reduction, but it is not as large as the one found on MotoGP bikes. The suspension is also less advanced, with fewer adjustments available to the rider.
Despite these differences, Superbikes are still capable of incredible performance. Even though they are basically race tuned versions of motobikes that anybanyone can buy, they can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in less than three seconds and reach top speeds of around 200 mph. They can also achieve fast lap times, with the current lap record at the Phillip Island circuit set by Alvaro Bautista in 2019 at 1:29.137.
Which One Is Faster?
So, which one is faster – MotoGP bikes or Superbikes? The answer is not straightforward, as it depends on a number of factors.
In terms of outright speed, MotoGP bikes are faster than Superbikes. They can achieve higher top speeds and faster lap times than Superbikes, thanks to their lighter weight, more powerful engines, and advanced aerodynamics and suspension systems. However, Superbikes are not far behind and can still offer incredibly thrilling and fast racing.
Another factor to consider is the track. Different tracks have different characteristics that can favor one type of bike over the other. For example, a track with long straightaways may favor MotoGP bikes, as they can achieve higher top speeds. On the other hand, a track with lots of tight turns may favor Superbikes, as they are more agile and easier to maneuver through corners.
The rider also plays a significant role in determining which type of bike is faster. Both MotoGP and Superbike riders are incredibly skilled and talented, but their riding styles can vary significantly. Some riders may be more comfortable on MotoGP bikes, while others may prefer the handling characteristics of Superbikes.
Overall, MotoGP bikes are faster than Superbikes in terms of pure speed and lap times. However, the difference is not significant, and both types of bikes offer incredible performance and excitement for fans of motorcycle racing.
In conclusion, MotoGP bikes are faster than Superbikes, but the difference is not significant. Both types of bikes offer incredible speed, agility, and performance. MotoGP racing and Superbike racing are among the most exciting motorsport championships in the world and the riders that compete in this categories are the fastest on the planet and either on a production bike or on a purpose built race machine they are capable of entertaining mortorcycle race fans over action filled competitions weekend.
Whether you prefer the raw power and advanced technology of MotoGP bikes or you are a fan of the modified production machines of Superbikes, one thing is for sure – motorcycle racing is one of the most thrilling and exciting sports on the planet and MotoGP riders and superbike riders alike will go full throttle to win the respective world championships and keep us entertained during the racing season.
Picture: Smudge 9000, Marc Marquez, 2013, Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license.