I cant underline enough the importance of Aprilia to continue the V2 engine range, and preferably the V60 config. The Rotax engine makes a very distinct sound that can easily be distinguished from other 2 cylinders
(note:ducati L2). In my opinion one of the reasons I fell in love with Aprilia. It has a much rawer raspy caracter than the lazy sound of the Ducati'es. I have the feeling Aprilia is going to use their new in house L2 1200. This is understandable because its their engine.
Aprilia has for me been more of a European industry project. I've never had any romantic Italian afair with Aprilias as some describe, specially the Ducati crowd. For me Aprilia has been darn good bikes that has the looks, end of story. And they are a bargain for what you get. Just get the best bits and pieces and put them together to a refined and balanced product with cutting edge performance and reliability. Thats why I have no problem with the Rotax gem. I dont mind its not Italian. Why not a Rotax 1200? But I have the feeling its not gonna happen....
The V4 project is very exiting and in my opinion the best way to go for a ultimate superbike project, but I still want a V2 that is a razor sharp trackday tool and that shines when riding in sport mode for the roads.This is what they've done before. Cause I'm afraid they are gonna make a more compromised 1200, just as many manufacturers has done in the past fading out old "racing" models. Aprilia NEEDS to take on Ducati in the big 2 cylinder segment. Its emotional, its marketing! The way Ducati has been promoting and releasing the 1098 is just amazing. The old trick by increasing volume is very clever and works well. And concidering the volume increase of the Duc, the power output is no revolution, its pure mathematics. I remember the discussions when the 600 sportbike era started, how some stated the 600 where just as fast or faster than the bigger bore bikes, others said: nothing beats VOLUME. I've seen time after time how the smaller capacity bikes shine on track, but in general I tend to agree with the later. And for petrolheads nothing equals the rush of a big engine, and this apply for journalists too.
Anyone notice that both Ducati and MV has used steroids? Mastebike of 2007 is on steroids!!!! And they havent used the Factory on any of the comparios on net yet, and the 1098s is been used every time!! By the way the Masterbike 2006 laptimes where actualy faster than last year (yes, same track!). This to everybody who believes every year is a revolution in development, including journalists. Well one can argue the technical value of these test. As far as I recall a high ranked Honda representative who attended the Masterbike mayhem as observer a couple of years ago, questioned the validity of the tests, but one undeniable fact remains: MARKETING.
Sorry for this long post and the topics have been discussed before, I just had to get it out of my system , and yes I'm very biased, thats why I bought Aprilia! Yes, I could afford Ducati but I prefer the less snobbish Aprilia way. I just love the way they think motorcycle, period.