First Look: 2015 Honda RC213V-S "prototype"

Long-rumored MotoGP replica for the street finally makes its appearance at EICMA

honda unveils rc213v-s prototype at eicma
Emanuele Bella

Well, after a few years of hopeful concept drawings by various magazines/websites and swirling rumors of its impending release that always ended up in disappointment at the year-end bike shows, Honda finally unveiled the street-going replica of its all-conquering RC213V MotoGP racebike at the EICMA show in Milan, Italy. Dubbed the "RC213V-S Prototype", the bikes that were on display literally appear at first glance to be the MotoGP bike with lights and mirrors tacked on (as a matter of fact, the bike is labeled an "exhibition model" in official Honda Japan press releases). But a closer look reveals that there was some definite production-scale work going on with the prototype.

honda unveils rc213v-s prototype at eicma
This close up of the right side of the RC213V-S shows some production pieces in its build, including the stamped "Y" connector in the exhaust and the exhaust canisters with smaller silencer tips, as well as the cooling fans mounted on the production-style radiator. The dry clutch on the MotoGP racebike engine has been replaced with a wet clutch.

For example, the massive radiators are not the custom race units commonly found on the factory racebikes, but are production pieces with stouter end tanks. This allows easy installation of brackets for the cooling fans installed on both sides of the radiators for slow-going in traffic. The coolant overflow catch tank (another street-going production item) looks to have been made specifically for the bike, and the right side of the engine shows that a wet clutch cover replaces the dry clutch mounted externally on MotoGP bike. The exhaust also shows some production build, with one "Y" connector pipe visible from the rear showing its pressed stainless steel origins, and the exhaust tips have silencer cans with a smaller opening.

honda unveils rc213v-s prototype at eicma
Although two-time MotoGP World Champion Marc Marquez rode into the RC213V-S prototype introduction at EICMA with an all-carbon-fiber-bodied model, this nice Japanese flag livery model was on display as well.

Unfortunately Honda did not provide any technical details on the RC213V-S prototype, so it's likely we'll have to wait until next year before any specs are revealed.