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ADV NewsAprilia Confirms New Details & Launch For Tuareg 660 Adventure Bike

Aprilia Confirms New Details & Launch For Tuareg 660 Adventure Bike

A new middleweight Adventure Bike to be unveiled by Aprilia this year.

Published on 07.02.2021

Almost two years after teasing the Tuareg 660 at EICMA, Aprilia’s Product Marketing Manager, Cristian Romeo Barelli, confirmed in a recent interview with Italian magazine, Motociclismo, that the much-anticipated bike is already in the chute, due to arrive later in 2021 as a 2022 model.

Better yet, when asked for details about the Tuareg and its intention as an off-road bike, Barelli stated that “Yes, it will be very off-road oriented, which is why it will have 21-inch front and 18-inch rear wheels.” This, in keeping with the legacy of the brand’s Tuareg moniker, an ambitious line of rally-raid style bikes Aprilia built during the 80s and 90s, including the last-of-the-line Tuareg Wind 600, a model that made its mark in Paris-Dakar racing.

Aprilia Tuareg 600 wind
1988 Tuareg Wind 600.

Barelli also said a lot of work has gone into making sure the new Tuareg is light, in keeping with the other two 660 bikes — a sporty Tuono and track-ready RS — already hatched using the company’s all-new liquid-cooled parallel-twin engine. The whole 660 family, he said, was born with the idea of “sport and fun,” and “the Tuareg will follow that imprint.” 


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The first time we had a sighting of the Tuareg 660 out testing was back in September 2020 when some leaked spy shots revealed a bike that looked pointed straight for the Tenere 700, even borrowing obvious style cues straight from the Yamaha’s front wheel and fairing. The blacked out test mule featured a low front fender, a steel trellis frame similar to the company’s Dorsoduro 900 naked bike, and the 21/18-inch tubeless wire spoke wheel combo hard-core adventure riders demand. 

A more recent sighting, published by MCN in January, showed the bike in more detail, confirming that, as is the case with the RS and Tuono, the Tuareg’s slightly modified frame will use the engine as a stress member. A higher-mount exhaust muffler will be used to aid ground clearance, and we expect a Tuareg-specific swingarm and suspension components to offer a respectable amount of travel. 

Aprilia Tuareg 660 adventure bike testing
Photo by MCN

Both spy series showed the bike carrying data capture devices that provide telemetry information were mounted to the prototype’s tail, suggesting the bike was still deep in the development phase. 

And while we don’t have any visual updates on the forthcoming middleweight’s styling, we do expect the Tuareg 660 to be a showpiece for the Piaggio-owned Italian brand, long revered for the quality of its offerings. It’s likely to be a bike with a spec sheet and pricing a step above the Yamaha Tenere 700, something more in the realm of KTM’s 790 Adventure R in price, power, torque and componentry. 

We do know the new 660cc power plant, basically the forward tilting half of the company’s revered RSV4 1100 V-four mill, has been very well received, with universal praise for its wide ranging torque, a feature a Tuareg version will be tuned to exploit.  

Aprilia Tuareg 660 adventure bike testing
Photo by Aprilia Cup

We also know the first born in Aprilia’s new 660 line, the Tuono and RS, come with a long list of electronic goodies, including adjustable traction control, switchable ABS, ride modes, quickshifter, cruise control and a large full-color TFT dash with Bluetooth connectivity, so it’s likely the Tuareg will include these features as well. 

From its strange debut at the 2019 EICMA, when 90% of the then-rumored ADV bike was covered by tropical foliage and sealed into a large plexiglass cube, to the spy shots of a test mule out in the wild, the Tuareg has been a bit of a puzzle. 

But looking at all those pieces, capped off by this confirmation the Tuareg will be both light and off-road ready, makes us think this bike is a very promising middleweight solution. 

Author: Jamie Elvidge

Jamie has been a motorcycle journalist for more than 30 years, testing the entire range of bikes for the major print magazines and specializing in adventure-travel related stories. To date she’s written and supplied photography for articles describing what it’s like to ride in all 50 states and 43 foreign countries, receiving two Lowell Thomas Society of American Travel Writer’s Awards along the way. Her most-challenging adventure yet has been riding in the 2018 GS Trophy in Mongolia as Team AusAmerica’s embedded journalist.

Author: Jamie Elvidge
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5 thoughts on “Aprilia Confirms New Details & Launch For Tuareg 660 Adventure Bike

  1. Pingback: Aprilia Confirms New Details & Launch For Tuareg 660 Adventure Bike - ADVENTURE & OVERLAND MOTORCYCLE TRAVEL

  2. Very cool! But one downside might be the very limited support network of Aprilia dealerships (outside Italy). I was surprised now to see there are more dealers / workshops for Aprilia here in Sweden than for KTM, but are they all able to help with big bike issues (Aprilia is selling a lot of scooters)? And how is the situation outside Europe? Atill interesting to see more manufacturers offering alternatives in the moddle weight section!

  3. “It’s likely to be a bike with a spec sheet and pricing a step above the Yamaha Tenere 700, something more in the realm of KTM’s 790 Adventure R in price, power, torque and componentry.”
    KTM 790 power from a 660? Me thinks not! Price and componentry, yes.
    I hope it comes in at closer to 400 lbs. and that they change out the Buick muffler for one designed for a motorcycle.
    I guess I’ll have to make the 3 hour round trip to the nearest Aprilia dealer to check one out.

  4. Didn’t KTM already switch to the 890 Adventure? I’d love to check out the Aprilia if they had a dealership closer than 2 hours away. I’ve got KTM around the corner. They’ll probably get my money for the next bike.

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