The Mugen Shinden electric motorbike is preparing to take up the challenge of the zero emission Tourist Trophy on the Isle of Man for the seventh time... with a dream team of riders!
The Mugen Shinden electric motorbike is preparing to take up the challenge of the zero emission Tourist Trophy on the Isle of Man for the seventh time. Since the bike was launched, it has undergone non-stop development and the latest iteration has been given the name, “nana,” which means seven in Japanese. Its three riders will have the record set by John McGuinness in 2015 at an average speed of 191,961 km/h (119.279 mph) in their sights.
The Japanese manufacturer’s engineers will be aiming for their fifth victory on the famous 60-km (37.773 m) Snaefell Mountain course. To achieve this they have designed a new front cowl to improve cooling and have also modified the other bodywork elements to enhance aerodynamic efficiency. Last but not least, the battery’s capacity has been maximised.
The three riders selected by Mugen constitute a dream team! John McGuinness and Bruce Anstey have won the TT all categories combined 23 and 10 times respectively. They also shared the last four victories in the TT Zero (McGuinness in 2014 and 2015, and Anstey in 2016 and 2017). This year they will be backed up by Lee Johnston who finished third in 2015 behind his two teammates.
To find out more about the Shinden Nana we talked to Katsuya Arai, Motul Japan general manager and technical expert.
What is the role of a high-performance lubricants specialist in a programme like this one?
“Even an electric engine heats up and if it gets too hot the power tails off. On the Shinden it is installed at the back of the chassis just in front of the rear wheel, a position that doesn’t facilitate cooling it by air. The engine has a system of liquid cooling that used water originally, but it wasn’t efficient enough. This is why M-TEC Co., Ltd. (the company that owns Mugen) and Motul decided to collaborate to come up with a cooling liquid for the Shinden’s engine.”
Last year, Bruce Anstey and Guy Martin compared the Shinden to a 250 cc bike. Which of the present categories is it nearest to in terms of performance?
“The Shinden 7 puts out 120 KW, which isn’t far off a 600 cc Supersports in terms of power and lap times on the Tourist Trophy circuit.”
Motul is an Official Partners Of The Isle of Man TT Races and Mugen will be racing in the TT zero with Motul’s technical support.