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TT amps up | NEWS

The floodgates of electric bikes are well on the way to opening and there’s no doubt that the Isle of Man TT Zero – which is a decade old this year – has helped improve the technology.

Mugen’s Shinden Hachi goes into the 2019 TT Zero has the overwhelming favourite. Now in its eighth (hachi) iteration, the Shinden first appeared in 2012, with John McGuinness second behind Michael Rutter on the winning MotoCzysz. The result was the same in 2013, but from 2014 onwards the Mugen has won the race.

Rutter and McGuinness will both ride the Shinden Hachi to an expected sixth win on the trot for Mugen. Rutter won 2018’s event on its predecessor, the Shindan Nana. Except for sharper bodywork Mugen hasn’t made big changes to create the Hachi.

The new bike’s physical dimensions are identical to Mugen’s last three Shindens, the 2018 Nana, 2017 Roku and 2016 Go, including the 248kg weight, and Mugen still claims the same peak power – 163.2hp – from the oil-cooled, three-phase, brushless electric motor that powers the bike. However, any officially-announced race bike specifications need to be taken with a large bucket of salt; no team wants to give away its true potential, and this year’s Shiden is sure to be faster than its predecessors.