2018 Aprilia Shiver 900 Review | Getting Frosty with the New Shiver

Introduced in 2007, the Aprilia Shiver has always taken a bold stance in terms of styling, and fills a much-needed role in the Aprilia lineup as a far more street-able sport machine than the race-ready Aprilia RSV4 or the Tuono V4.

For 2018, Aprilia has given the Shiver platform a shot in the arm, bumping its engine capacity up to 896cc and reworking many of its critical systems, improving on many aspects of the Shiver.

Here are the Fast Facts following our first ride review of the 2018 Aprilia Shiver 900.

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2018 Aprilia Shiver 900 Review

1. The new 2018 Aprilia Shiver’s new motor has what you need and more. With a claimed 95 horsepower at 8750 rpm and 66 ft/lbs of torque at 6500 rpm produced by the short-stroke 90-degree V-twin, the new Shiver pulls straight through the rev-range with no discernible hiccups.

The hearty twin is astoundingly tractable, allowing for a wide demographic of riders to make use of the newly updated Shiver. Less experienced riders will appreciate the relatively soft clutch pull, precise throttle, and seductively smooth charm, while experienced riders will be able to wring every bit out of the twin engine, making it a satiating powerplant.

2. A new engine means new tech and Aprilia certainly did its research. Aprilia engineers focused on getting more out of their powerplant—not just more power, but more utility, regardless of the type of riding you’re doing. To satisfy that requirement, Aprilia has updated the fuel injectors, reduced piston friction, and rebalanced the crank assembly, all of which improve the Shiver’s rideability.

3. The 2018 Aprilia Shiver 900 is buttery. The motor is smoother thanks to a semi-dry sump design with reed valves in the crankcase to relieve internal pressures and temperatures. Also, the six-speed transmission is treated with anti-friction coatings and gear ratios changed to match the increased power output.

2018 Aprilia Shiver 900 colors

4. Sporty, yet comfortable suspension awaits. The 41mm Kayaba fork has spring-preload and rebound damping adjustment, was does the Sachs shock. In urban environments, the Shiver 900 performs admirably, soaking up potholes quite well. In the canyons, the story is the same—comfortable and compliant, performing adequately under hard braking, settling well on the edge of the tire. Where the suspension does falter is at higher speeds when there is a sizeable bump mid-corner, which can get a hair bouncy.

5. An all-around machine must be confidence inspiring, and the 2018 Aprilia Shiver 900 doesn’t fall short. Though the Shiver hasn’t been imbued with a new chassis, its 57.7-inch wheelbase and relaxed rake of a hair under 26 degrees gives the Shiver a mountain-goat-like sure-footedness. A bit of input in any direction and the Shiver acquiesces with ease, despite its substantial 481-pound wet weight (56 pounds more than a Yamaha FZ-09).

6. The Shiver 900’s upright ergonomics will keep you riding all day. Featuring a sub 32-inch seat height, I could flat-foot while in the saddle of the Shiver, as the narrow chassis doesn’t bow the rider’s legs out. While its cockpit does lean towards the sporty side of things, it remains spacious and allows for plenty of movement. At 5’ 10’’, with a 32-inch inseam, I didn’t experience excessive knee bend. Handlebar width is petite, but doesn’t detract from the ride; there is plenty of leverage when needed.

7. More sophisticated electronics are now on the Shiver. Utilizing the Marelli 7SM ECU—the very same ECU found in the top-spec RSV4 and Tuono—the Shiver is has three-step traction control and ABS, both of which can be adjusted on the fly. Three engine maps are available—Sport, Touring, and Rain. You do get full use of the power in Sport and Touring, with throttle response damped for Touring. Rain dropped the peak horsepower to 70.

2018 Aprilia Shiver 900 first ride

8. A basic safety package gets the job done admirably. Though the Shiver 900 does not receive the full APRC electronic suite, its reserved electronic aids do quite well for the scope of work. The traction control behaves as you’d expect, with Level 1 being the least intrusive. In some of the dirty corners on the twisting California State Route 33 north of Ojai, with bits of shale and dirt clods strewn about, I put it to the test. While the Shiver did do a bit of wigglin’, I’m still here to tell the tale.

9. A full color TFT display keep you informed. Although the left-thumb controls are carryovers from previous generations of Aprilia bikes, the display and interface certainly isn’t—and we graciously thank them for that. Simplistic and intuitive, the Shiver 900’s menu system is self-explanatory. A few moments of plinking around and you’ll get it figured out.

10. The 2018 Aprilia Shiver 900 got some new kicks. Now equipped with lighter alloy wheels, the new package shaves off almost five pounds in comparison to the previous generation. Meeting the road are the mileage-minded Pirelli Angel ST tires—120/70 front and 180/55 rear. In the canyons, they do quite well, but we’d like to remind readers to always make sure you get some heat in them before having fun. When cold, I felt the whole bike shudder from a lack of grip.

2018 Aprilia Shiver 900 top speed

11. You get braking power for the masses. Featuring Aprilia branded four-piston radial calipers, clamping on 320mm floating rotors, and a single 240mm rotor in the rear; the Shiver’s brakes do an adequate job all around. Braking power is perfectly effective and allows for positive feel at the lever, which is great for trail braking either wheel. Initial response is soft, which less experienced riders will appreciate. To get the most out of them, you will need to apply a bit of pressure, but nothing out of the ordinary. Two-channel Continental ABS is standard and unobtrusive.

12. The styling is a bit dated, while still being updated. Underseat exhaust used to be cutting edge, but no more. However, the mufflers are now round each has an unusual external baffle. The Shiver is already pushing the scales a bit high and with heavy underseat exhaust adding more ballast up top, it’s noticeable when lifting off the kickstand. The plastic has been updated, and a chin fairing is now standard.

2018 Aprilia Shiver 900 seat height

13. You can have the 2018 Aprilia Shiver 900 in any color you want, as long as its silver. To be more specific, it is actually shod in Hi-Tech Silver. While I do appreciate the Shiver 900 from a styling standpoint, it would be nice to see the sporty naked machine in a few different hues.

14. The 2018 Aprilia Shiver 900 returns with a host of updates that keep it in fighting form within its class. An absolutely superb engine and great handling characteristics make this a stand out model, at a competitive price point, that should pique interest within the sub-liter upright sportbike class.

Photography by Brian J. Nelson and Kevin Wing

RIDING STYLE

For a specs and a photo gallery, click to page 2 below.