Aprilia, the Italian motorcycle and scooter maker, started out making small displacement bikes before producing the 998cc RSV Mille in 1998. That bike was so successful that it gave rise to a number of other 998cc sport bikes. Aprilia revised the RSV Mille substantially in 2004 and renamed it the RSV 1000R for the U.S. market. A Supersport bike that handles well on the street and the track, the Aprilia RSV 1000 comes in two models, the R and the R Factory – both of which were design carryovers in 2009.
Both motorcycles feature Aprilia’s V60 Magnesium Evolution V-twin engine, with double overhead cams and fuel injectors, paired with a six-speed transmission and a chain final drive. The standard front suspension on the 1000R is an Ohlins inverted fork with spring preload and rebound damping; the rear is a Sachs aluminum alloy swing arm with adjustable rebound damping and preload. The Factory model has a standard Ohlins twin-sided swing arm rather than a Sachs, and the same Ohlins is available for the 1000R as an option. Aprilia’s AVDC anti-vibration double countershaft keeps the machine running smoothly and comfortably, while making sure all of its power is at the rider’s disposal. Since the RSV has been clocked at 160 miles per hour, there is indeed plenty of power. However, the quality Brembo 12.6-inch dual disc front brakes and 8.7-inch disc rear brakes will bring it to a halt in no time.
The compact RSV 1000R and 1000R Factory models are noted for reliability, and you can trust the Italians to give the bikes, with their aluminum frames and carbon fiber bodies, a distinctive look. The front fairing and the double-curved windshield pay tribute to the machine’s track roots. Side panels and tank sides are sleek and close fitting; nothing interferes with the aerodynamic styling.
The Factory model is essentially the same bike as 1000R, but it weighs a few pounds less, just 407 pounds (dry) compared to the 1000R’s 416, and it comes in just one color, Red Lion, with contrasting white and gold-tone wheels. The 1000R is available in Planet Blue and Ice White.