If we go as far back as 1982, the fastest thing you could get was a GPZ1000, which was putting out a staggering 102bhp.
I had a 1986 GPX750, putting out 106bhp.
Jumping to 2005, Kawasaki made the ZZR1400....
The ZZR1400 kawasaki was incredible. The ultimate hyperbike. 200 horsepower but it weighs a ton, and doesn't handle too well, a brilliant huge sports-tourer.
In the meantime, superbikes were approaching the 200bhp mark. Augusta and Ducati both hit the 200bhp mark but the bikes were erratic.
Now kawasaki have hit the 200bhp mark with a one litre superbike.
In a little under 3 decades, the power of superbikes has basically tripled, and now there is no endgame in sight.
Or is there?
Its possible to tune up bikes to 500bhp with turbochargers but its rare. And why don't these manufacturers make 500bhp bikes as stock? Because they're un-ridable. If you give me a 200 bhp bike, I'll be quick round Cadwell. If you give me a 500 bhp bike on the same track, I'll be slower cause I won't be able to put the power down.
Boss Hoss put V8 chevvy engines in their bikes, I think they put out over 400bhp, and some people in the US have started using 800bhp Nascar engines. They're muscle bikes, powerful but they can't put it down, so that's kind of futile trying to make them go quickly. In reality, you'll be quicker on a 200bhp Ninja and a 800bhp muscle bike.
With the rate of technology developing (traction control, ABS, sticky tyres ETC), I think they'll hit 300bhp. I really don't think we'll be able to get past 300bhp, I think that'll be our "Concorde" moment, when we make the first 300bhp superbike.... Then I think it'll be dull for a while, until we have another breakthrough. Electric engines, stability through downforce, variable transmission systems, anything is possible.