2015-Aprilia-RS-GP-Alvaro-Bautista

Aprilia’s MotoGP project has suffered a setback. The 2016 version of their RS-GP MotoGP machine will not be ready in time for the first official IRTA test at Sepang, according to a report by Crash.net’s Neil Morrison.

Instead, the 2016 Aprilia RS-GP will make its debut in a private test at Qatar, ahead of the third preseason test of 2016, with its first public outing coming in that third and final test, two weeks before the start of the 2016 season.

The delay is a sign that the project is at least a couple of weeks behind schedule. At Valencia, Aprilia spokespersons said that the original plan was to hold a shakedown test at a private Italian racetrack, with the bike making its public debut in Sepang.

Designing a radically new bike is taking longer than expected, however: the 2016 machine will be a brand new prototype, designed from the ground up, at least 10kg lighter than the current RS-GP, and is rumored to have a different angle between the cylinders.

Development of this race bike is an incredibly complex and time-consuming process, so delays are not entirely unexpected. Accordingly, Aprilia’s test plan has now been altered.

Alvaro Bautista and Stefan Bradl will travel to Sepang for the first test, where they will work on the Michelin tires and spec-electronics using last year’s RS-GP machine, still based on the RSV4 World Superbike engine.

The pair will then skip the Phillip Island test from February 17th to 19th, and have a private test in Qatar, ahead of the final test before the start of the season.

Skipping Phillip Island had always been part of the plan anyway, according to the German language website Speedweek. Originally, Bradl and Bautista were to test the bike at the first Sepang test, then return there a couple of weeks later for a private test.

However, the resurfacing that is to take place at Sepang made that impossible. Instead, Aprilia will visit Qatar twice, achieving the same objective, allowing better comparison of the changes made between the tests.

Source: Crash.net & Speedweek

This article was originally published on MotoMatters, and is republished here on Asphalt & Rubber with permission by the author.

  • Scenic Highways

    I think it is premature to conclude that this news signals “big trouble” for the Aprilia effort. The team is still early in its development mode and the changes in the MotoGP world this year are fairly dynamic. I’m not saying that Aprilia isn’t a long-shot for soon being a top-tier competitor in this class. I just don’t this this delay makes them a much longer shot or signals an impending demise.

  • since sbk rsv4 without pneumatic valves already puts out 230+bhp. how much power do you think rsv4 with a pneumatic valves puts out.

  • SKD007

    pneumatic allows engine to rev higher and also eliminates power wastage that happens in driving cam shaft. So it should be about 250 to 260. But that is still low. And this power we are talking is on crank.. If KTM makes 270HP as per some posts here.. Honda and Ducati should be making even more if not same. Last year Ducati made Honda look a bit underpowered because of the extra 2 litters they had. Now that all have same fuel, let’s see which bike is more powerful. But hope at least this time Honda find a way to put the power down within manageable limits.

    Adding to that, Honda never changed their weight balance when they moved to Bridgestone. Going back to Mich will have advantages as Mich as usual has good rear end grip which was a problem with Bridgestone.

  • Chocodog

    Good info hope you’re right and Honda performs well

  • SKD007

    if they still don’t have a solution for aggressive engine output. Riders
    wont be able to manage the power and again 2016 will be Yamaha year…