The OG naked/ hooligan/streetfighter has received a ground up redesign for the 2021 model year. Triumph tells us it has left no stone unturned with every single component new from tip to top. From the chassis to the new 1160 cc Triple, the latest Speed Triple RS is said to be the, “Fastest accelerating, most powerful, highest torque Speed Triple ever with a hair-raising new sound.”
Well yeah, the FTR did not win our little Monster 1200/Yamaha XSR900 comparo, and is currently taking heavy fire in the Comments section from the sportbike purists. But as you know, MOBOs are also selected using other criteria, including historical significance, originality, and the debating skills and/or ability of a given bike’s proponent to wear the other contenders down with BS via Google Hangout.
It was a sad day in southern Spain, not to mention a long way to travel, to be peering out from the garage as intensifying rain dashed any hopes of spinning another lap around the Circuito de Almeria. With only a single session under our belts, and that one merely a familiarization one at best, there was nothing left to do except get wet on the ride back to the hotel.
Not since the heady days of the 600cc sportbike wars have we witnessed competition between manufacturers as fierce as it currently is between Aprilia’s and KTM’s super streetfighters. With the arrival of the Super Duke R in 2014, the monstrously torquey V-Twin-powered hooligan has been in a lock step dogfight with the Tuono and its rip-roaring V-Four. So enamored were we with the SDR it won both Streetfighter and Bike of the Year awards in 2014. For 2015 the SDR retained its streetfighter of the year title over the Tuono, but in 2016 an updated Tuono took away the SDR’s streetfighter crown by virtue of offering a nearly equally equipped but more affordable RR model alongside its top-of-line Factory version. The Tuono duo also claimed honorable mention for motorcycle of the year in 2016.
In 2016 the revised Aprilia Tuono 1100 rightfully earned its place as the winner of our Streetfighter category and runner-up for Motorcycle of the Year. Fast forward to 2017 and what we thought was already an incredible motorcycle just got better. Aprilia invited Motorcycle.com to the Circuit of the Americas to sample these upgrades in Texas.
This category is one of our favorites here at MO, and it proved to be the tightest contest of our 2016 MOBOs – we initially decided to give it the second tie in the eight-year history of MO’s annual Best Of awards. After all, our recent face-off between KTM’s Super Duke R and the Aprilia Tuono 1100 Factory was a virtual tie, with their scores separated in our rankings by just 0.1%! And, in pure subjective terms, our two testers were divided.
To date, the KTM 1290 Super Duke R’s perch atop Streetfighter Mountain remains unassailable. Last year’s two-time winner – Bike of the Year and Best Streetighter/Hooligan – returns this year retaining its Best Streetfighter title. From our initial First Ride Review of the SDR to its winning three shootouts last year ( 2014 Super Streetfighter Smackdown + Video, 2014 Super Naked Street Brawl + Video, 2014 Ultimate Streetfighter Finale + Video) the SDR has proven to be the benchmark in the Streetfighter/Hooligan category.
In its first year of existence, KTM’s 1290 Super Duke R doubled down by winning both our 2014 Bike of the Year award and Best Streetfighter/Hooligan trophy. Now, the Super Duke R has become the choice machine for Best Streetfighter/Hooligan bike among MO readers – a triumvirate of accolades!
The playground where I take my three-year-old son to blow off steam is called Astro Park, but aside from a large asteroid-like climbing structure, you’d never guess why it has that name. That’s because about 15 years ago, a crew from the City of Oakland hauled away a large steel flying-saucer shaped play structure that had been there since 1968.
In 2003 the streetfighter scene was just starting to pick up, with virtually every manufacturer bringing something to market to appeal to the younger, edgier, crowd. Those who wanted to go fast, but had no interest in the racetrack. Hell, streetfighters appealed to those with hardly a care about abiding by the law. Wheelies, attitude and street cred was where it was at. That’s why the BMW Rockster was such an anomaly. BMW, the company which, at the time, was building its reputation as your father’s motorcycle, saw a chance to hop on the streetfighter bandwagon and repurposed its existing R1150R to appeal to a younger crowd. Did it work? Let’s see what Jason Roberts thinks.
While choosing this year’s MOBO selections we noticed that the Best Standard category was awash with bikes such as Aprilia’s Tuono and Triumph’s Speed Triple R – last year’s Best and Honorable Mention, respectively. This year adds models such as MV Agusta’s Brutale 675 and 800 as well as a revised Triumph Street Triple R. How is a true standard such as Honda’s new CB1100 to compete with bikes such as these high-performance nakeds? To solve this conundrum we created a new category for 2013, Best Streetfighter/Hooligan.