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2016 MV Agusta Brutale 1090 review

Jake Dolan racer and learner rider at AMA training with MV Agusta Brutale 1090
Review by Jake Dolan*

The 2016 MV Agusta Brutale 1090 has a very sharp and edgy kind of jet-fighter look, but like a jet fighter, it’s got a lot more potential than you could ever use on the road.

I think it would make a great track-day bike.

For my first road test with Motorbike Writer I actually rode the bike during my full-day licensing test to go from a restricted to open licence.

While it wasn’t exactly like any of my races, it was a surprisingly valid set of tests to put the bike through.

Probably a lot more testing than any buyer would get from a quick round-the-block test and  probably more the sort of riding most people will do on this bike, anyway.

While I’m used to salivating over faired race bikes, I actually found this very aesthetically pleasing for a naked bike.

The matte paint is nice, but I could already see some light markings that may be difficult to get rid of. I know bug splats and oil can be difficult to remove from matte or flat-finished paint.

The standard exhaust has an average appearance. The headers are nice but the rear of the exhaust system has lumpy and poorly finished welds.

It would be much nicer with a performance slip-on which is quite likely what most people will do when they buy one.

MV Agusta Brutale 1090

When I threw my leg over the bike, the seating position felt comfortable yet it still had a racy kind of feel which I like.

We were told to check the mirrors and they appeared a little small and difficult to see past your elbows, but at least they suit the look of the bike.

At first, I rode the bike around a carpark doing emergency stops, slow-speed manoeuvres and tight turns.

While it’s a nimble and manoeuvrable bike, there is not a lot of steering lock to play with which makes sharp u-turns a little difficult and potentially embarrassing. But no, I didn’t drop it!

The throttle is also a little jerky off idle which increased the difficulty in slow-speed stuff.

The jerky throttle got easier the more I rode the bike.

Once away from idle, the acceleration is smooth and the bike has more than enough power for daily use.

Performing the emergency stops was a breeze as it has a strong and powerful braking system with ABS as standard.

jake Dolan racer and learner rider at AMA training

Suspension is stiff as you expect from an Italian performance bike but when we hit the urban streets I found it still soaked up all the bumps nicely.

Here I found the bike much easier to ride among the traffic but you have to concentrate to keep it to the speed limit as it’s easy to get carried away.

In first and second gear it was difficult to keep the front wheel down with a handful of throttle. What an awesome feeling.

Overall, it’s a nice bike but its full potential could never be reached on the street. It would make a fun track day bike.

After all, it has a maximum speed of 265.0km/h, not that I did that on my licence test.

Hopefully I’ll get to revisit the bike on the track and can give you more feedback on its handling and performance.

MV Agusta Brutale 1090

2016 MV Agusta Brutale 1090

  • Price: $19,999 (+ORC) or $21,390 ride away
  • Warranty: 2 year, unlimited km, 2 year roadside assist
  • Engine: 1078cc, 16 valve, DOHC, 4-cylinder
  • Compression: 13:1
  • Bore x stroke: 79 x 55mm
  • Power: 106kW @ 10300rpm
  • Torque: 112Nm @ 8100rpm
  • Transmission: 6-speed, wet clutch, cassette gears
  • Wheelbase: 1438mm
  • Length: 2100mm
  • Width: 775mm
  • Seat: 825mm
  • Clearance: 140mm
  • Trail: 1035mm
  • Dry weight: 183kg
  • Fuel: 23 litres
  • Suspension: USD Marzocchi 50mm forks, adjustment for preload, rebound & compression, 125mm travel; Sachs shock with rebound damping and spring preload adjustment, 120mm travel
  • Brakes: Double floating 310mm discs with Brembo 4-piston callipers; 210mm rear steel disc with Nissin 4-piston calliper
  • Wheels: 3.50” x 17”; 6” x 17” alloys
  • Tyres: 120/70 – ZR 17 M/C (58 W); 190/55 – ZR 17 M/C (75 W)
  • Colours: white with red frame or all black
  • Web: Click here
Also available in black
Also available in black

About the author:

Jake has been riding since the age of two, competed in Australia and America road-racing competitions and hopes to eventually race in World Superbikes. Results: 2013 Southern Californian Open Superstock 1000 champion, second in the 2013 Southern Californian Formula Twins championship, third in the Southern Californian Open Superstock 1000 championship and sixth in the 2010 Australian 600cc championship.

  • Feel free to ask any technical questions of Jake by placing your query in the comments section below.
  1. Hi Jake, I am considering to buy one of these bikes ( the basic 1090 ), Just wondering if you noticed any different between standard and sports mode? or at any situation you felt the Traction Control was working?
    Is the power delivery in the rev range smooth or very choppy similar to triple engines ( Brutale 675 and 800 )?

    1. Hi Ben,
      I’m excited to hear you’re thinking about purchasing a Brutale. They are a great bike!
      Power wise the modes did change quite a bit. It went from almost a rain mode with heavy power restrictions to pretty much a race bike wheelstanding through the first 3 gears with ease!
      Each mode definitely changed the delivery also getting more aggressive as you went through to sport mode.
      But in saying that even in sport mode if you wanted to cruise without turning the throttle hard the bike was very smooth and predictable.
      The inline 4 MV has produced really is a great motor.
      I hope this helps you with making your MV Brutal 1090 purchase.

  2. I currently own two MVs a1090 and also a 1090rr and would recommend either to anybody that can afford 1.
    My wife rides the 1090 in rain mode and there’s been no dramas at all with either bike in the last 2 years.
    Great bikes

  3. Hi Jake,
    I’m 6’3″ and was wondering about the riding position of this bike with taller riders? Is this bike sutiable for taller riders?

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