MV Agusta F3 800 (2013 – ) expert review – Bike Trader UK

14 May 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on MV Agusta F3 800 (2013 – ) expert review – Bike Trader UK
MV Agusta F3

Bike Trader

Top class handling and braking

Heaps of MV style and charisma


Gearbox quick-shifter is erratic

Light-action throttle requires care

Expensive for a middleweight


MV’s engineers say their 798cc, longer-stroke engine was conceived at the same time as the original 675cc triple, and that it’s the one with optimum dimensions. Its 148bhp peak output is 20bhp higher, and it makes far more torque throughout its range. The F3 800 also gets the first slipper clutch in an MV triple, and benefits from the firm’s continued development of the injection and traction control systems.

It’s a wonderful engine: less free-revving than the peaky 675 unit but much more flexible and easier to use. The 800 starts running out of steam at 13,000rpm rather than revving to 14,500rpm like the 675, but its extra power made the bike seriously quick on its launch at Misano. Response to the light-action throttle was sharp, especially in Sport mode, but accurate; the revised traction control too intrusive in its medium settings but fine when turned down.

Better still the MV’s fuelling was very crisp, with none of the spluttering of the original F3 even when deliberately provoked in the pit lane and on a top-gear lap of the circuit. The 800’s only annoyance was its gearchange. The standard fitment quick-shifter frequently needed a second prod to change from third to fourth.

MV say they’ll cure the problem with new software, which will be available as a free upgrade.

The F3 800 gets the first slipper clutch in an MV triple.


The 800’s chassis comes straight from the F3 675, but suspension at both ends is retuned to stiffen it up, and the front brake is upgraded from Brembo’s radial four-pot calipers to Monoblocs. The triple has always been short and firm, with outstanding agility that MV say is partly due to the contra-rotating crank. It feels as light as the claimed dry weight figure of 173kg suggests, although independent tests have found it to be one of the heavier super-sport middleweights.

Like the throttle, the chassis responds best to a light touch. The 800 steered with fantastic ease and precision, especially in the couple of places where it had to be flicked from full right lean to left. But when I did this clumsily one time it tank-slapped briefly, recovering well but making me think a steering damper wouldn’t be a bad idea.

Being taller and heavier than an average rider I found the suspension fine for track use, and the bike steered even more sharply after I’d added an extra turn of preload to the Sachs shock. The ride would be firm on the road, or on track if you’re small. At least there’s plenty of potential for fine-tuning.

The Brembo Monoblocs give huge power with lots of feel, though disappointingly ABS is not available even as an extra.

Our rating: 4 out of 5

Roland (pictured) experienced a small tank slapper on a clumsy flick from left to right. Adding a steering damper wouldn’t be a bad idea.

MV Agusta F3


This depends on how you view the F3 800: its price of £11,499 is expensive for a middleweight super-sports bike, but is pretty cheap by MV’s traditionally elevated standards. The 800 costs £1200 more than the quick-shift equipped version of the F3 675, which remains in the range. Last year’s F4 is still available for only £500 more, too. But the F3 800 is a more sorted package.

And unlike the peaky 675, the 800 has more than enough performance and flexibility for most riders – on either road or track.

Our rating: 4 out of 5

Three colour schemes on offer.

Again it depends on where you’re coming from. Doing track days on an MV Agusta is hardly the cheapest of hobbies, though at least the traction control might help keep you upright. Even on the road it will be difficult to ride this bike without keeping the throttle wound open, which won’t help fuel consumption.

But the middleweight F3 will be easier on Pirelli Supercorsas than a more powerful open-class superbike. And MV’s updates to fuel maps, which can be uploaded for free, should soon include new quick-shift software.

Graphics apart, this bike is visually identical to the F3 675 — which means it’s drop-dead gorgeous. Shaped by MV’s British design chief Adrian Morton, it’s sleek, neatly detailed and has that distinctive trio of pipes by your right foot. A sticker on the tank gives a reminder of MV’s 37 world championships: racing heritage is never far away with an MV Agusta.

The bike is nicely finished, with black-and-white or matt black the alternatives to the Italian firm’s traditional red-and-silver.

The F3 800 is so similar to the 675 that all the original triple’s accessories will fit, and there are plenty of them on the importer’s site. Most owners are likely to opt for racy accessories such as the Ergal levers or carbon-fibre bodywork parts. There are also dedicated front paddock stands, soft luggage, dust covers and an alarm.

For track days the most useful extra might be the £644 Öhlins steering damper kit. Only racers or the seriously wealthy will invest five grand in the Swedish firm’s fork kit and rear shock too.

MV Agusta F3
MV Agusta F3
MV Agusta F3

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