Bikes

MV Agusta Brutale 1000 RS Is Coming

The Brutale 1000 RR will soon be joined by the softer 1000 RS model for 2022. (MV Agusta/)

It’s been two decades since MV Agusta—then newly revived under the guidance of Claudio Castiglioni—introduced the first-generation Brutale and created a model that’s long since outlasted the F4 superbike it was derived from.

Looking at that original bike and its 2021 successor, the Brutale 1000 RR, it’s striking how much of the essential design has survived the intervening decades. The distinctive headlight, draped over the nose like one of Salvador Dalí’s clocks, was controversial at its launch, but has since been mimicked by hordes of rivals, and other key elements including the stacked exhaust pipes on the right side and the single-sided swingarm have also been maintained across the generations.

The 1000 RR (pictured) has often been criticized for being too extreme for a naked bike. The RS aims to change that.

The 1000 RR (pictured) has often been criticized for being too extreme for a naked bike. The RS aims to change that. (MV Agusta/)

What has changed, though, is the performance. The first Brutale, with 749cc and 127 hp on tap only at high revs, was considered a little subpar in comparison with the naked musclebikes of its era. The current one, with 205 hp (208 PS, 153kW) from 998cc, is simply one of the most powerful production bikes on the planet, regardless of class, category, or capacity.

If there’s a common criticism of the Brutale 1000 RR, it’s that it’s simply too extreme, too track-focused for a naked bike. Dropped bars and high-spec but stiff suspension mean that while it will sail past fully faired superbikes in the right circumstances, on real-world roads it lacks the comfort and usability for day-to-day use. Throw in a near-$40K price tag and the Brutale’s appeal, while undeniable, has a limited scope.

The RS will carry the same 205 hp powerplant, but looks to offer taller and wider bars (though images have not yet appeared).

The RS will carry the same 205 hp powerplant, but looks to offer taller and wider bars (though images have not yet appeared). (MV Agusta/)

For 2022 that’s going to change with the introduction of the Brutale 1000 RS, which has been confirmed by a newly published European type-approval certification.

In terms of raw performance, the RS will give nothing away to the RR. The engine is the same 205 hp unit, hitting that figure at a stratospheric 13,000 rpm and making 86 pound-feet of torque at 11,000 rpm, and the bike’s weight—458 pounds fully fueled—is also unchanged. As a result, there should be no change in acceleration ability, and the certification lists an identical 189.5-mph top speed.

Related Content: 2020 MV Agusta Brutale 1000 RR First Ride

What does change, though, is that uncompromising riding position. The dimensions of the RS show that the bike is a little more than an inch wider at 32.9 inches, showing it uses wider bars. It’s also around an inch taller than the RR, at 42.1 inches. In fact, the height is identical to that of the Brutale 800 RR, which has significantly higher, straight bars instead of the dropped bar design of the 1000 RR.

Although the type-approval details don’t confirm it, the change in bars may well be mirrored by lower footpegs to suit the new riding position, and we understand the RS will also get a completely different suspension specification, with far softer, more compliant damping to make the bike more suited to the road.

The price remains an unknown at this stage, but with softer and probably down-spec’d suspension it should be cheaper than the RR model—sitting in the sizable price gap between the Brutale 800 RR and the Brutale 1000 RR in the firm’s model range.

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