Dirt Bike Engine

Hey guys, 

This is kind of a random question. I'm currently building a lightweight race car for a school project, and I need your input on the engine selection. 
I'm looking for a lightweight motorcycle/dirt bike engine to power the car. The maximum displacement is 600cc. What are some of the options out there? Preferably one with a nice and flat torque curve. The only one I kind of know is the Yamaha R6 and I've been looking at some of the KTM engines. 

Thanks in advance! wink.gif

Well if you wanting engine with highest HP output then a 600cc inline four from sportbike runs in the 110 to 120 range. Any will work fine CBR, ZX, R6, GSXR. And easy to come by lots of sportbikes in junkyards

Yeah , R6 or any other 600cc motor

depends on how complex, how costly, and how strong you want the engine to be, and also how much space you have for the engine.


if you want something fairly cheap, easy to work on and with and relatively small, I would suggest looking for an older air-cooled 4-stroke single-cylinder dirtbike engine, like an XR600R\650L, XT600 etc.etc.

advantages to an engine like this is that they don't have a watercooling you need to factor in, exhaust is simple and can be fabricated with relative ease, they are strong and offer plenty torque, reliable too.

downside is that they don't like to rev and will offer limited top-speed, most of them are kick-start only too.


if you have a bit more money to spend and have a bit more space and fabrication skills, you can go with any inline 4-cylinder sportsbike engine, a 600cc offer plenty of peak HP and will be scary fast, maybe too fast.

downside is that they take up a lot more space, they have watercooling that needs airflow and proper hose routing, some might be EFI and need more complex wiring.

You Mech Eng in school?  We had a similar program, for the Formula SAE design competition, used a CBR600 motor, but any 600 sportbike motor will do.  Whatever you can get a deal on, and has common parts available.  


Good brakes!!! trust me!

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