MOTORCYCLES: What does cc mean?

I know what it stands for (cubic centimeters) but I don't know what it really means on a motorcycle? What does it do and why is it more dangerous to get a high cc motorcycle? Is it like speed or horsepower or something? (Btw, I don't even know what horsepower means haha)

How does it work and what makes it so dangerous (In lack of a better word)

Thanks, I know nothing about anything so go easy on me. Pretend you are talking to a 10 year old boy.

10 Answers

  • 7 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    The cc of an engine is measured by the amount of volume that is displaced from BDC to TDC multiplied by the number of cylinders. It has nothing to do with fuel and air mixture volume. Those numbers are affected by valve size, porting, carb size and air filtration systems. Also consider turbo and super charging would have a dramatic effect on the volume of fuel and air mixture.

    It is not dangerous to have a high cc bike if you ride at a level you are comfortable with.

    HP is defined by the amount of work that it can do. For example if you have a 3HP minibike it would take 10 seconds to go 200 feet, if you put a 5HP on it you might cut that down to 6 seconds because it is getting more work done. A modern measurement would be watts of electricity it could produce when connected to a generator.

    Simple how it works, the more HP the more power. Is it dangerous, I don't think so if you ride according to your skill level.

    Source(s): Certified Yamaha Tech
  • Tim D
    Lv 7
    7 years ago

    Imagine a syringe – that is the piston inside the cylinder of an engine. However there are restrictions on the distance the plunger can move so the plunger compresses the contents of the cylinder into a smaller space (on an engine this restriction is achieved by a crankshaft and a con(necting) rod attached to the piston).

    The volume (what the syringe/cylinder holds) is the amount of fluid it displaces when expanded to its maximum then compressed to its minimum, this volume is measured in ccs (it could also be cubic inches but keep it metric).

    In theory the more fluid (in an internal combustion engine this is a fuel/air mixture) the cylinder holds, the bigger bang you get when the sparkplug ignites the mixture, driving the piston back down the cylinder to its maximum. That bang is translated into movement by the con rod rotating the crankshaft, which transfers it movement to the drive via a transmission (gears) and continues to rotate expelling the exhaust gases from the cylinder.

    In very simple terms the bigger the bang the more rotating power you get, known as torque. Horsepower is torque multiplied by the number of times the crankshaft rotates – the more rotations the higher the horsepower. There are various restrictions on the amount of rotations you can achieve in a minute – the size and weight of the piston, the way it is cooled and the number of cylinders, the size, position and number of the valves and any number of variables.

    Again simply, the more cylinders (in a 600cc engine with four cylinders the individual cylinder/piston displacement volume is 150cc) the easier it is to revolve faster which makes more horsepower from the available torque.

    More cc means more potential power means small errors are magnified.

  • Dan
    Lv 7
    7 years ago

    It is how BIG the engine is, the same as a car.

    It has no direct bearing on speed or HP, some 600 cc bikes can run about 100 MPH, some can go 160 MPH, depending on the way it is designed, 2 cylinders pull better at low RPM than 4 cylinders the same size.

    A single cylinder 350 cc is about the size of a 12 oz soda can

  • Fred
    Lv 6
    7 years ago

    cc = cubic centimeter(s) equals the volume the cylinder displaces in one compression stroke.

    Why a high displacement motor exposes you to more hazards: Greater displacement motors make more horse power (energy) and will require greater skill and restraint in use. Over use that power and you will wheelie (raise the front tire off the ground) ...that may be great but unskilled setting the bike back down is an opportunity for disaster. Over using power on a turn will cause the rear wheel to slide away from the turn, over compensation will cause the bike to go out of control and fall and that's not good for bike nor rider. Using that power in the exit of a curve in excess or using an excess to early will also create a error you will need a correct, rapid response to remove the consequences of. That response needs to come automatically deep in muscle memory to be effective. Those skills will not be acquired in short amonts of time and after years they will still be honed ever quicker and more refined. Any road hazard will become more of a threat under use of greater amounts of power, dust, gravel, paint stripes, rail crossings, and assorted construction debris. You don't buy a larger displacement bike not to use the power and use that power you eventually will.

    Source(s): It's just best to learn all your recovery skills and find all the road hazards on a smaller ligthter easier to control motorbike.
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  • 7 years ago

    Some good answers so far but let me try to explain it my own way. 8^)

    You know how an internal combustion engine works, right? The intake valve opens, the piston goes down to suck in a load of fuel/air mixture. The volume of that mixture is measured in cc or Of course you multiply it by the number of cylinders.

    Now generally, all things being equal (which they usually aren't), the more ccs, the bigger the engine, the heavier it is, the more power it has. A bigger, heavier engine with more power needs a bigger frame, bigger tires, brakes, shocks, etc., so it's a way of classifying the size of the whole bike.

    But as I said, all things are usually not equal. Sportbikes want to be light and agile so they do all kinds of tricks to get more hp out of the same size engine. A GSX-R or R6 gets like 120 hp from 600cc. At the other end of the scale are big cruisers like Harley Davidson whose engines seem huge (1600-2000cc!) but only make 60 or 70 hp, because they want a big heavy bike to be smooth and stable on the highway but have only sufficient power.

    When I was learning to ride, 60 hp was a 'superbike'. The Triumph Bonneville 650cc twin cylinder was -the- hot bike of the early 70s. Then came advances like overhead cams four valves per cylinder, etc.etc. and tday you can get a bike with THREE TIMES that amount of horsepower that weighs like 100 lb less! So you can't go just by displacement.

    But displacement serves to categories bikes into 'classes'. In the 650cc class today, for instance, are standard all-around bikes like Suzuki SV650 and Kawasaki Ninja. In the 600cc sport class are GSX-R, CBR, ZX, etc. And there's a 1000cc sport class also, 600 and 1000 being standard track classes. The fastest bike on the road today is the Suzuki GSX-R 1400 Hayabusa. The biggest is the Triumph 2300cc Rocket 3, which looks like a Harley Davidson had sex with a railroad locomotive. 8^)

  • 7 years ago

    CC in engines stands for cubic centimeter. This is the capacity or amount of air-fuel mixture which can fill a piston for combustion. The bigger the cylinder the more power an Engine produces. Therefore more powerful engines have larger CC values. cc is ur engine displacement. its generally the size of ur piston and the bore of the head - which they measure in centimeters. larger cc engines are more dangerous b/c they have a greater fuel to air ratio so if ur engine was to have a catastrophic malfunction---the higher the cc the bigger the BOOM

  • 7 years ago

    cc=cubic capacity or size of engine . as this number goes up so does power of engine . horsepower . in the old days a horse could lift or carry a certain weight , this carries on to today and same as cc the more it is the more powerful the engine is . torque turning power . the higher torque the better

  • 7 years ago

    It means cubic centimeter. There are 1000 ccs in one liter. Another term for it is milliliter (ml).

  • Cubic Capacity! In simple terms a cube is defined in length, breadth and height (centimeters) of the cylinder and bore comprising the size of the engine deriving its power.

    Source(s): ZIGWHEELS
  • Anonymous
    7 years ago

    cubic capacity ...No doubt

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