2014 Aprilia “V4” Day – RSV4 Factory & Tuono V4R ABS Tests
In January this year, I got the chance to test the upgraded RSV4 superbikes at Estoril. Except for new colors on the 2014 Aprilia RSV4 Factory, there’s nothing new.
What’s interesting, though, is that this time I was able to test the RSV4 Factory directly in comparison with the Tuono V4R ABS, which was upgraded for 2014.
Aprilia invited international journalist to what it called “V4 day” at the fairly new Italian circuit San Martino del Lago near Cremona (home to Stradivarius). There isn’t an actual lake near the circuit, but during the night it rained, and several puddles developed around the circuit. The track never completely dried, but the testing went on with Pirelli rain tires.
I started with the RSV4 Factory, followed by two sessions on the new Tuono V4R ABS. On this day all the Aprilia safety programs in the APRC package came to good use.
The traction control and new racing ABS partially came in handy, though the racing rain tires provided plenty of grip. Eventually I went fast enough to get the knees down, but it took some time getting used to this. It also didn’t help that Aprilia kept urging me not to crash their only RSV4 Factory present at the circuit.
The 2014 Tuono V4R ABS gets the latest Bosch 9MP racing ABS with RLM (Rear wheel lift mitigation), the setup being the state of the art feature not found on many other motorcycles. On a wet circuit, let alone even on a dry one, I wasn’t able to actually test this feature, but it would also benefit the not so hard brakers out there by settling the rear wheel more.
The new Tuono also gets a larger 4.8-gallon fuel tank, and a more powerful 170 horsepower version of the V4 at reduced rpm. This created a more responsive motorcycle at lower rpm than the previous model. This will make the 2014 Tuono V4R ABS particularly good for road usage. Another road upgrade is softer standard suspension set-up and a better padded seat.
On a wet circuit I much preferred the Tuono with its upright position to the RSV4 Factory, which is pretty much a full blooded racing bike. The RSV4 Factory has a 184 horsepower version of the V4, but it was only on the nearly one kilometer straight I could use this extra power during “V4 Day,” but the Factory is definitely more stable at high speed than the Tuono V4R ABS on rain tires.
Both bikes are fantastic, but on this rainy day I had the best time piloting the Tuono V4R.
Stay clicked to UltimateMotorCycling.com for my full review of the 2014 Aprilia RSV4 Factory and the 2014 Tuono V4R ABS.
Photos by Milgaro