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Aprilia Is Working on a Yamaha Nikken Challenger

Aprilia reverse trike
Image from Motorcycle News

Another Three-Wheeled Wonder

Aprilia isn’t ready to let Yamaha own the three-wheeled market. According to some new patent info showcased by Motorcycle News, Aprilia has a new tilting front suspension design that it has attached to a Mana 850. The leaning trike game is now afoot.

For those unfamiliar with the Mana 850 from Aprilia, it was an automatic motorcycle that featured a CVT and was as easy to ride as a scooter. The bike looked like a real-deal motorcycle. It makes a lot of sense to do a three-wheeled bike with the Mana’s very competent powertrain. 

It’s also no surprise that this is coming from Aprilia. Piaggio Group owns Aprilia, and Piaggio has its own three-wheeled leaning machine in the MP3. The setup on the front for the two wheels is a bit different, though, from the MP3. The new design features four lateral links at the bottom that are connected to upright suspension and utilize wishbone-like suspension—as is the case on many cars.

This idea makes a lot of sense. The Niken’s telescoping fork design is expensive and complex. This new design from Aprilia would be cheaper, simpler, and do essentially the same thing. This is something that has made news before, but this new patent suggests Aprilia will continue moving forward with this design.

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  1. Aprilla, loose the stupid-level 33-inch seat of the Niken and you’ll probably get a lot more sales, from a much larger potential market (wBw is wrong listing the seat height at 32.3 inches, as Yamaha itself

    shows the seat height at 32.9).

    The industry is trying to get more people involved in motorcycling, yet still continuing to actually *build* motorcycles for a minority of riders. Want women and other styles of riders? Start making bikes that they’ll actually want, that they feel that are make with *them* in mind, rather than having to settle for bikes that they know didn’t have them in mind but they have no other choice in buying. I’ve met several people, and know a few more, who like motorcycles but can’t fit on most of them and are frustrated by witnessing the industry only make taller bikes, not any shorter yet still powerful ones with their concerns in mind.