The Brutale is light and flickable enough to dart around traffic and in the normal riding mode the power is softened making it even easier. Its turning circle isn’t bad considering its sporting DNA, the mirrors are fine and the dash is really useful. Ground clearance is excellent despite the low seat and feel from the standard suspension is more than adequate. It’s on the firm side out of the box, which does compromise hitting cobbled streets with speed but should work on track. You don’t have to be an expert to get the most out of the Brutale on road or track, historically with MV that was never the case. And thanks to its more friendly ergonomics you wouldn’t be in agony on the ride home, but you may need a cushion for the hard seat.
The engine is almost as powerful as the engine in the F3 supersport bike, but makes more torque lower down the rev range, making it more useable on the road and great fun. The little three-cylinder motor also loves revs and will happily scream along and over rev. MV has listened to criticism and worked hard to improve throttle response from the first F3. It’s much friendlier and not as snatchy as before.
There’s no question it’s beautifully-built and well-finished, but it’s too early to say if it will be as bulletproof as the competition. Many current MV owners complain of spare parts supply, but a UK spokesman for MV says parts availablity has improved with the addition of a new distribution partner in Italy.
The MV is over £1000 cheaper than a Yamaha R6 or Honda CBR600, and is not that far behind the CBR in terms of outright power and torque, but that doesn't mean they've skimped on the quality. It's the most high tech middleweight naked, with switchable engine maps, traction control and radial Brembo brakes.
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The Brutale uses the same changeable engine mappings and traction control as the F3. The eight stage traction control can be changed on the move, from the mode switch on the left bar. There are also four modes to choose from (switchable from the starter button): each has a different level of throttle response, torque, rev limit, and engine braking characteristics. Rain mode restricts the power to 80%, which means around 85bhp, and also softens the power delivery. It also automatically switches the traction control back on if you’ve turned it off. Normal mode again softens the power, making it less aggressive but unlike rain mode you can have full power and revs at the top end. Sport mode is more aggressive: the torque is more instant but it’s not unrideable like the previous, first F3. There’s also a custom mode, which lets you customsie everything from power to engine braking. You can easily switch between modes on the move using the starter button the right bar