When we look at Aprilia’s lineup, it is surprisingly sparse. The brand has only a pair of models with its V4 engine, and another pair with its 900cc v-twin. Four bikes – that’s it.
The revised middleweights – the Shiver 900 and Dorsoduro 900 – debuted in 2017, bringing some refinements to the lackluster 750cc machines that they replaced. The 900cc bikes are not the stars in Aprilia’s lineup though, and they struggle to sell at Aprilia dealerships, but they have a tremendous amount of potential.
We say this because it always felt like Aprilia could have done more with the engine platforms available to the Italian brand. A long-travel suspension adventure-sport makes a ton of sense for the V4 platform, and today we see what could be done with the v-twin platform.
When we first heard that Ducati was bringing back the Supersport line, we were excited. The original SuperSport wasn’t exactly the best selling model for the Italian brand, but Ducati created some loyal enthusiasts with the half-faired sport-touring machine.
The new Ducati Supersport does a good job of tapping into the ethos of the old model, but visually it draws too close to the Ducati 1299 Panigale Superbike, rather than the lines of yore.
Here, Oberdan Bezzi plays another one of his “what if” games, drawing an air-cooled Supersport model (based off the current Scrambler platform), complete with the more classic half-fairing design.
BMW basically created the adventure touring category, popularizing the segment with its Gelände Straße motorcycles. Ever since, the German brand has created more and more “GS” bikes to help diversify its lineup for the tastes of riders, and also to defend its position from other brands.
Here, designer Oberdan Bezzi imagines a different kind of GS – a grand sport. Living somewhere between a scrambler and a maxi-motard, Bezzi’s creation sees the use of an air-cooled 1250cc boxer engine, wedged into a light adventure-sport format.
It is an intriguing idea (and design), and it pokes an obvious hole in BMW’s current crop of motorcycles. We didn’t think the Bavarian brand could use another boxer-powered motorcycle in its lineup, but Bezzi’s Global Sport makes a good case for such a machine.
Yamaha really hit on something when it made the MT-07 and MT-09 motorcycles – two machines that still offer plenty of features and fun, while enjoying the benefit of not emptying the bank account.
Similarly, we have already seen that the Yamaha MT-07 makes a convincing track bike, especially when you change out the lower-spec components and add a full set of fairings.
Today, Oberdan Bezzi imagines a similar treatment for the Yamaha MT-09, with a slant toward endurance racing duties, which we find very appealing.
The BMW G310R is an unassuming small-displacement machine, from little German company called BMW Motorrad.
Joking aside, the minds in Berlin might be the most successful in the motorcycle industry right now, with BMW continuing to release intriguing new bikes, and also continuing to see steady growth in its sales year after year.
Some of that success is built around BMW repurposing motorcycle platforms for different segments. The company’s boxer engine powers the entire R line, the company’s inline-four engine powers the entire S line, and so on and so forth.
For the G lineup of bikes, BMW is drawing upon its 313cc single-cylinder, for both its beginner model street bike, and an entry-level adventure-tourer. Taking a look at the rest of BMW Motorrad’s lineup though, Oberdan Bezzi has imagined some other niches that BMW could take its G line.
As a young sport bike enthusiast, I never really took the BMW HP2 Sport seriously during its brief tenure as part of BMW Motorrad’s two-wheeled lineup (the BMW HP2 Sport was discontinued after the 2012 model year).
Under-powered, overweight, with clearance issues from the air-cooled boxer engine – I just didn’t “get it” when it came to the HP2.
As a more veteran rider, who too now is a little underpowered, overweight, with some clearance issues, I have a better appreciation for this quirky street bike, and a sort of longing for the HP2 to return to BMW’s arsenal. So too does Oberdan Bezzi.
Here, the Italian designer imagines a machine that benefits from BMW’s liquid-cooled version of its boxer-twin engine, the same lump that powers the current line of R-bikes, like the venerable BMW R1200GS adventure-tourer.
We’ve got air-cooled bikes on the brain today, so it seemed appropriate to share one of Oberdan Bezzi’s latest work. The Honda CB1100R concept imagines an air-cooled inline-four engin, wrapped in the bodywork of a sport bike that harkens back to the Honda RC30.
Two classic bikes from Honda’s lineup that make for odd bedfellows, Bezzi’s concept strikes a chord though – especially with more veteran riders who remember when 100hp was more than any street rider could hope for.
Despite the advent of Euro4 emission regulations and crack-downs by the EPA, air-cooled motorcycles are finding their second wind. Free from having to achieve outright performance figures, less powerful air-cooled motorcycles are filling a niche where more simple and affordable bikes are the most alluring.
Here’s a little concept art from Italian designer Oberdan Bezzi, to get your weekend started. The idea takes the venerable Yamaha FZ-09, and imagines an R-spec model with a little bit more pep in its step.
Noticeable changes include a revised tail section, fuel tank design, and wheels – all of which give the FZ-09 a much sportier look. Presumably the suspension pieces have been upgraded as well, and the murdered Akrapovic exhaust means a modest bump in power too.
Oberdan Bezzi has been on a roll lately, making some intriguing concept sketches for two-wheeled fans. And his latest render, the BMW S1000 “Lightburner” concept doesn’t disappoint, either.
Based off the BMW S1000R streetfighter, Bezzi sees another naked model in the BMW stable – one that would roll on 16″ rear wheel, and have a 230 sized tire mounted to it.
We are not sure what purpose a 16″ rear wheel would serve on a street bike, or if you could even find good street rubber in a 230 size, but the visual affect of the Lightburner is what draws us to this design.
After a bit of delay, the Ducati Scrambler is finally hitting US dealerships in meaningful numbers, so it is timely that we see a concept piece by Oberdan Bezzi on the affordable Italian twin.
With a name like “Scrambler” a certain off-roading heritage is implied by the new Ducati model, despite its low-to-the-ground stance and clearance-challenged exhaust pipes.
Ducati’s whole marketing campaign envisions some sort of beach-ready romp machine, which taps into the California Coast lifestyle. We doubt too many owners will be scrambling on their Ducati Scramblers, but then again, we could pass the same generalization about the venerable BMW R1200GS. Anyways, we digress.
The 2006 Yamaha YZF-R1 LE livery, which was a yellow, black, and white homage to Kenny Roberts Sr., is perhaps the greatest livery ever to adorn an R1, straight from the Yamaha factory.
Whether you are a loyal subject of King Kenny, or you just enjoy the fetching, yet simple, racing design, the Roberts livery is a treasure to see in any form — but especially so at speed.
Giving us a glimpse as to what the 2015 Yamaha YZF-R1 would look like with such a limited edition paint scheme, Oberdan Bezzi has once again whet our appetite ahead of a weekend full of riding.
And for you Giacomo Agostini fans, there is something special waiting for you after the jump as well. Enjoy!