Harley-Davidson's Evolution V-twin has powered the brand’s Sportster since 1986. Over the years, the pushrod-actuated engine has earned kudos for its reliability and simplicity, and the Motor Company keeps the V-twin in the air-cooled Sportster platform to this day.
Of course, with the arrival of the 2021 Sportster S, the Evolution gave way to the Revolution Max 1250T due to Euro 5 regulations. In the States, however, the Evo remains in the Sportster 883 and Forty-Eight. Harley still turns to the air-cooled V-twin after 36 years, but Chinese brand Shineray wants in on the action with its new 1200cc mill.
The company doesn’t just borrow the architecture of Harley’s 45-degree V-twin, it also replicates much of the Evo’s cosmetics. From the cooling fins to the lower rocker covers, from the chromed pushrod covers to the oil filter location, the Shineray unit practically clones the legendary Motor Company engine.
The resemblance is more than skin-deep too. Shineray’s engine also touts four camshafts that actuate one valve each thanks to starboard-mounted pushrods. The Chinese brand can’t quite replicate the Evo’s performance, though.
Shineray reports that its 1,200cc V-twin generates 60 horsepower and 66.4 lb-ft of torque with a 9.1:1 compression ratio. The 1,200cc Evo in the Forty-Eight, on the other hand, boasts a 10:1 compression ratio that pushes performance to 67 horsepower 73 lb-ft of torque.
Shineray previously purchased Italian firm SWM and released an SWM-branded, liquid-cooled, 350cc, 550cc, 850cc, and 1200cc V-twins. However, the company hasn’t stated what its new air-cooled V-twin will power. Given the layout, we highly expect a throwback cruiser to showcase Shineray’s air-cooled V-twin.
Unfortunately, Europe probably won’t receive that impending model due to Euro 5 homologation. Regardless of which cruisers utilize Shineray’s V-twin, hopefully, its reign lasts as long as the Evolution’s.