Monday, 27 August 2012

Exclusive – The new TVS Phoenix 125CC Pics, Specs and Launch Date

TVS recently launched this new 125cc motorcycle – TVS Phoenix in Bangkok at the TVS Storm Ahead event held at 17-18 August. One of our reader spotted this and managed to send this our way. This is the first real picture of the TVS Phoenix 125CC, as you can see the bike looks stylish with a modern design, alloy wheels and front disk brakes. Check out more details with launch date and price information of Phoenix 2012 after the break.
TVS Phoenix Pics: Upcoming 125cc motorcycle from TVS
Dual color stylish tank
Six spoke Alloy wheels with front disk brake
TVS Storm Ahead Event

Expected specifications of the Phoenix 125cc:

  • 124.8cc air cooled engine
  • 4 speed transmission
  • Digital console
  • 10Nm torque
  • 10.5 PS of power

TVS Phoenix 125cc Release date in India?

Expected release date is in the month of October, exact launch date not available at this time.

TVS Phoenix 2012 expected price in India: Rs. 50,000

Phoenix 125cc will be aimed at the premium 125cc segment of Indian motorcycles and will start shipping during the October – November, 2012 to rake in the Diwali festival sales.
What do you think about the Phoenix 125cc? let us know in the comments below.

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Aluminium in the automotive industry

A modern car with components made of aluminium can be 24 percent lighter than one with components made of steel, which also allows fuel consumption to be reduced by 2 litres per 100 kilometres.
Car manufacturers first started to use aluminium over a hundred years ago. Back then aluminium was a new and a poorly explored metal, however its light weight and corrosion resistance showed the metal's great potential for application in the emerging automotive industry. The first sports car featuring a body made of aluminium was presented to the general public at the Berlin international motor show in 1899. The first engine with aluminium parts was made two years later, when in 1901 Carl Benz, later a world-famous manufacturer, presented a new car for the prestigious race in Nice. The 'light metal' added to the handling of the car, but difficulties in metal working, lack of knowledge and its high price impeded the use of aluminium in mass car production in the beginning of the century.
It was only after the war with aluminium becoming more accessible and cheaper, that the British company Land Rover started an in-depth exploration of the properties of 'winged metal'. In 1961 the company presented and later launched into mass production the Buick 215 with an eight-cylinder V8 engine. Cylinder blocks of this engine were made of aluminium. With a weight of only 144 kg the engine was a real breakthrough. It immediately became popular among race-drivers. It was light and allowed for a considerable advantage during acceleration. When in 1962 the legendary American racer Mickey Thompson drove a car with an engine made of the light-weight metal during the 'Indianapolis 500', the engine demonstrated great performance. In the course of time many companies improved this legendary engine to use it in mass-produced models and race cars, including in Formula-1 cars.
When in the seventies the oil crisis broke out, car manufacturers began to search for ways to reduce fuel consumption. The best method was to reduce the weight of the vehicle. The calculations showed that reducing a medium-sized car's weight by 100 kg would result in a saving of 700 litres of fuel during the vehicle's lifetime. Thus, car manufacturers started to replace numerous car units with those made of aluminium, therefore reducing the total weight of vehicles. Today, an average of 110-145 kg of aluminium is used in production of an average car, a figure which continues to grow with every year.
Advanced high-tensile aluminium alloys can now completely supersede steel that has conventionally been used to make a vehicle body, the most important car component. This was proved by Audi engineers, who in 1994 released a passenger A8 model with the complete body made of aluminium. The model showed a weight reduction of 239 kg!
Audi has been studying aluminium applications for 20 years by intensive R&D projects. Release of the ASF space frame marked the birthday of a high-duty aluminium frame structure with embedded large aluminium panels that absorb a part of load. Stamped aluminium panels are connected with multifunctional cast elements. This new structure also required new technologies to be applied. For this purpose, new light alloys and material treatment technologies were developed.
First produced in 1997, aluminium body cars were a riot even among the Audi fans. Today, all-aluminium bodies are installed on Audi A2 (advanced design) and A8 (updated design) models. According to the information from the company's Russian representative office, 133,000 of A2 and 117,000 of A8 have been produced since 1993.
A new generation of offroader Land Rover Range Rover will also have an important difference from its predecessor, namely an aluminium body. Although Ford, the parent company, has not officially approved completion of this technology for Range Rover, sources from within the company believe the approval will be granted in the coming months. One of the sources made a following comment, 'We're just waiting here to be told: OK, guys, get it on!' An aluminium body will help to reduce Range Rover's weight by about 300-400 kg as compared to the current model. However, in Land Rover's lineup this car will still remain the most pompous and presentable with the most spacious and exquisite interior. An aluminium body will also allow for the fuel economy to be improved, the CO emissions to be reduced. Dynamics and handling behaviour are also expected to improve.
Mazda engineers have designed a revolutionary idea of welding together aluminium and steel that will be first utilised in industrial production of parts for the new model of RX-8 sports car. So far it was considered impossible to weld aluminium and steel together.
Mazda engineers resolved this task by heating up upper layers of aluminium by attrition (like in a microwave oven), with simultaneous galvanising of welding surface of steel. The corrosion process enables aluminium particles to penetrate the structure of steel and form a reliable adhesion. The new cutting-edge technology opens broad prospects for the automotive industry to produce combined aluminium-and-steel bodies for cars with partial use of welding instead of clamps. It enhances durability and reliability of structures, making them more light-weight at the same time. Mazda specialists have obtained over 20 patents in the framework of developing the new technology.
Not so long ago Jaguar announced the birth of the first representative of its sports cars new generation — Jaguar XK model. The technology of producing the body of the car is worth giving attention to. What is unique about it is the first industrial application in the automotive industry of an integral all-aluminium 'monocoque'-type body. Having developed aviation technologies where light-weighting is the critical factor, Jaguar managed to introduce the light and durable body design, some parts of which can be fasten together both by clamps and epoxy adhesives, for batch production.
BMW 5-series was designed actively using aluminium parts — the 'winged metal' served as the material for nearly all elements of the fore carriage. According to specialists, such a decision was inspired by the wish of BMW engineers to decrease the overall weight of the car and at the same time to even out its distribution by axes. This decision will have a positive effect on the car driveability.
Today aluminium is the second most used material (in percentage terms) of the total weight of the car. It is used to make components of the suspension, the chassis, cylinder blocks and other engine components. It is believed that 1 kg of aluminium can replace up to 2 kg of steel and cast iron in many areas of application.
The more aluminium is used in the production of a vehicle, the less the weight of the vehicle is and the less fuel it consumes, thereby reducing the amount of harmful emissions into the atmosphere. The calculations showed that in 2006 the automotive industry output reached 65 million vehicles. If during manufacturing of each of these vehicles their bodies, engines and other components had been made of aluminium instead of steel, the CO2 emissions into the air would have been reduced by 140 million tonnes, and the total fuel economy during the lifetime of all vehicles would have allowed to save 60 billion litres of crude oil.

Friday, 24 August 2012

Mobile electron beam welding provides the solution for fabricating large structures

Mobile electron beam welding
A steel tubular, representative of a wind turbine tower foundation structure, in preparation for 'out-of-vacuum-chamber EB welding
Continuous developments in out-of-vacuum-chamber EB technology are pushing away at techno-economic barriers previously preventing the uptake of single pass, thick-section, low distortion electron beam (EB) welding of large pressure vessels and structural fabrications. The ability to use EB technology outside a vacuum chamber, coupled with the introduction of new sliding seal vacuum technology means that the welding process is given greater mobility enabling an increasing number of technical applications and commercial opportunities across a range of industries.
In conjunction with the ManOS  (Cost-Effective Manufacture of Offshore Wind Turbine Foundations) project, and specifically to showcase its reduced pressure EB gun and the capabilities of mobile local vacuum sliding seal technology, TWI hosted a recent seminar and technical demonstration at its Low Carbon Energy Manufacturing Technology Centre in Middlesbrough, UK. The event on 19 April 2012 was attended by partners of the ManOS project (see below) and delegates from UK industry and academia with interests in large-scale steel fabrication and offshore wind power engineering.
Chris Punshon, Consultant, Electron Beam Processes at TWI began by presenting the progress made by the ManOS project, which aims to enable faster, efficient and cheaper production of offshore marine foundations. The project, funded by the UK TSB, has successfully developed and demonstrated EB wedding in thick section steels with offshore application relevance and validated the resulting metallurgical and mechanical properties. The ManOS partnership comprises TWI, Nippon Steel Corporation and Aquasium Technology Ltd, with KBR acting in a consultative role.
Chris introduced the focus of the event – the demonstration of a full penetration, 60mm wall thickness, 1300mm longitudinal seam weld in a 2350mm diameter S355 steel tubular (representative of an offshore wind turbine tower foundation structure), which took less than 6 minutes to complete.
Prof. T Ishikawa, Nippon Steel Corporation, Japan, concluded by presenting delegates with details of a proprietary grade of S355 steel, which has recently been granted Germanischer Lloyd’s approval for EB welding due to its excellent as-welded and post-weld heat treated properties, including exemplary sub-zero impact toughness.
All attendees noted that they were impressed by the demonstration, the technology supporting the EB welding capability, and the opportunities that this mobile variant brings for application of EB welding to large structures where conventional EB has been prohibited due to the need to operate within a vacuum chamber. 
Please contact Chris Punshon  for further details or if you wish to explore this technology further for your applications.

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Exclusive Scoop: Mahindra’s 110cc Bike Stallio Caught Testing, Coming This Diwali

new 110cc bike India
Mahindra’s first motorcycle, Stallio did not open to any good start when it was launched two years back. Prematurely, it had to be withdrawn from the market because of some technical glitches which hampered the bike big time. Now, Mahindra is preparing second innings of Stallio in 2012 and here we present before you the exclusive spy pics of the upcoming 110cc bike.
Mahindra Stallio 110 cc

Upcoming 110cc Bike by Mahindra in 2012: What Appears Different?

Overall the bike looks similar to what it was when launched. The bike which we spotted was blue in color. It sported different graphics with a more pronounced Mahindra logo at the tank.
There is a new ‘110’ badge at rear panels signifying the bikes cubic capacity. And obviously, there would have been big rectifications in the engine and gearbox.
stallion 2012 console
The bike sported same 5-spoke alloys, same face, MRF tyres and same all-digital console.
Stallio 110cc Extensive Testing ~1500KM nonstop
upcoming 110 cc bike
Mahindra is leaving no stone unturned to make this as niggle free a bike as possible. Stallio is going through extensive rigorous testing day in and day out. There was a recent 1500-1600 km marathon run conducted which was reportedly non-stop to test the bike’s durability. There are around 5-6 test mules of Stallio roaming around in Pune clocking many hundred kms every day to ensure the final output matches Mahindra’s expectations and more importantly customers do not go disappointed this time.
Stallio Launch Date: At Diwali
Mahindra is planning to launch Stallio sometime around Diwali, 2012 to latch onto the increased festive sales during that period.
Mojo Reportedly ‘Under Test’
We have also heard that Mahindra has also started testing the big and peculiar ‘Mojo’ but a 100% confirmation would only come when we actually see the product (test mule) in front of our eyes.

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Six Steps in Product Design for Success

Natarajan Ramamoorthy, Managing Director EGS Computers India Private Limited.
Natarajan Ramamoorthy, Managing Director EGS Computers India Private Limited.
Natarajan Ramamoorthy is Managing Director EGS Computers India Private Limited. He holds a Master's Degree in ME from The University of Toledo, Ohio, USA. Prior to starting EGS India, he served as a Consultant at Ford Motor Company working on Automotive Design Engineering including validation …
Six Steps is all it takes to ensure product success.
  1. Statement of Requirement for Fit, Form & Function
  2. Design Failure Modes & Effects Analysis (DFMEA)
  3. Design Validation for Performance, Value & Reliability
  4. Design for Assembly, Manufacture, Service, Safety and Cost
  5. Tolerance Specification based on Process Capability
  6. Estimating Product Quality & PPM at Design Stage

1.  Statement of Requirement (SOR) for Fit, Form & Function:

Attention paid at the beginning of a product design, towards enumerating the product requirements in terms of Fit, Form and Function goes a long way in ensuring product acceptance, performance and delivery.  Time well spent in documenting the capabilities and limitations of the proposed product, would ensure that the Voice of Customer, Marketing Strategies, Unique Selling Points, Performance Specifications and Acceptance Criteria are known and accepted by the cross-functional team comprising of Design, Manufacturing, Marketing, Sales, Finance, Quality and After-Sales-Service members.  Sign off on the SOR indicates the acceptance and endorsement of the proposed design by all team members with their input given the priority as required.  SOR is a live working document that is updated during the life of the product.  Without this document and its acceptance by concurrent engineering team members, the product would go thro’ many design changes in the initial stages of the product development process that the goals could get compromised.  In fact, prioritization of design objectives in consultation with the cross-functional team members assures timely development of the product with little scope for unpleasant surprises towards the end of the development cycle.
Structure of the Statement of Requirement could consist of Objectives, Fit Requirements, Form Specification and establishment of Functional criteria for product performance and acceptance.  Additionally, Functional Test Criteria, Quality Acceptance Criteria, Voice of Customer, Scope of Product Usage, Limitations of Product proposed, Life & Reliability expectancy, Safety parameters, Sustainability Goals should form a part of the SOR.

2.  Design Failure Modes & Effects Analysis (DFMEA)

Design criticality is captured by incorporating the DFMEA as a part of the product design process.  This document forms the IPR of the organization.  The design assumptions, verification, criticality assessment and considerations included in understanding and preventing failure modes in addition to the calculation of the Risk Priority Number (RPN) help ensure that all aspects of the product are considered and addressed.  This reflects the strength of the design process and the ability to address potential threats to the product during and after launch.  Needless to say, successful and careful assessement of the DFMEA assures the management on the product viability, reliability and life-time performance.  This homework needs to be done by the design team in charge of the product design early in the design process leaving ample scope for improvement and update.

3.  Design Validation for Performance, Value & Reliability

Validation of the Design at every stage of the product evolution is a necessity driven by competition, predatory pricing and enhanced customer satisfaction.  Technologies such as Finite Element Analysis (FEA) and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) have matured for practical application to real-world problems.  Post-processing of FE Stresses, Strains and computing Fatigue Life for analyses performed on the basis of the DFMEA document ensures that the objectives of Performance and Reliability are met.  Design for Cost is an added responsibility of the Design Team to ensure that the product cost parameters are met.  Targets for Cost Reduction, Value Addition & Value Engineering (VAVE) goals should be provided to the Design Team, and monitored, to achieve assured profitability.

4.  Design for Assembly, Manufacture, Service, Safety and Cost

Design for Assembly (DFA) is a criteria that is sometimes overlooked or given lesser priority.  However, it is a single important assessment that will influence product cost in terms of manufacturing stages, inspection time, assembly time and fitment issues that lead to wastage and re-work.  Method of assembly, Interference check at extremes of tolerance variation, Sequence prioritization for efficiency and cycle time reduction, wrongful assembly check (including Poka Yoke) are some of the considerations that need to be addressed early on in the design process.
Design for Manufacture (DFM) considerations regarding tooling (such as Drill Depth to Diameter Ratio, Undercut, Draft among others).  Design for Serviceablity, Safety and Cost are as important as product reliability for improved Customer Satisfaction.

5.  Tolerance Specification based on Process Capability

Tolerancing of part features is an important part of the design process that usually is given least importance, until product sign-off.  Design Engineers need to understand the process capability of the manufacturing processes (Cp, Cpk) and reflect the same in the selection of tolerances.  If the process capability does not meet the tolerance criteria required, in addition to specifying the process capability required, it is the responsibility of the design team to justify the selection of tolerances.  Least cost tolerancing should be the guiding principle in selection of tolerances without affecting Fit, Form and Functional specifications.

6.  Estimating Product Quality & PPM at Design Stage

Tolerance Stack Up Analysis is a part of the Dimensional Management process that needs special emphasis before design drawing sign-off.  By incorporating GD&T (Geometric Dimensioning & Tolerancing) and ensuring the correctness and compleness of the Drawing Specification, the pre-requisite to perform Tolerance Stack Up Analysis is ensured.  1-D, 2-D, or sometimes, 3D Tolerance Stack Up Analysis can be performed using CAD based tools by either manually or automatically selecting the Vector Loop.  The process capability of the various processes can be attributed to the feature dimensions and their tolerances to perform what-if analysis of tolerance variations.  Additionally, by specifying the assembly build criteria, the PPM based on control limits as against specification limits are known a priori, even before the first product build is completed.  This ensures the identification of critical features and their required tolerance deviations that would permit achievement of PPM based on Sigma Levels.  This provides the management a profitability dashboard to evaluate the pros and cons of making investments in new manufacturing lines and tooling depending on ROI calculations.  Additionally, the Quality personnel can monitor critical processes based on these assessments and ensure that the SPC stays within limits as stipulated by design.
Now that we have completed the enumeration of the Six Steps in Product Design for Success, the design engineers have to ask themselves the following questions for continuous improvement in processes and products:
  • Is this the best design that is possible to achieve for the cost provided?
  • Is the design reliable?
  • Have I given the best to the Company, Customer and Society?
  • If I were to go about re-designing the product all over again, where would I start the correction process?
  • Am I a good Corporate Citizen in delivering Sustainable Products and Technologies?

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Putting electrification to work

Image: BAE HybriDrive.jpg
BAE System’s HybriDrive parallel propulsion system for heavy-duty vocational trucks features a modular design so as not to affect chassis layout. The new parallel system benefits from the company’s proven series hybrid in terms of software, control laws, and energy management, helping to accelerate market-readiness.
For fleets, going green is a high priority—but making green is an even higher one.
“There is a significant uptick in the cost [for electric vehicles]. At the end of the day, we are a for-profit business, and we need to make the bottom line work,” said Steve Saltzgiver, Group Director of Fleet Operations, Coca-Cola Refreshments, Inc., discussing his company’s partnership with Missouri-based Smith Electric Vehicles at last month’s Green Truck Summit in Indianapolis.
Coca-Cola and other large fleet operators such as Staples, FedEx, and Frito-Lay are in the process of crunching the numbers to determine if electrified vehicles make sense in their fleets—and if so, where exactly. “They are not one-size-fits-all,” Saltzgiver noted. “You want to make sure it’s in the correct application...and you need to understand the [EV] limitations.”
The correct application is “almost any truck” used in an urban environment, according to a recent study conducted by researchers at MIT’s Center for Transportation and Logistics. They found that the operational costs for electric delivery trucks used on a daily basis within cities can be 9-12% lower than with diesel-powered trucks.
Return on investment (ROI) was a hot topic at this year’s Green Truck Summit, whether experts were discussing the electrification of vehicles, retrofitting of propane autogas systems, or other technologies. And eventually—if not now—ROI must be realized without government assistance.
“The goal again is to produce biofuel without subsidy…Electric vehicles, without subsidies. We’re talking, ‘This is the best technology; don’t need any help,’” said Dr. Steven Chu, U.S. Secretary of Energy, during his keynote address that kicked off the Summit. “Whether it’s going to be 5 or 10 or 15 years from today, I don’t know, but it’s around the corner.”
According to Mark Greer, Green Fleet Market Manager for Altec Industries, it can be difficult to monetize all of the benefits that contribute to payback, such as the environmental stewardship gained by operating a green fleet. But the main “hard benefit,” he noted, is savings in fuel costs, particularly as diesel prices climb.
Reduced maintenance can be another benefit. Longer brake life was one example cited by several experts. According to Scott Carson, National Sales Director for Smith Electric Vehicles, one customer discovered that the brakes lasted five times longer on the EV compared to its conventional diesel-powered trucks, positively impacting the payback equation.
BAE Systems discovered through customer research that the “payback requirement” for heavy-duty hybrid vocational trucks is less than five years. According to Dr. Mike Mekhiche, Program Director for HybriDrive Solutions, the company’s new parallel hybrid system offers payback in about three to five years. Other experts said payback out to seven years or longer—i.e., at some point within the vehicle’s anticipated life—could be enough for fleets to green-light green technology.
But still, a green fleet is attained at a premium, and the price gap between electrified and conventional technology must shrink for widespread adoption, stakeholders agreed.
“We really need pricing to come down, but how do we get there with EVs?” asked Ken McKenney, Sustainable Fleet Program Manager for Verizon, discussing the keys for electrification expansion in fleet vehicles. “I think we need to get standardization in the battery [in terms of size] and BMS [battery management system] language protocols…If that could be standardized, it would eliminate some of the anxieties that fleet managers live with [servicing their vehicles].”
And, importantly, standardization could help to drive down costs, he added. That’s what will ultimately put more electrified vocational vehicles to work.

Laser R&D at German university helps carbon fiber make the cut

Image: Laser A 01-12Laserline-AFPT_Tapelegekopf.jpg
Tape laying head from AFPT in combination with a diode laser and specially developed homogenizing optics from Laserline. (AFPT)
The subject of alternative materials for vehicle design and construction is as repetitive and as seemingly endless as waves on a beach. Like those waves, there are variations—although relatively limited—on the familiar theme, so the industry can ponder the applications of aluminum, magnesium, a broad spectrum of steel strengths, materials recycled from an array of sources, and, increasingly, carbon-fiber-reinforced plastics (CFRPs).
Each has its pluses and minuses, but some, notably CFRPs, can present particular processing challenges. Research is under way at several industrial and academic centers, however, to ease those challenges via the use of lasers.
The Institut für Strahlwerkzeuge (IFSW) at the University of Stuttgart is one of the world’s leading research establishments for the implementation of laser technology for industrial applications, including automotive. Its director, Prof. Dr. Thomas Graf, and his departments are working to ease CFRP processing difficulties and help increase the use of the material as a wider-spectrum metals alternative for automotive.
Unlike metals, which are physically homogeneous, composite materials are inhomogeneous, comprising polyglot properties that give them advantages (stiffness, light weight) but also bring processing difficulties. In theory, lasers offer a solution to the quick and efficient cutting, drilling, and welding of CFRP; but it is not quite that easy.
Said Graf: “On one hand, inhomogeneity influences the distribution of the laser beam; on the other, the heat conduction is very anisotropic and the parameters that are decisive for the ablation of materials are very different.”
Serious damage of the plastic matrix may be caused by incorrect process control due to the high heat conductivity of the carbon fibers and the different properties of carbon and plastic. The solution to that lies in the development of guidelines for optimized process control, said Graf, which is just what the IFSW is doing: “In particular, very high infeed speeds, high precision with high dynamics, and a precise focus position control are some of the challenges.”
Dr. Wolfram Rath, Product Manager for Laser Beam Sources at Rofin-Sinar Laser, Hamburg, states that the different properties in composite materials demand very different optical and thermal properties of the composite partners, which lead to “very irregular” processing results when processing via continuously emitting lasers. However, procedures with a shorter interaction time can help, “achieved either by a correspondingly short pulse duration of the laser beam or by correspondingly quicker processing speeds,” Rath said.
Various types of laser technology (solid state, fiber, CO2) and wavelengths are being tested for CFRP applications. Indications are that CO2 is the most promising, its wavelength being apposite for processing composite materials in operation with a continuous beam. However, Rath notes that ultrashort pulse lasers are of interest for such applications; the short pulses cause little heat input.
In cooperation with companies and other research institutes, the IFSW is working on the control of the physical basics in the interaction between laser beam and composite material as a prerequisite for productive, high-quality processes and suitable system concepts.
The Manager of Process Development at IFSW, Dr. Rudolf Weber, states that the institute is not only working on the cutting of CFRP materials but also other composites and their manufacture. Cooperative ventures are in place with Daimler, Audi, and Porsche.
This June will see about 200 exhibitors taking space at LASYS 2012, the trade fair for laser material, to be held in Stuttgart.

Autonomous braking a must for EuroNCAP 5-star rating?

Image: EuroNCAP6-12aeb_image.jpg
Autonomous emergency braking technologies will almost certainly be necessary from 2014 for vehicle 5-star ratings by EuroNCAP.
New cars on the European market will almost certainly have to incorporate autonomous emergency braking (AEB) if they are to achieve a EuroNCAP 5-star safety rating from 2014.
Figures from the European Commission (EC) suggest that universal fitment of AEB on all new European cars could potentially reduce the number of road accidents in the region by some 27%, saving approximately 8000 lives a year and reducing very significantly the number of people seriously injured.
AEB systems can warn a driver of an impending collision and if necessary support braking action to avoid, or mitigate the effects of, a collision. The technology typically uses radar for long-range sensing and either vision sensors or lasers for short range.
At an event in Brussels, Belgium, to mark EuroNCAP’s 15th anniversary, the independent consumer organization stated that from 2014, it will be “practically impossible” for new vehicles to receive a 5-star rating if they are not fitted with the system.
But a survey that it completed recently showed that AEB is not available on 79% of car models on sale in Europe and that 66% of manufacturers do not offer AEB on any of their new cars—figures that indicate great opportunities for suppliers in light of EuroNCAP’s statement and the importance placed by the buying public on the 5-star rating.
Said EuroNCAP Project Manager Aled Williams: “A small number of vehicle manufacturers now have systems on the market, but they don’t all work across the full speed range. Lower-cost vehicles typically avoid expensive radar systems by offering only operation at city speeds, but they are still very worthwhile as these speeds represent a high proportion of relevant impacts.”
Williams revealed that the organization’s goal is for all new cars to have systems that operate across the full speed range. “We recognize that this will only be achieved when fitment rates are high to bring costs down. We have seen the cost of airbags falling by a factor of 20 since they became standard, and we believe that substantial cost reduction will also be seen with AEB. We would like to accelerate that process.”
EuroNCAP Secretary General Michiel van Ratingen says that premium brands including Mercedes-Benz, Volvo, and Infiniti have the best levels of standard fitment: “Audi, Jaguar, Lexus, and Range Rover models also have high levels of availability of AEB as an option. And we are very pleased that some volume manufacturers are now making AEB systems available, too. These include Ford, Honda, Mazda, and Volkswagen, with Fiat expected to join this group midyear.”
The European Commission’s Head of Unit (Automotive Industry), Philippe Jean, has revealed that the EC is considering mandating AEB as part of the European Type Approval requirements, adding that AEB systems have been identified as the single tool with the greatest potential to reduce injuries and deaths. “The predicted reduction in death and injuries compares favorably with electronic stability control, which prevents a similar number of serious injuries each year but saves around half as many lives as we predict for AEB.”
The case for AEB also embraces economic aspects. Jean said that it was not possible to produce a precise figure for the cost of all Europe’s road accidents, but the EC estimated the figure for those that AEB would address as being between 5 billion euros and 8 billion euros a year. “The impact assessment studies we have carried out indicate that the resulting reduction in congestion due to accidents would represent an economic value of around 100 million euros in Germany alone.”
From November 2013, the European Type Approval of new commercial vehicles will require AEB to be fitted. From November 2015, every new commercial vehicle sold must have the technology fitted. So an extension to cars would be a natural progression. Image: EuroNCAPDelphi ESR module.jpg
EuroNCAP is now examining methods to assess the different types of AEB technologies.
The first AEB-equipped car to be demonstrated at the Brussels event was a Volvo S60, fitted with sensor technologies developed by Delphi. The car’s Collision Mitigation System (CMS) uses data fusion techniques to combine camera data with that from Delphi’s Electronically Scanning Radar (ESR). The fused data allows accurate detection and classification of objects in front of the vehicle, providing the quality of scene interpretation required to initiate an appropriate mitigation strategy.
Delphi states that it regards electronically scanning systems as being superior to previous mechanically scanning or multibeam systems because they combine what it describes as exceptional performance with robustness and compact dimensions. The use of solid-state electronics also makes them more affordable, helping to achieve wider market penetration, the company claims.

Marsilli advances ‘open poles’ motor winding for hybrids

Image: Marsilli open pole vs. traditional.jpg
Marsilli claims two main advantages gained with open-pole motor winding: higher power density allowing for a more powerful motor within the same size envelope; or, if the same power output is maintained, a possible reduction in size and weight.
According to Marsilli, a leading winding systems manufacturer based in Italy and an exhibitor at this year’s SAE World Congress in Detroit, brushless motor design is facing a “revolution phase” as traditional needle-wound or field-coil motors have reached their maximum efficiency, being limited mainly by the fill factor. Marsilli is advancing the open-poles motor winding concept to assist motor manufacturers in various markets, including automotive hybrids, actuators, and industrial automation, to increase motor performances by up to 20-25% and reduce material costs.
These performance improvements depend on the overall design of the motor and the specific motor application, according to S. Kumar Rajasekhara, President and CEO of Marsilli North America, based near Baltimore, MD. “It can be related to higher torque, better efficiency, and better material utilization. However, this performance result has been reported to us based on the increased fill factors that we can achieve through our innovative winding concepts…Our strength is our ability to participate in a co-design effort to redesign the customer’s motor in order to achieve more of their goals along the lines of smaller, lighter, and material cost savings.”
Open-poles winding makes it possible, within the same space, to apply more wire turns to obtain a higher motor torque, or to use a larger wire size, allowing a higher motor current. “The inner side of the lamination stack design in a traditional closed stator is conditioned by the air gap required to allow the needle passage between the pole-shoes,” the company explained. “Reducing the air gap between the pole-shoes, the magnetic field increases, reducing the cogging effect and making it possible to add more wire turns.”
Marsilli boasts two main advantages gained with this motor-winding process: higher power density allows for the manufacture of a more powerful motor within the same size envelope; or, if the same power output is maintained, it is possible to reduce size and weight—and, consequently, material costs as well.
Lower wire stress during winding can also result in material-cost reduction, according to Marsilli, by allowing use of a less-expensive type of wire (thinner and less sophisticated insulation enamel). In addition, wire-length optimization reduces the copper cost; “the magnetic field is proportional to the number of turns and not to their length, and considering that all wires out of the lamination are useless for creating the magnetic field,” the company noted.
A new motor winding product line, the MWM (Motor Winding by Marsilli), is structured on two different series. One series is designed for a single-pole motor winding concept, to enable winding single stator poles and then allow for assembling and connecting. The second series is designed to manage the chained phase concept—to wind an entire stator using the open chain pole and then closing the stator upon completion of winding.
For the single-pole MWM, known as the SX machine, the motor poles are wound singularly, then assembled on the lamination and electrically connected to create the stator. Suitable for complex winding designs (i.e., paired coils), the SX motor-winding machine features a wire-clamping gripper to keep the wire ends in position, a special programmable device to control the crossing of the wires, optional wire stripping, and allows easy product changeover.
With the CX motor-winding machine for the chain-poles concept, the motor poles (already integrating into the lamination) are aligned one on side of the other on a tool, then the motor phases are wound around the poles, without cutting the wire between the poles. The pole stack is then closed to create the stator. Some of its main features include an interpolation winding method using torque motors, three programmable axes shuttle for precise winding layering (Z axis) and loading/unloading operations, three programmable axes system for parking and cutting devices, wire parking clamps on the shuttle, movable holding fixtures to simplify loading/unloading operations, and an optional stator automatic closing unit.
“We have already applied these concepts in steering motor applications, starter-motor generators, torque motors in various automotive applications, stepper motors for gauges, etc.,” said Rajasekhara. “Although there is currently no hybrid application in production, there is frenetic activity ongoing in developing the hybrid motor applications. Due to confidentiality reasons, we cannot divulge too many details about this ongoing development and co-design efforts with our customers.”
Is the technology suitable for heavier-duty commercial vehicles as well? “In general, yes; however, it depends upon the sizes of motors to be considered,” Rajasekhara told SAE Magazines. “We continue to expand our product offerings to include larger wire sizes, motor sizes, etc., so it would not be appropriate to limit the applications that we would consider. We can also work with motorcycle and off-road vehicle applications.”
He added that Marsilli is “witnessing an explosion of the use of motors as energy-efficient replacements to power-hungry automotive solenoids, which typically perform simple on-off functions. We expect this trend to push us toward greater innovation within the automotive motor industry.”

Waste heat recovery by Behr improves fuel economy for long-haul trucks

Image: WHR_Bild_1.jpg
The prototypical waste heat recovery (WHR) system, developed by Behr, is based on the Rankine cycle. It showed an efficiency improvement of 5% on average, which, according to the supplier, is the direct equivalent to a potential fuel-efficiency increase in the same magnitude.
During a recent technical presentation at the Mahle headquarters, Behr revealed a prototypical waste heat recovery (WHR) system for long-haul trucks that has demonstrated a fuel-efficiency benefit of around 5% on the test rig during stationary and transient operation.
“Currently the biggest driver of commercial-vehicle drivetrain optimization work is emissions legislation. While that is not likely to change, the diesel price level together with oncoming low carbon regulations for trucks also require better fuel efficiency,” said Dr. Ing. Eberhard Pantow, Head of Advanced Engineering Engine Cooling, Truck at Behr.
As only around 40% of the energy contained in the fuel can actually be used to propel the truck, according to Behr, it is attractive to harvest at least some of the 30% of energy that is currently lost via the hot exhaust gases and exhaust gas recirculation (EGR).
“If a waste heat recovery system is fitted, the thermal efficiency of this WHR system is directly equivalent to a lower fuel consumption of the same magnitude,” Pantow said, explaining the rationale why the automotive supplier, based in Stuttgart, Germany, has built a WHR prototype, which is already designed to fit realistically into the packaging space long-haul trucks offer.
The WHR unit is based on the Rankine cycle (in practical terms, a variation of the steam engine process) and has been fully tested with water as working fluid. Parts of the process have also been tested with ethanol. During rig testing according to the European Stationary Cycle, the system demonstrated an efficiency of between 4.5 and 5.5%, depending on the individual part of the cycle. The tests were conducted on a full engine with typical long-haul truck dimensions at roughly 2 L displacement per cylinder. Also, the full exhaust gas aftertreatment systems were installed.
“It turned out that the motorway [highway] part of the cycle proved to be particularly beneficial at 5% and more of efficiency,” Pantow said. The total WHR system weight is currently around 100 kg (220 lb); “however, that is inclusive of high safety margins and before further optimization measures, which will be part of industrialization,” Pantow added.
Testing the system according to the European Transient Cycle showed that the highway benefits in particular are also confirmed during transient operation: during the urban section the WHR efficiency was 4.2%, during the rural section it was 3.5%, and during the highway section it was measured at 5.2%.
The Rankine closed-loop power delivery cycle consists of four major elements: A small pump feeds the liquid working fluid to two vaporizers, which serve to turn the working fluid to vapor. Both vaporizer units are positioned downstream of the aftertreatment components, one in the exhaust gas recirculation flow (EGR vaporizer), the other one in the main exhaust flow (tailpipe vaporizer). Within these two vaporizers the working liquid is preheated, then vaporized, and is subsequently superheated to produce a dry steam. This super critical steam flows into an expander.
“We chose a two-cylinder reciprocating engine with 650 cc displacement to turn the thermal energy in the exhaust flow into mechanical power,” Pantow explained. After passing through the expander, the working fluid enters a condenser where it is returned to the liquid state. In the Behr WHR, this condenser is cooled by the engine cooling system. From here the cycle begins again.
During development the supplier’s engineers were able to bring down the exhaust gas back pressure increase to a few mbar, according to Pantow. They also minimized the need for extra cooling, which would otherwise impact WHR efficiency. As it is, the most relevant part of the map—long-haul highway driving at medium engine load and constant rpm levels—requires the least cooling, which is good news as the system targets long-haul trucks.
Image: WHR_Bild_2.jpg
“Under full load conditions and during urban driving, the extra coolant and fan requirements can eat up 1% of the WHR efficiency,” Pantow said.
One of the important oncoming decisions will be the choice of the working fluid. While water has specific benefits inasmuch as it requires fewer changes in the engine cooling system, ethanol offers advantages because it does not freeze and is more benevolently controlled during load change situations. During the technical briefing, the Behr expert highlighted the benefits of ethanol but said that “this decision will ultimately depend on an industry-wide discussion.”
Asked about how the recovered energy is best fed back into the drivetrain, Pantow said that both the direct mechanical use and the electrical storage have advantages: “If we use the kinetic energy from the expander directly as mechanical driving force, the total system efficiency will be higher. However, there are driving situations where there is no need for the recovered energy. If the expander energy is converted to electrical energy, it can be stored and used freely, independent of the driving situation. The downside of this thermo-electric process is the amount of loss, which is caused by the conversion.”
During the oncoming further development work, the supplier is optimistic that there is even more potential to increase the WHR system’s efficiency: “For one, we have not yet optimized the system design details for individual working fluids. Secondly, we have had some heat losses through the many sensor accesses we integrated into the prototype.”

Indian 180CC Bikes Specs and Mileage Comparison Chart[Pulsar 180 vs Apache 180]

180cc mileage comparison
After covering the most important segments at present in the Indian biking scene, its time to move to the other segments which might not boast of many options to choose from but nonetheless have some seriously good bikes to boast about. Moving one notch higher from 150cc, we come to the 180cc segment, a segment made most popular via Pulsar and Avenger series. However, it hasn’t caught the fancy of the other bike manufacturers much except TVS Motors who has its Apache RTR 180 and recently added the Apache RTR 180 with ABS. The Avenger 180 from the Bajaj stable has been discontinued, so it doesn’t feature in this article.
Looking up from the 150cc segment is only an option for the serious bikers for whom the mileage is indeed important but they also crave for the performance. If a bike can deliver superb performance at the cost of a few extra drops of petrol then it will surely be the bike of desire. So, here in addition to the comparison of mileage, we bring you a detailed comparison of the technical specifications of the 180cc models to help you make a wise choice.

180CC Bikes mileage comparison table

Manufacturer Model Official Figure User Claimed figure (avg) Difference

Pulsar 180 DTS-i 44 42 2

Apache 180 48 43 5

180CC Bikes Specifications comparison table

Bajaj Pulsar 180 DTS-i TVS Apache 180 /ABS

Type 4 stroke, DTS-i 4 stroke

Displacement 178.6 cc 177.4 cc

Cooling Air Air

Cylinder Arrangement single single

Max Power 16.8 bhp @ 8500 RPM 17.03 bhp@ 8500 RPM

Max Torque 14.22 Nm @ 6500 RPM 15.5 Nm @ 6500 RPM

Bore X Stroke 62.5 X 57.8 mm

Compression Ratio 2 valves, SOHC

Starting Intelligent Cdi IDI-Dual Mode digital ignition

Transmission Clutch Wet Multi-plate Wet Multi-plate

Gears 5 speed 5 speed

Suspension Front Telescopic, with anti-friction bush Telescopic forks

Rear 5 way adjustable, Nitrox shock absorber Monotube inverted Gas filled with spring aid.

Brakes Front 260mm disc 270mm petal disc with ABS

Rear 130mm drum 200mm petal disc with ABS


Front 90/90 X 17- tubeless 90/90 X 17- tubeless

Rear 120/80 X 17- tubeless 110/80 X 17- tubeless


Length 2035mm 2085mm

Width 765mm 730mm

Height 1165mm 1105mm

Ground Clearance 150mm 165mm

Wheelbase 1350mm 1326mm

Kerb Weight 147kg 139kg
Do let us know your thoughts about the above article in the comments below, if you happen to own a 180cc bike then do tell us the mileage you are getting.

Saturday, 11 August 2012

So, What Has Changed in 2012 Ninja650? Check out the details with Pictures of the Bike

Ninja 650R bikeadvice
With a lot of fanfare and hoopla we welcome the new 2012 model Ninja 650 in India. It would replace the older 2011 model Ninja 650R and is priced around Rs 42,000 over the outgoing model.
What has changed in the new Ninja 650?
  1. First, Kawasaki Bajaj now calls the new bike as Ninja 650 without an ‘R’
  2. The bike has got a meaner face and other cosmetic changes which you can make out from the pic posted here.
  3. Compression ratio of the new Ninja is 10.8:1 (11.3:1 of the earlier variant)
  4. Fuel Tank is 16 Liters as compared to 15.5liters of the earlier variant
  5. The new 2012 Ninja 650 is 7 kgs heavier @ 211 kgs (204kg of outgoing variant)
  6. The new Ninja is 10mm longer (2110mm) and 10 mm wider (770mm) than the outgoing variant.
  7. Tyres on the new Ninja at the event were Dunlop. The earlier variant had leech-grip like Bridgestone Battlax. Specs and dimensions remain the same though.
  8. According to what we were told at the launch, the new Ninja 650 gets a lot of changes on the cosmetic front (as visible) and also the engine and chassis.
  9. The most important bit price: New Ninja is priced Rs 42,732 costlier than the outgoing variant. Earlier variant was priced at Rs.4,57,102 ex-showroom New Delhi and the new one goes for Rs 4,99,834 Ex-Showroom Delhi
* Figures compared between official press releases of both the older and new Ninja 650
New Ninja 650 Features:
  • Sharp dual headlamps inspired from liter class Ninjas
  • Retuned suspension settings
  • Slimmer tail cowl and sharper LED tail lamps
  • Higher and taller fuel tank
  • MotoGP inspired digital console
  • Thicker padded split seats
  • Adjustable windscreen
  • Petal discs
  • Signature mono-suspension
  • Comfortable seating posture
Check out the pictures from the launch event:
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Ninja_650_By_BikeAdvice (62) (Copy) Ninja_650_By_BikeAdvice (69) (Copy)
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Ninja_650_By_BikeAdvice exhaust
Ninja_650 in India

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Diesel aircraft coming soon to an airport near you?

Image: fig 3 2011-24-0089 diesel aero.jpg
For modeling uniflow scavenged engines, researchers referenced a modern aircraft two-stroke turbocharged diesel power plant, named WAM 100/120, produced by Wilksch Airmotive, with a top brake power of 100-120 hp. A GT-Power model of the IDI engine was built and calibrated against experiments.
The application of the two-stroke diesel concept to aircraft engines is everything but a novelty. For example, Junkers built a very successful series of these engines in the late 1930s named JUMO. The main advantage offered by such an engine is fuel efficiency; even in 1938, the JUMO engine was capable of a brake specific fuel consumption of 213 g/kW·h, an impressive figure even by modern standards.
It should be noted that fuel consumption is very important for aircraft performance, since a relevant portion of the aircraft total weight (sometimes up to 50%) is due to fuel storage.
The main reason for the outstanding fuel economy of two-stroke diesel engines is the high mechanical efficiency ensuing from the two-stroke cycle. Besides the possibility of having no poppet valves and the associated driving system, mechanical friction losses over the cycle are about halved in comparison to a four-stroke engine having the same crank and piston and crankcase design, due to the double cycle frequency.
Furthermore, the two-stroke cycle is a good match for aircraft engines, since it is possible to achieve high power density at low crankshaft speed, allowing direct coupling to a propeller without the need for a reduction drive (which is heavy and expensive, besides adsorbing energy).
Supercharging further improves power density and fuel efficiency, as well as enhancing altitude performance. Diesel combustion allows a higher boosting level, in comparison to spark ignited engines, limited by knocking. In addition, high octane aviation gasoline is expected to be subject to strong limitations, due to its polluting emissions of lead, while a diesel engine can burn a variety of fuels, including automotive diesel and turbine fuels such as JP4 and JP5, and Jet A.
Further advantages in comparison to gasoline powerplants are: reduced fire and explosion hazard, better in-flight reliability (no mixture control problems), no carburetor icing problems, and safe cabin heating from exhaust stacks (less danger of carbon monoxide intoxication).
The recent development of diesel technology, along with the above mentioned series of advantages, has made the two-stroke, compression ignition engine an interesting option for light aircraft manufacturers, seeking power unit of 100-300 hp, preferably not heavier than existing SI powerplants.
Conversion of automotive four-stroke units is generally not attractive, since they are relatively heavy. Thus, design must be carried out from scratch to achieve an acceptable power-to-weight target. The mission is not impossible: in the late 1990s, AVL developed a 1-L, two-stroke turbocharged diesel engine, with uniflow scavenging, achieving a brake power of 50 kW and a weight less than 80 kg, and Wilksch Airmotive brought to the experimental aircraft market a 90-kW three-cylinder, two-stroke unit using IDI combustion and weighing only 100 kg.
The aircraft diesel engine market is in its infancy: several two-stroke prototypes have been built but none have achieved type certification at the time of this writing. Selected cylinder configurations have included loop and uniflow scavenging as well as opposed piston uniflow.
Researchers from the University of Modena & Reggio Emilia and Wilksch studied the two most widespread scavenging designs: uniflow with exhaust poppet valves and loop scavenging with piston controlled ports to assess the potential of two-stroke high-speed diesel engines on light aircraft.
Comparisons were made between both the two-stroke CI configurations. Predictions for both uniflow and loop scavenged three-cylinder engines were calculated using GT-Power, supported by CFD-3D combustion and scavenging simulations.
The results were not anticipated at the outset of the study. The uniflow engine was significantly more complex and hence more costly and heavier than the loop scavenged engine. It also had the perceived advantage of complete flexibility of exhaust timing events via the cam-operated valves.
By contrast, the loop scavenged engine was simpler and cheaper to produce but brought with it the restriction of symmetrical inlet and exhaust event timing.
It was anticipated that the more complex uniflow engine would offer performance benefits at the cost of increased complexity.
This was not the case, with the loop scavenged engine showing advantages in all key areas of interest (power-to-weight ratio, fuel efficiency, altitude performance, cooling pack size requirements) and no major disadvantages.
This outcome can be mainly explained by the particular layout of the engines (three-cylinder), providing an exhaust manifold dynamics that helps to enhance trapping ratio, even with large exhaust closing retard. This fact almost canceled the advantage inherent to the cam-controlled valves, leaving the drawbacks, i.e. lower mechanical efficiency and smaller exhaust flow areas.
It is expected that a future study should address the loop scavenged engine's durability potential and should define a viable all-mechanical fuel system.
This article is based on SAE technical paper 2011-24-0089 by Enrico Mattarelli and Carlo Alberto Rinaldini, University of Modena & Reggio Emilia; and Mark Wilksch, Wilksch Aero

Friday, 3 August 2012

New Ravishing 2013 Ninja 250R Revealed

Barely a few days have gone by when we shared the news of the new Ninja 650R entering India soon and its time for the smaller sibling Ninja 250R to make news now.
Ninja 250R was already touted as the best 250cc in the world. However, there were always a few murmurs about its looks getting dated with too many edgy lines steaming around. For all those and even not those, here comes the super ravishing 2013 Ninja 250R.
Kawasaki has updated a few details of the new Ninja at its Japanese website which talks about the bike in brief. The major changes which we could notice:
  • Sharper Edges
  • Meaner Front looks
  • Integrated Side-Blinkers
  • Bigger Air Outlets
  • Raised and reworked rear
  • New Piston, Cylinder & Crank Case
  • New Suspension and chassis
  • Wider Tyres
  • Better heat management
  • Introduction of ABS variant
  • Semi-Digital Console – Digital Speedometer, analogue tachometer, clock,tripmeter, various indicators
  • 140mm Rear Tyre
  • 10 spoke alloy wheels
Color Options:
  1. Lime Green
  2. Ebony
  3. Passion Red
  4. Pearl Stardust White
  5. Ebony/Metallic Moondust Grey (Special Edition)
  6. Lime Green/Ebony (Special Edition)
  7. Passion Red/Stardust White (Special Edition)
When and would it come to India? No one knows yet! But we are sure about the fact that Bajaj would definitely want to bring it to India. Lets wait as more information about the bike gets revealed. We are more interested in the engine related specs and hope we have a fabulous product coming our way. soon!

Check out the New 2013 Kawasaki Ninja 250R in 38 scintillating pics

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Upcoming 650cc Bike in 2012, Kawasaki Ninja 650R Overview, Features and Price

The Updated Kawasaki Ninja 650R.
The indigenous bike manufacturer, Bajaj Auto Ltd created a stir when it brought the Kawasaki Ninja 650R to the Indian market for the first time at a killer price of about 4.75 lakhs. It was the first foray of Bajaj Auto into offering high displacement bikes in India. With that killer pricing, the mean green Ninja 650R became an instant hit among the bike lovers. Such was the demand for this bike that Bajaj Auto had to stop bookings intermittently to avoid facing supply constraints. Well, the fault was at Kawasaki’s end allotting very few models for the Indian market.
2012 Kawasaki Ninja 650R top
Come 2012, Kawasaki has given a fresh upgrade to its Ninja 650R and also taken some lessons from Indian markets. One good piece of news Bajaj Auto added along with the formal announcement of the 2012 Ninja 650R coming to India was that this time, the supply would be far more than the last episodes. According to some rumours doing the round, Bajaj Auto is likely to start the bookings from July-August, 2012. The bike is set to be launched in few days and we evaluate what we are looking forward to this year.
Kawasaki Ninja 650R  Styling:
2012 Kawasaki Ninja 650R rear
To put it straight, the 2012 iteration of the “Kwacker” 650 receives majority of cosmetic upgrades and nothing serious under the covers. Talking of styling, the most obvious is the design change done to the front fairing. The new fairing looks sportier and is also wider giving it a better “big daddy” bike aura all around. The headlight design remains almost the same. The other parts going under the designer’s knife are the fuel tank and the seat. The fuel tank gets a more chiselled design portraying aggressiveness. The rear ends are neatly sculpted for your thighs to go around it ensuring better grip. The rear end doesn’t receive any styling changes though sadly.
Kawasaki Ninja 650R  Performance:
The 2012 Kawasaki Ninja 650R gets the same mill as the previous model, the liquid cooled, DOHC, 649cc parallel twin producing 72 PS @8500 RPM and maximum torque of 66 Nm @7000 RPM. However, it is believed that the 2012 model has been tuned to produce better low end and mid-range power. Instead of focusing on outright performance or best-in-class handling, Kawasaki has gone for a more holistic approach merging the “good” of both worlds. The same engine is also likely to receive new pistons for smoother power delivery and a revised intake system giving a better engine noise. The short “underbelly” exhaust muffler is also tweaked somewhat for better gas flow and noise. It is no secret that the outgoing model did not make the best of the exhaust notes unlike its sibling, the 250R. The power unit is coupled with the same 6 speed manual gearbox.
Kawasaki Ninja 650R  Handling:
When it comes to handling, there is indeed some sweet surprise in store. The updated Kwacker gets a much stiffer twin-spar perimeter type chassis fabricated of high tensile steel which is expected to make it more agile round the corners allowing bikers to pull off increased lean angles. In addition to that the saddle design and height has been tweaked with. The new seat is wider, thicker and has more significant amount of cushion letting you do your dream touring rides with absolute ease. The saddle height has been slightly raised up this time but the positions of the foot-pegs have been changed to give a better stance. The front gets 41mm hydraulic telescopic fork while the trademark single offset style laydown shock does duty at the rear. Braking power remains the same with dual 300mm petal discs at the front and single 220mm petal disc at the rear. An interesting piece of news we have come across is that the 2012 version might get ABS as optional. Now this would be a very lovely addition to this fast machine!
Kawasaki Ninja 650R  Instrument cluster:
2012 Kawasaki Ninja 650R instrument
The 2012 model receives some improvements to its instrument cluster too. It now sports a large tachometer above a smaller digital speedometer, and the display now offers fuel economy and cruising range info, as well an “ECO” indicator that shows when you’re riding with a light throttle. Although, it doesn’t look very high tech but its neatly laid out and offers clear display of all the information.
2012 Kawasaki Ninja 650R side

2012 Ninja 650R Price in India

All in all, the 2012 model is about to get some welcome changes to make the mean green machine more desirable. However, Bajaj Auto seeing the huge response last time is planning to increase the price of the bike. It is expected to retail at Rs. 5.8 lakhs (approx). Make up your minds fast in case you desire to possess such a fast piece of cool machine!