MotoGP's spec ECU plans could still be scuppered by Honda

Dorna's chances of introducing a spec ECU in MotoGP could still be scuppered by objections from Honda

MotoGP's spec ECU plans could still be scuppered by Honda

HRC team principal Shuhei Nakamoto has been an outspoken critic of the scheme and, speaking before the recent Japanese Grand Prix, warned that Honda would consider quitting if a spec system become mandatory.

While Honda's position was weakened by the subsequent announcement that Dorna would also take over organisation of the rival World Superbike Championship, Nakamoto insists Honda's current contract gives it a say in future rule changes.

"It is still not certain whether there is going to be a control ECU for everyone in 2014," Nakamoto told Motosprint.

"Dorna must discuss technical regulations with the MSMA. We have a five-year contract with Dorna and based on this agreement Dorna can't change the rules without our approval.

"So, talks are still ongoing.

"I'm against a control ECU because it's useless for cutting costs, which is Dorna's goal. Changing programmes and the way to program is a waste of time and doesn't reduce costs."

Honda may also be able to use the supply of prototype bikes as a bargaining tool in the ECU debate.

Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta has been keen to reduce the costs for privateer teams looking to buy prototype factory bikes.

Nakamoto said he was open to the idea of selling bikes to privateers, provided top management consents.

"Ezpeleta wants that, but it needs the agreement of Honda Motor's top management, and it hasn't arrived yet," he explained.

"Should it come, we may respect production schedules. That is, 2014."

Despite the conflict over rules, Nakamoto insisted he is on good terms with Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta.

Ezpeleta said on the Thursday of MotoGP's race at Motegi that it was 'easy to talk' to Honda about the future of the premier class.

"The situation between Carmelo [Ezpeleta] and myself is very good," Nakamoto explained.

"I'm the one who proposed to Carmelo to use a single Magneti Marelli ECU for CRTs, to reduce their gap to MotoGP prototypes."

shares
comments
MotoGP: How the past could help the future

Previous article

MotoGP: How the past could help the future

Next article

Sepang MotoGP: Dani Pedrosa dominates first practice

Sepang MotoGP: Dani Pedrosa dominates first practice
Load comments

About this article

Series MotoGP
Teams AB Motoracing
Author Michele Lostia
The "pit bull" MotoGP rookie already drawing legendary comparisons Plus

The "pit bull" MotoGP rookie already drawing legendary comparisons

MotoGP’s 2021 rookie crop is one of the strongest in recent years, but one is already standing out. Jorge Martin’s Doha GP heroics have courted many to compare him to numerous MotoGP legends. Autosport spoke to Pramac boss Francesco Guidotti to find out why MotoGP’s latest Spanish star is already making such an impact

MotoGP
Apr 9, 2021
Why MotoGP's stewards must revisit Miller and Mir's Losail clash Plus

Why MotoGP's stewards must revisit Miller and Mir's Losail clash

Despite Suzuki’s decision not to appeal against Race Direction’s refusal to penalise Jack Miller following the incident with Joan Mir in Losail, something must be done to avoid a repeat of such an incident, which could have easily ended in tragedy

MotoGP
Apr 6, 2021
Has Yamaha banished its demons with its 2021 MotoGP bike? Plus

Has Yamaha banished its demons with its 2021 MotoGP bike?

Against the expected run of play at Qatar's Losail circuit, both Yamaha riders Maverick Vinales and Fabio Quartararo carved through a resolute Ducati defence to secure back-to-back MotoGP wins for the Japanese marque. After a difficult 2020, it appears that Yamaha has swaggered back into championship contention

MotoGP
Apr 5, 2021
Why MotoGP’s top gun looks more dangerous at the Doha GP Plus

Why MotoGP’s top gun looks more dangerous at the Doha GP

Lightning hasn't struck twice for Maverick Vinales since 2017 and his wayward form of recent years makes predicting how he'll fare each MotoGP race weekend tricky. But fresh from his Qatar GP win, Vinales looks like an even more dangerous prospect for the Doha GP following an intriguing Friday practice

MotoGP
Apr 3, 2021
Why MotoGP’s new Amazon series is long overdue Plus

Why MotoGP’s new Amazon series is long overdue

OPINION: MotoGP is getting its own version of Drive to Survive on Amazon Prime at some point in the near future. It was news welcomed by the grid’s leading riders. And following the impact DTS has had on Formula 1, MotoGP desperately needs the same boost.

MotoGP
Mar 31, 2021
Did the Qatar GP hint at Ducati’s true MotoGP leader? Plus

Did the Qatar GP hint at Ducati’s true MotoGP leader?

OPINION: Johann Zarco talked a big game pre-season, and is so far vindicating himself as a factory rider at Pramac after finishing the Qatar GP as top Ducati in second. And contrasting his and Jack Miller's weekends and their approaches, is Zarco emerging as Ducati's true MotoGP leader?

MotoGP
Mar 30, 2021
The key changes behind the latest 'return of the Mack' Plus

The key changes behind the latest 'return of the Mack'

Maverick Vinales’s authoritative victory at the MotoGP season opener came during a period of personal and professional change for the Yamaha rider. Can it be the springboard for a title challenge?

MotoGP
Mar 29, 2021
The past clues which hint at the MotoGP order in Qatar Plus

The past clues which hint at the MotoGP order in Qatar

The MotoGP season kicks off this weekend in Qatar - two years after it last visited the Losail circuit for a race weekend as last season's round was called off. As ever, the pecking order is difficult to map out at this early stage of the season, but perhaps the 2019 race offers some clues as to how things might shake out...

MotoGP
Mar 27, 2021