MV Agusta will introduce a new, lighter and more powerful F4-RC 1000cc inline four-cylinder Superbike in January, according to company officials. The new model will be the platform for MV Agusta’s 2015 World Superbike effort.
“Basically it’s a 210-horsepower lightweight version of the actual F4,” Brian Gillen, the head of the MV Agusta Reparto Corse racing department and the Three- and Four-Cylinder Platform Manager at MV Agusta, told Roadracingworld.com in Spain in December. “We shaved weight from everywhere – the crankshaft, all of the internal gears inside the transmission were lightened, all of the bolts inside of the engine are titanium bolts, all of the bolts on the chassis are titanium, the bodywork is full carbon-fiber. We’ve looked at everything.”
Thanks to new FIM homologation requirements, MV Agusta only needs to produce 250 examples of the F4-RC in 2015 followed by another 750 units in 2016, according to Gillen, but that’s not a cheap or easy task.
“You need a tremendous amount of capital just to put the bikes together,” said American Gillen. “You have a tremendous amount of money you have to put into your stock, which you then send out to your dealers. So it’s not so simple. Actually it’s a rule that makes it easier for the very big companies rather than helping the small companies. Make a €20,000 price cap. That helps the small company. Look at a €40,000 price cap and you’re helping a big company.
“With the [new Superbike technical] rules this year you only have one set of transmission ratios homologated for the whole year. Who does that help? Does it help someone who is going World Superbike racing with a four-cylinder machine? No. To make six sets of different gears and six sets of the same gears costs the same amount of money. If you have a 1200cc V-Twin that makes a lot of torque you can get away with one set of ratios at all the tracks. If you have an Inline Four that makes less torque gear ratios become really important.”
MV Agusta plans to run a one-rider team with Leon Camier riding its F4-RC in the 2015 FIM Superbike World Championship.