The market has spoken, and go-anywhere, do-everything machines are what it demands. Not just for cars, but for motorcycles, too. The adventure (ADV) segment has been growing rapidly in the past years, with manufacturers tangled in a literal arms race to outdo each other.
And now, Aprilia has decided to throw its hat into the adventure ring with the introduction of its latest model, the Tuareg 660.
Aprilia’s adventurer makes its intentions clear even with a simple visual inspection. High ground clearance, Kayaba long-travel fully adjustable suspension (240mm of travel), as well as 21-inch front and 18-inch rear aluminum spoke rims wrapped in Pirelli Scorpion Rally STRs all point to this bike being a serious off-roader.
Although it may photograph small and narrow like an enduro bike, this is unmistakably a middleweight ADV in person—about the size of a KTM 790 Adventure or a BMW F850 GS. The rider sits 860mm above the ground just behind the expansive 18L fuel tank. The handlebars are wide and high, creating a commanding and upright seating position.
As the 660 in its name implies, the Tuareg is powered by the same 659cc liquid-cooled DOHC parallel-twin seen on the RS660 and the Tuono 660, albeit detuned to a maximum power output of 80hp and 70Nm. Torque comes 2,000rpm earlier, though, for better traction and response on unpaved surfaces. On the flipside, stopping is taken care of by twin 300mm discs up front and a single 260mm rotor in the back, both supplied by Brembo.
As for the electronics suite, the Tuareg 660 comes with traction control, switchable ABS, engine map settings (riding modes), adjustable engine braking, and cruise control.
Aprilia distributor Bikerbox launched the Tuareg over the weekend at the lahar trails of Lake Mapanuepe, Zambales, in order to demonstrate the off-road capabilities of this machine.
In the short time that we had with it, it showed great promise. It bears the agility that is expected of the Noale-based brand, and stability off-road is easy to achieve even for a novice. It could be a great option for those stepping into an adventure bike for the very first time due to its modest size, lightweight, and approachable demeanor.
It is a more premium offering at P898,000, but hey, it is an exotic Italian machine. Keep your eyes open for the full review of this bike.