With one of Europe’s biggest bike shows taking place in Milan this week, the world’s leading motorcycle manufacturers have been unveiling even more new machinery for 2019 – the majority of which will make their UK debut at Motorcycle Live at The NEC from 17-25 November.
To cut through the chatter, we’re pleased to bring you the top 10 hot picks from Milan.
Triumph Scrambler 1200 XE
In an age of scramblers being a style statement rather than a promise to get you across a muddy field, the new Triumph Scrambler 1200 XE might just be the exception we’ve been waiting for. Available in two versions, the XE is the one we’re most excited by with its genuine off-road intent. It also gets an all-new TFT dash with multimedia connectivity that can even control your GoPro Action camera.
KTM 790 Adventure R
Who better to make an accessible adventure bike than the kings of off-road, KTM? While most adventure bikes are getting bigger, heavier, and even cleverer, the 790 gives riders who really want to head into the wilderness a viable lighter-weight option. Powered by the 799cc LC8c parallel twin and boasting a full suite of rider aids, colour TFT dash and 280 miles tank range, it’ll take a lot of beating.
Yamaha Ténéré 700
Recent Ténéré models have lacked the purity that established the model name as a legend, but the true Ténéré is back – and it looks serious. Aimed at being accessible for everyone from novice riders to experienced world travellers, the MT-07-derived Ténéré 700 brings rideability and affordability to the bloated adventure class. Everything about it screams ‘competition’ and ‘daily rider’ in equal measure.
The RR has taken another shattering step forward in performance for 2019. It’s lost weight, gained complexity, a connected TFT dash, more power and technology. Not least, it adopts the ShiftCam tech that means VVT and 203.8bhp, while also boosting midrange torque delivery. It’s more brutal and friendlier all at the same time – all wrapped in a new frame and fairings, complete now with a symmetrical face, too.
Ducati Panigale V4 R
This is far more than a V4 S with fewer cubes and set of carbon wings. The R uses a 998cc variant of the Stradale engine, with increased power, marginally reduced torque, and all tuned for optimum track delivery. The claimed 217bhp is impressive enough, but stump up for the race kit and it’ll crack 230bhp. With all that shove, you might even feel the effect of those huge wings. The epitome of superbike excess.
Taking its styling cues from the CB1000R, the new 650R is lighter and more powerful than the old F, with a new frame, fuel tank and more that all add up to a 6kg weight loss. That’s boosted by a 5% hike in power and a fatter torque curve for improved drive throughout the rev range – which you can watch climb on the new LCD dash. What was once a worthy bike is now a cool café hopper that’s no less practical.
Husqvarna Svartpilen 701
This dark and brooding modern urban funkster shares much with this year’s Vitpilen, while it offers a very different looking flat-track take on the same platform. All the mumbo comes from that remarkably smooth and flexible 692.7cc single cylinder thumper, while the Svart gets 18in front and 17in rear cast alloy wheels with meaty looking Pirelli MT60 RS rubber, and can even be restricted for A2 licence holders.
Kawasaki Ninja H2 SX SE+
Kawasaki have bestowed a version of the ZX-10R SE’s semi active Showa suspenders on the H2 SX SE for 2019. The damping action is linked to the riding modes and settings you choose via the updated dash. The calipers are also upgraded to top-spec Brembo Stylema radial units, and that dash now offers smartphone connectivity and integrated riding modes to smooth out every ride. The best just got tricker.
Aprilia RSV4 1100 Factory
Wings are in vogue, and the new 1100 RSV4’s got a lovely pair. It’s also had a boost in engine capacity to 1078cc which Aprilia say delivers 214bhp. Better still, they’re claiming a 10% torque boost across the rev range for improved drive, too. That titanium Akrapovic comes as standard, as do Brembo’s Stylema calipers and the latest APRC electronics package. It’s in the hunt for top superbike honours in 2019.
Motorcycle Live 2018 takes place at The NEC, Birmingham from 17-25 November. Advance tickets are on sale now priced at just £19.50 per adult, £12 for Seniors, £1 for 11-16 year olds* and FREE for children aged ten and under**. There is also a £25 advance ticket, which includes entry to the show and an Oxford HD MAX disc lock worth £25.00.
Motorcycle Live 2017 takes place at The NEC, Birmingham from 17-25 November.
Special thanks to Motorcycle News and MCN Live for their contributions on this article.