2016 Aprilia RS-GP

Here is our first good look at the 2016 Aprilia RS-GP MotoGP race bike, as the Aprilia Racing Team Gresini squad just wrapped up a three-day test in Qatar, with Alvaro Bautista and Stefan Bradl.

The entire 2016 machine is a departure from the RS-GP that was raced last year, which also means that an all-new V4 engine powers the 2016 Aprilia RS-GP. There has been much debate about what cylinder angle the new Aprilia is using, as the old bike used the 65° angle found on the RSV4 street bike.

The 2016 Aprilia RS-GP is also said to be considerably lighter than its predecessor, likely right on the line of the FIM’s minimum weight requirement for MotoGP race bikes.

“After the Aragon shakedown with the test riders, Alvaro and Stefan began to get to know the new Aprilia RS-GP here in Qatar. These were three very intense and positive days of work,” said Romano Albesiano.

“We are bringing home a lot of information and some growing pain problems we need to solve, but above all we are leaving with confirmation that the new bike’s dynamic performance is significantly better than the 2015 bike. We have an important development path ahead of us that will be necessarily accelerated, but we are confident that this will be a season of growth toward a decidedly interesting level.”

The progress made by Aprilia Racing and Team Gresini is certainly a welcomed sight by riders Alvaro Bautista and Stefan Bradl, who had to make do with a knife in a MotoGP gunfight. There is still much more work to be done with Aprilia’s MotoGP project, but the Italian effort is certainly looking more competitive for the start of 2016.

“In these three days we explored the new bike, doing a lot of work with short sessions since this was the first real test with the 2016 RS-GP. Obviously we are not at 100% but we have a very good starting point. I think that we are already at a similar level as the end of 2015 with the difference being that we are just at the beginning,” said Alvaro Bautista.

“There is a lot of room for development whereas with the old bike we were at the limit. We still need to work on a lot of things but I’m pleased with the work Aprilia has done. In the next tests I hope to be able to lay the foundation for the new season.”

“This test was really important as it was the first contact with the new bike,” added Stefan Bradl. “First impressions are good. I see a clear difference compared to the old bike and we are moving in the right direction.”

“At the moment I have a good feeling despite the fact that we have a long way to go before we’ll be able to say that we’re satisfied. That was to be expected at the beginning. This is a completely new and decidedly demanding project, but we can truly say that we are off on the right foot.”

2016 Aprilia RS-GP

2016 Aprilia RS-GP

2016 Aprilia RS-GP

Source: Aprilia Racing

  • Gary

    Remind me why Aprilia street bikes never look this good?

  • Michael K

    I was thinking the same thing.

  • Daniel Caruso

    This is just the beginning of a new project but so far looking real good. Nice to see them racing a proper GP bike and not a production based Superbike with a stock crank. Good luck Aprillia..

  • BBQdog

    RS 125 ?? RS250 ?? RS4 125 ??

  • AHA

    Remind me again why Aprilia is puting themselves through this in MotoGP? Why not just stick to WSB? Suzuki, of course. BMW & KTM, not sure. Aprilia…?

  • ColonelClaw

    Along with the Suzuki and the Yam there are now some really quite beautiful bikes in MotoGP. Here’s hoping more of this styling filters down to their road bikes.

  • Superlight

    Race bikes always look better than their street counterparts. It has something to do with lights, turn signals, license plates, mirrors and other required street equipment.

  • Superlight

    Notice, however, just how much this bike looks just like every other motoGP bike in the paddock.

  • Daniel Caruso

    well thats because they have rules they have to follow so all the v4 bikes do look similar. V4, twin beem aluminum frame, dual exhaust, underseat fuel tank.. No need to spend millions on re-inventing the wheel only to finish dead last..

  • Superlight

    I understand how rule making drives entrants to create machines just like their competitors. That was my point of my comment.

  • Emptybee

    It’s official: The phrase “breaks cover” is overused in your headlines. I stopped counting at 50 articles. Awesome-looking bike, though.

  • grahluk

    Except for Ducati. Their street bikes are almost always sexy bits of performance luxury goods. Conversely in the last few years their race bikes have looked like Rube Goldberg failures of ad hoc modifications.

  • grahluk

    the SXV450/550? RSV4? Those are dangerous looking weapons. Looks wise IMO they are the perfect blend of Japanese understated purpose and Italian sense of emotion made tangible.

  • grahluk

    It is interesting that the contemporary MotoGP formula is resulting in bikes that have more than a passing resemblance to each other. It’s fun to see the the commonalities with little bits of legacy manufacturer design cues. The frame, tank, & tail look very Rossi era, 1st gen twin spar Ducati. The swingarm & exhaust look very RCV like. The nose & front fairings though scream late 90’s Aprilia GP250 aeros.

  • Ducati Kid



    Amazing PIAGGIO can’t manage their retail products better.

    Sad but other than MotoGP devotees would know be expected to know of APRILIA?

    I’d be spending funds on properly distributing (dealers, service facilities) well reported ‘production’ motorcycles, no matter their ‘brand’, NOT a costly MotoGP champaign.

  • Daniel Caruso

    Thats why i liked the original 4 -stroke concept of 2004 when you could race a twin, triple, four, or even a v-5.. That was pretty cool..

  • Superlight

    Yes, Ducati (and MV) street bikes look good. Race bikes, especially motoGP, are another thing entirely, but you’ll notice they all look pretty much the same, including Ducati.

  • roma258

    Aprilia’s made some great looking street bikes. RS250, RSV1000R, RSV4 and the Tuonos are all lookers.

  • Bob Krzeszkiewicz

    So they can say “me too.”
    They make a good bike. Sadly, their dealer network isn’t much better than MV’s, at least in the USA, so riders aren’t taking the chance on them for that reason. Some great delears out there for sure. We have AF1 in Austin. Great dealer actually. Doesn’t do us much good in Houston. Houston Superbikes are barely adequate at what they do and forget about parts other than filters and plugs.

  • If that’s today’s big complaint, I guess we’re doing pretty good then.

  • Aprilia’s problem hasn’t been the aesthetics of its machines, more the marketing behind them.

  • C’mon Man

    Aprilia certainly had not taken advantage of their success in racing and translated it into sales, unlike Ducati. At least not what I’ve seen in the US.

  • Daniel Caruso

    problem is the dealer network for years they have denied customers good service and parts availability so they moved on to other brands.. I can count atleast 5 good friends that would never own another Aprilia for that same reason..

  • Very true. And Piaggio isn’t doing much to change that attitude.

  • irksome

    Airflow relies on curves, newer street bikes rely on Optimus Prime.

  • Alclab

    Love the looks! Quite a difference from the new Ducati.

  • paulus

    …. and having spare parts available ;-)

  • Emptybee

    We editor types complain about things nobody else cares about.

  • TKM

    A problem Ducati doesnt have.

  • Superlight

    Yes, and several different engine configurations were tried initially, but they are all now 4-cylinders and all seem to look pretty much the same. There is only one “best practice” design under a rules package and competitors will gravitate to what works best.

  • Superlight

    Oh, really? How so?

  • Daniel Caruso

    So MotoGp consist of three v4’s and two inline 4’s..

  • Alclab

    Not sure if you’re being sarcastic… But in case you’re not. ‘Nuff said.

  • Superlight

    Yep, all 4-cylinders.

  • Superlight

    Remove the “winglets” and look again.

  • ‘Mike Smith

    That sounded insane.

  • Well, that too.

  • Someone has been listening to the podcast. Good man.

  • Daniel Caruso

    EURO 4/E.P.A. standards are to strick 2-stroke bikes would never get certified for street use.

  • Alclab

    yeah, but the winglets steal the whole attention

  • So, what about the cylinder angle? Has it changed or not?

  • Shawn Kitchen

    I hate it when rules are to strick.

  • Shawn Kitchen

    That was the Number One complaint at the (former) Aprilia dealer where I live. One of the salesmen told me stories of a customer bike that was in the shop for over six months for lack of replacement parts. Aprilia wouldn’t even let them cannibalize a showroom bike to get the customer back on the road. The customer ended up selling the bike in frustration.

    I wouldn’t touch them with a ten foot pole for that reason alone.

  • Shawn Kitchen

    Not when you can spend millions on existing wheels and finish dead last…

  • Shawn Kitchen

    I’m a former magazine copy editor (5 years). I can complain about a wide variety of things.

  • sagar ksr