Motorcycle USA Motorcycle.Com has posted their 2010 Literbike shootout, comparing the newest European bikes to the top Japanese 1,000cc rockets. From Europe, they test the Aprilia RSV4 R, and the BMW S1000RR. From the Land of the Rising Sun comes the Honda CBR1000RR and the Kawasaki ZX-10R. Like nearly everyone else who’s riddewn it, they give the top marks to the BMW.
BMW S1000RR. If you want the literbike with the most power, best brakes, a wonderfully compliant chassis and best available options in 2010, these are the only letters and numbers you need to know.
Everybody loves this bike, it seems, in the sportbike set.
And yet, in World Superbike, where the S1000RR is in its second season of competition, its riders have been on the podium…um…not a single time.
Aprilia introduced the slightly lower-spec street version of its V-4 RSV4 race bike, the RSV4 R, to the press at the Mugello Race Track in Italy. According to Hell For Leather:
The RSV4 R is not Japanese. It will not make a beginning rider feel like Superman. it will make them feel like a meek nerd who gets sand kicked in their face.
In other words, if you don’t know how to ride–and well–it’s not a “fun” bike. Hard to steer, stubborn handling, etc. If you push it to the limit, however, it’s apparently a blast. As long as you know what you’re doing.
Unfortunately, it seems that if you push it to the limit, other problems arise. The press launch of the new bike had to be cut short when “five of the bikes suffered terminal con rod failures” out of the 30 pre-production models present. This now gives Aprilia the number one spot in press launch fiascos, pushing ahead of Buell’s 2007 1125R press launch, where all the pre-production bikes had fuel mapping problems. At least the Buells didn’t have to be deadlined, causing the event to be shut down.
Aprilia says they’ve traced it to a manufacturing fault, and that the production bikes will be just spiffy.