Aprilia Tuareg 660, Eighties philosophy and ultra-modern technology

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The Tuareg completes the triptych of medium-displacement motorcycles of the 660 platform, which at the next Eicma could also surprise with a fourth bike – rumors about a new Pegasus – perhaps still in the form of a concept. After the sporty RS and the Tuono street car, which have rekindled attention on a recently abandoned segment, the enduro also arrives and brings back a mythical name of the Eighties. They all have in common the parallel twin born from a “slice” of the V4 winner of three Superbike Championships. An engine that is showing great versatility, given that in this version it delivers 80 HP, against the 95 and 100 available on the asphalt-loving sisters. The torque, on the other hand, reaches 70 Nm at 6,500 rpm and is very well distributed throughout the engine’s operating range. The response to the right throttle (ride-by-wire) is mellow up to 4,000 rpm, brilliant going up to 6,000 rpm and then unleashed up to 9,250 rpm of maximum power.

In other words, this Aprilia has a double soul that allows it to excel in different situations. The 21-inch front wheel and 18-inch rear wheel make it perfect for off-roading, even demanding ones, which can be tackled without problems in the standard configuration with Pirelli Scorpion STR tires, perhaps after having deflated them at the right point. Similarly, the Tuareg is a splinter between the curves, where you drive practically with your mind, forgetting the presence of the large enduro rim and taking advantage of the speed of the gearbox with quickshifter (a 200 euro option), and very agile in traffic. . An excellent dynamic performance, resulting from the great work of the Noale technicians: the frame is a mixed structure with steel tubes and molded plates, while the seat post is welded to the frame to create a very resistant whole; if you want to load the bike like a mule and leave as a couple for the desert, know that you can do it.

Alberto Cervetti

The suspension travel provided by Kayaba is 240 mm: the swingarm is made of aluminum with progressive linkages and the inverted fork has 43 mm stanchions. The latter has an exemplary behavior, also thanks to the progressive springs: it is very soft in the first part of the stroke and becomes harder as it is compressed. The great modularity, on the other hand, is the main feature of the Brembo braking system, which uses a pair of 300 mm discs at the front and a single 260 mm disc at the rear. On the road you can also appreciate the aerodynamic protection deriving from the fairing and the shape of the tank, which with its 18 liters promises up to 450 km of autonomy. Speaking of shapes, that of the saddle is very narrow on the hips and long, allowing excellent maneuverability and configuring an excellent riding position both seated and standing, all this with a height of only 860 mm.

The technical package is completed by the APRC electronic platform which includes traction control, cruise control, engine maps and engine brake adjustment, as well as separately disengageable ABS on both wheels. Everything is summarized in four customizable riding modes, one of which is dedicated to off-road riding. They are managed very intuitively through the commands on the blocks and the digital instrumentation with a 5-inch color TFT panel. Speaking of coloring, the Tuareg you see in the photo is painted in the evocative Indigo Tagelmust, which raises the price list from 11,990 euros for the black-yellow and black-red versions, up to 12,960 euros. A price that is more than justified by the qualities of this Aprilia, which, moreover, does not even have a real antagonist. The competitors on the market, in fact, are either much more off-road oriented, or refined for road use. Neither can offer the versatility of the Tuareg, including touring readiness, nor its package of electronic driving aids.

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