PERFOR MANCE DISGUI IN SE
Buying a touring bike, for many, signals a change in their biking ambitions, or essentially a move to gentler pastures. However, there are one or two touring bikes that cram in loads of sporting ambition…
There’s little denying that motorcycles in the ‘touring’ type mould, haven’t, historically, been our thing here at FB. Some are terrific machines, no doubt, and we’ve had a lot of fun on a great many of them over the years, although that’s usually when doing things on them we weren’t not really supposed to!
We can understand, sort of, why some people eventually chop in their sportsbikes and head in this direction, even passing straight over the naked class without even a glance, in many cases. Reasons for this are many: older, scared, wanting a quieter life, tired of going fast, physical complaints
– the list goes on, and all are genuine and acceptable reasons. After all, we’d much rather people remained bikers in some fashion, than not at all, nay?
Yet while some touring machines have a bit of pep to them, there are a couple out there which do the job that class demands, but allegedly with a serious sporting slant. Okay, okay, the fact is that one of the bikes we have here is, frankly, cheating.
Yamaha’s MT-10 Tourer Edition is supposed to fill the void between a normal MT-10 and something like Yamaha’s Super Ténéré range. The ST is a decent enough adventure bike, but when it comes to comparing it to, say, a Ducati Multistrada, it falls somewhat short in the dynamic excitement department. But with a sack of official Yamaha accessories thrown at an MT-10, this is now apparently a viable touring option. And we say viable, because it has an appropriately sized front wheel (17in) for what 99.99% of these kinds of bikes do when they’re bought solely for the road.
As has the other machine here, MV Agusta’s Turismo Veloce ‘Lusso’. MV pride themselves on always keeping a heady dose of sporting talent ingrained into whatever bike they build, for whatever class. We rode the first Veloce a couple of years ago, and despite a few rough edges it did indeed display many sporting traits. This version, the Lusso, wears electronic suspension and a few other classy bits and bobs over the stock Veloce, justifying the extra few grand it costs over its pauper non-lecky suzzied sibling.
But, can either of these two continue your love of fast, naughty and sportingly effective machines, but on a touring slant? Myself and the Gawler headed out for a couple of days on them, zapping around the south west of the UK and Wales, before remembering we hate panniers! So we chucked them back at HQ before ripping up Wiltshire and the south coast, to see if either of these pair fit the FB bill…