DESIGNED FOR RACERS, BUILT FOR RIDERS
Unanimously acclaimed by critics and sought after by bikers from every corner of the globe, the RSV4 has always been the undisputed segment representative, the reference point for sportiness and performance, the best example of what can be achieved by exploiting the valuable experience of a victorious Racing Department like Aprilia’s which, in its brief history has taken 54 championship titles.
RSV4 – A NEW ERA
The Aprilia RSV4 represents the most important and profound advancement ever made on this extraordinary model. A development that even involved the design. The style is the result of the perfect combination of form and function. The careful design led to the creation of the most compact full size sport bike on the market, where technical elements such as the impeccable aluminium double rail frame contribute to emphasising its racing vocation.The front end has been completely redesigned: now there is a more protective top fairing, created after a careful wind tunnel aerodynamics study, which provides better protection from the wind for riders of any height. This choice has a positive impact not only on the track when the rider is seeking protection to achieve maximum speed, but also on the road where greater comfort is provided thanks to the lower air pressure on the body and helmet. The characteristic triple headlight is new, now with a more modern shape and an LED parking light. The mirrors were also the subject of a wind tunnel study, combining excellent aerodynamic penetration with improved visibility and built in LED turn indicators.2016 model year becomes even richer, adding as standard the new “Superpole” graphic, the V4-MP multimedia platform and a new Öhlins shock absorber.
65° V4 INCOMPARABLE ENGINE
In terms of quantity and quality of the operations, the unrivalled Aprilia V4 has every right to consider itself a radically new unit: if there were any doubts, they are quickly dispelled by the more than 16 additional HP and the 2.5 kg less than its predecessor. This is one of the Aprilia RSV4 RR and RF elements that is most closely derived from the racing world and the one on which the Aprilia Racing Department was able to work the most with the factory production.
The primary and unique characteristics of this gem of Italian technology, the ones that led to the creation of the best superbike of all times, remain unchanged. This is the world’s first full scale production motorcycle with a high performance narrow V4 engine, the most revolutionary and powerful engine ever built by Aprilia. An engine that has been made unmistakeable because of the use of “total” electronics, because of its extremely compact size and exceptional light weight.
The main goals of the V4 project were clear: increase power across the board, exceeding the threshold of 200 HP maximum peak and at the same time increase the already generous torque at all engine speeds. To achieve them work was done on decreasing internal friction, improving combustion efficiency and fluid-dynamic efficiency as well as on increasing the maximum rotation speed. The Noale engineers redesigned almost all of the internal and external elements.
Starting from the top, the 65° V4 has an air box with filtering elements perpendicular to the air flow, studied with sophisticated CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) systems in order to minimise load losses and maximum pressure in the intake ducts. The upper injectors are new, whereas the variable setting intake ducts were redesigned to the benefit of an even wider range of management in terms of their travel As with previous models, each bank has a dedicated servo unit actuating the two throttle bodies of that bank only. In order to improve the fluid dynamic performance, the heads were redesigned with intake and output ducts that have new geometries and contouring on the ends machined by a numerically controlled tool. The combustion chambers are no longer obtained through a fusion process but by a finer, numerically controlled machining process. In order to improve reliability and precision under extreme loads the height of the valve seat seals was increased and the internal cooling and oil discharge circuit were consequently modified. The heads now have a triple layer of gaskets. The timing system confirms the innovative mixed chain and gear kinematics of the Aprilia V4 (with the chain camshaft driving only the intake camshaft, which in turn drives the exhaust camshaft via a gear) which allows for extremely compact heads especially in the area beneath the frame spars, much narrower than would otherwise be possible. In order to increase the maximum rotation speed a painstaking study was conducted on lightening the parts in motion of the elements included in the heads. All four valves are now in precious and lightweight titanium (the intake valves are oversized at 33 mm); the valve springs are completely new and the relative tappets and caps were lightened. The camshafts have a brand new profile and were lightened by a whole 600 grams. Moving farther downward, the crankshaft now has connecting rod pins reduced to 36 mm in diameter with 450 grams more weight, while the Pankl connecting rods are lighter by a total of 400 grams.
As in previous models, the monobloc crankcase with integrated aluminium cylinder liners ensures maximum rigidity and consistent performance. The upper half of the engine case is now made with a new shell fusion and has been lightened (-1.3 Kg) and reinforced; it also now has an optimised ventilation system in order to reduce power loss due to air pressure inside the engine crankcase. The lubrication system has also been redesigned and optimised. A brand new oil sump ensures increased draught no matter what position the engine is in (for example in the most extreme leans or in maximum acceleration/deceleration conditions) despite the oil level being decreased in order to decrease friction. The “rose pipe” is also new (oil pump intake duct), now equipped with a new overpressure valve and a filter in an optimised position. The piston cooling oil nozzles were also replaced and the gearbox now has a valve regulated direct hydraulic lubrication circuit. The latter uses lightened drive shafts and gears (-0.35 Kg), a lightened primary drive (-0.1 Kg) and takes advantage of ratios which have been optimised to fully exploit the increased engine power. The entire exhaust system has also been completely redesigned with revamped electronic valve management, now equipped with two oxygen sensors (one per bank), while a more powerful ECU contributes to more precise management of the engine in the area of maximum rotation achievable.
Aprilia is known as one of the best chassis manufacturers in the world and the RSV4 represents the synthesis of the technical prowess Aprilia has acquired in top level world championships. A particularity which is still exclusive to the RSV4 RR and RF (and which has always been a characteristics of the previous generation RSV4 models) is the exceptional possibility of adjustments that the standard equipment chassis is able to offer. In fact, the Aprilia is the only superbike that allows the rider to adjust the engine position in the frame, the headstock angle, the swingarm pivot and the rear end height, naturally in addition to the fully adjustable suspension. Just like a real racing bike.
The highly sought after and winning structure of the Aprilia RSV4 frame has remained substantially unchanged and uses elements in pressed and cast aluminium capable of guaranteeing exceptional performance, thanks in part to the perfectly balanced torsional rigidity and flexibility values. Optimally centralised masses are just one of the RSV4 chassis strengths. To achieve this result nothing was neglected. The swingarm the same construction technology as the frame but it has been lengthened 4 mm to guarantee better traction and to decrease the tendency for wheelies during the violent acceleration that the extraordinary characteristics of the powerplant allow.The fork advancement was increased from 30 mm to 32 mm with a consequent reduction in the trail to further increase handling.Precisely because of the V4’s significant power increase the chassis and weight distribution configuration have been revamped: the engine is mounted in the lowest possible position allowed by its adjustment range within the frame, whereas the fully adjustable suspension has been fine tuned to guarantee maximum control in extreme riding.
The Aprilia RSV4 RF version reaps the benefits of a new Öhlins shock absorber with an elastic coefficient increased from 95 to 105 N/mm and consequently a different hydraulic extension calibration, more suited to sustain the work loads generated by using professional track tyres. This improves traction and riding precision, allowing the rider to take turns even more effectively.
The Aprilia RSV4 RR and RF make perfect what was already top shelf in the previous versions thanks to a significant improvement to its already exceptional dynamic controls package designed and patented by Aprilia. APRC (Aprilia Performance Ride Control) is the well known dynamic control suite derived directly from the winning technology in world Superbike, the most complete and refined of those currently available on the market.
On the RSV4 RR and RF, APRC has been further developed to adjust even better to the engine and chassis characteristics in order to meet the specific needs of the pleasure or professional rider. The APRC system integrates even better with the full Ride-By-Wire multimap electronic management of the powerful V4 engine.
APRC, which comes as standard equipment on the Aprilia RSV4 RR and RF, includes:
- ATC: Aprilia Traction Control, adjustable on the fly (without having to release the throttle) to 8 settings thanks to a practical joystick on the left side of the semi-handlebar, with extremely fine tuned operating logic;
- AWC: Aprilia Wheelie Control,adjustable to three settings, has been recalibrated for maximum performance at level 1 (the least restrictive setting);
- ALC: Aprilia Launch Control,for use on the track only, with 3 settings;
- AQS: Aprilia Quick Shift, a system for extremely fast gear changes without shutting the throttle and using the clutch.
In addition to the second generation APRC system, RSV4 RR and RF come from the factory standard with the highly advanced “Race ABS” antilock braking system, designed and developed by Aprilia in collaboration with Bosch to guarantee not only extreme safety on the road, but also the best possible performance on the track. The ABS 9MP unit constitutes the maximum point of distinction and technology available today: the system, weighing in at just 2 kg, can be disengaged and adjusted to 3 different levels by easily accessing the sophisticated instrumentation control menu:
- Level 1: dedicated to the track (but also approved for street use), it acts on both wheels and guarantees maximum possible performance, even in the most intense braking situations at any speed. This setting takes nothing away from the pleasure and performance of “pushing the envelope”.
- Level 2: dedicated to sport riding on the street, it works on both wheels and is combined with an advanced tip over system (RLM – Rear Lift-up Mitigation) which has progressive action based on the vehicle speed.
- Level 3: dedicated to riding on surfaces with poor grip, it acts on both wheels and is combined with the advanced tip over system.
Each of the 3 setting levels for Race ABS can be combined with any one of the 3 engine maps to allow riders with varying experience and skill levels to find the best possible combination.
The powerful engine ECU now provides easier management of the three maps, each one of which corresponds to a different engine power output and now also to a dedicated engine brake management map. The two classic engine management logics Track and Sport are now joined by the new Race map, the most extreme and suited for professional use of the bike on the track with engine braking control reduced to a minimum in order to support more abrupt braking. All three maps are more manageable and less aggressive than the previous version, therefore allowing perfect correlation between throttle control and the torque sent to the wheels. This reduces rear tyre wear and makes it possible to better manage the power that the Aprilia V4 is able to develop.
DESIGN AND COLOUR
RSV4 RF is the exclusive version which come standard with lightweight forged aluminium wheel rims and more sophisticated Öhlins suspension and stand out with a new dedicated graphic which maintains the evocative name of the previous “Superpole” version, but which has different graphic designs.