|Manufacturer||Honda Racing Corporation|
|Engine||990 cc (60.4 cu in) four-stroke V5|
The Honda RC211V was developed in 2001 by HRC (Honda Racing Corporation) to replace the Honda NSR500 because regulations for the World Championship motorcycle road racing 500 cc (30.5 cu in) class were changed drastically for the 2002 season. Two-stroke engines were as before limited to 500 cc (30.5 cu in) and 4 cylinders, but four-stroke engines were allowed to grow up to 990 cc (60 cu in) and from three to six cylinders. The name of the class was modified to MotoGP, and is limited to race prototypes only.
The model name designates the following:
- RC = Honda's traditional racing prefix for 4-stroke bikes
- 211 = first works bike of the 21st century
- V = V engine
In 2002, the debut year of the RC211V, Honda and Valentino Rossi dominated by winning the constructor's championship by more than 100 points over their nearest rival. The bike underwent small modifications over the season, but it did not as yet have traction control so much as a handlebar-mounted power management system with 3 settings for different needs during a race.
- Factory riders: Valentino Rossi, Tohru Ukawa
- Satellite riders (in the latter part of the season): Alex Barros, Daijiro Kato
Among other changes in 2003, power was increased from about 200 to 240 bhp. Traction control was also added.
- Factory riders: Valentino Rossi, Nicky Hayden, Daijiro Kato, Sete Gibernau
- Satellite riders: Max Biaggi, Tohru Ukawa, Makoto Tamada, Ryuichi Kiyonari
For 2004, a new, inverted rear suspension link was added, and a new exhaust was introduced at the Sachsenring round. The RC211V riders were unable to keep Rossi (now on a Yamaha YZR-M1) from winning his fourth premier-class championship, and no clear candidate appeared to take over Rossi's role of lead development rider for Honda.
- Factory riders: Alex Barros, Nicky Hayden, Sete Gibernau
- Satellite riders: Max Biaggi, Colin Edwards, Makoto Tamada
2005 would be the first time in 4 years Honda lost the constructor's championship in the premier class. The RC211V chassis underwent frequent revision and rewelding, with reversions to the 2003 design. After the race at Brno, Honda tested a new bike which both Hayden and Biaggi said was an improvement, and was thereafter known as the "Brno bike".
- Factory riders: Max Biaggi, Nicky Hayden, Sete Gibernau
- Satellite riders: Alex Barros, Makoto Tamada, Marco Melandri, Troy Bayliss
In 2006, the RC211V came in three flavors: the "Brno bike" to be ridden by Hayden, a 2006 bike with a special chassis for Pedrosa, and a 2006 bike to be ridden by Melandri, Elías, Stoner and Tamada; Melandri and Stoner eventually got the special Pedrosa chassis. Hayden's RC211V was modified to put the crankshaft higher, the clutch and gearbox lower, and to lengthen the swing arm; the goal was to centralize mass and improve stability. After the Jerez round, Hayden was the fastest Honda rider in testing. At the British GP, HRC gave Hayden a new chassis, but Hayden complained that he didn't have enough time to test it. Hayden had started the year with the same clutch as Pedrosa, but four rounds later it was shelved in favor of a clutch Hayden had used in previous years; at the Brno round, he had a problem with the clutch that contributed to a 9th-place finish. Honda and Hayden had difficulty finding a clutch that would allow a good launch at the start but also work well throughout the race. Hayden eventually won the rider championship and Honda reclaimed the constructor's championship.
- Factory riders: Nicky Hayden, Dani Pedrosa
- Satellite riders: Makoto Tamada, Marco Melandri, Toni Elías, Casey Stoner
In 5 seasons of MotoGP racing the Honda RC211V won 48 races out of 82 (58.5%) contested. It also won 3 rider world championships (Rossi 2002, 2003 and Hayden 2006) and 4 constructor titles (2002, 2003, 2004, 2006).
Specifications as per manufacturer:
|Length||2,050 mm (80.7 in)|
|Width||600 mm (23.6 in)||645 mm (25.4 in)|
|Height||1,130 mm (44.5 in)|
|Wheelbase||1,440 mm (56.7 in)|
|Road Clearance||130 mm (5.1 in)|
|Weight||around 145 kg (320 lb)||around 148 kg (326 lb)|
|Engine Type||water-cooled, four-stroke, DOHC 4 Valve, V-5|
|Displacement||990 cc (60 cu in)|
|Max Power||200 PS (147 kW; 197 hp)||240 PS (177 kW; 237 hp)|
|Front Wheel||17 in (43 cm)||16.5 in (42 cm)|
|Rear Wheel||16.5 in (42 cm)|
|Rear Suspension||Unit Pro-link||New Unit Pro-link|
|Fuel Capacity||24 L (5.3 imp gal; 6.3 US gal)||22 L (4.8 imp gal; 5.8 US gal)|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Honda RC211V.|
- "We Ride Honda's RC211V GP bike!". Motorcyclist. Retrieved 2007-02-01.
- Scott, M. "Different Strokes," page 26. Motocourse 2002-2003. Richmond, Hazleton Publishing Ltd., 2002.
- Spalding, N. "Better By Design," page 24. Motocourse 2003-2004. Richmond, Hazleton Publishing Ltd., 2003.
- Honda Worldwide | WGP 2004 German Grand Prix, Sachsenring World.honda.com, 2004-07-18.
- Ryder, J.: MotoGP Season Review 2005. Page 37. Sparkford, Haynes Publishing, 2005.
- Honda Racing Corporation Brno Test Speedtv.com, 2005-09-02.
- Ryder, J.: MotoGP Season Review 2006. Page 35. Sparkford, Haynes Publishing, 2006.
- Hayden Leads Jerez Test Cyclenews.com, 2006-03-28.
- Spalding, N.: "The Ghost Bike". MotoGP Season Review 2006. Pages 26-29. Sparkford, Haynes Publishing, 2006.
- "Honda RC211V specifications". Honda Racing. Retrieved 2007-03-03.
- "King Nicky wins another World title for Michelin". Michelin. 2006-10-30. Retrieved 2007-03-03.
- "Michelin: It's all about the front now.". Crash.net. 2007-02-27. p. 2. Retrieved 2007-03-03.
- Honda Worldwide | MotoGP - official Honda MotoGP site
|Grand Prix Motorcycles, 2000–2009|
|Aprilia||RSW 500||RS Cube|
|Team Roberts||Proton KR3||Proton V5||KR211V||KR212V|
|250 cc||Aprilia||RSW 250||RSA 250|