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There have been no new combustion bikes in the UK since 2035

The UK wants to ban newly registered motorcycles running on fossil fuels from 2035.

In the European Union, the end of fossil fuels in cars and light commercial vehicles has been announced since 2035 to reduce CO2 emissions. The substance of motorcycles has not yet been discussed in the EU and would be unreasonable for motorcycles: so far, two-wheelers are not subject to any CO2 limits. Britain does not care. The British plan to ban new registrations of motorcycle emissions from 2035. Before it got this far: current motorcycle engines have the largest cubic capacity at the photo show.

Burners are prohibited without exception

The UK government plans to have newly registered, i.e. new models, emission-free from 2035. Nothing is burned in the engine, not even hydrogen and carbon dioxide or synthetic fuels made from biofuels. They are CO2 neutral, but pollutants are still emitted with carbon monoxide or dioxide, which is not currently an option for the UK.

EU with limited restriction

With that, Great Britain will go one step further than the European Union. The EU currently has only plans to reduce greenhouse gases from cars and light commercial vehicles. For the combustion engine, this is primarily carbon dioxide, which in theory opens the door to biofuels such as electric fuels and the E 100. Greenhouse emissions from motorcycles are not currently directly regulated and will probably not be subject to current EU plans. Nevertheless: Against the backdrop of more severe pollution and noise restrictions for cars and motorcycles, it emits no pollution and is highly understandable according to the manufacturers in the drive technology which is less noticeable in terms of noise.

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The combustion engine can perform better

Its end is near the car. On a motorcycle it will survive for some time: the combustion engine. But only if it consumes less in the medium term and emits less carbon dioxide. Low fuel consumption is possible with the same efficiency in fuel selection, new technologies and reduction of internal friction. Is this enough for the combustion engine? According to Neil Fraser, engineering head of Mahle Powertrain, “there is still potential to further improve the basic engine and increase the efficiency of motorcycle engines through the use of new technologies so that CO2 emissions can be significantly reduced by reducing the use of synthetic fuels, especially when viewed on a well-wheeled basis.” Well-to-wheel is to upgrade the entire power chain in one drive.

Less friction

With the introduction of Euro 5, one can often read: the engine is friction-optimized. The engine components are re-tuned so that they require less power to go with each other. For example, the valve rail through the piston in the cylinder and the crankshaft or camshaft in its bearings. Friction in the engine can be reduced by coatings, processing methods and material combinations. Objective: To use the energy of the fuel for propulsion and not to overcome the internal friction of the engine.

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New technologies for the combustion engine

This seems paradoxical: performance increases can be derived from Formula 1. In terms of performance, these engines are one of the most economical combustion engines. Atrial ignition is used here. Instead of a small spark from a spark plug into the combustion chamber, the mixture is ignited by a large spark. Pros: The main composition is very thin. The pilot flame is ignited with a small amount of rich mixture. Can increase compression, combustion is faster, efficiency increases. Also the double welding required for larger holes can be avoided because the mixture is welded more evenly and quickly. And for the motorcycle? Honda recently patented such a system and helped Neil Fraser develop this technology at Mahle: “Mahle has developed its own pre-chamber ignition MJI (Mahle Jet Ignition) that has been used in Formula 1. for many years. The passive MJI system with a single spark plug in the press chamber is easy to operate from a single point of view, so it is best suited for motorcycle engines. Treatments are also required.

Low consumption with low power?

It sounds like a simple calculation: low speed and low power consumption. The expert contradicts: “No. With the appropriate fuels and technologies, efficiency can be increased without compromising customer needs.”

The right motorcycle engine?

What would a perfect motorcycle engine look like for a developer? In the future motorcycle engine with optimal performance, I will combine an MJI ignition system and variable valve rail for optimal performance, efficiency and emissions. The basic mechanical design is a lightweight composite and skeleton structure to reduce weight. Friction-optimized components and synthetic fuels will ensure lasting fun. “Constant fun. Good idea when it comes to combustion engines on motorcycles.


Yes, I also focus on the low consumption of the bike.

No, consumption is an absolutely small thing.


This seems strange. The European Union plans to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from cars and light commercial vehicles to zero by 2035. This is not a direct ban on combustion engines, it is a logical decision of the manufacturers. Motorcycle in this context is not yet mentioned.

Great Britain is hitting hard here. Not only do they want to emit less greenhouse gases, all pollutants need to get out of the roads. Motorcycles are expected to be affected in 2035. No contaminants means no combustion, which is prohibited for burners. Let’s see if this will push manufacturers in 2035 or trigger a complete change in the British movement on two wheels.

In the carbon dioxide environment, the combustion engine is not finished. Engineer Mahle has a number of technologies that can reduce engine consumption without sacrificing performance or fun on the bike.