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Factory Race Bikes for the Masses: Aprilia Announces Factory Works Project

Did you know that you could buy a “Factory Works” bike direct from Aprilia? That’s right, an RSV4 Superbike kitted out to mimic a World Superstock, superbike … or even MotoGP machine. The top dog RSV4 R FW-GP features pneumatic valves and more than 250 horsepower! If your object is racing, or just a super exotic track day weapon, Aprilia has you covered (provided you have loads of disposable cash).

We couldn’t find a price on Aprilia’s web site for the GP version, but the World Superbike version is available for approximately $37,000 U.S.  Here is the press release we received from Aprilia this morning with all of the information:

THE FACTORY WORKS PROJECT MAKES A SPECIAL, HIGH PERFORMANCE RANGE OF BIKES AVAILABLE, CREATED ON THE EXTRAORDINARY RSV4 BASE, SOLD AND SUPPORTED DIRECTLY BY APRILIA RACING, THE FACTORY BIKE THAT HAS WON 54 WORLD TITLES. THE NEW FW-GP IS FULLY LOADED WITH TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPED IN MOTOGP

The history of the Aprilia RSV4 is one of the most sporting and victorious ever for a single model in the factory derivative category. From 2009 to the present, this extraordinary Italian V4 has collected seven world titles in the World Superbike championship, sealed further – in the 2015 season – by the FIM CUP Superstock 1000 Rider and Manufacturer titles. This is an extraordinary racing career that stems from the technical leadership of the factory model, reconfirmed constantly by its multiple wins in comparative tests organized by the most authoritative international motorcycle periodicals.

Aprilia Racing – the Piaggio Group’s most advanced development, innovation and experimentation platform – launched the “Factory Works” programme last year to make the same technology developed for the world champion bike available to anyone who wants to compete in top level factory derivative championships or for those who simply want to have an RSV4 with optimised performance for track use. The programme includes the realization of RSV4 “Factory Works” bikes developed in compliance with the Superstock and Superbike championship regulations in the different countries, with various levels of chassis, electronics and engine modifications. In 2017, this extraordinary project will reach a new peak, introducing an even more powerful version of the RSV4, called the FW-GP, fitted with the V4 with bore taken to 81 mm and pneumatic valve timing, a configuration similar to the one that Aprilia raced officially in the 2015 MotoGP world championship. Therefore, Aprilia Racing is the first to make all the technology developed in MotoGP available, accompanied by a complete range of exclusive services, before, during and after sale, that aim not only to make this experience truly unique and unrepeatable, but also to allow the customer to take maximum advantage of the RSV4 FW-GP’s full potential.

Romano Albesiano, Aprilia Racing Technical Manager comments on the new and extraordinary initiative: “Aprilia Racing has always competed in the most selective world speed championships, like MotoGP, in order to acquire experience and to develop technologies that we can also apply to the factory product. The RSV4 is the best example of the close collaboration between the racing world and production. With the Factory Works programme, Aprilia Racing now offers something more, something truly unique – the chance to own a true racing bike. Different levels of sophistication are available: it starts with an RSV4 optimised for the track, moving on to the SSTK version (exactly like the bike that dominated the 2015 Superstock 1000 FIM Cup) all the way to a true Superbike. For 2017 we decided to push farther, making an extreme RSV4 configuration available, fitted with an engine that has pneumatic valve timing. With the FW-GP, Aprilia Racing provides its customers, not only with the technology developed in MotoGP, but also with special treatment in terms of information, support and fine-tuning of the bike before, during and after the purchase, just like the riders have who race with Aprilia Racing, in order to allow them to take maximum advantage of this exceptional bike’s full potential.”

All of the versions begin with the already exceptional technical base of the MY 17 Aprilia RSV4 RR Race Pack.

RSV4 R FW-SSTK1

Aprilia RSV4 with Race Pack (Öhlins suspension systems and forged wheel rims).

Standard electrical system with ultra lightweight lithium battery.

Standard electronics ECU reprogrammed in Race version, engine control and vehicle dynamics map made in Aprilia Racing.

Reprogrammed instrumentation, predisposed for lap times if combined with the V4-MP system. This is the multimedia platform with which Aprilia introduces a telemetry system that provides, among other things, “corner by corner” adjustment of the RSV4’s electronic settings.

Optimised and lightened braking system with ABS eliminated

Lightened factory engine, with no thermostat and secondary air circuit, with simplified cooling circuit lines. Akrapovic exhaust kit, fairings kit and complete engine optimization.

RSV4 R FW-SSTK2

Aprilia RSV4 with Race Pack (Öhlins suspension systems and forged wheel rims).

Racing electrical system, lightened and simplified with dedicated vehicle and engine wiring harness and lithium battery. APX2 ECU made in Aprilia Racing, fully programmable in ignition and engine control parameters using the included palmtop terminal. The ECU includes the data acquisition system, with the possibility of using both original sensor or optional sensors available and permitted by Superstock 1000 FIM Cup regulations. Special Aprilia Racing instrumentation. Special engine with Aprilia Racing mods. Akrapovic exhaust kit and fairings kit. Maximum power reaches 204 HP.

RSV4 R-FW SBK

Aprilia RSV4 with Race Pack (Öhlins suspension systems and forged wheel rims).

Racing electrical system, lightened and simplified with dedicated vehicle and engine wiring harness and lithium battery.

APX2 ECU made in Aprilia Racing, fitted with GPS module, fully programmable in ignition and engine control parameters using the included palmtop terminal. The ECU includes the data acquisition system with a telemetry sensors kit available as optional equipment.

Special Aprilia Racing instrumentation with racing button panel.

Electronic gearbox with assisted downshift feature (blipper).

Special Aprilia Racing instrumentation.

Special engine with SBK mods ‘made by Aprilia Racing’. Maximum power reaches 215 HP.

RSV4 R FW-GP

The starting point is the top of the range RSV4 R FW SBK, but the Aprilia V4 engine, derived from the unit in the RS-GP 15, has 81 mm bore and pneumatic valve timing to guarantee maximum power of more than 250 HP.

These customers will receive truly special treatment: they are invited to the Aprilia Racing headquarters in Noale to stipulate the contract, partly so that they can select the ideal configuration for their needs and budget along with our engineers. During preparation of the bike, they will receive “live” images of the outfitting progress and they have a telephone line and address available for any other needs, both of which remain active subsequently in order to receive information or request support. The bike is hand delivered by Aprilia Racing engineers with pick up, if desired, at Noale. The customers also have the right to receive Aprilia Racing branded full track leathers and a paddock pass for an entire MotoGP Grand Prix weekend, in addition to an invitation to participate in an Aprilia track day, where Aprilia Racing engineers can adjust the bike’s settings based on their riding needs and provide the best possible technical tips to take full advantage of the RSV4 FW-GP’s mechanical and electronic potential. In any case, an Aprilia Racing engineer will always be at the track, any time the customer wants to use the FW-GP.

The Factory Works programme provides, included in the price of each model, technical training aimed and providing all the information required to best adapt the vehicle to the rider and circuit characteristics, as well as a test session on the track with the Aprilia Racing test team in order to ensure that the instructions are put into practice.

In the special web area www.serviceaprilia.com/public/racing, riders, collectors and teams can access the exclusive world of the Aprilia “Factory Works” racing bikes and receive further information and more technical details on the RSV4 machines prepared by Aprilia Racing.


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16 Comments

  1. falcodoug says:

    I have owned 3 Aprilia’s (the Rotax motors), put 27K plus miles on the first two and am still riding the third bike at 28K miles. Very little issues and the most troublesome problem being the stater on the last two. Easy do it yourself repair.

  2. Daddiey says:

    I’ve also heard the horror stories about the RSV/RXV – what is the opposite of “bomb-proof”? Such a good concept. Such a crappy motor.

  3. mickey says:

    Everyone I have ever talked to that owned an Aprilia ( pretty rare sighting so I like to talk to the owners), I have asked them about dealer network, and getting parts and service, and to a man they tell me there’s a very good dealer in Texas

    Is that the only one? Lol

    They also seem to love their bikes

    • Dig Dirt says:

      The dealer I purchased from was great, but they are a road bike shop and the RXV was an Aprilia engine and they had to send mechanics to Italy for trainiing. Their trained mechanic left and they did not sell enough RXVs to pay to train another guy so they stopped handling the RXV and the SXV. The dealer in Texas is where I buy oil and filters and parts when I need them. They are great. There also are two great private shops that make these bikes bullet proof. One in Cali and one in Maryland. The guy from Maryland drove his RXV 450 across the USA from Maryland to Long Beach, CA without a problem. My only problem with my bike is the starter. Needs to be cleaned once a year.

  4. Dig Dirt says:

    My RXV 550 has 5000 trouble free very fun miles on it. The build quality of this bike is as good as my CR 250 Honda, but a lot more fun.

    • Provologna says:

      Long term reliability is only one aspect, and that’s the only subject of this comparison: I sold my ’84 Honda Sabre VF700S V4 w/97k miles. It ran like new. The only failed non-regular service item I remember is the voltage regulator, which I replaced in about an hour (maybe longer including replacement of a few wires w/burnt insulation). It cleaned up great after detail, appearing more like a bike w/15k to 20k miles. It burned no oil and got about 40mpg ridden pretty hard. The motor was glass smooth.

      I’m sure it would have benefited from a suspension upgrade.

      I preferred the Sabre over my similar vintage BMW K750.

  5. Jim says:

    Looks great on the surface. Friend of mine had a new RSV4 regular last year. All kinds of problems. Regional manager of Aprilia told him that he should not expect a bike that was dependable with Aprilia. Bike is gone. Kawasaki zx10r replaced it. Rave review on the zx10r. With this in mind, I would not even consider any Aprilia.

    • Provologna says:

      Not too many years ago Aprlia sold their mid size V-twin ultra high performance enduro bikes. IIRC they also sold a Super Moto version.

      Not only did virtually every single motor implode, but Aprlia had no fix, so they replaced the imploded motors w/motors having the exact same mechanical problem.

      Stay classy, Aprilia!

      Suppose person X purchased two bikes in 2017, one the Honda Superbike, the other this here Aprilia w/about 50 more hp. Fast forward to the year 2027, and both bikes need similar replacement parts. Do you suspect one brand might have more difficulty delivering said parts, and if yes, which brand might that be?

      Tough question? Me thinks not.

      • Pacer says:

        I ride an SXV550. They need to be gone through, but once that is compelete they are a fun street legal race bike. It maybe 10 years old, but it is a very entertaining ride. More like 68-69 horse.

        • Dave says:

          I recall their Rotax powered V-twin bikes gaining a reputation as the “reliable Italian bike”. I suppose people don’t buy bikes like this for Toyota like reliability, though.

    • Brian says:

      Jim speaks the truth.

    • azi says:

      I don’t think these concerns apply to the bikes featured. They are race bikes, with on-site tech support included as part of the package.

    • Steve says:

      I own two RSV4s and have a 2007 Tuono that I’ve owned since new. I have had very few issues – those I have had were small (improperly torqued bolts on new RF sprocket due to wheel manufacturer handing Aprilia 125cc torque spec, not much else). My Tuono just completed its 9th season with me and still no mechanical or electrical issues even after tossing it down the road once on black ice and taking it on multiple track days, not to mention a thousand wheelies etc. It’s in need of a steering damper rebuild and some new head bearings but any bike that’s regularly abused for nine seasons is going to have those kind of issues.

      I know that some RSV4s had some issues in the early days but I also know that there’s always two sides to every story…

  6. JPJ says:

    I think this is an excellent idea for Aprilia. All manufactures of sport bikes should build examples like the Aprilia. This would help with the upfront cost of ownership, for inspiring, racers, get more on the grid for club, CCS, WERA and MotoAmerica racing . Help manufactures maybe offset some of the cost with technology. Make it easier for the rules of racing, to level the playing field.