Ok, so I've not got many comparisons in my riding experience, but I still cant deny how amazing this machine is! I picked her up brand new a couple of months ago from the guys at Jeffrey Motorcycles in FTGully. I've just gone through the 1000km service, so still pretty new. I fell in love with the look of these bikes after seeing them at the 2008 MotoGP Expo. The styling is... well, unique. straigh edges and triangles, along with the paintjobs, always reminded me of a Decepticon. I never rode any of the previous RC8's, although I keep hearing about the early R's having rough power delivery problems. If so, then the twin sparks in this one have definitely solved it! While low revs were rough to begin with, breaking it in has cleared that. Only roughness is under 2500 with no clutch feathering. The customising options are awesome. Best of all was the rear frame height adjustment. Instead of just having suspension adjustment, there is a lower bolt option on the frame to drop the seat/tail by about 10mm. Add in all the suspension options, chassis tuning is becoming an ongoing thing. The factory suspension setting were pretty much track ready which, combined with the brand new condition, made for a painful road ride at times. But after running it all in, playing with the suspension, and adjusting myself to this ride posture, I've found the ride to be beautifully smooth. Only aftermarket mods I have are trickle charger, alarm and a KTM tailbag. Only mod I would really consider for road use, maybe different exhaust, just to open her breathing. Exhaust note is pretty load as standard, and I've been told the under-slung Acro Titanium system for them is beautifully loud, but at $2000, I might wait a while. Maybe when I get some sticky rubber for the track.... Pricey, powerful, very usable and forgiving, kinda rare around Australia, distinctive, comfy.