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Yamaha YZF-R1 (2012-current)

£12,399

998cc, 157.75bhp, 185mph, Insurance group 17

Not much has changed with the 2012 R1, but the big news is it now has a six-stage traction control system, incorporating anti-wheelie in its two most intrusive levels. It also has a restyled nose, a slotted YZR-M1-style top yoke and a longer, softer rear shock. The changes aren’t enough to compete with the new-generation of hardcore superbikes, like the ...

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 4
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Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC (2011-current)

£12,632

999cc, 167bhp, 165mph, Insurance group 17

Aprilia’s new Tuono V4 R APRC has genuine superbike performance, advanced electronic rider aids, a MotoGP soundtrack and a real-world, roomy riding position. Could this be the ultimate real-world superbike? Producing a claimed 167bhp, it’s more powerful than its closest super naked rivals, like the Ducati Streetfighter, KTM 990 Super Duke and Triumph Speed Triple. It’s a serious weapon on ...

  • MCN rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 4.5
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Aprilia RSV4 Factory APRC Special Edition (2010-2012)

£16,474

998cc, 180bhp, 180mph, Insurance group 17

It might look like a common or garden 180bhp V4 Aprilia RSV4 Factory, but this special edition version (only 350 are being made, 50 to come to the UK) has moved road-going superbikes on as much as the BMW S1000RR did. It’s loaded with cutting-edge electronic riding aids, which make you faster and safer. Its new traction and wheelie control ...

  • MCN rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 4.5
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Bimota DB8 (2010-current)

£22,500

1198cc, 170bhp, 180mph, Insurance group 17

Bimota’s DB8 superbike may look the spitting image of the 160bhp Ducati 1098-engined 2008 DB7, but it’s different in three distinct ways. It’s powered by the bigger 170bhp Ducati 1198 superbike motor, it has a pillion perch and it’s cheaper, to the tune of £1700. The DB8 test bike we rode from their factory is easily the best Bimota we’ve ...

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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MV Agusta Brutale 1099RR Cannonball (2010-2012)

£22,361

1078cc, 165bhp, mph, Insurance group 17

Based on MV’s range-topping Brutale 1090RR, the Cannonball is fitted with an array of mouth-watering MV Agusta Corse goodies. Starting with the standard £13,699 machine, which is smoother and far easier to live with than the angry Brutales of old, you can choose what parts of the Cannonball kit you want by going on to MV’s online ‘configurator’. Our test ...

  • MCN rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Ducati Streetfighter (2009-2012)

£12,095

1099cc, 155bhp, 155mph, Insurance group 17

It might not have the traction control, Ohlins suspension and Marchesini wheels of the more expensive ‘S’, but this base-model Streetfighter, complete with its retuned 1098 superbike engine, is still one hell of a machine and a better value package. Super naked machines like these make more sense on the roads than small, uncomfortable race replicas. The Ducati combines high ...

  • MCN rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 4.5
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Kawasaki GTR1400 (2010-current)

£13,299

1352cc, 139bhp, 151mph, Insurance group 17

Kawasaki has given the GTR a significant upgrade, added to the comfort of the original model with a larger screen and include heated grips as standard. But more interestingly they’ve improved the safety of their flagship tourer with new ABS and traction control. The traction control is really impressive and works off the ABS wheel sensors and is the most ...

  • MCN rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 4.5
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Honda VFR1200F (2010-2011)

£12,325

1237cc, 160bhp, mph, Insurance group

The new VFR is a good bike – but it’s not a great one. And after all the hype and expectation (Honda themselves are pumping it up as “the Ultimate Road Sports Motorcycle” and it’s simply not) that is not good enough.Logically, to justify its almost £12K tag, the new VFR should offer abilities and specification head and shoulders above ...

  • MCN rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 4
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MV Agusta Brutale 1090RR (2009-current)

£14,599

1078cc, 142bhp, 165mph, Insurance group 17

MV’s new range-topping Brutale 1090RR, the first of the new-generation of machines built under Harley Davidson ownership, might not look very different to the old one, but it’s a revelation. It’s 85% new, boasts a dual power map, an eight-stage traction control system and is 4kg lighter than the out-going 1078RR. But most importantly it’s night-and-day friendlier and easier to ...

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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MV Agusta Brutale 990R (2009-2013)

£11,400

998cc, 139bhp, 165mph, Insurance group 17

Replacing the old Brutale 989R, the new 139bhp 990R has a sleeved-down version of the new 1090RR engine. It’s slightly lower spec, so has non-adjustable footpegs, more durable Pirelli Diablo Rosso tyres (not Dunlop Qualifier RRs), forged aluminium wheels, no steering damper or slipper clutch, but still has a two-way engine map and eight-position traction control. Like its big brother, ...

  • MCN rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 0

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