Aprilia officially unveiled the all-new mid-size adventure motorcycle Tuareg 660 on November 1, 2021. This motorbike is the third model of Aprilia's 660 inline two-cylinder power platform after the RS660 sportbike and the Tuono 660 street motorbike.
For Aprilia, the Tuareg is synonymous with their enduro/dual-purpose/off-road touring motorcycle segment, with the first model being the Tuareg 125 released in 1985. The flagship Tuareg 600 was introduced in 1988. The new Tuareg 660 is a modernized product after a lapse of two decades. The origin of the name Tuareg is a nomadic people in the Sahara - Tuareg.
The Tuareg 660 is powered by a liquid-cooled inline two-cylinder engine with a displacement of 659 cc and a maximum power output of 80 hp (the sportbike version of the RS 660 and the streetbike version of the Tuono 660 have a maximum power output of 100 hp). The design concept of this machine and some component measurements are taken from the front cylinder group of the V4 1100 machine in Aprilia, with a bore of 81 mm, which is also the same data as the V4 1100 engine.
The benefits of this engine layout are compact dimensions and lower weight, according to Aprilia. When the engine has small horizontal and lateral dimensions, there is a lot of design freedom when arranging the basic mechanisms such as intake and exhaust systems, chassis/frame, etc. Therefore, it (referring to the engine) is very suitable for carrying on different types of motorcycles. The front cylinder bank of the reference V4 1100 machine was chosen as the design concept, mainly because this structure is conducive to the cooling of the engine.
The cylinder block and the engine crankcase adopt integrated design. The crankcase is horizontally divided into two parts, and the cylinders are built into the upper half of the crankcase to reduce bulk and make the structure stronger.
In addition to performance and light weight, the reason this engine references the design philosophy of the V4 1100 is to apply some of the output characteristics of the V2 machine to an inline two-cylinder (as another design goal). In order to achieve this goal, this 660 machine uses crankshaft rotation timing 270-degree ignition (Note: if 360-degree ignition is the synchronous machine in the saying, 180-degree ignition is the asynchronous machine in the saying, and then 270-degree ignition, is equivalent to being between the above two) to obtain an irregular burn. This configuration gives this inline two-cylinder 660 machine a V2-like output character and sound.
Corresponding to the use environment of the adventure motorbike, compared with the sportbike version and the streetbike version, the Tuareg 660 adopts a newly designed air intake system. In the intake system, a longer intake duct is equipped, and the layout of the exhaust system has also been modified accordingly. This series of changes allows the Tuareg 660 to have better engine performance at low and medium speeds. In addition, the six-speed transmission gearbox, the first gear ratio is different from the streetbike version of the Tuono 660.
In terms of bodywork, a newly designed tubular frame is used (the RS 660 and Tuono adopt an alloy double-spar-type wide frame). Considering the reliability and robustness required for off-road use, the Tuareg 660 has six anchor points between the frame and the engine (the RS660 has only three, and the Tono 660 has only two). Longer aluminum alloy swingarm, inverted front fork with long travel (240 mm front and rear), multi-link single-tube rear shock, 21-inch front and 18-inch rear wire rims.
The body of the motorcycle has an ergonomically slim design. Despite having a fuel tank with a capacity of 18 liters, it adopts a very slim design in the contact position of the rider's knees, which allows the rider to overcome various obstacles with confidence when driving in the wild.
In terms of electronic control system, it is equipped with electronically controlled throttle, optional power output mode, and APRC (Aprilia Performance Ride Control) including ATC traction control, ACC cruise control, AEB engine brake control and other subsystems. The two-way (gear up and down) quick-shift system is an optional component.
Other configurations include LED headlights, a digital instrument panel, and Pirelli's Scorpion Rally STR matching tires.
Aprilia said the 660 platform represented the beginning of a new era for them. It (meaning this new era) is defined by a lightweight and high-performance motorcycle with an attractive design, unique and unmistakably high-end technical content.
Aprilia believes that the new generation of motorcycles requires simplicity and fun. Even in daily commute use, it feels as exciting and dynamic as a game. And their 660 platform introduces a new sports concept, which meets the expectations of the contemporary younger market. The new Tuareg 660 is designed for adventure. With an excellent weight/power ratio, excellent off-road performance, extraordinary chassis/frame performance when running on asphalt roads, and a wealth of electronic equipment, it can withstand the toughest off-road riding. At the same time, it also guarantees comfort and riding pleasure on the road.