BIKE OF THE WEEK
The Aprilia Tuono was first manufactured in 2002. Based on the Aprilia RSV Mille, it immediately proved to be a popular motorcycle. Its basic personality has remained the same, since its early days, despite improvements and upgrades along the way.
Making its first appearance at the Bologna Motor Show in 2001 it was released in a kind of limited edition of 220 motorcycles called the Tuono R Limited with each of the 220 bikes numbered individually. The new Tuono R had a 94.9kw engine and a gold frame and was a high end product made from titanium, carbon fibre and kevlar with Ohlins racing suspension. It had the Aprilia Racing Titanium exhaust system, OZ forged alloy wheels and Brembo 4-pad brake calipers.
From 2002-2005 the RSV Tuono also borrowed its frame, suspension, engine and brakes from the RSV Mille superbike and the parts on both bikes were pretty much the same up until the arrival of the RSV 1000 R as a replacement for the Mille and then their paths began to diverge. One of the only notable differences before this was that the Tuono had a steering damper designed to avoid the bike from wobbling at speed which it could have been prone to due to the rider's more upright seating position.
Appearance-wise the RSV Tuono had factory mounted bikini fairings and body covers in plastic, or tougher carbon fibre for the Factory models.
In 2003 the Tuono frame was pale bronze, then in 2004/5 the frame and swingarm turned a sophisticated black. These new models differed from the special edition bikes with adjustable Sachs rear shocks and Showa front suspension. The engine itself was the Austrian BRP-Rotax V990 60° V-Twin favoured by many other Aprilias, delivering 92kw @ 9500 rpm.
The RSV Tuono Factory model was the high spec version with forged alloy wheels, Ohlins racing front forks, rear mono-shock and adjustable steering damper. It also sported radially mounted Brembo brake calipers and had carbon fibre parts to reduce its weight all adding to the speed.
In 2006 the Tuono 1000R appeared, a motorcycle loosely based on the 2004 -2009 RSV1000 superbike. Then for 2012 the Tuono got a redesign similar to the RSV4 with a 65° V4 and some other improvements like a larger tank and 3 position ABS brakes.
In 2015 the Tuono became the Tuono V4 1100 RR and the engine crept up to 1,077cc and in 2017 got Aprilia's new TFT display and factory paint scheme.
The 2017 Tuono is, like its predecessors, a beauty to behold and to listen to (the name means clap of thunder by the way) and in 2019 came with a list of upgrades such as Ohlins smart EC 2.0 semi active suspension.
Along with a sublime gearbox, employing an electronically aided quick shifter and auto blipper when shifting down and standard Akrapovic exhaust – well what's not to like.
All in all the Aprilia Tuono has always been something of a thoroughbred, now bearing comparison with the Ducati Panigale V4. Anyone got one? If money was no object, which would you choose Tuono or Panigale? Let us know at email@example.com
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