Motorcycles are so important for many people and are an actual hobby for most of us. People tend to go on the bike for short trips in their areas rather than driving cars.
Motorcycle manufacturers have improved their designs a lot during the past years. We have now also had electric bikes that are being developed every year, and of course, the original gasoline-powered motorcycles that many people enjoy driving.
But are that all the available types of engines or power sources that could drive a vehicle? Where is the diesel? We all know those powerful cars and trucks that are all diesel-powered, and many people actually prefer them over gasoline-powered vehicles.
So why aren’t there diesel-powered motorcycles? Let’s find out.
Motorcycle equals Speed
Diesel engines are well known for their higher torque production and reliability, and this is why they are mostly used in truck and farm tractors. But on the other hand, they have relatively lower rpm compared to gasoline engines.
Lower rpm means that diesel engines usually have lower horsepower compared to gasoline engines. And this is a big issue for motorcyclists—higher speed and acceleration demand higher horsepower, which the diesel engine lacks.
Ask any motorcycle enthusiast about their passion for driving a bike, and most probably, they will tell you higher speed and acceleration are a must.
Size really matters
If you know how a diesel engine works, you just got this point already. Diesel engines usually produce more energy which means more heat, and this will need a proper cooling system to protect the engine from complete destruction.
Having such a cooling system will eventually lead to a bigger engine. Not just bigger but also heavier, why heavier you ask? I hear you.
Diesel engines have a higher compression ratio than gasoline engines, and in order for the engine to handle the high pressure and temperature of the air being compressed in the cylinders, the engine must be made of heavier and powerful material.
Having such a massive and heavy engine is not convenient for bikes that need small and lightweight engines.
Can you handle vibration?
I don’t matter sitting on a massage chair for a couple of minutes every day. I will actually enjoy that. But would you endure such vibration for a couple of hours each day and while driving your bike?
I’m not exaggerating the case, the diesel engine is knowns for its high vibration and noise levels, and this is, of course, due to its higher compression ratio. Driving a diesel truck or car will not be an issue since the distance between the passenger and the engine is big enough.
On the other hand, driving a diesel-powered motorcycle will be a long vibrating trip. The distance between the driver and the engine is so small that the driver will be really distracted by the high vibration and noise produced by the engine.
As we mentioned before, diesel engines are produced of higher quality material and have a bigger size for a proper cooling system. This will require the manufacturer to pay more in the production process.
Having more manufacturing costs will eventually increase the price tag the customer will have to pay, and this is, of course, a big disadvantage due to using a diesel engine.
Why are there no diesel motorcycles?
Due to the reasons we have mentioned in this article, diesel-powered motorcycles are neglected from production. These are not the only reasons, and there are some more.
Diesel engine often requires more maintenance and more frequent oil replacement, which is more money needed to be paid. It is also a great source of pollution compared to gasoline since it produces 13% more carbon-di-oxide per gallon.
So what do you think of this? Do you still prefer to have a diesel motorcycle? And for what reasons?