Walking around the halls of the 2011 EICMA show, I saw this concept for an MV Agusta tourer sitting in the Motociclismo booth, and wondered what was the story behind the bike. Luckily the internet has answers for such questions, and it turns out that the MV Agusta Tricruiser is the brainchild of students at Istituto Europeo di Design of Turin (IED).
Using the MV Agusta F3 as a starting point, the graduate students at IED set out to envision the next iteration in MV Agusta’s smaller-displacement platform. With the Italian company under tremendous pressure to become profitable, MV Agusta must increase its volume by a factor greater than 10x if it wants to see blank ink on its balance sheet.
Accordingly, the company from Varese has been making a bevy of variations of its F4-based models, showing three new Brutale street-nakeds at EICMA (Brutale 920, Brutale R 1090, & Brutale RR 1090) at ECIMA, along with two F4 superbikes (F4R & F4RR).
Slotting in a smaller-displacement and cheaper-price point model series that is based off a 675cc three-cylinder motor, MV Agusta also showed its F3 supersport and its corresponding Brutale 675 street-naked at EIMCA this year. While compelling pieces, MV Agusta will surely need more models in its arsenal if it wants to achieve its financial goals, and the next MV Agusta is heavily rumored to be a sport-touring/adventure model.
While an unofficial project with MV Agusta, the students at IED were given an MV Agusta F3 to use as the basis for a sport-touring concept. Studying the MV Agusta brand, its current model line-up, and the company’s needs for the future, the students at IED ultimately landed on this MV Agusta Tricruiser concept, which we have to say is very pleasing to the eye in these photos (love, love, love the three-port exhaust design), and is even more striking in person (shame on me for not taking any photos).
Moving away from the classic Tamburini lines, the MV Agusta Tricruiser concept doesn’t immediately strike you as an MV Agusta machine, which will likely offended hardcore owners. However, given Varese’s decade-long rut when it comes to motorcycle styling (even if it is one of the most iconic designs in two-wheeled transportation) a move away from Maestro Tamburini’s work had to occur at some point. A bit modern in flare, our only other real criticism would be one from a technical point of view.
While MV Agusta is banking its future on its 675cc three-cylinder platform, one has to wonder how well-suited the supersport-derived motor would be in a sport-touring role. Competing in a market saturated with 1,000cc+ machines, MV Agusta might be hoping to forge a smaller-displacement path, which would at least differentiate the company in the popular bike category. However, at the price points we’ve seen here in the US coming out of Varese, MV Agusta’s tourer could very well tout a price tag commensurate with its larger competitors, which will be a tough sell to a very pragmatic market.