Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine

Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine

The Wankel engine did not receive the popularity and hit that it was made for, even though it’s considered as the engine that will bring innovation in bikes and cars. The engine did not get the chance to become the most significant hit of the 20th century. The details won’t be discussed here about how the engine works. Still, the idea of minimizing the factors of a standard engine like valves, can-rods, and pistons have been substituted by a style that uses authentic rotating part sure is a great revolution. However there are some issues related to rotor trips. The Suzuki RE5s and Norton consisted of a Wankel engine, so here comes our list for the Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine.

Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine – Top Rated

10: Hercules/DKW W-2000

Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine

The Hercules is one of the oldest manufacturers of this engine and was marketed in the UK as DKW, and was considered to have successful rotaries and was sold mostly in the 70s. However, the bike only gave our 30bhp from a 294cc Wankel engine despite the name that was very much muscular. The quality was also considered to be patchy even though it was German made.

9: Yamaha RZ201

Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine

In 1972 Tokyo Motor Show, Yamaha almost produced a bike with a Wankel engine with their bike RZ201 which made up to 66bhp on a 660cc Wankel engine. Only a few models were made despite its prototype looks. If you’re going for looks, then go for Yamaha TX750 which has a similar suspension and frame from the RZ201.

8: Norton Interpol II

Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine

Norton produced its first Wankel engine bike in 1984 and before that it used to create prototype rotary-powered bikes. But these bikes weren’t made for ordinary people but was only available for breakdown service or police force. The looks are very much similar to the BMW R100T which was considered as the most liked bikes by cops back in those days.

7: Kawasaki X99 RCE

Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine

The firm underwent a lot of efforts and expenses to make a Wankel engine motor, and so the Kawasaki twin rotorX99 was one of the innovative productions. The motor disappeared without any warning but it was a 900cc machine with 85hp and came out in 1972.

6: Norton Classic

Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine

With the help of similar air-cooled, twin-rotor 588cc motor used in Interpol ll, Norton made its first classic with rotary in the British firm. Only 100 limited edition bikes were made which was considered to be the first initiative for the return of Norton and rotary motorcycle which was in production by 1987. The Suzuki RE5 dropped after 11 years of Wankel bikes.

5: Van Veen OCR1000

Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine

Van Veen was one of the first firms from Holland to produce a Wankel bike. The bike gave 107bhp with 996cc engine (which was intended for a car), with a speed of 135mph. The loos are also good except for the fact that rotary Motor is not as good as the pistol engine. Only 38 bikes were made as buyers weren’t content and the production stopped in 1981. The other ten machines are expected to add in the total number of these bikes, as €85,000 were spent in 2011 to remake these bikes.

4: Norton Commander

Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine

The bike consisted of the latest water-cooled twin-rotor engine which came out in 1989 as the ‘P53’ Commander. The bike was perfect for those who liked unique engineering or just the name of Norton over Honda or BMW. The firm gained success when it used a derivative of Commanders Engine during racing of that time.

3: Suzuki RE5

Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine

You’re mostly expected to get an RE5 if you want a bike with a rotary engine. Suzuki was the only manufacturer to make mass production of these bikes as other firms only made limited quantities. They’re still available on eBay. The engine gives 62bhp with its single-rotor design which wasn’t considered very hardcore even back in 1974.  But it contained barrel-shaped instruments, taillight and smooth style were the factors altered in 1976 by conventional units.

2: Norton F1

Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine

It’s a bit odd that the first manufactured bike of Norton was a Commander tourer, even when it gained all the success in racing via rotary engines in the 1980s. It was changed with the production of F1 in 1990 which was the first proper sports bike. The design was pretty unique similar to Ducati Paso, CBR600 first-generation and CBR1000. The bike however didn’t have a race reputation look which would’ve added more success for the firm which is a shame as it also consisted of high-end suspension, and fabulous aluminum Spondon frame. The prices currently are high and only 130 pieces were made.

1: Norton F1 Sport

Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine

In 1991, the F1 was made with proper Race reputation design and with much higher prices with its TT bikes and BSBs. The Norton was not in a good position in 1991 so this bike is considered to be just accidentally made. This bike was not prepared to attract the buyers or Wankel engines but was only made to make use of the remaining parts at the factory. The motorcycle had race bikes seat unit and side panels which are latest which makes Spondon frame visible, but it is still the same as the previous F1. The bike never reached production which was introduced as F2 in 1992 and was also considered to be less steep.

Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wankel Engine – Top List

Sr. # Top Ten Best Motorcycles with Wantel Engine
1 Norton F1 Sport
2 Norton F1
3 Suzuki RE5
4 Norton Commander
5 Van Veen OCR1000
6 Norton Classic
7 Kawasaki X99 RCE
8 Norton Interpol II
9 Yamaha RZ201
10 Hercules/DKW W-2000


The Wankel engines were surely an innovation and revolution made for the bikes. Still, as we all know, not all the firms have the audacity and capability to create the perfect bikes using the rotaries. However, this revolution is still loved by those who know it’s worth it.