THE new MV Agusta F5 promises to be the most desirable bike in the world.
With a 150bhp 1000cc four-cylinder engine and the design genius of Massimo Tamburini (the man responsible for the F4 and, of course, the Ducati 916), knees are likely to go weak the world over when the bike is revealed.
The firm is now expected to show off its masterpiece for the first time this September, in Milan with full production starting the following summer.
We expect to have a reliable artist’s impression of the bike before the end of the week.
While the engine is based on the 750cc motor, the stroke is increased from 43.8mm to 55mm, while the bore goes up from 73.8mm to 76mm – giving a capacity of 998cc. The bore and stroke are similar to machines like Yamaha’s R1 (74x58) and Honda’s FireBlade (74x54) – so the engine’s characteristics are likely to be similar to these bikes.
However, MV Agusta has gone for some radical technology to give it the edge over the Japanese competition.
The F5 will feature a new cylinder head with a narrower angle between the valves to improve gas-flow into and out of the combustion chamber. This move comes from a development of MV’s radial valve arrangement, allowing the head to be more compact.
And the fuel injection system features a variable-length inlet tract. The inlet trumpets on the fuel injection will electrically move in and out depending on revs and engine load using a system patented by MV.
Altering the length of the inlet will change the motor’s characteristics – giving the ideal combination of bottom-end torque and top-end power when each is demanded.
At the moment, MV has a highly tuned version of the engine on the dyno making more than 165bhp at the gearbox sprocket. It is convinced the final version will make at least 150bhp in standard road bikes.
Currently, the motor is being tested in modified F4s to keep the styling under wraps. MV used the same trick during the development of the F4, running all its test mules in Ducati 916 bodywork. However, one Italian insider described the bike as " another Tamburini masterpiece "
Production is currently expected to start in Summer 2002, with a prototype appearing at the Milan show this year. As the new engine is based on the old one, it is likely to appear in the future in other models in the MV range – including the naked Brutale.
MV boss Claudio Castiglioni has also said in the past he intends to build and MV sports tourer, which would also be likely to use this big-capacity motor.