New for 2015 Motorcycles: Bombshells and Bargain Blasters

We’ve already devoted more space to new bikes in the last several issues than we have in years, and now another round of new-for-2015 models has been revealed at the stylish EICMA show in Milan, Italy. Here’s the scoop on them; as you’re reading this we’re already riding the wheels off several, and have a Ridden and Rated on the new Triumph Tiger 800s on page 30. From the 200 horsepower of the supercharged Kawasaki H2 to the sit-up fun and versatility of the new Yamaha FJ-09 triple, 2015 will have something for everyone.

Aprilia

Aprilia Tuono V4 1100 RR
Aprilia Tuono V4 1100 RR

The Tuono was born in 2002 when Aprilia stripped off the bodywork and mounted an upright handlebar on its V-twin RSV Mille sportbike. Then a completely new Tuono emerged in 2011, based on the World Superbike-winning Aprilia RSV4. The next-gen 2015 Tuono V4 1100 has a larger bore, which increases displacement from 999.6cc to 1,077cc and boosts peak output to 175 horsepower (up from 170) and 88.5 lb-ft of torque (up from 83.3). Two versions will be offered, the Tuono V4 1100 RR and the higher-spec Tuono V4 1100 Factory. Both feature new styling, revised ergonomics, a redesigned chassis and top-shelf suspension and brake components. The Tuono V4 1100 RR and V4 1100 Factory will be available in May 2015. MSRP is TBD.

Aprilia Tuono V4 1100 Factory
Aprilia Tuono V4 1100 Factory

The Tuono V4 R aPRC ABS also returns for 2015, with all of the updates introduced for 2014. This year its compact, 65-degree, 1,000cc V-4 engine produces 170 horsepower (up 3) and 83 lb-ft of torque thanks to a re-engineered internal exhaust system. Throttle-by-wire engine modes include Track, Sport and Road. The 2015 Tuono V4 R ABS aPRC is available now with an MSRP of $14,499.

Since debuting in the World Superbike Championship for the 2009 season, the Aprilia RSV4 has won three out of six championships. The RSV4 has been updated for 2015 with new, more aerodynamic styling, increased output (201 horsepower and 85 lb-ft of torque, claimed) from its 1,000cc, 65-degree V-4, a revised chassis, and the latest version of the aPRC (Aprilia Performance Ride Control) electronics package. Race ABS and multiple engine maps (Track, Sport and Race) are standard. It’s available in two versions: the RSV4 RR and the limited edition RSV4 RF. Both will be available in May 2015. MSRPs are TBD.

Aprilia RSV4 RF
Aprilia RSV4 RF

The naked and affordable Shiver 750 has a new-generation 750cc 90-degree V-twin, which makes 95 horsepower and 60 lb-ft of torque (claimed). Advanced electronic management includes built-in ride-by-wire tri-map technology (Sport, Touring and Rain), and the engine sits in a modular trellis aluminum frame with an aluminum swingarm and lateral shock absorber. The 2015 Shiver 750 is available now for $8,699, in new Aprilia Black or Formula Red.

Aprilia RSV4 RR
Aprilia RSV4 RR

Aprilia Shiver 750
Aprilia Shiver 750

BMW

BMW S 1000 XR
BMW S 1000 XR

Since its debut for 2010, BMW’s S 1000 RR sportbike, powered by a ferocious in-line four-cylinder engine that makes a claimed 190 horsepower (for 2015, peak output is up to 199 horsepower), has ruled the racetrack. An even more race-oriented version, the HP4, debuted for 2013, and the naked S 1000 R broke cover in 2014. At the EICMA show in Milan, Italy, BMW Motorrad announced the fourth member of the S (Sport) line, the S 1000 XR “adventure sport,” which “encompasses dynamic touring qualities, sporty performance and high levels of comfort, as well as outstanding everyday usability.”

The S 1000 XR’s liquid-cooled, 999cc in-line four is derived from the S 1000 R naked sportbike, with maximum output of 160 horsepower at 11,000 rpm and 83 lb-ft of torque at 9,250 rpm. Two riding modes (Rain and Road) and ASC (Automatic Stability Control) are standard, and the Pro riding modes option adds two more (Dynamic and Dynamic Pro), Dynamic Traction Control and ABS Pro.

BMW F 800 R
BMW F 800 R

The chassis is based on the S line’s existing design, with an aluminum-alloy perimeter frame that uses the engine as a stressed member. Long-travel suspension is comprised of a male-slider fork and a single rear shock, and BMW Motorrad Dynamic ESA (Electronic Suspension Adjustment) is optional. As with all BMW motorcycles, ABS is standard. Optional ABS Pro adds a further margin of safety with anti-lock braking that works while leaned over in corners. Wheels are 17 inches in diameter front and rear, fuel capacity is 5.3 gallons, wet weight is 503 pounds (claimed) and seat height is 33.1 inches. The BMW S 1000 XR will be available in Racing Red or Light White. Price and availability are TBD.

The F 800 R roadster joined BMW Motorrad’s other parallel twin-powered bikes in the F model family for 2011. Updated for 2015, its liquid-cooled, four-valve, 798cc engine boasts 90 horsepower (up from 87), 63 lb-ft of torque and shorter first and second gear ratios for snappier acceleration. Chassis improvements include a new male-slider fork and radial front brake calipers (ABS is standard). New options include ASC and ESA.

Ducati

Ducati Multistrada 1200
Ducati Multistrada 1200

At the EICMA show in Milan, Italy, Ducati announced a major update to its Multistrada 1200 for 2015, the third generation of its sport/adventure tourer. Already known for power and technological sophistication, the new Multistrada will offer more of both. Featuring new Desmodromic Variable Timing (DVT), its 1,198cc Testastretta L-twin will make a claimed 160 horsepower (up from 150) and 100 lb-ft of torque (up from 92), with improved fuel economy. At high rpm, DVT maximizes horsepower; at low to mid-range rpm, it provides smooth power delivery and strong torque. Other new technologies include Bosch-Brembo cornering ABS, electronic cruise control, Ducati Wheelie Control (DWC) and an Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) that dynamically measures roll, pitch and yaw. The S version adds upgraded, semi-active Ducati Skyhook Suspension (DSS) Evolution, an LED headlight with Ducati Cornering Lights (which point auxiliary lights into curves based on input from the IMU), the Ducati Multimedia System, a full-color TFT display and upgraded brakes and wheels.

For 2015, the frame has been made stiffer and ground clearance has been raised from 6.3 inches to 7.1 inches. The standard Multistrada 1200 is fitted with a 48mm male-slider fork and a Sachs monoshock, both fully adjustable. The higher-spec Multistrada 1200 S has a 48mm male-slider fork and rear monoshock, both by Sachs, with compression and rebound adjustment controlled automatically via the semi-active DSS Evolution, which offers revised settings and greater precision thanks to additional input from the IMU. DSS damping settings are integrated into the Multistrada’s four riding modes, and rear spring preload is pushbutton adjustable.

The same four Riding Modes—Sport, Touring, Urban and Enduro—return, but they now include settings for DWC and cornering ABS, in addition to settings for engine output, Ducati Traction Control and—on S versions—DSS. With input from the IMU and other sensors, the Multistrada’s Ducati Safety Pack now includes the multi-mode Bosch 9.1ME ABS system that works when the bike is leaned over in a corner.

Ducati 1299 Panigale
Ducati 1299 Panigale

While the Multistrada 1200 has always been a performance platform, its primary mission is touring. For 2015, the rider seat is height adjustable (32.5 or 33.3 inches), the windscreen is taller, wider and height-adjustable with one hand over a 2.4-inch range, and standard equipment includes new electronic cruise control and two 12V sockets. The standard model has an LCD instrument panel, while the S model has a 5-inch, full-color TFT display.

Four accessory “personalization packs” will be offered, Touring, Sport, Urban and Enduro. All Multistrada 1200 models will be available in Ducati Red, and the Multistrada 1200 S will also be available in Iceberg White. A Multistrada 1200 S D|air model wirelessly connects to airbag-equipped Ducati Apparel D|air clothing by Dainese. Pricing and availability are TBD.

Named after Borgo Panigale, the manufacturing district of Bologna, Italy, where Ducati is headquartered, the 1199 Panigale superbike made a huge splash when it debuted for 2011. The latest iteration of Ducati’s mighty machine is dubbed the 1299 Panigale, and its Superquadro engine now displaces 1,285cc and makes a claimed 205 horsepower at 10,500 rpm and 107 lb-ft of torque at 8,750 rpm. Like the new Multistrada, the 1299 has an extensive electronics package, including an IMU to dynamically measure roll, pitch and yaw. The IMU provides input for the three Riding Modes (Race, Sport and Wet), Ducati Traction Control and the new cornering ABS. Other electronic aids include Ducati Wheelie Control, Ducati Quick Shift, Engine Brake Control and Ducati Data Analyzer. The 1299 Panigale will be available in three versions, from the base model to the Panigale S with suspension upgrades and forged wheels, to the radical 1299 Panigale R, which is bathed in high-end Öhlins suspension components, titanium and space-age electronics, and weighs a claimed 353 pounds dry. Prices and availability are TBD.

Kawasaki

Kawasaki Ninja H2
Kawasaki Ninja H2

Although the deadline to order one was December 19, 2014, the new Kawasaki Ninja H2 literally won the Internet when it was revealed in November 2014. This is the street-legal version of the Ninja H2R, a 300-horsepower, supercharged, racetrack-and-experts-only sportbike introduced the month before. Aside from minor differences in the engine, as well as an intake and exhaust system tailored for street use to meet noise and emissions standards, the supercharged engine is essentially the same as the closed-course Ninja H2R. Although the U.S. press release makes no mention of peak output, Kawasaki Motors Europe claims 200 PS (197.2 horsepower).

Developed using “Intense Force Design,” the Kawasaki Ninja H2 means business. As a flagship for the Kawasaki brand, it needed to have presence and styling that reflects its incredible performance. While its edged styling certainly looks the part, the Ninja H2 also possesses a functional beauty, right down to the high-tech mirror-like paint specially developed for this model. Each piece of its bodywork was aerodynamically sculpted to enhance high speed stability; the cowling design also maximizes cooling performance and heat dissipation, aiding the engine’s incredible output; and the ram air duct is ideally positioned to bring fresh air to the supercharger.

Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS
Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS

High output notwithstanding, the design of the 998cc in-line four is on par with power units found in supersport liter-class models. The supercharger uses planetary gears, spins at up to 130,000 rpm and develops up to 20.5 psi boost pressure. A tubular-steel trellis frame was used for the first time by Kawasaki to provide strength, controlled flex and air circulation. The single-sided swingarm is also a first for the company and mounts to the engine as a stressed member. Multi-mode traction control, launch control, engine braking control, ABS and a quick shifter are standard on the $25,000 machine.

For its eighth model year, Kawasaki has also nicely revised and updated the 2015 Concours 14 ABS sport tourer, which offers a high-powered but flexible 1,352cc engine derived from an earlier version of the Ninja ZX-14 sportbike in a machine with far more comfort and versatility. The 2015 model benefits from enhancements including a revised first gear ratio, lighter steering at low speed, stiffer rear suspension for enhanced carrying capacity, a new windshield, revised ABS braking and a new rear luggage base. The rider’s seat is sculpted and narrower in the front for more comfort and an easier reach to the ground. For 2015, the Concours 14 ABS will be available in a choice of Candy Lime Green or Metallic Spark Black for an MSRP of $15,499.

Yamaha

Yamaha FJ-09
Yamaha FJ-09

Yamaha’s FZ-09 sport-standard triple is so popular that it’s unlikely a slight price increase for 2015 (to $8,190) will have any negative effect on its sales. In fact, that popularity has led Yamaha to spinoff an adventure-styled, sport-touring model variant on the same triple platform for 2015 called the FJ-09, which will reach dealerships in December 2014 with prices starting at $10,490.

The FJ-09 is based heavily on the FZ-09, sharing its crossplane-concept, liquid-cooled, in-line-three-cylinder, 847cc, fuel-injected engine, and its aluminum mainframe and swingarm. The bike also features the Yamaha D-Mode (Drive Mode) variable-throttle-control system, which allows the rider to choose the optimum engine character for the riding situation.

Importantly, Yamaha says that both the 2015 FZ-09 and FJ-09 throttle-by-wire and ECUs have been tweaked to improve their throttle response, presumably making them less abrupt, which was a complaint on earlier FZ-09s (and Yamaha says that those who have an issue with their FZ-09’s throttle response should see their dealer, as the new components are retrofittable).

The FJ-09 also offers an upright riding position and many position-adjustable components, including windscreen, handlebars, and a 33.3/33.9 inch seat. Both the 41mm fork and single rear shock have adjustable spring preload and rebound damping, and the 4.8-gallon fuel tank is 1.1 gallons larger than the FZ-09’s for more range. Cast wheels wear 120/70-17 and 180/55-17 tires, and the FJ-09 weighs a claimed 462 pounds gassed and ready to go.

Hand guards, LED headlights, a centerstand, and both ABS and traction control are standard on the FJ-09, and Yamaha will offer a complete range of custom accessories including a top case, side cases, a taller windscreen, heated handgrips and a comfort saddle seat. The 2015 FJ-09 will be available in two color options, Matte Gray and Candy Red.

Yamaha YZF-R1
Yamaha YZF-R1

Yamaha also introduced two all-new YZF-R1 sportbike models for 2015 that have the potential to make as big of an impact in sportbike and roadracing circles as the original R1 did in 1998. The 2015 R1 features a completely new, lightweight and compact, crossplane-concept, in-line-four-cylinder, 998cc engine that delivers high horsepower and a strong pulse of linear torque. Yamaha would not disclose power-output numbers, but suggested that power is up significantly from the previous model.

Twin injectors fuel each cylinder, and the bike’s titanium fracture-split connecting rods are an industry first for a production motorcycle, according to Yamaha. The 2015 R1 is also equipped with a new exhaust system manufactured mainly from titanium.

The first six-axis Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) on a street-going motorcycle gives the R1 rider what Yamaha calls “total 3D controllability.” This is complemented by banking-sensitive Traction Control, as well as Slide Control, Anti-Wheelie Control, a Quickshifter, Launch Control, ABS and a Unified Braking System, so the R1 gives street riders, track day participants and full-on racers a new level of rider-adaptive performance.

The R1’s new chassis has a 10mm shorter wheelbase and benefits from weight-reducing features such as a magnesium subframe and—another first on a production motorcycle—magnesium wheels. The aluminum fuel tank is 3.5 pounds lighter than if it were made from steel, and claimed wet weight is 439 pounds. The all-new 2015 YZF-R1 will be available in three distinctive color options—Team Yamaha Blue/Matte Silver, Rapid Red/Pearl White and Raven—and will retail for $16,490.

Yamaha YZF-R1M
Yamaha YZF-R1M

If the new R1 just isn’t enough, the YZF-R1M kicks things up to production superbike levels with exotica like Öhlins Electronic Racing Suspension, carbon fiber bodywork (upper fairing, side fairings and front fender), and a Communication Control Unit with GPS that enables the rider to capture ride data (including GPS tracking) and then download it via Wi-Fi to the Yamaha Y-trac smartphone and tablet app.

Additional R1M features include a clear-coated aluminum fuel tank, polished aluminum swingarm, gold-colored front radial-mount calipers, specially finished gold inner tubes on the 43mm Öhlins front fork, and a special R1M badge on the airbox cover. Less than 500 of the limited-edition model will be available in the U.S. Offered in a first-of-its-kind Carbon Fiber/Liquid Metal color scheme, the R1M will carry a suggested retail price of $21,990.

Moto Guzzi

Moto Guzzi Eldorado
Moto Guzzi Eldorado

Moto Guzzi’s two new variants on the California 1400 platform will join the Touring and Custom models in U.S. dealerships in the summer of 2015. First, the venerable Eldorado name returns to the Moto Guzzi lineup with the latest 1,380cc flying V-twin. While it benefits from technologies that the California 1400s brought to Moto Guzzi for the first time, like throttle-by-wire, cruise control and traction control, the Eldorado echoes the past with its unique styling. Sixteen-inch spoke wheels give the bike a lower stance, and are wrapped in whitewall tires and full-coverage fenders. Unique styling touches include the fuel tank with its chrome sides, an oversize saddle, bullhorn handlebar and chrome passenger grab handle.

With its low 28.5-inch-high seat, floorboards, bullhorn handlebar and 5.5-gallon fuel tank, the Eldorado looks to us like it’s ready for some stylish cruising complete with lots of traditional Moto Guzzi V-twin engine character.

Moto Guzzi Audace
Moto Guzzi Audace

Moto Guzzi will also offer a new blacked-out muscle cruiser based on the California 1400 called the Audace (“bold” in Italian). It has an undersump lug that gives the side view a gritty look, a metallic radiator grill and short megaphone exhaust. Instead of floorboards and a heel-toe shifter, the Audace has sportier footpegs mounted farther forward and a classic gearshift pedal.

A low solo saddle and flat drag handlebar come on the Audace, with an optional passenger seat. Burnished valve covers, piggyback reservoir rear shock absorbers and alloy wheels personalized with the Moto Guzzi logo complete the Audace’s look, and exhaust system changes are said to give the 90-degree V-twin a nice bark as well as more power.

Moto Guzzi’s best-selling V7 lineup will also get a revamp sometime in 2015. In addition to new paint and graphics, a broad accessory lineup and customization strategy that will give riders plenty of personalization options for the air-cooled 750 V-twins, the transmission in the V7 II Stone, Special and Racer get a sixth gear, new gear ratios and improvements to the clutch action and feel. ABS and traction control will be available if not standard, and ergonomics are improved with lower saddles and footpegs, and by lowering and tilting the engine forward to make more knee room.

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