Aprilia RS 660, the test. How are you doing, strengths and weaknesses

Let’s start immediately with what you all want to hear: after 200 km of curves on the alpine roads between Bassano del Grappa, Asiago and Feltre, we can only confirm the excellent impressions we had a few weeks ago riding the pre-series model. . Let’s start with the position in the saddle and the handling: the new RS 660 can accommodate even the tallest riders quite comfortably and there is enough space to move with the seat (the writer is 190 cm). The saddle (at 820 mm from the ground) is comfortable and not too yielding (even if a bit slippery in the most important braking situations) and the triangulation with the footrests and handlebars perfectly combines comfort and sportiness. You travel well when you are looking for a sporty driving position, such as when you are looking for a minimum of extra comfort, in transfers and in city traffic for example. The riding position is a cross between that of a sports bike and a touring bike. The load on the wrists is not that high: it allows you to feel the front end well between curves, but after half a day of driving your wrists begin to tire, despite the fairly open half-handlebars. The lower limbs, on the other hand, are better, which although very bent, do not tire particularly. As soon as you start moving, you immediately realize two characteristics that should not be underestimated: the first is the high turning radius, which allows you to turn around in spaces unthinkable for a sports car, the second is lightness. The 183 kg in running order (so with all liquids and 90% full they actually seem much less. At the level of comfort we can make only one note: the vibrations on the footboards and the inner leg area, which grow with climbing revs and long journeys are annoying. On the other hand, the aerodynamic shelter is appreciable: shoulders and arms remain well protected by the air bubble formed by the fairing and fairing. Only the helmet remains outside, but is hit by a flow of constant air, of those that do not create turbulence and do not “toss” the head.

But the beauty of the RS 660 comes when you start the engine and turn the throttle. The twin is tuned to perfection, perhaps at the bottom there is less pepper than other twins, but it has an exemplary fluidity. It is true that the maximum torque figure is not very high (67 Nm), but it must be considered that 80% of this value is already available at 4,000 rpm, this means having a nice back right away. Even exiting a corner in third gear, at 3-3,500 rpm. there is no uncertainty and the motor rises linearly up to 6,000 rpm. Here it “crouches” for a moment and then gives its best above 8,000 and from this speed up to the limiter (set at 11,500 rpm) it is capable of an exemplary thrust. And then… what a sound! We would never have expected a similar melody from this twin cylinder, which is capable of a dark, hoarse voice, quite similar to that of the V4s from Noale. This was possible thanks to its 270 ° crank, which allowed the manufacturer to simulate the sound, and the behavior, of a V engine.

What can we tell you about the chassis? Well, it’s an Aprilia! Precise, fast and stable. Perhaps it doesn’t have the speed of a naked when changing direction, but the precision and stability of a real sports car. The suspensions are the right mix between sportiness and comfort and therefore allow you to push (hard!) Through the curves and travel without your wrists and lower back asking you for a break every 30 km. Braking is also excellent, which at the front does not have a nervous attack, but responds perfectly to every slight variation in pressure on the lever and is capable of important braking. Press the rear brake pedal firmly.

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