The Aprilia RSV4 is a favorite among the MO staff, even if the
limited edition RF version (UPDATE: while the RF will be a limited edition model elsewhere, its numbers will not be limited for the U.S. market) narrowly lost our six-bike Superbike shootout by the slimmest of margins. At EICMA 2015, however, Aprilia has announced that the up-spec RF version will receive further updates.
MV Agusta has decided to grace a little extra love on the already impressive Dragster RR by creating an exclusive, limited edition MV Agusta Dragster RR LH44. Capitalizing on the special relationship the marque has with F1 racing, having produced two special series F4 MV Agusta’s dedicated to Ayrton Senna (the F4750 in 2002 and the F41000 in 2006), the new Dragster model carries the name of the three time world champion, Lewis Hamilton.
Moto Guzzi unveiled two new mid-sized cruisers powered by a new 850cc V-Twin engine. The new V9 Roamer is the spiritual successor to the Moto Guzzi Nevada while the V9 Bobber adds a blacked-out bobbed cruiser to lineup. both V9s will be available in the U.S. as 2015 models but we’ll have to wait a little while for MSRPs.
KTM’s calling the 1290 Super Duke GT its Adrenaline Express. Basically we’re taking MO’s 2014 Motorcycle of the Year 1290 Super Duke and turning it into a very sporty sports tourer, with a 1301cc 75-degree 173-hp V-Twin, hard bags, touring fairing and everything you need to hit the road in a fully fuelled 503-pound (228 kg) package.
Piaggio revealed the new Moto Guzzi MGX-21 Flying Fortress bagger, the production version of a concept revealed at last year’s EICMA show. The design is a blend of Italian and American styling, born from the Piaggio Advanced Design Center under the watchful eye of Miguel Galluzzi (and yes, the Flying Fortress is coming to the U.S. as a 2016 model).
Triumph has diversified its 1215cc Tiger Explorer lineup, following the pattern established by its smaller Tiger 800 siblings announced at EICMA last year. Like the 800s, the Tiger Explorer will be available in six trim levels, each offering a different balance between adventure and touring.
In Europe, the Kawasaki model we know as the ZX-14 is called the ZZR1400, and there are two versions: the standard and the high-spec Performance Sport model. At EICMA 2015, Kawasaki announced small, but significant changes to the line, though it is still unclear if or when these changes will be implemented on U.S. ZX-14s.
Borrowing the looks and design of its bigger brother, the J300 (which itself is a re-branded Kymco Downtown 300i), Kawasaki’s smaller-displacement version, the J125, basically keeps all the amenities of the 300, but replaces the engine with one less than half its displacement to better meet the needs of the European market. The engine is still mated to a CVT, for true twist-and-go rideability.
It has been a year now since Kawasaki strung us along with what seemed like endless teaser videos for its Ninja H2 and Ninja H2R superbikes. Let’s revisit what made them so popular. Boasting 998cc from its inline-Four, the H2 brethren represents Kawasaki’s flagship motorcycle. Let’s not forget the supercharger attached to both models, giving them a healthy amount of torque without the need for an intercooler. The trellis frame, Brembo M50 brakes, and traction control, among other things, helped the H2 line handle about as well as it accelerated.