Norton and Zhongshen have entered into a 20 year Design and Licence agreement based around Norton’s all new 650cc twin-engine.
The 650cc twin-engine has been jointly engineered and developed by Norton and Sussex-based Ricardo engineering and has been specifically designed to the requirements of Zhongshen. It will be Euro 4 compliant, which enables Zhongshen to meet current and future emissions regulations, allowing them to continue their growth in the global motorcycle market. Last year Zhongshen produced around 4 million engines.
The Norton developed engine and its IP is exclusive to Zhongshen – and it is expected that the engine will be produced under its ‘Zhongshen’ or ‘Cyclone’ brands.
Norton CEO, Stuart Garner commented; “It’s a great endorsement of our new 650cc engine platform and shows the high level of engineering expertise we have here at Norton. Working with Zhongshen going forwards will enable them to deliver high quality low emission engines compliant to current global standards. The commercialisation of our IP is a key area for Norton and we will be investing the substantial revenue received back into our skills, training and engineering capability, thus ensuring long term sustainability to our British made Norton motorcycles here in the UK”
The value of the 20 year deal is to remain private – but the initial fee paid to Norton is said to be in the millions of dollars, with ongoing royalties paid on each engine produced. Importantly, Norton will continue to produce all of its own engines here in the UK at its Donington Hall factory.