Aprilia Tuono R 1000 (2003-2010): Underneath these ordinary clothes, you discover a wild lady.

      The bike under test is a 2003 model, provided with an aftermarket air filter, Acrapovic muffler and a chip. These changes improved the throttle response to the whole power band, especially the lower – middle area. The screen is also extra.


     Engine: The V2 liquid cooled, injection fed 998 c.c. engine, provides a constant boost, no holes to the power band whatsoever. Thus the rpm numbers mentioned below, higher than 3500 rpm, are just indicative. The minimum rpm required for throttle response without any surging, is the 3000 rpm figure.
     From 3500 rpm there is a clean pull. The lower power band up to 5000 rpm is more than adequate for town use, throttle response is instant, which propels the bike easily in front of the traffic.
     On B roads this lower range operation is satisfying for leisure, normal, even kind of inspired riding. The beefy throttle response continuous at 7000 rpm, which is fully satisfying for inspired riding on almost any kind of road. The engine becomes linear at the higher power band, the rev limiter intervenes at 10800 rpm.
     If torque was less , the top power output would seem really great for a naked bike. However in this case, the top power output feels normal, much more than adequate though, for every kind of use.

    
     The boost provided by the engine, is a real advantage at the exit of the bends, providing the rider the opportunity to select between two gears for a decent exit. The right hand motion on the throttle, transforms to exact power delivery at the rear wheel.
     In most of the cases, selecting one gear higher, results to relaxed engine operation, providing strong boost at the exit. According to the road friction factor and the mood of the rider, this boost results to either easy lift of the front wheel, or skidding the rear wheel.
     Some enjoyable and exciting engine vibrations get their way to the rider, resulting to some edge to the bikeĘs character. The temperature of the motor remains impressively low and steady at 77-78 į C, even on town use. This is achieved by the two water cooling radiators as well as the large oil radiator.
     ‘he engine is noisy when engaging the first gear, with the motor temperature low. At the duration of the test there was some difficulty selecting neutral and in some cases there was a failure engaging the right gear between third and fourth. Also the engine had a tendency to stall when rapidly downshifting the bike on low friction roads.
     Top power output 126 bhp at 9500 rpm, torque 10.3 Kgm at 7250, nominal values. Average fuel consumption for the duration of the test at an ordinary pace faster than inspired riding, 8 l/ 100 Km.


     Riding position: The seat height is slightly increased for a naked bike, the width of the seat is narrow just to the very front, close to the fuel tank. Normal height riders or higher will step a firm foot on the ground.
     The riding position locks in a way the rider just behind the fuel tank, the legs will fit into the tankĘs curves. Rider is positioned in and over the bike, the torso is slightly bowed to the front. The handle bar is high and wide, providing a superb leverage. Finally the riding position is comfortable in everyday riding, a touch of sporty, just for the rider to be in alert.
     The weight feels slightly increased, center of gravity feels relatively low. The width of the bike is narrow, except the handle bar which is wide.

     On the road: The forks are kind of stiff while the shockĘs firmness is average. The feedback provided to the rider is decent.
     On town rides the Tuono feels neutral, as the riding position is, the weight of the bike will be felt, although it doesnĘt get intimidating.
     The low engine temperature in spite of the large motor capacity, together with tons of torque available, will encourage the rider for town use. Road imperfections will be felt. When filtering the wide handle bar is usually at the same height with car mirrors. This requires constant attention by the rider, as it is the only drawback of the Tuono in town use.
     Steering lock is average for the standards of the category, it will be a disadvantage only in traffic congestion. Consequently itĘs a bike that will serve the rider for adequate urban use.
     On low friction B roads, the combination of the engineĘs torque and slight vibrations, the exact feedback by the suspension, the neutral handling and the comfortable-slightly sporty riding position, results in superb rides. Rider may go sightseeing or charge.

     As the pace gets faster, the wide handle bar becomes a superb lever in order to change direction fast. This increases agility a lot. Tuono is neutral, very firm, no matter of the pace, neutral turn in, stable in the curve and tempting exit.
     The original design as well as the age of the particular bike is dated, however feedback to the rider feels loud and clear. Rider gets clear view of the handling of each wheel. As a result, riderĘs confidence is superlative, even by modern standards. Actually its better than many contemporary naked bikes, regardless of the engine capacity.
     Its only in the very fast pace that the weight as well as the neutral rake will tend to deter rider to achieve rapid turn in. Feedback to the rider is reduced then, mainly due to the hard tyres fitted.

     On high friction B roads, stability is impressing at the whole length of the curve. Tuono is agile and firm at the same time, providing decent feedback. The handle bar is again a great lever, charging into corners is a must.
     At the very fast pace the front end gets light, asking for some weight transfer which is difficult due to the riding position which locks the rider in one place and the handle bar being high. Some lowering of the handle bar adaptors is required initially.
     Tyres should be replaced with softer ones as feedback to the rider as well as handling will greatly be improved at a pace like this. The weight of the bike will gradually become an obstacle, riding very fast. In spite of the short wheelbase, turn in on tight – average bends is slightly slow.

     On the highway the air protection is unexpectedly superb in early models, even close to 200 Km/h. Riders legs are exposed to air flow, this is reduced if rider keeps the legs close to the fuel tankĘs curves. Due to the high and wide handle bar, riderĘs hands are also exposed. Changing the handle bar and the height adaptors will help touring ability.
     The decent air protection of the riderĘs head and torso, together with the relatively low fuel consumption make ‘uono a decent touring bike for warm climates. The stability of the bike and the confidence to the rider on sweepers is great.
     On roads featuring minor constant imperfections, Tuono is comfortable, just out of the blue.
     The front brake provides decent feedback, lots of initial bite, really powerful. The rear is relatively strong, low feedback on early models though. Increasing the lever pressure of the rear brake, it suddenly locks.
 
     Comments: It was introduced in 2003, minor changes were done for 2004. In 2005 radical changes were introduced , torque was reduced and top power output was increased.
     Together with the Tuono, version  Factory was produced, featuring many improvements. Tuono is a bike that will serve for every road use. On the road handling issue its still at the top.
     The engine is full of character as the whole bike is, although the engine operation of early models is considered to be rough in modern standards, which reveals the age of the original design.
     However there are not many motorcycles that their character is outstanding so many years after their introduction, which is definitely honourable.
 

Price: 11200 § Tuono R, 15260 § Tuono R Factory

+Character

+Handling

+Variety of use

+Price, used

-On early models, rough engine operation

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