2017 Aprilia Dorsoduro 900 Review

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Aprilia has been firing on all pistons to give the world class leading performance motorcycles that make the riding aphrodisiac’s hearts racing. And as with them trying to stay with changing times, they add new updated models every year to their existing lineup to keep things fresh. Although they never made many headways before, it seems like they have now learnt things the hard way and have been busy making bikes that speak for themselves and beam technical prowess.

First seen on the EICMA 2016 stage, Aprilia launched the updated model of its adventure crossover, Dorsoduro 900. Dubbed as a “True Thrill Generator”, Aprilia have been making the Dorsoduro crossover for some time now, and it used to run on a 750cc before. Now, Noale has updated the part-supermortard-part-sportbike motorcycle with an all-new 900cc machine that also makes a scene in the Shiver 900.

With more modern technologies and features embedded into a fine tune chassis built with the experience of the Aprilia Racing Department, there isn’t much that could go wrong with this adventure crossover here. New electronics, refined mechanics and an excellent chassis structure sees this motorcycle take new levels of riding pleasure and we are here to find out how.

As one can notice, there isn’t much that Aprilia has done with the urban-shenanigan design of the Dorsoduro 900 when compared to the outgoing model. Why would they? It was already futuristic when they made it. Justice is served.

The Dorsoduro follows a minimalistic approach when it comes to design elements and keeps rider involvement and pleasure as its main focus. Clearly derived from the sports world, this 900 gets the same dirt-style bird’s beak front fender, flyscreen, cheek fairings, fuel tank and a long and flat saddle to give the rider plenty room for movement and comfort. But from that point down, the Dorsoduro quickly shows its street bike DNA with inverted front forks and slick street tires.

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High front fenders and squarish curvy headlamps give out the old supermortard look, meanwhile carrying the state of the art TFT instrument cluster tucked behind the headlamp flyscreen unit. Hand guards on the handlebar, golden forks and the double exhaust unit under the saddle all form a part of Aprilia’s form and function philosophy.

The strongly tapering tail also incorporates the twin exhaust silencers, a feature which makes the design even more aggressive, while keeping weight distribution highly symmetrical. The adoption of a side shock absorber not only adds a further distinctive feature but also enables a rational and compact exhaust system to be fitted. It also manages to retain the “Italian” with its racing red tubular frame, wheel rim strips, and cylinder head covers.

“The Dorsoduro follows a minimalistic approach when it comes to design elements and keeps rider involvement and pleasure as its main focus”

The motorcycle gets an all-new modern 4.3” TFT instrument cluster which borrows from the RSV4 RF and Tuono V4 1100 RF versions. This light sensitive screen gives out clear and highly legible readings and can be wirelessly connected to your smartphone device via the optional AMP kit. On the whole, the Dorsoduro has been built synonym with Aprilia’s DNA where form and function come together to create an almost perfect object. The design is refined, but at the same time clean-cut, without too many frills for the maximum possible functionality.

Overall Dimension

Make Model 2017 Aprilia Dorsoduro 900 Ducati Hypermortard 939 MV Agusta Turismo Veloce
Length 87.32 in 83.5 in 83.6 in
Width 35.6 in 35.2 in 35.8 in
Height 46.6 in 45.5 in 33.46 in
Wheelbase 57.6 in 58.8 in 56.8 in
Seat height 34.2 in 34.2 in 33.46 in
Wet weight 419.9 lb 450 lb 443 lb
Fuel tank 3.17 gal 4.2 gal 5.6 gal

POWERTRAIN

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While it’s easy to be captivated by the Dorsoduro’s state-of-the-art design, more impressive is what’s inside. The 2017 Dorsoduro 900 gets, as the name suggests, a new 900cc V-twin engine that is capable not just of high performance, but also complete reliability. The 90 degree, liquid cooled, DOHC engine make enough grunt to produce 95.2 bhp power and 66.4 ft-lb of torque, thanks to new Marelli 7SM ECU and increased stroke.

As before, the Dorsoduro continues using the ride-by-wire technology that it was first bestowed back in 2007 itself. It was the first factory fitted motorcycle to get this back then and still makes the scene of giving precise throttle response to the rider with being much lighter than before. Other electronic management bits include electronic accelerator that optimises opening of the throttle bodies to improve performance and fuel consumption.

“It was the first factory fitted motorcycle to get ride-by-wire back then and still makes the scene of giving precise throttle response to the rider with being much lighter than before.”

All the power is transmitted to the rear via a 6-spped gearbox and a multi plate-wet clutch system. Slipper clutch gives a miss here. The under seat stainless steel exhaust unit is one of the characterising aesthetic elements of the Aprilia Dorsoduro. A new internal lubrication circuit capable of limiting power loss due to churning and lubrication consumption keeps the fuel consumption levels low.

Make Model 2017 Aprilia Dorsoduro 900 Ducati Hypermortard 939 MV Agusta Turismo Veloce
Capacity cc 896.1 937 798
Bore/ Stroke mm 92/56.4 94/67.5 79/54.3
Output 95.2 bhp @ 8750 rpm 113 bhp @ 9000 rpm 110 bhp @ 10150 rpm
Torque 66.4 lb-ft @ 6500 rpm 72.2 lb-ft @ 7500 rpm 59 lb-ft @ 7100 rpm
Type Aprilia V90 Longitudinal 90° V-twin engine, 4-stroke, liquid cooled, double overhead camshaft with mixed gear/chain timing system, four valves per cylinder Testastretta 11° L-Twin, 4 Desmodromically actuated valves per cylinder, liquid cooled Three cylinder, 4 stroke, 12 valve, DOHC
Clutch type Wet- Multiplate Wet multiplate clutch mechanically operated, self-servo action on drive, slipper action on over-run Wet- Multiplate with Slipper
Transmission 6-speed 6-speed 6-speed

RIDE AND HANDLING

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The Dosoduro was always known to be one of the most rider friendly supermoto bikes ever to come out of the Noale factory and still manages to hold that title even today. The ultra-fine chassis architecture born out of the WSBK experience helps in giving the rider a clutter-free engagement and riding a pleasure. The easy and intuitive chassis maintains high characteristics of efficiency, balance, a tight ride and precision both for street use and track.

Seat height approaches nosebleed altitudes at 34.2-inches tall, great for extreme lean angles, but for short inseams, not so much. The rider triangle seems to favour taller riders as well with plenty of distance between the jockey-mount footpegs, handlebars and seat, but this isn’t exactly the kind of bike one shops by comfort and ease of use, is it?

The mix of steel trellis/aluminium plates frame provides confident riding around the corners, and the stiff setting makes it easy for the rider to flick it from side to side. Thanks to the reduced engine length, the engineers in Aprilia managed to obtain a short, agile bike and ensured that this compact bike could cater to the fledgeling riders with no problem, as well as enhance the riding skills of more expert and discerning bikers.

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Optimum definition of the suspension is an obsession for Aprilia designers. Hence, on the mechanical front, the Dosoduro gets a light and beefy new 41 mm stanchions Kayaba forks that are adjustable in hydraulic rebound damping and spring preload for smoothly tackling both urban and highways. The rear mono shock is pivoted to the side straight onto the aluminium alloy swingarm, and it is adjustable in spring preload and hydraulic rebound.

When it comes to stopping prowess, Aprilia engineers have left no stone unturned. Equipped with two-channel ABS, twin 320 mm discs on the front with four piston callipers and a 240mm disc at the rear sport a single-piston radial callipers. Metal braided lines guarantee maximum braking precision and excellent modulability. They are clutched onto the lightweight three-spoked wheel rims borrowed from the standard Aprilia Tuono V4 and shod a 120/70 tyres on the front and 180/55 on the rear.

” Aprilia managed to obtain a short, agile bike and ensured that this compact bike could cater to the fledgeling riders with no problem, as well as enhance the riding skills of more expert and discerning bikers.”

Electronic rider aids like the three-level advanced traction control system adjust throttle position and fuel injectors to provide optimum engine performance and at the same time keeping you safe from skidding away. Then there is the three-level riding modes: Touring, Rain and Sport with which the rider can access the engine management settings such as the throttle response, throttle position and power delivery to suit the riding conditions.

Chassis Specifications

Make Model 2017 Aprilia Dorsoduro 900 Ducati Hypermotard 939 MV Agusta Turismo Veloce
Frame type Modular tubular steel frame fastened to aluminium side plates by high strength bolts. Dismountable rear frame Tubular steel Trellis frame ALS Steel tubular trellis (MAG welded)
Suspension / Front Upside-down fork, stanchions 41mm with adjustable hydraulic rebound damping and spring preload. Wheel travel 120 mm Upside down 43mm forks Marzocchi “UPSIDE DOWN” telescopic hydraulic fork with rebound-compression damping and spring preload external and separate adjustment
Suspension / Rear Aluminium alloy swingarm with stiffening truss.Hydraulic shock absorber with adjustable extension and spring preload Wheel travel 130 mm Progressive linkage with adjustable mono shock. Aluminium double-sided swingarm Progressive Sachs, single shock absorber with rebound and compression damping and spring preload adjustment
Brakes / Front Dual 320 mm stainless steel floating discs. Radial, four-piston callipers. Continental two-channel ABS system Twin 320mm semi-floating discs, radially mounted Monobloc Brembo M4-32 callipers, 4-pistons, axial pump with ABS as standard Twin 320mm floating discs, radially mounted Monobloc Brembo M4-34 callipers, 4-pistons, Bosch 9 Plus ABS with RLM
Brakes / Rear 240 mm stainless steel disc. Single piston calliper. Continental two-channel ABS system 245mm disc, 2-piston floating calliper with ABS as standard equipment 220mm disc, 2-piston floating calliper, Bosch 9 Plus ABS with RLM
Tyres / Front 120/70 ZR 17 120/70 ZR 17 Pirelli Diablo Rosso II 120/70 – ZR 17 M/C (58 W)
Tyres / Rear 180/55 ZR 17 180/60 ZR17 Pirelli Diablo Rosso II 190/55 ZR17

PRICING

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Replacing the $10299 Dorsoduro 750, the 900 will make way into the country by late Spring 2017. Although no official announcement on pricing is released, it will, however, cost around $10500-$11000 (MSRP) when launched. This price gets you a two-year, unlimited-mileage warranty complete with one full year of Road Side Assistance through Road America and will be available in Black&Silver colour option.

You can as well accessorise the motorcycle with original Aprilia range of accessories dedicated to sport and touring. Levers, mirrors, frame guard, fork bumpers, comfort saddle, panniers, amongst others are made available to Aprilia customers.

Make Model 2017 Aprilia Dorsoduro 900 Ducati Hypermortard 939 MV Agusta Turismo Veloce
MSRP $10500 (Est) $14995 $15988

COMPETITION

Ducati Hypermotard 939

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Ducati made a radical move in the context of motorcycling when it launched the Hypermotard for the first time. Many may think that the Diavel is the only motorcycle to showcase a best of two worlds, with its naked streetfighter inspired styling and cruiser credentials. Much before the Diavel, it was the Hypermotard which started the trend of ‘cross-breeding’ at Ducati. Yes, that’s right, the Hypermotard combines the properties of a naked streetfighter as well as an on-off road supermoto, making it a unique and worthy motorcycle.

The entire lean and aerodynamic profile of the Hypermotard 939 results in a modern design which is a blend of styling cues taken from both a streetfighter and a supermoto, making it one of the most contemporary and desirable trans-roaders available on sale today.

Underneath its sleek body, the Hypermotard 939 has ditched the 821cc Monster derived mill for an all-new four-stroke, L-twin, liquid cooled, fuel injected, 937cc engine, which now comes with a major bump in performance – 113 bhp of maximum power and 65.7 lb-ft of torque. The new Hypermotard has also been equipped with Ride-by-wire system, which enables three different engine mappings for the motorcycle for different usability of torque. This results in three different riding modes – Sport, Touring and Urban

The 43 mm upside-down front forks and fully adjustable Sachs mono-shock at the rear are set for an ideal balance to deliver both agility and good ride quality, traits which should be in an equal amount for a supermoto. Like the previous model, the Hypermotard 939 has been blessed with dual disc brakes at front and a single disc brake at rear, both sourced from Brembo, functioning of which are further strengthened by Bosch 9M ABS and Ducati Traction Control (DTC).

The Ducati Hypermotard comes with a price of $14,995. Every purchase of the bike comes with a two-year unlimited mileage warranty with maintenance service intervals recommended at 9,000 miles or 12 months, and a valve clearance checks at 18,000 miles.

MV Agusta Turismo Veloce

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Making the Turismo Veloce was the boldest move by MV, which meant redefining the process of making a world class motorcycle that could trump other brands. Now, even in the touring segment. Instead of crunching apexes and punching the straight, MV is giving you the pleasure of conquering the world of sweeping bends, stunning scenery and open roads.

Although the Schiranna brand is giving you a touring motorcycle, they are not any less in style and class. The Turismo Veloce can be immediately recognised as an MV Agusta, thanks to the chiselled front fascia resembling the MV Agusta F4 that has a sharp and rakish full LED headlight element flanked by strips of DRLs’.

MV has created a one-off unique three-cylinder engine that is regarded as the most advanced and powerful mid-sized power unit to have ever been built. The in-line 798cc motor produces a phenomenal 110 bhp at 10150 rpm and 59 lb-ft at 7100 rpm. The performance at high revs is superlative due to double overhead cam timing system with four titanium valves per cylinder. The fuel consumption is 20% lower than the rest of the line-up and is now made Euro4 certified with a bigger catalytic converter also. Three engine settings: Rain (80 bhp), Touring (90 bhp) and Sport (110 bhp) and a custom mode that have the ride-by-wire throttle lets you play around with the bike’s performance according to your imagination.

Being a tourer, expect the most comfortable of positions and a supple ride to take you more than 200 miles at a stretch without hurting your body. Compared to all its competitors, it also handles like a racer. The motorcycle feels compact and agile twisting down on the winding curves and giving you a soft, supple ride is Sachs USD semi-active telescopic hydraulic fork at the front and Progressive Sachs, semi-active single shock absorber with hydraulic spring preload adjustment at the rear. Both of these can be adjusted with respected to rebound and compression by a graphical tool on the app on your smartphone. Braking units are taken by the Brembo radial-type monoblock with discs 320 mm in the front and 220 mm at the rear clutched by 4 and 2 pistons respectively. Bosch 9 Plus with RLM (Rear wheel Lift-up Mitigation) ABS system comes as standard.

You could be forgiven for expecting to have to sacrifice your firstborn for such a ride, but MVA isn’t quite as proud as all that. The base Turismo Veloce 800 rolls in Metallic Carbon Black/Metallic Matte Graphite or red/silver for only $15,998. In the middle, we have the Lusso in red/silver or Pearl White/Avio Grey for $19,298, and at the top end, the RC comes in MVA’s racing livery for $23,298. Folks, this is a lot of bang for your buck, and the factory packs in considerable electronic wizardry for your riding pleasure.

VERDICT

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With the new Dorsoduro 900, Aprilia has once again shown us that their attractive design language has still some juice left in them and with this motorcycle being equipped with state of the art technologies, it makes itself heard at the least. With it certainly being not an easy matter to take the lead in a class as fiercely competitive as the medium powered adventure class, we feel the folks at Noale have maintained the ante the motorcycle has carried over the years, especially with the competition getting stronger by the day.

Aprilia has picked up the mantle and shown belief in their product to deliver. To a company that has to date acclaimed more than 250 world championship victories, including Supermoto titles, this Dorsoduro 900 motorcycle is their way of satisfying the disparate needs of those wanting a tool for everyday use, to a trip along mountain passes, or to use on the racetrack. The Aprilia Dorsoduro behaves completely at home in any situation, guaranteeing pure riding pleasure at all times.

” To a company that has to date acclaimed more than 250 world championship victories, this Shiver 900 motorcycle is their way of satisfying the disparate needs of those wanting a tool for everyday use, to a trip along mountain passes, or to use on the racetrack.”

Only if it had a bit more pieces like the slipper clutch, quick shifter and a little more top end grunt like the MV’s or the Ducati’s, taking the top spots for this motorcycle would have been a breeze on the field. Nonetheless, the asking price of the motorcycle will do the trick for the brand. At the end of the day, all that matters is how much it could make you smile when you throw a leg around, and this, it knows best.

  • Leave it
    • Could have add more mechanical bits
    • Top end power

(topspeed.com, https://goo.gl/BfHgk0)

 

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