Is MotoGP Faster Than Superbikes?

Editorial credit: Rainer Herhaus /

MotoGP and Superbike are both thrilling and exciting to watch. Fans worldwide enjoy watching their favorite driver go around a track at incredible speeds. The two sports may race on some of the same tracks but is MotoGP faster than Superbike?

MotoGP is faster than Superbike because MotoGP bikes are custom-built and use lighter parts. Superbike uses standard production bikes with slightly tuned engines and modified parts. The engine used on a MotoGP bike produces more horsepower than a bike from Superbike.

MotoGP and Superbike may look very similar, but that is probably the only thing they have in common. MotoGP bikes and bikes used in Superbike are different regarding performance, weight, and the materials used for parts. Other aspects, such as budgets, also play a significant role in why MotoGP is faster than Superbike.

Why Is MotoGP Faster Than Superbike?

MotoGP bikes are prototypes built for racing on a track. None of the materials used on a MotoGP bike are standard compared to a production bike. A bike in Superbike uses standard parts, whereas a MotoGP bike uses lightweight custom-made parts.

A MotoGP bike is lighter and has a more powerful engine than a bike in Superbike. The lightweight body and powerful engine cause a MotoGP bike to be faster than a typical production bike.

How Does The Performance In MotoGP Compare To Superbike?

MotoGP and Superbike use a similar 1000cc engine, but the performance differs. A MotoGP bike has a top speed of 225mph, and the average Superbike can reach a top speed of 200mph if they are not limited.

How Powerful Is The MotoGP Engine Compared To The Superbike?

Even though MotoGP and Superbike use the same engine for their bikes, a MotoGP engine is much more potent than a production bike engine. A MotoGP bike produces between 250-300hp, and a bike in the Superbike class delivers between 200-250hp.

Who Accelerates Faster, MotoGP Or Superbike?

Regarding acceleration, the two are similar in how fast they reach 60mph. A MotoGP bike can reach 0-60mph in 2.6 seconds, and a bike in the Superbike class can do it between 2.5-3 seconds, depending on the make and model of the bike.

What Is The Weight Difference Between MotoGP And Superbike?

The weight difference between MotoGP and Superbike significantly affects how the bikes perform. A bike in Superbike has a minimum weight of 370 pounds, and a bike in MotoGP has a minimum weight of 348 pounds. MotoGP bikes are lighter because they use titanium, magnesium, and carbon fiber materials.

MotoGP bikes are on a different level when comparing the speed and power to a regular production bike, which is expected from a custom build bike designed for racing. However, what prevents Superbike from upgrading their bikes and performing just as well as a MotoGP bike?

What Restrictions Does Superbike Have That MotoGP Does Not?

When comparing the budget of the Superbike to the funding of MotoGP, one will notice that MotoGP has a much larger budget than Superbike. If Superbike had the budget of MotoGP, the contest would be a lot closer when it comes to power and performance.

  • Superbike has restrictions on team budgets when upgrading their bike engines. That is why they are only allowed to tune the bike engines slightly.
  • Superbike also restricts using lighter materials and specialized parts on their bikes.
  • MotoGP has a non-existent budget when it comes to teams upgrading their bikes. Teams in MotoGP can build their bike however they want and use whatever material they like as long as they abide by the FIM regulations regarding engine capacity and weight limit.

Comparing Superbike to MotoGP becomes difficult when budget restrictions exist, especially for Superbike, but how do the two compare when racing on the same track?

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MotoGP Vs. Superbike Who Has The Fastest Lap Times?

MotoGP is only a couple of seconds faster than Superbike on the same track. Still, you may ask yourself how a two-million-dollar prototype bike can only be a few seconds faster than a slightly tuned production bike.

  • In 2017 Marco Melandri set the race lap record of 1:40.938 for Superbike at the Jerez circuit.
  • In 2018 Jorge Lorenzo of MotoGP set the race lap record of 1:38.735 at the Jerez circuit.

A two-second gap may not sound like a lot when comparing the two lap times, but the distance becomes enormous if you take it throughout the entire race. When comparing the lap times of the same manufacturer in MotoGP and Superbike, one will realize that there is a difference between the bike built for MotoGP and the bike used in Superbike.

  • At the Assen circuit in 2010, the Ducati Bike MotoGP had a lap time of 1:34.761, and the Ducati of Superbike had a lap time of 1:36.413. A lap difference of 1.652 seconds.
  • The Honda of MotoGP set a lap time of 1:34.525 at the Assen circuit, and the Superbike had a lap time of 1:36.412. A lap difference of 1.787 seconds.
  • The Yamaha of MotoGP had a lap time of 1:34.626, and the Yamaha from Superbike had a time of 1:36.472. A lap difference of 1.846 seconds.

These lap times indicate that MotoGP is faster than Superbike, but in a way, it’s hard to compare the two with each other. The differences in power, performance, and weight show that MotoGP builds prototypes for racing, and Superbike uses production bikes for racing. MotoGP and Superbike may look similar in shape and size but differ in how they drive and perform.

How Do Superbike Drivers Experience MotoGP Bikes?

Many drivers driving Superbike and MotoGP have claimed that a MotoGP bike is more difficult to navigate than a standard production bike. The prototype bikes used for MotoGP handle and drive differently than a regular bikes.

One must possess a particular skill set to drive a MotoGP bike successfully. A driver that wins a Superbike season may not necessarily win a MotoGP season.

For example, Garret Gerloff raced in the 2021 German MotoGP. He finished in 17th place, but when he raced at the 2022 UK Superbike, he finished 2nd. He has indicated that pushing a standard bike to its full potential is much easier than pushing a MotoGP bike to its limits.


MotoGP bikes are faster than the bikes in Superbike. This is because MotoGP has a large budget for building and upgrading their bikes. However, A MotoGP bike is more difficult to drive than a production bike, and a Superbike is easier to navigate. Still, Superbike will always be seen as a class below MotoGP as long as there are restrictions.