BMW could be working on an active aerodynamic package that might be fitted on an upcoming superbike, probably named M1000RR. It looks like the German brand could fit some active winglets as shown in some recent patents on an upgraded BMW S1000RR to race in the World Superbike Championship.
Some patents filed in Germany reveal BMW’s plan to introduce active aerodynamic winglets on its future bikes according to these photos from MotoIT. Even though in the photos we can see a naked bike fitted with a boxer engine, BMW could bring this active aero package to a new S1000RR model which could bare the name BMW M1000RR.
BMW’s active aerodynamic winglets are designed to increase or decrease the downforce of the motorcycle and improve the stability under hard braking. Also, the active winglets could act as an aerodynamic brake in various situations. Thus, this system could be used on a new version of the BMW S1000RR suited for WorldSBK. Moreover, the active aero patents reveal that the winglets are fitted on the front-fairing and also towards the tail unit, plus another set on the front forks and on the swingarm (which could mean that it will be the first time a production motorcycle will be fitted with winglets on the swingarm). The active aero wings are continuously controlled by the on-board electronics, in other words, the winglets could move independently of one another and are adjusted depending on how the rider uses the throttle, brake and lean angles.
The active winglets are designed to increase or decrease the downforce as well as help the motorcycle while braking. So, the next-generation BMW S1000RR or M1000RR (if that’ll be the designated name) could be fitted with an engine delivering more hp as the German engineers will not need to worry about the bike’s stability and handling as they work on the engine design.
At the moment, there are a couple of brands that use winglets on their superbikes like Aprilia, Ducati, and Honda. So, BMW could be working hard to make sure they keep up with their rivals. But, let’s get back to the possible introduction of active winglets on a superbike. It looks like the latest WorldSBK regulations allow for the bikes to be fitted with a moveable bodywork for use on the track. Thus, this situation leaves a lot of room for manufacturers to develop road superbikes with active aerodynamics and bring them to WorldSBK to compete.
Also, Honda filed some patents last year indicating that they are working on such a device even though the active winglets were not fitted on the latest generation CBR1000RR-R Fireblade. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the Japanese brand will not fit such a system in the future. As the new WorldSBK rules allow for new models to be homologated with an active aerodynamic package, this could also mean that other manufacturers will start to develop such systems in the future among the brands competing at the moment – BMW, Honda, Ducati, Kawasaki, and Yamaha.
We’ll have to wait and see if this will pave the way for the upcoming BMW models as we know that last year the M Power performance subdivision was linked to BMW Motorrad and rumour has it that three new models could be in development – M1300GS, M1000RR and M1000XR.