Automotive two-stroke engine research is currently being pursued along two complementary paths. Long-standing development programmes on piston-ported two-stroke engines have now been joined by poppet-valved two-stroke engine concepts. Ricardo's poppet valved engine concept, Flagship, has been designed as a high torque, high power density engine for prestige vehicles. Analytical studies have indicated that acceptable performance should be achievable in the two new critical areas of high speed valve train operation and loop scavenge in a valved engine. A single cylinder research engine to investigate the Flagship concept has been built, and initial test results have proved the high torque potential of the concept.