2011 Aprilia RSV4 Factory APRC SE: traction control

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Aprilia Performance Ride Control is a self-adjusting traction control system capable of adapting to different types of tires and also includes wheelie control, launch control and a quick shifter; it’s basically Max Biaggi’s SBK system. The 2011 Aprilia RSV4 Factory APRC SE also includes a special kinda-Alitalia paint job, a new, smaller exhaust, closer gear ratios, a slightly revised engine with improved lubrication (Aprilia claims no power boost) and proprietary dual-compound Pirelli tires developed specifically for this model. Full details and images below.

Aprilia’s press release follows:

APRILIA RSV4 FACTORY APRC SPECIAL EDITION

WORLD SUPERBIKE DOMINATION GIVES BIRTH TO A SPECIAL EDITION OF THE BIKE THAT DEFINED NEW CRITERIA FOR SUPER SPORT ROAD BIKES.
THE APRILIA RSV4 FACTORY APRC SPECIAL EDITION SETS A NEW BENCHMARK FOR EVERYONE TO LIVE UP TO.
INTERMOT 2010 HOSTS THE UNVEILING OF THE MOST FOREFRONT BIKE IN THE APRILIA LINE-UP, BORN OF THE TECHNOLOGY CAPACITY OF THE MOST WINNING ITALIAN AND EUROPEAN BRAND IN THE HISTORY OF THE MOTOGP WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP WITH AS MANY AS 45 CHAMPIONSHIPS, NOW DOMINATING THE WSBK AS WELL.

Racing heritage

Born to be the best on the track and on the road, the Aprilia RSV4 has amazed the motorcycling world with its styling, technology and performance ever since its introduction. The first 65° V-4 engine ever in a sports production bike, a chassis worthy of a 250 GP, Ride By Wire, multimap engine management: all these are accomplished achievements for the Aprilia RSV4, that tops unique architecture and specs with Aprilia’s signature excellent rideability brought to the next level.

But records are made to be broken. Thanks to the unrelenting efforts of the Aprilia R&D department and a very close collaboration between Racing Department and production, the Aprilia RSV4 has made a giant leap forward.

The RSV4 Factory APRC Special Edition is a milestone in the history of super sport bikes. All of the racing expertise and indications gathered during the successful 2010 season of World Champion Max Biaggi were brought together in a bike that sets a new standard for future road bike development.

Unique adjustable traction control capable of self-adjusting to suit different types of tyres, wheelie control, launch control, quick shift: these are the RSV4 Factory APRC SE’s new features that raise the bar in track performance even further up.

Aprilia’s vast technology capacity made it possible to create the electronic engine management system of the RSV4 Factory SBK that dominated the 2010 World Superbike Championship with Max Biaggi fully in-house. Thanks to new insights earned in racing and the close collaboration between racing team, Racing Department and R&D, know how is nearly immediately passed on to production. This is how the Aprilia people were able to turn out the fastest, most effective bike on the track, a bike whose only goal is to post the fastest lap.

State of art technology

This new technology is brought together in the APRC (Aprilia Performance Ride Control) package, basically the state of the art in dynamic performance control, a multi-patented system that makes Superbike winning technology available to professional racing riders and hobby riders alike. All this comes in an easy to use, intuitive package.

Aprilia RSV4 Factory APRC SE’s improvements are not limited to the electronic management system. The 65° V4 engine offers improved lubrication and closer spaced gears for better acceleration. The new, lighter exhaust features an advanced butterfly valve management system to suit the Ride By Wire mapping for improved breathing and efficiency throughout the RPM range.

In addition, the Aprilia RSV4 Factory APRC SE is the first super sport bike sporting the homologated new-generation extra performance dual blend 200/55 tyres developed in collaboration with Pirelli based on the expertise gathered on World Superbike racing circuits.

All new features of the Factory Special Edition

The new features introduced in the Aprilia RSV4 Factory APRC SE in detail:

APRC Aprilia Performance Ride Control, the electronic management package including:
ATC: Aprilia Traction Control automatically adjusts to different types of tyres, with 8 settings conveniently selectable while racing from a joystick on the left handlebar without turning down the throttle;
AWC: Aprilia Wheelie Control with three settings;
ALC: Aprilia Launch Control, for use on the track only, with 3 settings;
AQS: Aprilia Quick Shift, for ultra-fast shifting without closing the throttle or using the clutch.

Dual display mode for instrument panel display: ROAD and RACE;

New exhaust is lighter and offers improved performance;

Optimised gear ratios for the utmost track performance;

Improved engine lubrication;

New, exclusive 200/55 dual blend rear tyre.

APRC APRILIA PERFORMANCE RIDE CONTROL

This is the most significant among the new features of the Aprilia RSV4 Factory APRC SE, a technology platform that is one step above any other systems available in the market, not yet available on all racing bikes. The transfer of know-how from racing to production created an extremely sophisticated electronic management system that is intuitive and easy to use for everyone.
The APRC package uses an automotive inertial platform with two turn meters and two accelerometers that enable the ECU to track dynamic conditions and adjust engine control consequently. The rider can adjust any component of the APRC system independently at will.

ATC: the traction control system of the future

The ATC- Aprilia Traction Control undoubtedly is one of the greatest strengths of the APRC package. This is a fully innovative traction control system developed from an Aprilia patent, mainly focussed on helping the rider improve his lap times. Thanks to the inertial platform and the Ride By Wire pioneered by Aprilia, the ATC not only reduces torque when the rear wheel slips but lets the rider control tail sliding when exiting a bend, giving him a better feel for throttle control, depending on lean angle.
Aprilia ATC is quickly, easily activated from the instrument panel menu and offers 8 settings. When the ATC is enabled, the rider can change setting in an instant at any time using a joystick on the left handlebar to suit track, pavement or tyre conditions, without closing the throttle and keeping his hands on the handlebar, as in professional motorcycle racing. This way, the system can adjust to every single bend of any track so as to meet the specific requirements of any rider, including the most expert ones.
The other incredible achievement of Aprilia technology is the system’s “learning capacity”. Current traction control systems are designed and optimised for a single size and type of tyre. This limit frequently cancels the benefits of traction control. Aprilia Traction Control (ATC) has overcome this limit: a procedure activated by the rider enables the system to learn the tyre radius and final ratio adopted on the bike to obtain fine-tuned traction control.

AWC: stability at top acceleration

Exploiting the full power of modern superbikes down to the very last HP is every rider’s dream. Aprilia’s AWC (Aprilia Wheelie Control) has achieved extraordinary results. Thanks to the exclusive Aprilia patented Wheelie Detection System, the AWC is able to “tell” when a wheelie begins and ends and kicks in to smoothen wheel contact with the road. Smooth, soft wheelie management avoid harsh power cuts or pick-up, providing perfect acceleration control. Again, the AWC system is activated from the instrument panel and can be adjusted independently from other control systems choosing from three settings to better meet rider requirements.

ALC: the best holeshot

The perfect start is yet another racer’s dream, because a good start frequently means you’re half way towards a victory. When the lights go out, handling the huge power of modern superbikes is no easy task. Unless the bike handles it itself to offer its best starting performance. The ALC (Aprilia Launch Control) system ensures an instant start as the lights go out, applying full power to the road to assist the rider in this critical moment of the race. All the rider needs to do is give full throttle and release the clutch as he normally would and shift gears. The ALC has three settings that can be selected from the instrument panel menu, then it must be “armed” at standstill, by squeezing both traction control buttons on the left handlebar joystick at the same time.

AQS: record-breaking shifting

When you’re after the utmost lap performance, you can’t afford to waste even one thousandth of a second in an apparently simple operation like shifting. RSV4 Factory APRC SE is the first Aprilia bike that comes with the Aprilia Quick Shift as standard. Basically, the quick shift shortens spark advance for an instant and then gradually restores it, making for super-fast shifting with no need to close the throttle or use the clutch. The system works hand in hand with the new closer spaced gearbox to limit RPM drop during shifting for faster lap times. To optimise AQS performance, Aprilia engineers have fine-tuned power cut timing based on shifting RPM.

THE MOTORCYCLE

A combination of superior mechanical and electronic technologies can only lead to excellent rideability. “Factory” is the key word that evokes the world of racing and special bikes, for special riders who demand top sport riding performance. Select valuable materials, ultra-sophisticated suspension, APRC system, and a dedicated livery make the RSV4 Factory APRC Special Edition the most cutting-edge sport bike with unsurpassed track performance.

The RSV4 Factory APRC Special Edition aims to be the perfect tool for riders who demand top track performance from their bikes. Sophisticated, valuable, refined – this bike is the best in motorcycling technology worldwide. This Special Edition, born at the end of an extraordinary season in which Aprilia dominated the WSBK, tops the refined structure and mechanics of the RSV4 Factory with valuable materials, lightweight design and APRC as standard equipment to enable professional dynamic control through an easy to use, intuitive interface.

This project is designed for those who want top riding performance on the track at a price/equipment ratio unequalled in its class.

RSV4 Factory APRC SE is the RSV4 at the nth power, direct descendent of the World Superbike winner.

RSV4 Factory APRC Special Edition highlights:
APRC fitted as standard
Fuel system with variable length intake ducts
Advanced exhaust butterfly valve management
3-point adjustable chassis
Öhlins fully adjustable front fork
Öhlins fully adjustable shock absorber
Öhlins adjustable steering damper
Wheel rims in forged aluminium
Carbon parts
Special Tricolour livery

THE ENGINE

The incredible APRC system is undoubtedly the most significant new feature of this new RSV4 version. However, the RSV4 Factory APRC SE engine sports a platitude of improvements to upgrade its already legendary technical and mechanical characteristics.
Aprilia RSV4 is the only production super sport bike using a narrow 65° V four-cylinder engine with unique features. Extremely compact, as slim as a twin-cylinder to fit in an ultra-compact chassis, the 65° V4 engine was and still is the epitome of Italian engineering ingenuity.

The Aprilia 65° V4 engine specifications in short:

Engine capacity: 999.6 cc
Architecture: 65° V4
Crankcase: monobloc with integrated crankcase liners
Timing system: 4 valves per cylinder (Titanium and Nymonic) operated directly by a camshaft driven by a mixed chain/gear system, lateral timing chain, central gear train
Fuel system: Electronic injection with 2 injectors per cylinder and integrated independent Ride by Wire system for each bank. Three mappings selectable from handlebar.
Antivibration countershaft
Compression ratio: 13:1
Transmission: 6-speed direct-control cassette type gearbox
Clutch: Multiplate wet clutch with mechanical slipper system
Electronic management: Magneti Marelli control unit managing ignition, injection and Ride by Wire system, and variable length intake ducts
APRC system for dynamic control

The narrow V architecture translates into an engine that is incredibly compact in length, offering advantages in terms of mass centralisation and an extremely high performance chassis (short wheelbase, long swingarm).
The innovative timing system (with the chain camshaft driving only the intake camshaft, which in turn drives the exhaust camshaft via a gear) has made extremely compact heads (just 250 mm at the rear of the engine) especially in the area beneath the frame spars, which are thus much narrower than would otherwise be possible.
A countershaft dampens first and second order vibrations, making the engine even smoother than a 90° V one.
The monobloc crankcase with integrated aluminium cylinder liners ensures maximum rigidity and consistent performance.

The electronic management system is another example of the 65° V4 engine’s technological supremacy. Full Ride-by-Wire technology eliminates any direct connection between the throttle grip and the throttle valves, which are entirely controlled by a latest generation Marelli control unit that also controls the ignition and the 8 injectors (the 4 secondary fan pattern injectors come into play at high loads).
Each bank has a dedicated servo unit actuating its own two throttle bodies only. This means that the aperture of the throttle valves and, as a consequence, the quantity of fuel injected, can be controlled independently. This solution, applied here for the first time ever in a production bike, opens up practically infinite possibilities for power delivery control and works hand in hand with the APRC system.

The transmission has also been designed to the meet most advanced criteria to offer the maximum performance possible. To underscore the racing soul of the 65° V4 engine, it is mated to a cassette gearbox with a wet sump lubrication system (with oil in the crankcase). The wet clutch features a mechanical slipper system for optimised engine braking torque control and stability under hard braking.

The 65° V4 was one of the most advanced engines in the world at the time of its debut. The new RSV4 Factory APRC SE underwent a number of refinements and further improvements based on the world superbike racing experience with the factory bike. The new exhaust and engine mappings make for optimal power delivery. Lubrication has been improved at critical points, the countershaft runs in ball bearings rather than plain bushings and the head cooling circuit has been reviewed for optimal operating temperatures and long-term reliability.
Combustion chambers and cylinder-piston fits have also been revised for optimal engine performance. The three lowest gears are spaced closer for extra speed out of bends. The advanced exhaust butterfly valve management system improved delivery in the low rpm band and reduces emissions while preserving the engine’s thrilling sound.

CHASSIS

The bike retains the unique chassis and swingarm solutions that make it the world’s first “race ready” V4 superbike. In order to boost chassis performance and make it match the rider’s tastes, or features of the track, Aprilia RSV4 Factory ensures a combination of adjustments that are pretty much infinite. The multi-adjustable suspensions, taken for granted on a motorcycle of this level, are combined with three chassis adjustments: headstock position and rake (through interchangeable bushings), rear end height, swingarm pin height and – introducing a new capability exclusive to this bike – the engine position in the frame.

Suspension

The Öhlins Racing upside-down fork has 43-mm diameter stanchions and is titanium nitride coated to minimise friction. The wheel travel is 120 mm. As on a racing bike, the fork allows millimetre-precise adjustment for hydraulic compression and rebound damping and spring preload.
The Öhlins Racing rear shock absorber was developed from experience learned directly on the track. It features a piggy back nitrogen canister (separate and mounted on the body of the unit) and adjustable spring preload, compression and rebound damping and length, allowing the height of the rear end of the bike to be altered to modify the set-up to suit different riding styles and tracks. Wheel travel is 130 mm.

Wheels and tyres

The effort to shed as much weight as possible and offer the best feeling led to implementation of new, ultra-light forged aluminium rims. An almost obsessive pursuit of top performance resulted in an exclusive, innovative dual blend tyre developed in collaboration with Racing Department, R&D and Pirelli. The racing sized 200/55 ZR17 tyre offers a better contact pattern in bends, shaving precious tenths of a second of lap time – a technology unique to this bike.

Componentry

A real Superbike is special not only as far as performance is concerned but also for the care it is built with. With regard to the RSV4 Factory APRC Special Edition, the details say it all: no other “race ready” motorcycle has ever been built with such care and attention. The attention paid to its construction not only satisfies the desire for beauty. A motorbike built like the RSV4 Factory APRC Special Edition is in any case gorgeous, but most of all aims at achieving the goal: to win. This is why every detail was thought out to increase performance and functionality, reducing the weight and considerably increasing the product’s quality and finish.
The unmistakably racing style livery lends the RSV4 Factory APRC SE a yet more exclusive look and recalls Aprilia’s victories in the World SBK Championship.

  • SPEKTRE76

    Digg the new exhaust but the paint could have been better.

  • MikeD

    Like the Angular Stubby Old Can better. This one reaches back too far.
    It should end where the black paint begins.

    P.S: When are they unveiling their Tuareg 1200? Milan?