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There's something about the Aprilia Tuono 1000 that eats away at you. Each time your eyes glide longingly over it, a staring match ensues. And you always lose.
The Aprilia Tuono is a beast waiting to be tamed. An exotic machine that begs to be man-handled, forced into submission, all the while begging for more. As I mounted the sit-up-high seating position, it almost felt awkward at first, that is until I hit the first curve. The Tuono fell into the curve as if falling in love.
It roared, it screamed, it blasted through the corner with a V-twin growl that had me giggling like a felonious school boy.
I dare not look down, but when I did, it hit me. Only in 3rd gear. There were three more to go. It took some getting used to- 1000cc's of power all the time, just keep it in the sweet spot. It occured to me while riding it that the power band was the complete opposite of my Hayabusa which has gobs of oomph at any gear, any speed, any time.
The next curve approached. The balls of my feet perched on the edge of the pegs, fingers fondled the brake, and I hung off as if peering over the edge of the Grand Canyon for a better look. The Tuono railed through the smooth corner, and I rolled on the gas powering out of it..
I get it now.
This third gear was such a sweet spot over such a wide range of power, I began to wonder why you'd even need any more.
Imagine the press introduction in some exotic Italian city... "Introducing the Aprilia Tuono, 1000cc and only 3 gears... Trust me, it's all you'll ever need!"
Insert maniacal laughter here!
It was a completely different type of riding, and pure unbridled fun! The Tuono dropped out of the mountainous twisties descending into a broad valley. I was surrounded in farmland that stretched out to the mountaintops that lined all four corners of the scene.
The road opened up with see-through stretching off for miles. Smooth corners, apexes that stretched a mile or more arced across the farmland. I dropped it down a gear, rolled on the throttle and the front end went light.
It was one of those times where you wish the ride would never end. Thus my introduction to the Aprilia Tuono. Aprilia's answer to the naked streetfighter craze that seems to captivate a certain segment of we motorcyclists.
The Aprilia RSV Tuono first released in 2002 offers up 126 horsepower delivered through a six speed gear box. The seat is high up, the handlebars wide. The gauge package seems far below you and by all means the aggressive sit-up-straight seating position seems to leave you poised for action. The tank feels impossibly narrow, and you steer this bike with your legs simply by gripping the tank and shifting your weight.
The most enduring allure of this bike is that V-twin motor and a power delivery that might come as a surprise to the owner of the in-line four. Torque and horsepower are always on tap. Power in the city, or in the twisties, or all day riding. Just standing still the bike oozes with an aggresively poise nature that can only spell trouble. Aboard this thing, you'll need to keep the twichy throttle in check and the front end on the ground.
Hooligans apply here. Pulling the front end off the ground requires only a twist of the wrist and the right gear. Up she comes yet when you set her down and want to stop, twin 320 mm floating stainless steel discs and a 220mm in the rear will bring this naked streetfighter to a quick halt. As tall as the bike feels, it's still easy to lay down a knee given a bit of practice and a smooth apex.
The moment you ride this bike, the sensation sticks around, nagging, eating away at you. I began to imagine what it'd be like to add one of these to the growing stable out in the garage. Another bike? I could always use one of those!
My wife once mentioned I should get a naked bike and of my all choices, this would definitely be a good fit. Speed Triple maybe, a Buell perhaps?. I like my bikes a little more exotic so been thinking Tuono would be a good choice. Little pricey, but the bike's been out a couple years, so could probably pick a used one at a decent price. Maybe someday soon in the future.
Maximum length: 2,070 mm
Maximum width: 800 mm (at handlebar)
Maximum height: 1,200 mm (at windshield)
Seat height: 820 mm
Handlebar height: 1,040 mm at bar ends
Wheelbase: 1,415 mm
Trail: 99 mm
Steering angle: 25°
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