Caponord Travel Pack, Multistrada Granturismo and Tiger Sport: the great arsouille
The sports maxitrails segment is in turmoil: Aprilia launches a new Caponord 1200, Ducati updates its Multistrada 1200 and Triumph overhauls its Tiger 1050. To compare these three new products for 2013, MNC goes on a mop … in arsouille mode !
Multistrada, Tiger and Caponord in the Ardennes
While the unprecedented docility of the Multistrada’s twin cylinder is one of the strengths of the "new" Ducati in an urban environment, we regret the more assertive character of the old version as soon as we land on the secondary network…
The accelerations and times of the Testrastretta 11 ° indeed seem almost too smooth and wise compared to those of Noale’s V-Twin, which balances the mash past 4000 rpm and puts the cover back at 6500 rpm, but leaves the biker on his hunger beyond 7000 rev / min – French clamping requires.
Question soundtrack, however, it is not easy to decide between the two Italians whose songs are as captivating as the voice of the English is muffled. However, during the recovery tests carried out by MNC on the last report, the Tigress made short work of the two (top) transalpine models. !
Gentle and considerate on very low revs, the 3-cylinder grows hairy as soon as the tachometer needle crosses the 3800 rpm mark, then irresistibly lengthens the stride. Castrated, the "French" Tiger begins to sound a sympathetic roar at around 7000 rpm, but it is already time to move up a gear.
The ride has only just begun, but the three “sporty road” trails are already going at a good pace. Fast enough in any case to realize that on deteriorated roads, the Ducati is not the easiest to guide…
The drier suspensions and the harder saddle stiffen the rider, and the front end sometimes hopping on small bumps does not encourage increasing the pace at first. It takes a few kilometers to seize the full potential of the bike, so that the two colleagues take the opportunity to get ahead. !
Mollo on the Multistrada !
Despite a longer wheelbase and chassis (see our technical sheets on the last page), the Aprilia is alert in the winding thanks to its wide handlebars and good balance. We twirl from one bend to another more naturally than at the controls of the Multistrada, whose front axle – again – tends to slip more sharply towards the inside of the bend..
Much more agile than the, the Tiger Sport 1050 feels a little cramped in the small Ardennes passes. The riding position makes this kind of exercise a little less easy: the Triumph tamer prefers tight hairpins the beautiful turns in which he and his motorcycle have time to wedge effectively..
On the Aprilia, we switch the engine back to S (Sport) mode in order to take advantage of the maximum responsiveness of the ride by wire and all the niaque of the V-Twin. Likewise, informed motorcyclists will not forget to set their ATC (Aprilia Traction Control) to 1. Thus, the electronics restrict the bike less when relaunching on the angle..
Exiting turns, the Multistrada is strong, very strong. A little too much even if its pilot decides to open very wide in Sport mode: the beast then tends to widen and you have to stay on guard to keep your trajectory !
Once the user manual has been assimilated, the Ducati becomes formidable in efficiency and goes back to the top duo. Especially on heavy braking, it is the most stable. The Triumph is a little less fixed on its fork, but the excellent feeling of the Nissin front brake lever makes it possible to compete with the Multistrada and its Brembo system..
The Tiger is therefore still ahead of the Multi in the winding, taking advantage of an exemplary stability in curves: flexible but determined in its approach, the Tiger devours the turns at an impressive speed and quickly stands on its legs its single rear leg to pounce. towards the next bend !
On the Caponord, while the work of the electronic suspensions had amply satisfied us during our trip, it did not convince us during our arsouille on the famous N810: without an Aprilia opener to dictate a certain – false – rhythm to us, the Capo has lost a few stripes…
La Caponord drinks the broth
Credited with a small 228 kg "dry" by its manufacturer (against 235 and 245 kg "full tank" for the Tiger and the Multistrada), the Caponord 1200 is clearly heavier than its competitors, and this is particularly felt when ‘we raise the tone.
If the agility of the Aprilia maxitrail remains quite satisfactory, including at high speed, its rigor is more questionable. It is by forcing the brakes on the outskirts of large curves that the running gear split up and greatly cool the ardor of the pilot, who must resolve to let his little comrades pass….
Contrary to appearances, the Caponord is not an RSV4! "It is not a sportswoman but a road maxitrail, do not forget", insisted the Aprilia France staff, giving us the keys to the bike. This great arsouille in the Ardennes confirms this to us..
Thanks to a smoother and more progressive feeling at the level of the right lever, a – good – pilot perched on Aprilia can hope to overtake his colleague – less good! – riding the Ducati by putting the brakes on it. But it will take some … courage. We will even speak of recklessness in the event of an attack on the pilot of the Triumph, who benefits from a braking a bit better at the front..
In terms of rear braking, the Tiger Sport wins. Too hard on the Ducati and Aprilia, the control at the foot of the Triumph allows you to finely dose your interventions. ABS question, on the other hand, it’s perfect equality: the three systems were not used during our journey !
For once, Site took advantage of perfectly dry and clean roads. But we must also congratulate the work of the tires that fitted our three machines: the other major new motorcycle 2013 !
Cut for the road only – unlike their Scorpion Trail brothers – the Angel GT confirms the only road destiny of these three "trails". Another clue? The ground clearance values are not even indicated by their manufacturers…
Who wants the Tiger for the highway ?
After having rallied Bouillon as quickly as possible (yes yes, short Bouillon …), MNC decides to return to its Parisian HQ as quickly as possible: via the motorway. Its suitcases just closed, the Caponord 1200 is already ready to go: "in automatic mode, the electronic control unit checks the spring preload every minute and modifies it if necessary. Nothing to touch so !", the Aprilia France press manager told us when we left..
"For information, the "solo", duo "and" baggage "pilot icons light up alternately when this mode is engaged. No worries, therefore, this flashing does not indicate a malfunction.", continued our interlocutor."As long as the red light is off, everything is fine".
On the Ducati, the pilot must remember to modify himself – by means of electronics, only when stationary -, the preload of his rear shock absorber. Thus, before complaining about not touching both feet on the ground, bikers with short legs should check that their Ducati is in solo mode and not in "loaded duo". !
At the end of the 250 km traveled in one go on the motorway, the conclusion is obvious: the Multistrada S Granturismo is the best motorcycle to break down barriers. The large screen – which can be raised in a jiffy thanks to its ingenious clamp – perfectly protects the driver’s head and shoulders.
Spree for two
Of the three machines confronted in this comparative test, it is not easy to identify which one will please the passenger the most. Certainly, the Caponord offers the most soft and comfortable seat. Its rear handles are perfectly gripping, but their edges are too sharp to be pleasant. In addition, the vibrations in the hands and feet are too present.
Not easy to climb – especially with its full luggage room! -, the Multistrada offers a wide saddle but a little too hard in the long run. The large handles are too far back and send the elbows into the top case, the back of which is placed too high at the back. Not great either.
The Tiger wouldn’t do that badly, if only its saddle was a little wider. Placed relatively high, the passenger takes advantage of the landscape but, like the driver, he lacks protection … His position on the motorcycle is more natural. However, to check once the suitcases are stowed !
As long as he does not put his left heel on the tip of the center stand lug, the pilot is not bothered by any vibration. The saddle, which lacks thickness, partially makes up for it thanks to its design: flat and wide, it can withstand 150 km journeys on motorway ribbons without too much fatigue. Beyond that, we openly jealous the driver of the Caponord…
The Aprilia is also not very far from the Ducati in terms of approval over long distances. In addition to this comfort in the saddle and a completely restful riding position, the Caponord Travel Pack benefits from a useful gadget: cruise control !
Certainly, the handling of the ACC (Aprilia Cruise Control) located near the throttle requires a bit of dexterity with the thumb. In addition, the speed once selected cannot be changed with a simple flick, as is the case on real "GT" motorcycles..
It is nonetheless pleasant to go quietly at 135 km / h, without having to continually scan the side aisles or take a worried look at your speedometer each time you cross a bridge or rest area! Because once the Capo’s bubble has risen to the maximum, the wind only whips the top of the helmet … and you drive faster than you think.
The double wheel system for adjusting the height of the screen of the Aprilia is far from practical, since it requires the machine to stop completely – it is in any case much more careful! Likewise, the Caponord 1200 loses points against the Multistrada because of the vibrations which tickle and then annoy the hands and feet of the driver….
The Tiger Sport is doing better on this subject by limiting the inconvenience to only the fingers resting on the levers. Likewise, in terms of noise, the 3-cylinder is the most discreet of the band although it turns 750 rpm above the bis: the Ducati takes down the 130 km / h counter at 4500 rpm, l ‘Aprilia right after.
Unfortunately, the little bubble of the Triumph struggles to relieve the pilot’s chest and the absence of handguards may be felt in the harsh winter, such as in spring showers, summer thunderstorms or autumn rains..
A last fill-up before returning the motorcycles and average consumption can be drawn up: 6.4 l / 100km over the whole of our journey for the Aprilia, against 5.9 for the Ducati and only 5.3 for the Triumph.
The Caponord 1200 may carry 4 liters more than its two rivals, its fuel weighs down its autonomy. So much so that in theory – and according to our surveys – the maximum range of the V-Twin is equaled by that of the Triple 1050 (375 km), while that of the L-Twin tops out at 340 km.
This final test was not enough, however, to upset the classification, dominated by the Multistrada S Granturismo. As sporty as it is a traveler, the Ducati is the undisputed winner of this comparison. Unfortunately, the Rouge Grise charges dearly for its services…
No need for a photo finish to decide between the following two: the Tiger Sport will above all be suitable for fans of motorcycle-work-sleep and weekend arsenal, while the choice of the Caponord Travel Pack will naturally be imposed on those who want to leave for long and quiet mops.
Caponord Travel Pack, Multistrada Granturismo and Tiger Sport: the great arsouille The sports maxitrails segment is in turmoil: Aprilia launches a new…
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