Cycle World|Issue 3 - 2020
Aprilia’s RS 660 is meant to be swift, secure, and fun. Does it deliver?

It was nice going back to Aprilia’s Noale factory, located in the beautiful countryside north of Venice, Italy. Last time I was there, I took apart and analyzed the mighty RSV4 1000 engine. Even during this post-lockdown period, the factory is still very much alive, particularly in the racing department, where I am not admitted. But there, the Aprilia people were hard at work on the latest evolution of their MotoGP bike, featuring a V-4 grown from the previous 72-degree vee to a full 90-degree vee, which ensures superior balance in primary and secondary order, for a higher mechanical and organic efficiency.

But as much fun as snooping around the MotoGP department would be, it’s not why I hopped on a train from Milan to Noale. No, what I came to see, and more importantly ride way ahead of production, was the Aprilia RS 660. This all-new bike and multirole engine platform is a daring attempt by the Italian company to reinvent the sport motorcycle in order to attract a new generation of enthusiasts by offering an affordable, light, compact, crisply styled, easy-to-ride, high-performance middleweight machine.

That is a huge pack of virtues loaded onto a single bike, and it represents a strong part of Aprilia’s strategy to address the progressive decline in popularity that motorcycling suffers among younger people.


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Issue 3 - 2020