Suit­able Part­ners MV Agusta Bru­tale 800

MV Agusta Bru­tale 800

Old Bike Australasia - - CONTENTS - Ride im­pres­sions Si­mon Brad­field

We first saw what is to­day the Bru­tale 800 back in 2012, when it was a 675cc triple. Now, thanks to the ever-threat­en­ing Euro 4 reg­u­la­tions, the model has evolved into a highly so­phis­ti­cated 800 that has mor­phed into four dif­fer­ent, but not that dif­fer­ent, ver­sions: the stan­dard model tested here, the 800RR, Drag­ster, and Drag­ster RR. But the story re­ally re­volves around the stan­dard model, which at $21,490 + ORC is a very en­tic­ing way to own an MV Agusta.

Bikes of this con­fig­u­ra­tion, let’s call them naked uprights, usu­ally don’t have the same front end feel that, say, sports bikes have. But what they do have is ma­noeu­vra­bil­ity in traf­fic, some­times at the ex­pense of sharp steer­ing. This one is hard to fault in that re­spect, with a nicely planted, pre­cise feel. The sus­pen­sion is ab­so­lutely a stand-out. The Mar­zoc­chi forks are ex­cel­lent, and the brakes are awe­some. The other thing I re­ally liked was the quick shifter, it’s ab­so­lutely seam­less, and prob­a­bly at its best in the Stan­dard en­gine mode. And of course, it’s a real head turner. I went for a week­end ride to Pie in

the Sky (north of Syd­ney on the Old High­way) and as soon as I rolled in ev­ery­one was just gazing at the MV; it’s that kind of bike.

Rid­ing, it’s all about the mid range, just stacks of torque and an added ben­e­fit is the fan­tas­tic ex­haust note you get when it’s un­der load, unique and pure mu­sic, a real growl. I guess that’s got a bit to do with the con­tra- ro­tat­ing crank as well. You have three en­gine modes; Sport, Stan­dard and Wet, and I soon put it in Sport and left it there. In terms of com­fort, I’d have to say that this is an­other ex­am­ple of styling over prac­ti­cal­ity, be­cause the seat is, well, hard, but the over­all rid­ing po­si­tion is OK and doesn’t put un­due strain on your wrists. And although the seat feels a bit on the high side, I can eas­ily plant both feet on the ground, which is im­por­tant around town. For a naked bike, the steer­ing lock is not overly gen­er­ous, but I never got into trou­ble with it. The wheel­base has been ex­tended a bit (20mm) on this model and that also helps to make it feel re­ally planted. It comes stan­dard with Pirelli Di­ablo Rossi III tyres which are su­perb. As a week­end war­rior, this is an awe­some bike. The trac­tion con­trol is amaz­ing, even when we were do­ing the pho­tog­ra­phy on only slightly damp roads, it was cut­ting in so you re­ally feel con­fi­dent that noth­ing strange is go­ing to hap­pen. There are 8 lev­els of trac­tion con­trol! You don’t get much in terms of in­stru­men­ta­tion and switch gear, and I found it a bit dif­fi­cult to see the in­di­ca­tor lights on the dash, but the modes are fairly easy to work out and change. To be hon­est, this is a rider-only bike, be­cause the pil­lion ar­range­ments are pretty sparse. But I reckon this was al­ways the in­ten­tion – that styling thing again...

“The sus­pen­sion is ab­so­lutely a stand-out. The Mar­zoc­chi forks are ex­cel­lent, and the brakes are awe­some.”

Pho­tos Jim Scays­brook

Gr­rrr.

Wet roads? No wor­ries. The Trac­tion Con­trol will han­dle it.

The Ital­ians think of ev­ery­thing; even a magazine rack un­der the seat.

The pipe or­gan.

Min­i­mal­ist dash­board – that’s it.

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