I had the privilege of being able to ride the Aprilia Tuono 660 for a week by Chris Williams at OnYerBike who are based in Westcott just outside Waddesden on the way to Bicester and are dealers for Ducati, Kawasaki, Aprilia and Moto Guzzi.
What a privilege that was.
The Tuono 660 is a very pretty bike, exactly what you would expect from Italian styling. It has a diecast aluminium frame and swingarm and only weighs an incredible 183 kg with a 95 bhp parallel twin engine. When I first started up the bike, the engine along with the noise of the exhaust, had me grinning. I knew I was going to love this bike even before I set off!
When I picked the bike up Chris gave me a run down of the controls and mentioned that the clutch lever appears to be made for the larger hand and is unfortunately not adjustable (the front brake lever is adjustable). As I rode off I could see what Chris meant, I was struggling to reach the lever and had to move my hand in order to pull the clutch in. I already knew what my first purchase would be if I were buying the bike – an adjustable clutch lever!
The tyres on the bike are Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa II which, according to Pirelli’s website are described as their first multi-compound motorcycle tyre transferring racetrack performance into street versatility. The tyres have a bicompound solution for the front tyre — applying the two compounds in three different zones and triple compound on the rear, distributed in five zones. During the time I had the bike, we had no rain so I cannot say what they would be like to ride in wet conditions but on dry warm roads I certainly encountered no problems, the tyres certainly gave me confidence when cornering especially through the twisties.
The Tuono has five rider modes as standard – commute, dynamic and individual are fixed road modes and challenge and time attack are recommended for track use. Aprilia describe dynamic mode as ‘for sporty riding on the road’ – that’ll suit me I thought and it did suit me really well. You can set the bike up to match your riding or the type of riding you are doing on the day. The navigation controls are easy to use and, if you’re like me, I find it quite interesting to flick through the modes and different options that are available, quite clever really.
I love the confidence the bikes gives in the handling, you set away in first and you can feel the power, up to second and then third, the bike is just pulling away with such ease and sounding glorious in the process, the Tuono responds to your commands with such ease and delivers what it is you are trying to achieve with noise and passion.
I rode up to Super Sausage Café on the Sunday and when parked up, the Tuono garners a lot of attention, the Italian styling draws you to the bike and you can’t help but notice little touches to the bike that give it that edge over some other bikes – the innovative double fairing for enhanced aerodynamics that have been the result of rigorous wind tunnel testing that has come from the RS660, it also comes with Kayaba adjustable suspension and Brembo brakes.
The tft screen is really easy to read and navigate your way around and is easy to read in the dark too. The Tuono has a 15 litre fuel tank and according to the trip on the screen, it says I was averaging 55.6 mpg which I think is pretty good, I’d be happy with that.
I found the bike really light to move in and out of the garage and would say that it feels the same weight as my R6 and slightly lighter than my Z900, my other half (who is taller and heavier than me) described moving the bike as like moving a bicycle!
On one of my longer rides, I did notice some vibration and a finger and thumb on my right hand was tingling when I stopped but that only happened the once.
I really enjoyed riding the Tuono taking it to and from work – home the very long way …. 😉 – it is a great bike for commuting as well as longer journeys. It is easy to ride, comfortable, easily fills you with confidence in the handling and agility and extremely fun in the twisties.
The on the road price for the Tuono is £9,700 so probably a bit more money than some other bikes in its category but you are getting stacks of bike for your money and I would definitely recommend a test ride.
What would my first purchases for the bike be:
Number one would definitely have to be an adjustable clutch lever!
Number two would be a tail tidy and number three would have to be a replacement end can for the exhaust. I am not a fan of the one that comes as standard and not, in my opinion, in keeping with the Italian styling of the rest of the bike, and to be honest is not loud enough.
Number four – my right boot appears to have scuffed the swing arm so a guard or protection film is needed.
Other than that I wouldn’t change anything on the bike, I love the Tuono as it is and I very reluctantly took the bike back when the time came 🙁
Thank you to Chris at OnYerBike for the loan of the Tuono, it was a privilege 🙂