Time has been kind to the original MV Agusta F4 design. Created by Massimo Tamburini, the first F4 came out back in 1998 (albeit with a 750cc inline-four, rather than the current 1000cc engine) and with just one update, which happened three years ago, the F4 is still in the battle. In 1998, when the F4 was launched, Ducati’s top sportsbike was the 916, Aprilia had the RSV Mille, and BMW and KTM weren’t even in the game yet.
As the years have passed, Ducati have moved from the 916 to the 996, 998, 999, 1098, 1198 and now the Panigale. Aprilia have the RSV4 Factory and other European manufacturers have also gotten into the act – BMW have the S1000RR and KTM have the RC8R. And MV? Er… it’s still the F4!
For 2013, MV Agusta have again updated the F4 range, which now includes the basic F4 as well as the F4R and F4RR versions. All three bikes are fitted with the same ‘Corsacorta’ short-stroke inline-four that produces a claimed 195-200bhp at the crank (should be about 170-ish horsepower at the rear wheel), and for 2013, this engine gets a host of very sophisticated electronics. In recent years, the F4 has been criticized for its inconsistent, difficult-to-modulate power delivery, and the new electronics package should sort that out.
The 2013-spec F4 engine gets ride-by-wire throttle control, 4-mode selectable engine mapping and selectable throttle sensitivity (normal, sport and rain modes). The new MVICS (Motor & Vehicle Integrated Control System) package basically allows the rider to configure almost every aspect of engine performance and controls everything, including the bike’s 8-level traction control system, ABS, anti-wheelie system and, on the F4RR, the electronically adjustable Öhlins suspension.
Cosmetic mods on the 2013 MV Agusta F4 range include new wheels, new graphics and LED daytime running lights. The base model F4 is priced at 16,990 euros, the F4R carries a price tag of 18,990 euros and the F4RR costs an impressive 23,990 euros. The entire 2013 MV Agusta range will be on display at the EICMA motorcycle show in Milan, Italy, next week.