BROUGH SUPERIOR SS100 (2016 - on) Review
At a glance
Overall ratingNext up: Ride & brakes
There are going to be lots of people who will sniff at the thought of any bike being ‘worth’ £45,000 and while barely any of us have the available cash to buy one, that’s missing the point.
The world is a better place for bikes like the Brough Superior SS100 existing. The famous brand is in British hands and from our ride on a prototype it would appear things are most certainly heading the in the right direction.
The new Brough Superior SS100 is a wonderful thing and the few lucky people who have the cash available to buy one are going to love it. The fact it’s so well built, so well-resolved is a triumph for such a small outfit. This is the perfect representation of a modern ‘gentleman’s motorcycle’ and the future is bright for the famous Brough Superior brand.
Ride quality & brakesNext up: Engine
That unusual suspension system contributes to a very flat, firm riding experience. Weirdly the front end rises when you accelerate but barely dives at all when you brake hard. This flat non-diving front end thanks to the suspension does make worse perhaps the only major flaw on the bike which are the fiercely un-progressive front brakes. They are a little scary at first and it takes an unbelievably gentle touch to avoid over-braking. Overnight the Brough engineers changed the master cylinder and piston to soften the braking force and on a brief test ride it proved to be a lot better.
EngineNext up: Reliability
Of all the engineering on this bike it’s the 997cc water-cooled V-twin that really stands out. While so many other small companies opt for an ‘off-the-shelf’ motor from one of the many global suppliers, Brough Superior insisted this bike could only exist if they developed their own motor. Work on the engine has been done by Akira Engineering; the same company that builds the factory Kawasaki engines for the World Superbike riders Tom Sykes and Jonathan Rea.
The V-twin motor is smooth, tractable yet still willing to rev out. It’s only when leaving it in too high a gear that any piston slap starts to become a problem.
Reliability & build qualityNext up: Value
Despite this bike being a prototype the overall styling is pretty much bang-on what owners will be getting. The stunning, hand-crafted aluminium fuel tank is welded from five sections on site; as is the sleek tailpiece. The cast aluminium Fior fork design is startlingly new and a world away from the usual twin conventional forks. The diamond-cut cast aluminium wheels are distinctively different.
Value vs rivalsNext up: Equipment
There is no point arguing the Brough Superior SS100 is cheap; at £45,000 and some change this is one expensive, exclusive bike which stays firmly on the side of the collector/rider than an everyday commuter. But that’s the whole point. It’s not meant to be cheap. If, however, you look at prices of original Brough’s which rarely dip below £100,000 then it starts to look cheap. What you get for the price is a handbuilt, beautifully-crafted machine that will always be something special.
The bike MCN tested was still at a final prototype stage and elements of the bike are going to change before production. Changes will include minor stuff like the exhaust hangers, but also include major elements such as the coolant hoses which have been re-engineered to run up under the airbox and fuel tank for a neater look. The switchgear will be changed for cast alloy version rather than the temporary Harley-Davidson items in use today, the handlebar top yoke will be cut from billet, the sidestand will get a far better design with a lug on the end to make raising or lowering it far easier. The Smiths clocks are getting a backlit needle and clearer LCD information from the small integral screen and the tiny indicators on this bike aren’t production specification. All of these changes are in the final stages of being fixed before full production begins in June.
|Engine type||liquid-cooled, four-stroke V-twin, DOHC, 8v, 6-speed, chain-drive|
|Fuel capacity||16 litres|
|Front suspension||Fior-type cast aluminium fork with twin articulated triangle titanium forks and Ohlins monoshock adjustable for preload and rebound with 120mm of travel|
|Rear suspension||Single rear Ohlins shock, adjustable for preload and rebound with 130mm of travel.|
|Front brake||Four 230mm Beringer stainless steel disc with two, four-piston radial calipers.|
|Rear brake||Single 230mm caliper with two-piston caliper|
|Front tyre size||120/70-18 Michelin Pilot Road 3|
|Rear tyre size||160/60-18 Michelin Pilot Road 3|
Mpg, costs & insurance
|Average fuel consumption||-|
|Annual road tax||£93|
|Annual service cost||-|
How much to insure?
Top speed & performance
|Max power||100 bhp|
|Max torque||65.6 ft-lb|
|Top speed||115 mph|
|1/4 mile acceleration||-|
Owners' reviews for the BROUGH SUPERIOR SS100 (2016 - on)
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