• 2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE

    Aprilia RSV4 RF LE Developed for the WSBK homologation
  • First developed on the RS-GP prototype
  • Aerodynamic appendages to help the bike at high speed balance
  • Gets race-spec Misano color palette salute to the first world championship win in 1987 by Loris Reggiani on his AF1 250GP
  • Wind tunnel designed fairings
  • Gets the advanced V4-MP multimedia platform “corner-by-corner” electronic management
  • Limited edition etching on the steering yolk 100 for N.America and 25 for Canada
  • Seat height: 33 in
  • Four stroke, liquid cooled, V-4, 999.6cc engine prances with 201 hp and 82.8 lb-ft peak torque
  • 4 into 2 into 1 layout exhaust system comes with two oxygen sensors, single lateral silencer with ECU-controlled bypass valve
  • Aprilia Quick Shift Electronic System (AQS) and a slipper clutch
  • Aluminium dual beam chassis Forged aluminum rims
  • Öhlins TTX 36 monoshock with piggy-back
  • Monoblock M50 Brembo calipers twin 330mm discs “Race ABS” Bosch 9MP with RLM
  • Price: $24,499
  • Next-gen Aprilia Performance Ride Control system Traction control, launch control, speed limiter, cruise control, Wheelie control

For $24,499, you get "aerodynamic appendages" on the bike

The world of motorcycles is looking at a future where the air is going to help them win races on the track and off it. Aprilia just gave us the world’s first production superbike with aerodynamic winglets. Underpinned by the legendary RSV4 architecture, the new machine will be a limited edition affair of just 125 units, and all of them are heading to North America.

Called as the Aprilia RSV4 RF LE (RF Limited Edition), the carbon fiber winglets on this will change the way future superbikes will look like. It was launched at the GP of Americas in Austin, Texas a couple of months back, and is here to serve a purpose in its life – help Aprilia get on with the new regulations in the WSBK championships.

  • 2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE
  • Year:
    2018
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    V4
  • Transmission:
    6
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    201
  • Torque @ RPM:
    85
  • Displacement:
    999.6 cc
  • Price:
    24499
  • Price:
  • Overall:
    8.7/10
The world of motorcycles is looking at a future where the air is going to help them win races on the track and off it. Aprilia just gave us the world’s first production superbike with aerodynamic winglets.

STYLING

2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE Exterior
- image 778097
First developed on the RS-GP prototype

To step-up their game in the competition, Aprilia will be honoring the new regulations that allow manufacturers to use winglets on their WSBK motorcycle as long as they feature on the homologation special. This led Aprilia to start off with the limited run of the RF LE models featuring these winglets.

Aprilia likes to call them "aerodynamic appendages" and are here to enhance stability when the rider unleashes all of that 201 hp. It was first developed on the RS-GP prototype and gets its debut on a production bike with the RSV4 LE. Although this time, these appendages are basically a work of art connecting civilian folks to the MotoGP bike rather than being functional.

2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE Exterior
- image 778096
Aerodynamic appendages
to help the bike at high speed balance

The special livery seen here is a salute to the first world championship win in 1987 by Loris Reggiani on his AF1 250GP, which is also on the current MotoGP RS-GP prototypes. You also get the “Limited Edition” logo and the unit number laser inscribed on the steering yolk plate, and forged aluminum rims come as a standard option.

The rest of the styling cues remain the same since the revamp in 2016. Wind tunnel designed fairings come with a larger surface providing better protection to the rider from the elements. The characteristic headlamp unit retains the triple setup with a more modern shape and LED parking lights. The fairing mounted rear view mirrors also get LED turn indicators,

2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE Exterior
- image 778094
Limited edition etching on the steering yolk
100 for N.America and 25 for Canada
2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE Exterior
- image 778099
Gets the advanced V4-MP multimedia platform
“corner-by-corner” electronic management
2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE
- image 784064
Wind tunnel designed fairings
2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE
- image 784069
Gets race-spec Misano color palette
salute to the first world championship win in 1987 by Loris Reggiani on his AF1 250GP

The color TFT instrumentation tethered to the advanced V4-MP multimedia platform transforms your smartphone into a semi-professional “virtual” dashboard instrumentation that gives us civilians “corner-by-corner” electronic management used in racing using GPS to increase safety and effectiveness on the track and the road. It will also come with the Adaptive Race Assistant to get the best advantage out of the RSV4 giving out tips on how to gradually improve performance.

Aprilia likes to call them "aerodynamic appendages" and are here to enhance stability when the rider unleashes all of that 201 hp. It was first developed on the RS-GP prototype and gets its debut on a production bike with the RSV4 LE.

Overall Dimension

Make Model 2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Honda CBR1000RR SP
Length 80.9 in 80.9 in 82.3 in
Width 28.9 in 27.2 in 29.1 in
Height n / a 45.3 in 45.1 in
Wheelbase 56.4 in 55.3 in 56.7 in
Seat height 33.2 in 33.9 in 32.9 in
Wet weight 450 lb 443 lb 458.6 lb
Fuel capacity 4.9 gal 4.5 gal 4.5 gal

POWERTRAIN

2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE
- image 784068
4 into 2 into 1 layout exhaust system
comes with two oxygen sensors, single lateral silencer with ECU-controlled bypass valve

The Limited Edition affair will be underpinned by the same potent four stroke, liquid cooled, V-4, 999.6cc engine with its 65° angle between the banks that made an exceptional chassis architecture to work around with. The 4-stroke, liquid-cooled mill prances with a whopping 201 hp at an exhilarating 13,000 rpm and peaks the torque map at 82.8 lb-ft coming at 10,500 rpm.

This four-cylinder mill comes mated to a 6-speed gearbox, which gets the assistance of Aprilia Quick Shift Electronic System (AQS) and a slipper clutch mechanism, thus making the gearshifts much more precise and faultless. What this powerhouse also comes equipped with is the much famed Aprilia Performance Ride Control (APRC) system.

2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE
- image 784061
Aprilia Quick Shift Electronic System (AQS) and a slipper clutch

To achieve such performance figures, Aprilia has adapted this V4 with extremely lightweight pistons that reduce the blow-by effect, and the connecting rods gets a honing treatment that contributes to reducing friction. The valve springs received optimized timing that guarantees reliability during heavier workloads.

A highly sophisticated electronic throttle gets the best from the entire power band to provide instant smooth acceleration from low and medium revs right up to top speed. This mill has been the most closely derived element from the company’s racing department, the most revolutionary and powerful engine built by Aprilia.

2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE Exterior
- image 778098
Four stroke, liquid cooled, V-4, 999.6cc engine
prances with 201 hp and 82.8 lb-ft peak torque

The 4 into 2 into 1 layout exhaust system comes with two oxygen sensors, single lateral silencer with ECU-controlled bypass valve and is Euro-IV certified.

The 4-stroke, liquid-cooled mill prances with a whopping 201 hp at an exhilarating 13,000 rpm and peaks the torque map at 82.8 lb-ft coming at 10,500 rpm.

Engine Specification

Make Model 2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Honda CBR1000RR SP
Capacity cc 999.6 998 998
Bore / Stroke in 78 / 52.3 76 / 55.1 76 / 55
Output 201 hp @ 13000 rpm 200 hp @ 13500 rpm 197 bhp
Torque 84.8 lb.-ft @ 10500 rpm 83 lb.-ft @ 10000 rpm 83.3 lb.-ft
Type Aprilia longitudinal 65° V-4 cylinder, 4-stroke, liquid cooling system, double overhead camshafts (DOHC), four valves per cylinder 4-stroke, Inline 4 cylinder, DOHC, 4-valve, Liquid-cooled
Clutch type Multi plate wet clutch with mechanical slipper system Multiplate assist and slipper clutch Wet- Multiplate with slipper assist
Transmission 6-speed with Aprilia Quick Shift Electronic System (AQS) 6-speed with Quick Shift System (QSS) an “auto-blip” downshift 6-speed, Kawasaki Quick Shifter (KQS)

RIDE AND HANDLING

2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE Exterior
- image 778101
Monoblock M50 Brembo calipers twin 330mm discs
“Race ABS” Bosch 9MP with RLM

The Noale based manufacturer is regarded worldwide as the best chassis manufacturers that have helped the team win those many accolades in the world if motorsports. The RSV4 RF receives such an Aluminium dual beam chassis which is also the only one that allows the rider to adjust the engine position, headstock angle, swingarm pivot and the rear height just like the WSBK machines.

The wheelbase has been increased by 4mm to negate the tendencies of wheelies, and so has the fork advancement that reduces the trail further growing handling abilities. Further adjustments come from the Ohlins units, featuring the latest generation NIX forks and TIX shocks with progressive linkage. There is also an adjustable steering damper, also Ohlins.

2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE
- image 784060
Öhlins TTX 36 monoshock with piggy-back

The braking department also sees new changes on their metal braided Monoblock M50 Brembo units with the front relying on a pair of new 5mm thicker steel discs with an increased dia of 330 mm gripped by superior friction coefficient brake pads. At the rear, however, it’s the same 220 mm disc clipped with Brembo 32mm isolated 2-piston caliper. “Race ABS” Bosch 9MP adjustable to 3 map settings comes equipped with RLM (Rear wheel Lift-up Mitigation).

Top shelf winning technology trickles down in the form of the APRC System (Aprilia Performance Ride Control), which includes Traction Control (ATC), Wheelie Control (AWC), Launch Control (ALC), cruise control (ACC) and speed limiter (APT), all of which can be configured and deactivated independently suitable to the three riding maps: Track, Sport and Race.

2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE
- image 784067
Aluminium dual beam chassis
Forged aluminum rims
The braking department also sees new changes on their metal braided Monoblock M50 Brembo units with the front relying on a pair of new 5mm thicker steel discs with an increased dia of 330 mm gripped by superior friction coefficient brake pads.

Chassis Specifications

Make Model 2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Honda CBR1000RR SP
Frame Aluminum dual beam chassis with pressed and cast sheet elements Tubular steel Trellis frame Aluminum perimeter
Suspension / Front Öhlins NIX USD 43 mm fork with TIN surface treatment USD 43 mm. Forged billet aluminum radial caliper mountings. Adjustable spring preload and hydraulic compression and rebound damping 43mm Öhlins electronic suspension w/inverted fork; fully adjustable 43mm inverted Balance Free Fork, KECS controlled compression and rebound damping, manual spring preload adjustability
Suspension / Rear Öhlins TTX 36 monoshock with piggy-back, fully adjustable in: spring preload, wheelbase and hydraulic compression and rebound damping. New progressive linkage. 120 mm wheel travel Öhlins electronic suspension w/single shock; fully adjustable Horizontal back-link with Balance Free gas-charged shock, controlled compression and rebound damping, manually adjustable spring preload
Brakes / Front Dual 330-mm diameter floating stainless steel disc with lightweight stainless steel rotor and aluminum flange with 6 pins. Brembo M50 monobloc radial calipers with 30 mm opposing pistons. Sintered pads. Radial pump and metal braided brake hose. Bosch 9.1 MP ABS with cornering function, adjustable to 3 maps equipped with RLM Dual 320mm hydraulic disc; Unified Brake System and ABS I Intelligent Braking (KIBS), Brembo dual semi-floating 330mm discs with dual radial mounted monobloc 4-piston calipers
Brakes / Rear 220 mm diameter disc; Brembo caliper with two 32 mm separate pistons. Sintered pads. Pump with integrated tank and metal braided hose. Bosch 9.1 MP ABS with cornering function, adjustable to 3 maps equipped with RLM 220mm disc; Unified Brake System and ABS KIBS-controlled, single 220mm disc with aluminum single-piston caliper
Tires / Front 190/50 ZR 17 120/70ZR17 120/70 ZR17
Tires / Rear 190/55 ZR 17 200/55ZR17 190/55 ZR17

PRICE

2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE
- image 784065
Price: $24,499

The 2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE will come with a price tag of $24,499, a $1,000 premium over the highly acclaimed Aprilia RSV4 RF, and has been made available across the dealerships beginning May 2018. The RSV4 RF LE bikes will come in limited numbers of 100 units to North America (25 to Canada) and only in the Misano color palette.

Of course, you can equip your RSV4 RF LE with a wide range of accessories to increase performance, make them more attractive or more comfortable. Items include racing exhausts, carbon components, mirror plugs, frame guards, aluminum levers, tank bags, and more.

Make Model 2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Honda CBR1000RR SP
MSRP $ 24,499 $ 22,999 $ 21,899

COMPETITION

Yamaha YZF-R1M

Yamaha YZF-R1 and YZF-R1M Superbikes gets updated for 2018 Exterior High Resolution Wallpaper quality
- image 746001
The power-mill remains the same
which oozes out 197 hp and 150 lb-ft of torque

Touted as the sharpest and most track-focused supersport bikes you could get your hands on, Yamaha has updated their mad YZF-R1M superbikes with recalibrated equipment and a couple of new features keeping the competition alive and well. Most of the updates are mostly underneath the skin, which itself gets a new Silver Blu Carbon paint job on the R1M.

The new Yamaha R1 comes bolstered with the same liquid-cooled, parallel four-cylinder engine which oozes out 197 hp and 150 lb-ft of torque. The engine is coupled to a 6-speed gearbox with slick up-shifts on tap. For 2018, the folks at Yamaha have given the Quick Shift System (QSS) an “auto-blip” downshift technology that can now accommodate clutchless downshifts along with the up-shifts. And the best part of it all, the rider can disengage the function through the Yamaha Ride Control (YRC) settings found in the newly updated TFT instrumentation.

Another electronic gadget present to aid the rider called the Lift Control System (LIF) also gets further refinements to prevent the front end from lifting off the ground during those hard acceleration scenarios. Thanks to the new Bridgestone RS10 tires, the rider now gets a better grip and feedback to hoon the track around. The YZF-R1M has one another trick up its sleeve with the Öhlins Electronic Racing Suspension (ERS) getting updated with the latest Smart EC 2 ERS system. It can now be fine-tuned via the YRC settings using a smartphone app connected to the motorcycle’s Communication Control Unit (CCU).

Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Exterior
- image 781666

Suffixed as ’SE’, the bike sits right in the middle of the ’R’ and the ’RR’. A pure-stealth Metallic Flat Spark Black / Metallic Matte Graphite Gray paintjob, and being a Kawasaki, you get green accents of course.

On the new Ninja ZX-10R SE, the overall engine and gearbox combination has been carried forward - the engine is the same four stroke, liquid cooled, inline four, 998cc engine, which pumps out 197 hp of power and 83.3 lb-ft of torque. The bike comes equipped with a back torque limiting clutch and a bi-directional quick shifter for clutchless gear actions for aggressive riding situations above 2500 rpm.

On the new Ninja ZX-10R SE, the new revised frame and suspension combination developed by Showa sees the new Kawasaki Electronic Control Suspension (KECS). Attached to the 43mm Balanced Free Fork (BFF), this semi-active electronic damper electronically adjusts the amount of damping after calculating the vehicle’s speed and modulation every millisecond. It does so via a stroke sensor and a solenoid valve with direct actuation rather than using step-motors or pilot valves.

Top of the line Brembo brakes features dual 330 mm semi-floating discs that replace the petal ones used previously. Radially mounted aluminum calipers are the best ones available in any store that gives amazing braking force and feel to the rider. Talking about electronics, this Japanese Green machine gets loads of it, all borrowed from the company’s WSBK stints. It includes a Bosch IMU that inputs 6 degrees of freedom, corner management function, 3 level Kawasaki Launch control mode (KLCM), 5 level Kawasaki Sport Traction Control (S-KTRC), Kawasaki Engine Braking Control (KEBC), all of which work efficiently in making the riding as well as braking experience a bit more engaging in the part of the rider.

VERDICT

2018 Aprilia RSV4 RF LE
- image 784063
Next-gen Aprilia Performance Ride Control system
Traction control, launch control, speed limiter, cruise control, Wheelie control

The RSV4 motorcycle has already received several accolades for bringing in the focused credentials of a track oriented superbike onto a street-legal motorcycle. Having an excellent set of mechanical and electronics in its package, the future versions of the RSV4 will be the fastest, safest and most powerful units of RSV4 ever developed.

Aprilia will have a future production model that will come with an actual functional winglet design that will dedicate its life to improving the handling prowess of the already potent RSV4. Top spec suspension and braking mechanicals give riders the edge they have been looking to get as close to the race machines themselves. And with the next generation of electronic rider aids, the competition just started looking bleak.

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