Considering that an RS250 weighs more than 300lbs - about 320 - I seriously doubt that a 4-stroke of twice the displacement is going to be lighter. That said - I sure would enjoy that extra 10hp in my RS250. My checkbook is open.
I really, REALLY, dream of them bringing a street legal version of the supermoto prototype they have been racing with this sweet engine in it. If you have seen pics of it, it is just screams canyon killer!
I am waiting for a 450/550 Tuono myself. Unfortunately there is no chance that this is going to go for 6k. Sure, it is small displacement, but the running gear will be high end, which is much of the cost of the bike anyway. I doubt that 450 is that much cheaper to produce than their liter engine anyway. Even if it is a grand cheaper for the engine, you are looking at what, a 8-9k 450? I still want one though.
That makes sense, leveraging the engine into multiple platforms. That's what they do with their liter engine too. I'd prefer the "mini-Tuono"
As for the adventure tourer, it may have a German badge on it...
"Munich, 15 March 2005 - BMW Motorrad and Aprilia S.p.A., Noale, Italy (Piaggio Group), have successfully completed talks regarding a renewed collaboration in the motorcycle sector. A co-operation contract in the areas of development and production was signed in Munich, concerning a new product offer which will add in the future to the market segments currently covered by BMW. Production is due to take place in the Italian Aprilia plants at Noale and Scorzè near Venice.
From 1993 up until the end of 1999, Aprilia has been manufacturing the first generation of the very successful single cylinder F 650 for BMW Motorrad. Production of the successor model was then moved to the BMW Motorrad plant in Berlin.
Herbert Diess, Head of BMW Motorrad, stated: "This is a further extension of BMW's motorcycle range. Models of the existing single cylinder series (F Series) are not affected by these developments. Among other things, we see this co-operation as a key contribution to the reinforcement of the European motorcycle and supply industry"."
I would think that the market niche for this engine is really dual-sport -- this is the engine that could do for Aprilia what the SV-650 did for Suzuki -- create an instant classic -- and also be a lightweight answer to the porky BMW F-650 and the ancient Kawasaki KLR 650. Even better -- imagine a bike like this in the Paris-Dakar weighing in at less than the KTM 660 singles with better reliability, less vibration, and comparable power with the potential for serious power tweakage.
For what it's worth Aprilia is defining this engine as an off-road engine. I wouldn't expect to see it in street-based bikes unless Aprilia thinks it can meet the much tougher noise and pollution requirements for such machines. Nothing on their website encourages such thinking.
After all, there are plenty of off-road only two-stroke dirtbikes. They are sold profitably without any intention from the manufacturers to make them street legal. Eventually they are being phased out. Aprilia may have no intention of ever making this engine available in a street legal machine.
Time will tell.
It'll be interesting to see if a 70 HP engine that requires 14,000 rpm to make that 70 HP will be able to compete in the dirt. Will it need a 10 speed transmission? Is there any midrange torque at all? What about the inherently slower revving response of a 4 stroke over a two stroke? This may not be a problem in road racing, but dirt is an entirely different animal.
All true, but I've know afew people that have made their dirt bike street legal. Titled, regestered, with bare minimum of fuss. I think that in some states it only requires a headlight, taillight, brake light, license plate holder (w/light). No turn signals needed. Slap some good street tires and have a blast.
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