Premier class will switch to a maximum engine displacement of 1000cc from the current 800cc limit. The new engines will be limited to four-cylinder configurations with a maximum bore of 81mm, though teams will still be allowed to use the old 800cc engines in the 2012 season.
The new engine rules are expected to attract more privateer entries by allowing motors derived from production machines. These so-called “Claiming Rule Teams” will be allowed to claim parts, including engines from other teams at a fixed fee. Claiming Rule Teams will also be allowed 12 engines per rider (double the 6-engine limit for factory supported teams) and larger fuel tanks.
The new rules may also attract new engine manufacturers to the series. Norton Motorcycles has already expressed an interest while some teams may adopt the engine from BMW’s S1000RR to power their racebikes.
The International Motorcycling Federation (FIM), MotoGP organizers Dorna and the International Racing Team Association have set up a three-stage process for teams applying for the 2012 season.
In the first stage, prospective teams are asked to register their interest by April 29, the start of the Portuguese Grand Prix in Estoril. Applicants deemed eligible for the MotoGP class will receive a prospectus outlining further information and conditions.
Teams who wish to proceed with their applications will then submit formal applications by May 13, the first day of the French Grand Prix at Le Mans. Applications will be reviewed during the Le Mans round and a provisional list of accepted teams will be released.
Accepted teams will then have to provide a security deposit with the IRTA by June 3 (the first day of the Catalan Grand Prix in Spain.)