What can we expect for 2016, some things will increase but mostly the prices of our beloved two-wheeler will go down in price, due to affordable automatics, while the weight of our exhaust systems will surely increase in weight...
ABS is set to be compulsory on all motorcycles above 125cc and combined brakes for all smaller motorcycles and scooters by 2017, for now this is only a European law but is expected to be adapted by several countries in Southeast Asia.
ABS requires disc brakes so we expect a huge shift to disc brakes and that shift to begin in 2016 itself. More demand for them should lower their costs, making it easier for manufacturers to offer disc brakes on budget models. This could be the start of the end for the drum brake. The drum brake technology may be obsolete within the next few year. The latest Euro-4 exhaust emission rules, which very likely will be adopted by the Thai government, will result in two big changes for new motorcycles – ride-by-wire and larger exhausts systems. Current underslung exhaust designs help centralize mass but cannot accommodate the mass of catalytic converters required to meet the Euro-4 exhaust emission norms.
The need for more volume will result in bulkier exhaust systems which need to be side slung near the swingarm, or even be integrated into the swingarm itself. As for ride-by-wire, current electronic fuel injection systems are very efficient but KTM said that even 3 to 4 percent gains are valuable in the pursuit of meeting these new norms and super precise ride-by-wire systems help achieve that.
There's so much for the motorcyclist to look forward to in 2016. At the expensive end of the spectrum, we have new Triumph Bonneville Street Twin. New touring/adventure-touring friendly Kawasaki and Honda models in the 600 to 800cc range. And we expect much more 250cc single-cylinder motorcycles from Chinese's manufacturers to enter the market. We will also see some established Chinese manufacturers introducing affordable 400cc motorcycles and maybe a few scooters.