New Bikes

Next-gen Aprilia RSV4 gets clever aero and engine cooling solution

The next generation Aprilia RSV4 could be about to get active aerodynamics and engine cooling revealed in patents

PATENTS have been found that could show the next generation Aprilia RSV4 with the addition of some interesting design elements relating to the bike’s fairing.

The patents seem to show an RSV4 sports bike of the future with the inclusion of some new wings and engine cooling elements.

The patent looks to make ground in sports motorcycle’s modern-day battleground of aerodynamics and motorcycle packaging.

The pictures show a sports bike with large protruding ducts running to the left and the right of the front wheel. The thinking behind the design is that the scoops can gobble up large amounts of clean or undisturbed air from in front of the bike. Normally on a sports bike, the radiator is mounted directly behind the front wheel. Here the airflow into the radiator is disturbed or made ‘dirty’ by the turbulence of the front wheel, brake and suspension assembly. This disturbance means manufacturers must make the radiator bigger than it needs to be, to make the most of the turbulent airflow.

Using a ducted intake to the radiator means the designers can focus a larger amount of clean air into the cooling system, shrinking it in size in the process. With the reduction in size comes a myriad of benefits; the weight is reduced and the mass of the rad’ and the associated coolant can be placed in a more performance-friendly location.

The design looks to be fairly well researched, with the patent even taking into account the dive of the forks when braking hard from high speed. In this instance, the scoops on the bike will remain on the same plane as the main chassis of the bike, slotting into a void above the inlet.

Another benefit of the design is the overall aerodynamic efficiency of the machine. With the smaller radiators now being fed directly with cooling air, the main opening behind the front wheel can be shrunk and turned into a much more streamlined part of the fairing.

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With this type of fairing currently outlawed in MotoGP, all signs point to Aprilia eyeing the design up for use on a road bike at some point in the future.

This isn’t the first time a manufacturer has looked to reinvent the radiator, with Benelli, Honda, and others all looking at radiators mounted in the fairing sides and even under the seat. Each design comes with its own pros and cons, although none have truly improved the current norm of making the rad’ oversized and locating it right behind the front wheel.

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