Aprilia Tuono V4R First Ride – Motorcyclist Magazine

16 Mar 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Aprilia Tuono V4R First Ride – Motorcyclist Magazine
Aprilia Tuono V4R APRC


Calling this bike a naked is hardly accurate given its large nosepiece, side cowls and heat-extracting bellypan. The upright riding position is what gives its character-and what a character it is!

Calling this bike a naked is hardly accurate given its large nosepiece, side cowls and hea

I’ve just pulled into the Valencia pit lane after my first session on the Tuono V4R, and handed the bike to the waiting mechanic. I muttered a brief grazie and floated into the garage on a wave of adrenaline, barely capable of coherent speech after 20 minutes aboard one of the fastest, most outrageously exciting bikes I’ve ever ridden.

Aprilia’s new generation Tuono was always going to be a weapon. After all, stripping the fairing off the machine that ran away with last year’s World Superbike Championship was bound to create a seriously capable naked bike.

The key to the Tuono’s brilliance is the way Aprilia’s engineers undertook the project with the same dedication and willingness to invest that they brought to the RSV4 project a few years ago. This time they already had the engine, of course. The 998cc, 16-valve V4 has been returned for low-end power, with extra torque below 8000 rpm and a 13-horse reduction at the top for a claimed 167 bhp arriving at 11,500 rpm-1000 rpm earlier than the RSV4R’s peak.

The sophisticated APRC (Aprilia Performance Ride Control) system introduced on the RSV4 Special Edition is available as an option on the Tuono. As before it incorporates a quick-shifter plus traction control, which is recalibrated to give a couple of softer levels for use on slippery roads. There’s also adjustable launch and wheelie control.

Aprilia Tuono V4R APRC

Even at a standstill the Aprilia felt special, and blipping the throttle made the bike live up to its name (Thunder in Italian) as it revved urgently with a loud, gruff bark from the single silencer.

But none of that prepared me for the addictive violence with which the Tuono took off around the twisty circuit. With even more midrange grunt than the RSV4, it’s no surprise that the Tuono charged out of bends at a mind-blowing rate. Despite its fierce acceleration, one thing the Tuono didn’t do was waste time wheelying uncontrollably.

Aprilia’s AWC anti-wheelie control was set on level two of three at the start, and worked so seamlessly that I simply left it there and got on with riding the bike. When I wanted to pull wheelies later, disabling the AWC took seconds and could be done on the fly.

With the optional traction control set in the second least-intrusive setting, I could occasionally feel the system kick in to warn I was approaching the limit of the rear Pirelli’s grip. Valencia’s traditional slot as the season-ending Grand Prix circuit means I’ve ridden some serious machinery here, including MotoGP bikes and World Superbikes. Yet I doubt I lapped much quicker on them than on this stunningly fast yet forgiving roadster.

The Tuono’s V4 engine has new cams and longer intake trumpets for improved midrange power. There’s also a heavier crankshaft and revised gear ratios for first through third.

Aprilia Tuono V4R APRC
Aprilia Tuono V4R APRC
Aprilia Tuono V4R APRC
Aprilia Tuono V4R APRC
Aprilia Tuono V4R APRC
Aprilia Tuono V4R APRC

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