Aprilia Tuono V4 1100 Factory
The period of time that has elapsed is 15 years. We are outside the same café in the Italian hills, although it does not look the same now, and the bike under consideration is the Aprilia Tuono V4 1100 Factory
We spend some time with the latest Italian from Noale
FFIFTEEN YEARS LATER, THE café high in the Italian hills is different and so is the naked Aprilia that I’ve just parked outside, its fat Pirellis hot and sticky to the sidewalls. But the Tuono name on the bodywork is the same and so is the feeling that once again I’ve just been riding the fastest and best sit-upand-beg superbike that the world has ever seen.
That conclusion was not in doubt last time, outside the Caffè Mokarico in Tuscany in spring 2002. Back then, Aprilia had essentially just founded the hyper-naked class by removing the fairing from the RSV Mille sports bike and bolting on a raised handlebar instead of clip-ons to create the original Tuono, making that rorty V-twin the undisputed numero uno in a class of one.
The competition is much more fierce these days, the level of performance far higher; any conclusions less sure. But after a memorable blast to reach the Costa Salici restaurant in the Alpine foothills north of Trento, it’s not just the adrenaline in my blood and the V4 thunder still echoing in my ears that are persuading me that this latest Tuono Factory is the current unofficial holder of that ultimate hyper-naked crown.
The Factory will certainly take some beating in any head-to-head with the likes of BMW’s S 1000 R, Ducati’s Monster 1200R or KTM’s 1290 Super Duke R, because Aprilia’s challenger was already at a seriously high level. In its unchanged Superpole colour scheme the Factory looks almost identical to last year’s model — in fact, its new Euro 4 legal silencer is slightly bigger and the heavier exhaust is the main reason that the bike has gained 2.5 kg overall. But there are plenty of mostly invisible changes that make