146 13011 +Kawasaki Displays Supercharged Engine At Tokyo Motor Show+
Kawasaki didn’t want to get left out of the spotlight at the Tokyo Motor Show, and displayed a forced-induction four-cylinder engine utilizing a supercharger nestled behind the cylinder block. Kawasaki’s vague press release verbiage states that “Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd. also has a long history of developing technologies for turbine engines. The lifeblood of these turbines is their blades, which need to be able to cope with extreme heat and vibration while spinning at high speeds. Know-how from years of designing turbine engine blades was instilled in the first supercharger developed by a motorcycle manufacturer.”
But the kicker is the last sentence: “And of course, designing a motorcycle-use supercharged engine in-house means that maximum efficiency could be pursued.”
Yes, Kawasaki Heavy Industries has an aircraft subdivision that produces, among other things, the turbine blades for most of the turbofan jet engines that power the last airliner you flew on. And although this may sound groundbreaking, actually Kawasaki already has a model in its current lineup sporting a 1498cc four-cylinder engine utilizing an intercooled supercharger that pumps out a claimed 300 horsepower. It’s called the Jet Ski Ultra 300X, Kawasaki’s top-of-the-line personal watercraft that was first introduced in 2011. We know, a watercraft engine’s loads will be different than a motorcycle’s, but much of the technology is already there, so this won’t exactly be starting from square one for Team Green.