20th Sep 2018 9:00 am
Aprilia’s entry-level sportsbikes may even feature bigger engines.
At Piaggio’s latest event, where they launched the updated 2018 SR150 range and the Connectivity app, the company representatives revealed that the launch of the Aprilia RS 150 and Aprilia Tuono 150 has been pushed to 2020.
First showcased at Auto Expo 2018, both bikes did manage to garner a lot of interest. The RS 150 and Tuono 150 are, in terms of styling, scaled-down versions of Aprilia’s superbike and its naked twin. Both bikes are mechanically identical and powered by a liquid-cooled, fuel-injected 150cc motor putting out 18hp at 10,000rpm and 14Nm of torque at 7,500rpm. The bikes proudly displayed a large perimeter frame and swingarm with suspension duties being handled by a 40mm USD fork and a monoshock. A 300mm disc up front and a 218mm disc at the rear handle braking duties with ABS as standard. At the time of the bikes’ Auto Expo reveal, the company also told us that it would offer a quickshifter as an optional accessory.
Judging by the impressive equipment on offer, we believe that the RS and Tuono will both sit at the higher end of the 150cc segment, in terms of pricing. The bikes could very well be priced higher than the current most expensive 150cc motorcycle on sale in India – the Yamaha R15 V3.0 (Rs 1.27 lakh, ex-showroom Delhi).
However, here’s the interesting thing: Aprilia says that it is still studying what the market potential in India is for bikes like these, although it hints that there is interest in the 150cc-300cc space. This means that the bikes that will eventually be launched here may run larger-capacity engines than what were displayed at the 2018 Auto Expo.
Due to features like the perimeter frame and other premium chassis components, the RS and Tuono could present Aprilia with a serious pricing challenge that will prove to be difficult to overcome in the 150cc space. A larger engine with a similar rolling chassis would better-justify the pricing and help the RS and Tuono take on bigger and more expensive rivals currently sold in the Indian market, like the KTM 200 Duke (Rs 1.50 lakh, ex-showroom, Delhi) and RC 200 (Rs 1.78 lakh, ex-showroom, Delhi).
Doesn’t that sound like an exciting prospect? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.