2021 MV Agusta F3 RossoArmani Moffatt
Italian purveyors of ultra fine motorcycles, MV Agusta, are quickly running out of parks to knock it out of in 2021 – another week goes by and another beauty appears. This time in the form of their F3 800, specifically, the Rosso variant.
Indeed, if one wants to buy a Supersport bike these days, your choices are limited to either a Ducati Panigale V2, a Triumph Daytona 765 (which are already all sold out…) or one of the finest handling sports bikes in history, an MV Agusta F3. Yes, we’re at that moment where someone who is still living in the land where everything is still fields, will point out an 800cc bike (or 900cc and more in the Ducati’s case), isn’t a mid-range Supersport machine. Well, yes they are, especially as nobody is building inline-four 600cc jobbies, none that we can nab in Europe at any rate. They’re gone – byeeeee…
And anyway, with the huge rise in horsepower of litre bikes and beyond, added to the significant increases in tyre grip and bike controllability across the board, things like 600cc sports bikes days were always numbered. Think also of the shift in beginner sports bikes, like the new Yamaha R7, Kawasaki Ninja 650 and so on. All over 600cc, some much more, but with half the cylinders, meaning they don’t make anywhere near the power a proper Supersport machine did twenty years ago. So, not a replacement class, then.
Many think a return to the 750cc class of old, including the Ducati V2 and F3 800, is the way forward and of course this year we’ll see those bikes along with bastardised Triumph Street Triple 765s all racing in British Supersport, which will then be taken up by World Supersport in 2022. The dream is a return to ZX-7Rs, GSX-R 750s and a proper R7 from Yamaha – please, guys, build these! So, in short, bikes like the F3 are contemporary Supersport machines, you better start swimming or you’ll sink like a stone, those fields are now car parks, end of story, etc…
Wait, not quite the end though, as here’s the new F3 Rosso, with the ‘red’ line of MV being on the affordable side of things, joining a Brutale, Veloce and Dragster all in that same delicious single colour. How affordable? At this precise second, we don’t know but expect somewhere around £13k for the pleasure.
And man, what pleasure, as if you’ve never experienced the chassis on an F3 be that road or track, prepare to be dumbfounded – they are astonishingly good. This bike comes with 43mm Marzocchi forks and a Sachs rear shock, both fully adjustable. They may not have the perceived sophistication of Showa or Ohlins but trust us, MV puts the time into making sure every bike they make handles like a dream no matter the equipment. Even the Brembo brakes, while not top of the line, appear to be of the M4 32 variety and if they’re good enough for a bike with seventy more gee-gees and 60kg more weight (like Kawasaki’s Z H2), they’ll be perfect to stop a lightweight 173kg (dry) track scorcher like this and better yet, now come with new cornering ABS.
One of the best things about MV is they do not skimp in many areas of their ‘budget’ line. So the three-cylinder 798cc engine enjoys all of the same important upgrades the rest of the triple range received in 2021, including new valve guides, titanium valves, a modified crankshaft and a new clutch, to name but a few of the improvements. There’s also a new ride-by-wire system, new electronics featuring 8-level traction-control, anti-wheelie and their latest EAS 3.0 up/down gear shifter.
The counter-rotating crank on these bikes has an utterly unique feel, too, like whatever is spinning below you from every blip of the throttle is made from air, and not a big lump of metal that wants you to run on at every corner a la cranks with a traditional forwards rotation. It’s partly what makes these bike such a joy to steer, and so easy to stop, just adding to the accuracy they’re capable of.
We still await an official announcement on whether or not there will be a ‘normal’ version of the F3 twixt the Rosso and uber-sexy RC, but seeing as MV tend to run three or four versions of each triple powered model, hopefully, it won’t be long until we see that too. In the meantime, if a big scary modern superbike is too much for you, or you want a very fast scalpel, get yourself to your nearest MV dealer and try one of these out – we guarantee it’ll be worth it!
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