Supercharged Honda 50 Racing

Anders Elsberg on his supercharged Honda 50cc racer

Anders Elsberg on his supercharged Honda 50cc racer

Anders Elsberg of Denmark has a long history of tuning and racing small displacement engines and the Honda 50 is one of his favorites. Though many tuners and racers of the little Honda will simply increase displacement and compression and add performance cams, Anders didn't want the tradeoffs required, a higher and narrower useful RPM range being the primary problem. High winding screamers go fast but don't last. What to do? Add a supercharger, of course!

Supercharger mounted on Honda 50cc engine

Supercharger mounted on Honda 50cc engine

The number of blowers suitable for the little 50cc engines is pretty limited and Anders has experimented with them all. Everything from automotive smog pumps adapted for blower use, the supercharger from a Subaru 660cc Kei-car and blowers designed for racing karts. Gearing the blower drive down and controlling pressure is a must but with 1/2 bar to 1 bar of boost the 50cc Honda is putting out between 8 hp and 10 hp, a very nice increase over the roughly 1.5 hp from the stock engine.

Elsberg doesn't just modify the engines, though, he rebuilds the entire bike and when he found his last exhaust was too loud to meet specs he made his own, but instead of welding up various cones he made one using hydroforming, very cool!

Plans for the near future include a 50cc twin. There is quite a bit on his site worth looking through, there's even a photo of a 3 liter 4 valve Lancia/Ferrari V8 destined for a future motorcycle. Hey, you don't always have to stay on the small side of the displacement range.

Anders said he likes to help out the young kids, getting them interested in classic racing as a way to keep them off the streets and out of trouble. What better way than this? Nice work Anders, ... very nice.

Link: Elsberg Tuning
Related: Supercharged Bugatti Powered Bicycle
Related: World's Fastest 50cc Project

Video below:


  1. Phoebe says

    Wow…that’s like my dream bike right there! Now, unfortunately, it’s giving me ideas for my CL100 cafe racer project.

    I love the way he starts it up by spinning the back wheel with his hand.

  2. aaron says

    somewhere I remember seeing a honda 50 with a homebuilt supercharger… I’ll see if I can dig up the link. also out there is the Futaba YS 120SF model airplane engine – somehow this thing has largely vanished from the internet, likely due to the takeover by electric engines…. the futaba website doesn’t even mention that they used to build motors. I think this was 1.2 cubic inches so…. 20ish cc? If I remember correctly the blower is a roots type at the rear of the crank (opposite the prop drive) enclosed in the crankcase.

  3. says

    Does fuel consumption go up proportionately with the HP increase, or is the supercharger increasing efficiency as well?

    I wonder what the top-end speed and acceleration are like on this thing. That bike can’t weigh more than about 150-200 pounds wet (sans rider, obviously).


  4. todd says

    Interesting he doesn’t use the upright, twin cam 50R motor (Dream 50), those put out that much power, stock. The bottom end relies on splash lubrication, right? It could be the fact that there’s so much more available for this motor than the R motor, especially considering costs. Pretty cool.


  5. aaron says

    todd – maybe it’s the cult status of the bike or it could be for a race class using this motor…I’ve heard of a few “anything goes” race classes when using a particular motor as a starting point (though the only ones I remember were for the ysr 50/80 and ride on lawnmowers!)

  6. Wave says

    Splash lubrication at 13,000rpm?!! I would be very surprised, although I suppose it would work as long as everything important had roller element bearings. Looks a very cool and technically interesting bike. I’m sure it’s probably cost him a fair bit of money to get to this stage but it looks like the cheapest way to get to such a high pinnacle of engine development. Awesome!

  7. Ramakrishna says

    I have a Kawasaki “Eliminator” Cruiser TwoWheeler powered by 180cc 4 stroke cycle SingleCylinder Gasoline Engine, with a Compatable Mikuni Carb. I am looking for guidance from you, on a compatable Electric Variable Speed SuperCharger, microprocessor, controlled (optional), to increase the power & fuel effeciency of the mobike. This also termendous commercial potential in the sub-continent of India,where there popular brands,of two-wheelers, Bikes & Scooters, off 150cc to 200cc, Honda, Suzuki,Yamaha, Kawasaki(manufacturing licensee Bajaj). The two wheeler population are approximately a few million.

  8. alex thornton says

    I’m working on a high-efficiency 50cc engine, and am somewhat desperately looking for a r50 head with dual overheads. does anyone know where i can get just a r50 or dream 50 head? cost may not be an issue. If not, what do you all think about dual overheads, it seems to definitely boost power, but is it at the expense of fuel consumption? I’ve heard 50cc’s isn’t enough to make up for the losses of extra bearings in the second cam, at least not at low rpms or superlean mixtures.

  9. says

    hola sr anders qede muy impresionado como a evolucionado ese motor es increible mire soy de uruguay tengo un motor igual pero cilindro vertical y 125 cc me gustaria recibir algun dato estoy armando este motor para velocidad en tierra pero no podemos usar compresores

  10. dale sanford says

    It is really good to see someone go to the extent you have to make the supercharger work, allot of the sights you see on you tube the bikes don’t run to the full potential. I am fitting a 660 supercharger to a z50 motor with a modified 88cc motor, once i have worked out the pulley gearing correctly i will be fitting a 124cc motor. did you have any problems with your clutch on the end of the crank flying apart with the motor accelerating faster through the rev range. (on my 124cc motor i destroyed two clutches reving to 15800rpm ) i had to put a kitaco manual clutch kit.

  11. bike fans says

    mr Anders Elsberg
    v r students from BVB engineering college from india.
    we are keen upon doing a project on supercharging of two wheelers/ as v were searching , v caught a glimpse on your work of installing supercharger in two wheeler (honda 50cc racer) and we were fascinated with it.. i have a bajaj sunny whose engine displacement is 59. 86 cc. and power of 2.8 bhp. since u mentioned about the ambiguity regarding the suitable blower, i am prone to check what type of blower can be best suited for bajaj sunny as aforementioned. pls tell the whole setup which is to be modified.
    waiting for ur expert reply..
    thanking you in advance