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The Brutale truth

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' at netrider.net.au started by Chairman, Mar 28, 2008.

  1. Two weeks and 1000km later, I figure it’s time to write the definitive review of the MV Agusta Brutale 750. What with me being an expert an’ all.

    First, the disclaimer. I can only compare it to the Yamaha SZR660 and the SR500. So don’t go reading this if you’re wondering “should I buy the Brutale, or the Buell?†because you won’t find the answer here.

    Of course, if you’re wondering “should I buy the Brutale or the SZR660?â€, then you’re in the right place. You’re also a complete fcuking idiot, because these are two completely different bikes and if you’ve narrowed your choices down to these two, then you have no idea about motorcycling. Go away. It’s making my brain hurt just thinking that you might be reading this.

    Firstly, what do they have in common? Of course, they both have two wheels. That’s about where the similarity ends

    OK - to be fair, they both corner like they were on rails, brake in their own length and, at some stage, clever Italian folk were involved in their creation. The SZR660 is actually an Italian bike and, like the Brutale, it has fancy unpronounceable suspension, Brembo brakes and Cagiva instrumentation.

    Now to the riding. The SZR shits all over the Brutale from idle to 3000rpm. A big torquey single, it jumps off the line with an arm-stretching leap, only to become asthmatic and wheezy at about 5000rpm. The Brutale, on the other hand, rides like a sedated slug to 4500rpm.

    And then things change. The power arrives at 4500rpm, and, like relatives at Christmas, keeps arriving until your head hurts. Happily doing 110kph in first, it redlines at 13000 and invites you to change up with a winking LED labelled “Rev Limiter†which is actually the shift light. And it does it all with a buzzing tingle rather than the frantic throb of the SZR. With 6 gears, the Brutale settles into a tidy 5500rpm at freeway speed – just at the bottom end of the useful power curve.

    That sort of power curve reminds me more of the T250 2-stroke on which I learned to ride. On a recent outing with Deyago, Cejay and Cammo , I was cog-swapping regularly to keep the bike in the best part of the rev-range, while their Tuonos happily tootled along in whatever gear the riders chose back when we left the outskirts of Healesville.

    This power comes at a price. As a bike for commuting, there’s a penalty to be paid for a bike that mopes along at 4500rpm and takes off like a scalded cat at 5000rpm. Coupled with a throttle that is extremely sensitive, low speed riding requires a cautious approach. An injudicious twist of the throttle, and you’re parked in someone else’s boot. A near miss riding into the sunglare on the Westgate reminded me that this bike reacts a little faster than the SZR.

    On the subject of reacting, these bikes couldn’t be more different. If you wish to overtake on the SZR, you complete form OT1/2008, submit for approval, call up the engine room, request “full ahead all cylinders†and, sometime before the end of the week, the bike will advise you that your application is being processed. On the Brutale, you approach the overtakee at 110, flick right while opening throttle and, as you pass the driver at 155, you just have time to grin before s/hes a speck in the rearview mirror. When an cigarette-paper wide opening suddenly appears in the next lane, the Brutale will slide into the gap while the SZR is still plotting a course, filing the flight plan, restocking the in-flight kitchen and shagging the flight attendant.

    Ergos. Cogitos. Sums. (Sorry, small joke). The Brutale is generally portrayed with a leggy blonde draped over it. Frankly, they never look at ease. Short, fat blokes like me will find the Brutale remarkable comfy. The seat is firm (but I’m well padded), the handlebars are wide and you’re very upright – which is great if, like me, you suffer from chronic back pain. Rides that would have crippled me on the SZR are a doddle on the Brutale.

    The horn and indicators are ass-about. I spent the first week honking at corners and gave a few stupid cagers a vigorous flashing. The display is clear and easy to read and has a clever toggle function – press the starter when the engine is running and the display cycles through total distance, trip 1, trip 2 and the clock. The manual is very explicit – don’t try this while in motion or you may lose control. “Phooee†says I. Actually “SH111111T!!!!!!!†says I as I reach for the starter with my thumb, inadvertently twist the throttle and suddenly I’m doing 120 in a 60 zone.

    I’ve always been a DIY rider. My workshop is equipped with everything I need – or at least it was. Those idiosyncratic Italians have done it again. The service intervals are slightly less frequent than the collapse of the Italian government. The MV uses special spanners for everything. Lovingly hand-filed by Italian virgins, the spanner for the rear wheel nut costs a paltry $80. I understand that rarity increases value – I’m just not sure if it’s the spanners or the virgins that are rare. Adjusting the chain is very cool – an eccentric hub shifts the rear wheel back and forth. Be careful, though. Overtighten the retaining bolts and the hub will seize. If you’re travelling fast at the time, the bike will stop for a rest. You won’t.

    In this green age, the Brutale is…red. With fuel consumption approaching that of my Camry, it is a thirsty beast – although the SZR has spoiled me a bit. I guess I shouldn’t expect the SZR's 22km/l, but it would have been nice. The other greenie-goading aspect is the exhaust. With an Arrow race system, it makes a growling sound I’ve only heard on classic bike sites like http://www.vintagebike.co.uk/Sounds.htm. Open the throttle at low revs and the induction noise is a breathtaking “whooshâ€. Soon after, it changes to a sound is hard to describe – imagine piece of corrugated cardboard ripped slowly. A droning buzz, overlaid with the staccato of… I don’t know what. Who cares. It’s magic.

    With all the pros and cons, I am in love with this bike. It is so very, very red. It sounds like a Spitfire and looks like it’s approaching light-speed even when it’s parked in the shed. It handles magnificently, and every aspect is adjustable and tunable. What a shame that I know SFA about adjustment and tuning.

    There you go. An entirely objective assessment of the MV Agusta Brutale 750. I’ve got one. You haven’t. Sucks to be you.
    • Like Like x 1
  2. :LOL: Mark should be forced to buy a new bike every six weeks so we can have one of his unique, incomparable bike reviews, every six weeks.

    Seriously, I fancy myself as a bit of a wordsmith, but, mate, you're the tops......

    Bike sounds terrific too :).
  3. Good review, just checkedd my wallet $5, can't buy :(

  4. aka windbag :p
  5. that was a great read enjoy the new toy.

    +1 for six week bike swaps, i could get used to this :)
  6. Bravo Mr Chairman, Bravo. :cool:
  7. 4_1_72. :rofl: :rofl:


    So long as it's only the fuel consumption that approaches that of a camry, and no other aspect of the bike!
  8. You funny, funny c*nt.

    I'll still have to pinch myself the first few times I see you riding the thing though!
  9. Sum it up in a few little words I reckon. :LOL:

    Loved the little Arrow GP pipe.
  10. I've just read the review again - it's still funny.

    You should drop over one night and we will drink red wine, eat steaks and agree that we own wonderful motorcycle. Let's not invite the ladies. :twisted:

    We should also invite Sunshine, he will agree we own wonderful motorcycles and enjoy a nice salad and then punch me :wink:
  11. watched the races from eastern creek (replayed on sbs) and the guy on the MV could hardly get it off the start line. bunny hopped and dropped about 10 places, then went like stink and passed all except one (same in both races). hope yours takes off from the lights better than that. looks fast though.