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Discussion Starter #1
I apologize for my ignorance but....

I've seen the times when Showa was a MotoGP supplier (GP500 back then) but at some point as LDH elegantly states "they couldn't keep up with the needs of the teams, so the team switched to Ohlins". I don't remember exactly at which post he typed that but I do remember reading it. So far so good.

Now I bumped into this picture



which brought me back in mind this picture



Why do they set up the bikes with those magnificent and delicious Nissin radial calipers and that piece of Showa art, since they are never gonna race it with them?
Why go into all the trouble and the cost just for some pictures?

Again I'm sorry if my question is dum..
 

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Maybe because the less educated wouldn't realise that the race bike ran Ohlins, and Honda can sell their (Showa) products off the back of the race bikes?

That is a sweet looking bike though.
 

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I heard showa and nissin are big sponsors for the gresini team. Bautista WANTS Ohlins on his RC213V, feels he would run closer to the front. Which may be true, he does fairly well on the showa.
As far as the RCV1000r, there are four riders on one this year in MotoGP: Nicky Hayden and his teammate Hiroshi Aoyama, Scott Redding, and Karel Abraham.
Are all those bikes being equipped with showa and nissin?
 

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Honda, Showa and Nissin are all long time partners (Wouldn't be surprised to find out that Honda owns a controlling interest in these companies.) The company I work for is 56% owned by Honda but has the Keihin name on it.

Japanese companies cherish and depend on these long time partnerships, even when they are not considered the top performer in a certain segment.

Honda has built its name on reliability and for that they are sometimes slow to react or use a newer technology or product. (How many of you folks would like a Honda truck about the size of an S-10 Chevy....I know I would!)

Japanese companies are no different than any other country, they will use suppliers that support their economy or a long term goal. (And I mean 10 years out, not the 3 to five range like US companies)



So it is no surprise to me, gents to see this at all. Prototype bikes are in built in Japan and those suppliers being right down the road doesn't hurt.;)
 

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MB is bang on with that. Also, Yamaha was the majority owner of Ohlins for a long time, until around 07. Honda wasn't stoked on the perception and irony of bolting yamaha parts onto their bikes.
 

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Makis, I'm sorry, I thought the red bike you have pictured was a the new RCV1000. That's why I went on about it. When I looked closer, it appears to be a RC211V?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yes...the first one ever made back in 2001.

In contrary of RC213V presented a few months back which is equipped with the Ohlins-Brembo package.



That's why I was wondering.....
 

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Discussion Starter #10
From 2002 where the bike was introduced, it was equipped with Showa forks and Brembo calipers when it was shown to the public

2003 - 2008









The last couple of seasons it was presented like this



I remember LDH saying that Honda made a contract with Ohlins cause Showa couldn't keep up with their demands but where Nissin fits to all this?
I mean those radial Nissins are magnificent.
 

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Pure marketing. I know I read an article a few days ago about some racebike, cant find it now though, where they had to switch forks for photoshoots to show of the Showa instead of Ohlins.
Also pretty sure there as another article about someone wanting to run Ohlins, but they had to stick to the stock tubes for marketing, but Öhlins internals as OK.
Going through some magazines to try and find a source.
 

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It is not marketing. It is driven by results. Honda owns Showa Suspension and part of Nissin. The Japanese do prefer to keep it in house as much as possible, but when the results come down to tenths of a second they do what they have to do. In todays world of racing you are not going to get a Marquez or Lorenzo signed to your race team unless you use the industry leading products on the bike. The bike is more important than the rider now and without the proper parts on it the rider will not be in contention for a win or even a decent finish.

The fact is the Ohlins suspension works better than the Showa stuff so the top tier Honda team switched to Ohlins several seasons ago to give their best riders at the top of the sport every little bit of edge they can get. The satellite Honda team does still have Showa Suspension although they did test and use Brembo brakes replacing the Nissins last season on one of the riders bikes (Bradl I think)

Years ago the American Honda AMA team leased their CBR1000RR from HRC and HRC would not let them use Ohlins suspension on it due to the relationship with Showa. In Pre-season testing the AMA riders went 1.5 seconds per lap faster on the Ohlins stuff than they did the Showa suspension they were forced to use. The next season American Honda no longer leased the 1000RR's from HRC, but instead built them in house and used Ohlins. Way back in like 2000 I can remember an AMA 600SS championship coming down to the final race of the season and once again American Honda pulled the Showa valving from their forks and installed Ohlins for the final race which caused a little bit of drama within the ranks again because of the relationship with Showa.

Anyone remember a few years ago Rea started the season as a backmarker in World Superbike when the Ten Kate Honda team was running WP suspension? They switched to Ohlins midway through the season and he instantly became competitive on track.

What more proof does anyone really need to know that the Ohlins is the best and the others are playing catch-up and always will be? You will be hard pressed to find any other brand besides Ohlins on any podium at the world levels of racing.
 

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It is not marketing. It is driven by results.

What more proof does anyone really need to know that the Ohlins is the best and the others are playing catch-up and always will be? You will be hard pressed to find any other brand besides Ohlins on any podium at the world levels of racing.
The whole point of racing is to win...want to win? Use the best products/riders/machinery that you can.

That's Ohlins when it comes to suspension...LDH is spot on with this ^^ statement.
 

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I will agree though that there is a heavy marketing influence as mentioned above, but that usually comes from the lesser quality companies. Companies that will give a national level rider their products to use just so they can be able to say that a rider of that caliber uses their stuff or certain companies for instance who make arguably inferior parts where you see their "wave rotors" on promotional pics for world level race teams, but when that same bike comes in off the track during a race weekend it has Brembo or even OEM style rotors on it etc. I know club racers that used to run EBC decals on their bike for contingency money, but would literally quit racing if the only pad they could use was an EBC pad...

Companies like Ohlins do not sponsor ANY riders or teams. They all pay to use their products and technicians.
 

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Apparently Arai is the same...from what I hear everyone pays for Arai they do not sponsor.
I don't know if that is true or not, but I do know that many times what the professional riders wear for safety gear (leathers, boots, gloves etc) is not even in the same league as some of the same branded crap they sell to us commercial users.
 
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