2013 Bimota DB9 Brivido Test
The Bimota Brivido (Shiver-Thrill in English) is pretty much what dreams are made of – at least in concept.
Take the most powerful standard Italian V-twin available on the market and add it to a chassis made of Chromo, billet aluminum and carbon fiber. The Bimota DB9 Brividi belongs in the upper streetfighter segment alongside the Aprilia Tuono V4R and Ducati Streetfighter S.
Like in the standard DB11, the DB9 Brivido utilizes Ducati’s mighty Diavel 1198 Testastretta II power plant. This translates in figures to a whopping 162 horsepower and 94 ft. lbs. of torque (claimed). At only 386 lbs. dry, the Bimota DB9 beats the Diavel donor bike by a hefty 55 lbs. And let me tell you the Brivido moves with considerable authority.
The engine is a gem, and with the Bimota Arrow exhaust, there’s Euro 3 homologation sound that strangely sounds more like Euro 1. I simply love it because Ducati never did let me ride any of their bikes with an open exhaust. This for some is what it’s all about, and while the Bimota factory isn’t located in a earthquake prone area, it sure sounds like one when the DB9 is stood running on idle on the concrete floor inside the factory gates.
The 1198 L-twin breathes freely and pushes the Brivido and me forward like a bulldozer on steroids. All that power and torque is transmitted through a six-speed gearbox that is easy to use. It’s packaged around that heart of gold that makes a Bimota a Bimota, though.
CNC machined billet aluminum graces almost every aluminum part, and a red steel trellis graces both the upper part of the chassis and the swingarm linked by a billet aluminum frame plate. The headstock and radial brake holders are also built in billet aluminum. This is the true art of any Bimota, but you need a bit of fairing too so the sharp looking Brivido gets all fairing parts in 100-percent carbon fiber. The 4.75-gallon fuel tank is pretty much the only significant part made of plastic.
I take a seat on the 31.5-inch saddle, and with raised bars the DB9 is instantly comfortable. With a wheelbase of 56.2 inches, the Brivido isn’t long. With the shorter wheelbase, it should feel like a sportbike in the corners. It does, but I also get a good feeling of plenty of weight over that front wheel. The front does get light, but only at higher rpm. The DB9 doesn’t look skywards each time you even think of touching the throttle like its DB10 B.Motard’s naughty little brother.
The wide and tall handlebars give good control under both acceleration and braking. I tested the “standard” DB9 Brivido, but it’s also available in an S version with a centrally mounted mono brake, which is a pretty special solution. The standard setup is double radial Brembo calipers that bite with the power. Tire dimensions are 120/70-17 front and 190/55-17 rear. The tires on the test bike were a bit worn, so it would of course have benefitted the handling with a fresh set of tires.
When you visit a small factory like Bimota you don’t get to choose between lots of spanking new press bikes, but you get the test bikes the Bimota testers use to test new things. But then again every Bimota is hand built so none of them are the same and that’s part of the charm.
2013 Bimota DB9 Brivido Conclusion
The DB9 Brivido doesn’t disappoint in any area, and the amount of power on tap at all times from very low rpm is impressive. It is also very stable both at low and high speed. It’s the sort of streetfighter you’d love to do a track day on, and I will of course pester Bimota at every opportunity to join one for further evaluation of this and other exciting but exclusive and expensive Bimota motorcycles. The most current price for the Brivido is €21.900 for the model I tested and €23.900 for the DB9 Brivido S version Ex Works (about $29,000 and $32,000, respectively).
2013 Bimota DB9 Brivido Positives/Negatives:
+ Hand built chassis by Bimota’s mechanical jewelers
+ No vibrations even though we’re talking serious power in a light chassis
+ You can’t leave that Testastretta II engine out of the plus section despite the fact Ducati built it
– The price is a very excluding factor
_ You’ll be the “special one” at your local Ducati dealership for services