We loved the 2013 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC on the road, except for a firm seat and suspension. Now, it's time to see how it fares on the track, with the help of ASM Motosport in St-Eustache.
Basically, the 2013 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC
is a stripped-down RSV4 R APRC
superbike with a wider steering angle, a 20mm longer wheelbase, road-oriented engine maps, shorter first three gears, and a new balance shaft. The result is one of the most radical naked bikes out there.
With the 2013 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC, you get a very spirited engine that produces 167 hp at 11,500 rpm and a healthy amount of torque, a lightweight chassis that tips the scales at just 181 kg (212 kg with all tanks full), and most of the electronic aids found on the almighty RSV4 R APRC.
In terms of styling, the 2013 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC is dressed to impress and looks ready to attack at any moment. The RSV4-inspired mini-fairing is an odd fit, but you get used to it after a while. A cleaner-looking headstock assembly, with a big, modern headlight and a small, tinted windscreen, would certainly enhance its streetfighter looks, although wind protection would be even worse.
Radical, sport-oriented ergonomics
Offering a tall seat height (840 mm), high-mounted foot pegs, and a nearly flat handlebar, the 2013 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC's ergonomics make for a aggressive riding position. You put more weight on your hands than on most Japanese competitors (Kawasaki Z1000
and Honda CB1000R), and almost as much as on the Ducati Streetfighter
You don't have to bend your knees excessively -- just enough to get a good hold of the machine when accelerating and braking. The small windscreen offers little to no protection, so hang on tight when reaching 200+ km/h at the end of a straightaway. Meanwhile, the seat that felt a bit too hard on the road perfectly serves its purpose on the track in terms of sculpting and support.
|You don't have to bend your knees excessively -- just enough to get a good hold of the machine when accelerating and braking. (Photo: Photos Dan)
The RSV4-derived V4 engine doesn't lose much of its beastly character when fitted to the 2013 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC. Highly responsive at medium revs, it keeps pushing relentlessly up to 8,000 rpm before fading a bit near the cutoff point. Although the transmission has room for improvement, gear shifts are extremely quick and precise thanks to the Aprilia Quick Shift system, which proves more suited to the track than the road. The ride-by-wire throttle system is much better now -- smooth and easy to modulate at all times.
The 2013 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC shows plenty of agility and enthusiasm through twists and turns. While it instantly obeys your every command, it's still a lightweight bike that you can easily upset. Part of the blame goes to the rear suspension, which is softer than the RSV4's. When accelerating, you have to shift your weight forward before you open the throttle, otherwise the front wheel will leave the ground. Fortunately, wheelie control (part of the Aprilia Performance Ride Control technology) is included to prevent things from getting out of hand.
Bumps? Who cares?
|The RSV4-derived V4 engine doesn't lose much of its beastly character when fitted to the 2013 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC. Highly responsive at medium revs, it keeps pushing relentlessly up to 8,000 rpm before fading a bit near the cutoff point. (Photo: Photos Dan)
The road-ready suspension works with the frame's longitudinal rigidity and lateral flexibility to effectively manage bumps and cracks. In fact, the 2013 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC behaves admirably on bumpy tarmac, even at full throttle (traction control very seldom steps in). The front-wheel setup remains sharp and responsive, with minimal vibration through the handlebars -- nothing to worry about. Fantastic to ride in tight corners, the Tuono V4 R APRC doesn't prove as stable as its race-spec sibling in long, sweeping corners.
The powerful, rider-friendly brakes wonderfully brush off speed at the end of a straight line. Actually, they might be too powerful for a beginner's own good, especially on wet pavement. The great news is that the 2014 model will benefit from the same adjustable ABS technology as the RSV4 R APRC ABS.
|Fantastic to ride in tight corners, the Tuono V4 R APRC doesn't prove as stable as its race-spec sibling in long, sweeping corners. (Photo: Photos Dan)
The 2013 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC delivers a performance package that's hard to beat in the road-oriented naked bike segment. When it comes to ergonomics, it offers a perfect compromise between the road and the track. Add some highly effective electronics and a great engine, and you get possibly the fastest naked bike on the market.
- WSBK-winning chassis
- Highly effective powerplant and electronics
- Lovely character
- Maybe too spirited for some
- Transmission is physically challenging