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VARIABLE VALVE TIMING

Honda, Suzuki, Ducatiand Kawasaki are all using variable valve timing in their engines, but just how does it work and what is the point of it? We locked Jon Urryina dark room and told him to find us some answers…
If it’s good enough for MotoGP…
Suzuki’s Variable Valve Timing is a fantastically simple system.

With Suzuki all set to launch their new GSX-R1000, a lot is being made of the fact that it uses variable valve technology taken from the firm’s MotoGP bike. While this is the first time variable valve technology has been seen on a litre sports bike, the technology itself is far from new. In fact, technically the ability to alter the valve’s opening times dates back to steam engines! But today we will simply concentrate on two wheels.

The first bike to have variable valve technology was the Japan-only Honda CB400, which used a version of the firm’s car-derived VTEC system. While this bike failed to make it to the UK, the same technology first came to most riders’ attention in 2002 with the launch of the VFR800 VTEC. Yes, that one…

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