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First test on production Benelli Tornado

Published: 04 March 2003

MCN has tested the bike that’s almost too beautiful to ride. The Benelli Tornado Novecento costs £11,500, rivals the Ducati 999, and we’ve ridden it in a test so exclusive, the bike’s designer was riding it for the first time alongside us.

Although the looks may be similar, the Novecento has a better throttle response than the £22500 limited-edition Tornado, with a healthy mid-range coming from the 900cc triple.

Plus we’re first to put the Kawasaki Z1000 against it’s rivals in a group test with the Triumph Speed Triple and the Aprilia Tuono. Find out what makes the Kawasaki the best all-rounder, as well as the cheapest of the three.

We’ve got exclusive pictures of the first 2004 BMW’s. The bikes may be recognisable as GS models, but they share virtually nothing with the 2003 machines.

There’s a new limited-edition version of the Sprint RS, which Triumph is on the verge of releasing, and details of the new 2.3 litre cruiser and 1300cc Daytona.

There’s a six-page Paris Tuning Show special, with all the wildest machines from France. The bikes include a Hayabusa-based Suzuki B-King, the craziest stripped R1, tweaked Kawasaki Z1000s, and a turboed 238mph Kawasaki ZX12R.

In the product section, there’s the new 2003 Dainese range, and you can win Michael Rutter’s hand-painted Shoei helmet. We test the Bridgestone BT010 tyres, and highlight the best gear for removing all traces of winter grime from your bike.

We test the capable Honda Transalp, which could make the perfect commuter and reveal all you need to know about buying a Honda SP-1 secondhand.

What else ?

A free babe-packed, eight-page guide to the Scottish Show, the exclusive MCN What’s On guide, Reports from the opening round of World Superbikes, including Neil Hodgson’s own column, Foggy and his team, and the HM Plant Ducati riders. Michael Scott. The secrets of the Yamaha M1 MotoGP bike. The Formula One technology of the Aprilia RS3. News from the MotoGP tests at Phillip Island and Estoril. Steve Hislop testing and crashing his British Superbike Yamaha R1. Triumph’s plans for World Supersport. Amazing factory-approved U.S. flat trackers. The new Kawasaki-Suzuki 250cc motocrosser. The Honda CR250M Elsinore, the world’s first production motorcrosser, and the Suzuki RMX250.

Comment on this story on the News message boards by following the link on the right. MCN is in the shops Wednesday, March 5