And that’s curtains on EICMA 2023, this year’s edition of the world’s greatest motorcycle show and what is our first close look at the new bikes set to hit Australian shores in the not-too-distant future.
The event signaled a shift away from perceived conservatism in previous years, with wildy styled and mechanically innovative new models stealing the show.
Much attention was on Suzuki’s GSX-8R, a new competitor to the Yamaha R7. Likewise the super sharp KTM 990 Duke naked and 916-inspired Ducati Panigale V4 SP2 superbike.
Looking to the future was Royal Enfield and its HIM-E concept, an all-electric adventure bike that surprised media aside the production Himalayan 452, as well as CFMOTO’s MT-X concept kitted to the brim in high-end hardware aside a more restrained 450MT lightweight dual-sport.
Let’s take a closer look at EICMA 2023, and the best new bikes headed to Australia in 2024.
EICMA 2023: Aprilia
RS 457: Aprilia is entering a new segment in 2024 with the upcoming release of its RS 457 learner-approved sportsbike, which is set to rival the likes of the Honda CBR500R, Kawasaki Ninja 400 and Yamaha YZF-R3 in Australia.
The Aprilia RS 457 continues the styling language debuted by its larger RS 660 sibling, tipping the scales at a healthy 175kg (wet) and featuring a new parallel-twin engine that is restricted to meet LAMS restrictions with a 35kW power output.
Notably, the Aprilia RS 457 features a ride-by-wire system offering three rider modes, and three levels of traction control. A quickshifter will be available as an option.
Also: Aprilia displayed its RS-GP MotoGP racebikes as well as its popular Aprilia Tuareg 660 in rally racer trim.
EICMA 2023: CFMOTO
450MT: The new CFMOTO 450MT lightweight adventure bike will hit Australian showrooms in the second quarter of 2024.
This 449cc parallel-twin platform underpinning the 450MT generates 32.5kW and 44Nm, and is mated with a conventional six-speed gearbox.
The bike rides on 41mm KYB upside-down forks which are adjustable for compression and rebound, while the rear-end sees a KYB monoshock that can be adjusted for preload, compression and rebound. Both ends offer 200mm of travel.
Importantly, the CFMOTO 450MT features wire-spoked wheels measuring 21- and 18-inches front-to-rear, as well as switchable traction control and switchable ABS at the rear wheel befitting its off-road-focussed positioning.
MT-X: CFMOTO also unveiled its new MT-X adventure bike concept at this year’s EICMA motorcycle show in Milan, with a range of high-end components like Brembo brakes, and Akrapovic exhaust, rally-inspired bodywork and ergonomics and Ohlins suspension.
800NK GP: A one-off version of the brand’s 800NK naked bike distinguished by a Pruestel GP racing livery and track-ready components like an SC Project exhaust, aerodynamic bodywork, Brembo Stylema brakes and uprated suspension.
Also: CFMOTO showcased its new three-cylinder engine, which underpins its 675R sportsbike concept, and is expected to make its way into a production model in the coming years. The 657cc triple-cylinder engine is said to generate more than 100 horsepower and weigh just 55 kilograms.
EICMA 2023: Ducati
Panigale V4 SP2 30th Anniversario: Ducati tore the covers off a limited-edition version of its Panigale V4 SP2 superbike that pays homage to the brand’s iconic 916 with a dedicated livery and trim. Just 500 units will be built, with only a handful expected to arrive Down Under.
Hypermotard 698 Mono: Ducati will release its all-new Hypermotard 698 Mono to Australian showrooms in the second quarter of 2024, complete with a most-powerful-in-class single-cylinder engine, priced from $22,800 rideaway.
The 2024 Ducati Hypermotard 698 is motivated by the new Superquadro Mono engine, a 659cc single-cylinder mill that generates 57kW and 62Nm.
DesertX Rally: A higher-spec version of its 21-inch-wheeled middleweight adventure bike, which is expected to launch locally in early 2024, priced from $36,600 rideaway.
The Ducati DesertX Rally brings key chassis upgrades to improve the bike’s off-road credentials, including increased-travel suspension, beefier wire-spoked wheels and a high-mounted front mudguard, among other changes.
Also: Two new Multistrada variants are headed for Australia, including the all-option V4 S Grand Tour ($45,200) and the track-honed V4 RS ($55,800).
EICMA 2023: Honda
CB1000 Hornet: Honda has revealed its flagship naked CB1000 Hornet at EICMA, a redesigned version of its in-line four-cylinder naked bike, as the brand consolidates its Hornet model umbrella.
While yet to be confirmed for the Australian market, Honda’s local wing indicated that it is likely to arrive some time next year.
CBR1000RR-R Fireblade: Honda’s full-fat superbike, the CBR1000RR-R, has undergone significant improvements for 2024 including power-boosting engine upgrades, chassis upgrades, and a revised six-axis IMU electronics suite that can be tailored on a fresh TFT dash.
Also: Honda has restructured its range, with the CB500X adventure bike now dubbed NX500, and the CB500F naked bike now wearing the Hornet moniker alongside the CB750 and incoming CB1000 Hornet.
EICMA 2023: KTM
990 Duke: KTM revealed its new 990 Duke, which is set to bolster the bikemaker’s naked sportsbike line-up in Australia from April, 2024.
With an increase in capacity over the 890 Duke R, upon which it is based, the KTM 990 Duke is positioned against 1000-class naked bikes, like the Aprilia Tuono V4 and Ducati Streetfighter V2.
The 990 Duke is motivated by the same LC8c engine as found in the 890 Duke R, however, KTM engineers have raised its capacity from 890cc to 947cc.
This jump in engine size, alongside other mechanical changes, has translated to an output increase of 1kW and 4Nm, for a total 91kW and 103Nm.
The bike takes on revised styling, and an overall increase in size, and can be recognised by its new angular front LED headlight unit. The bike is expected to come in two colours, the orange colour scheme as pictured as well as a more restrained black paint job.
As standard the KTM 990 Duke rides on high-end WP Apex suspension complimented by sticky Bridgestone S22 tyres.
EICMA 2023: Moto Guzzi
Stelvio: Moto Guzzi is expected to launch its new Stelvio adventure tourer in September, joining the V100 Mandello sports tourer upon which it is based.
The Moto Guzzi Stelvio builds upon the V100 Mandello with touring comforts like longer travel suspension, a taller windscreen, revised handlebars and riding position, a 19-inch front wheel (up 2-in) and a 21-litre fuel tank (up 4L).
V85: Moto Guzzi revealed its 2024 range of V85 adventure bikes, complete with a new entry-level Strada variant.
It is unclear what shape the local line-up will take in Australia, however, the brand’s local arm has confirmed that the updated V85 is expected to hit showrooms in August.
The bike’s 853cc twin-cylinder engine has adopted variable valve timing technology, upping its torque output by 3Nm to 83Nm. Power remains at 59kW but peaks at a later 7750rpm.
Also new is a manually adjustable windscreen with a revised shape, a new 5.0-inch TFT dash and newly designed Brembo radial-mounted calipers. Meanwhile, preload adjustability on the rear end and a six-axis IMU are now fitted to TT and TT Travel variants.
EICMA 2023: Royal Enfield
Himalayan: Royal Enfield’s all-new Himalayan adventure bike made its public debut on the EICMA 2023 show floor, with the bike expected to hit Australian showrooms early next year.
The new Himalayan 450 represents a big upgrade compared to the standard Himalayan, with a new liquid-cooled 450cc engine, long-travel upside-down forks, ride-by-wire electronics, a TFT dash, and a reported boost to overall fit-and-finish.
Also: An all-electric Himalayan adventure bike concept, dubbed HIM-E, surprised media aside the brand’s all-new production Himalayan 452. The Indian brand has previously hinted at forthcoming electric models, and as previously reported is tied up with electric bikemaker Stark, but this is the first of its kind to be presented in the flesh.
EICMA 2023: Suzuki
GSX-8R: Suzuki has revealed its new GSX-8R sportsbike, which will join its GSX-8S naked bike stablemate, and rival the likes of the Yamaha R7 when it hits Australian showrooms in the first half of next year.
The fully faired GSX-8R will be priced from $14,990 rideaway, placing it slightly above the GSX-8S naked bike which checked in earlier this year from $14,190.
The GSX-8R builds on Suzuki’s new parallel-twin platform that debuted this year with its V-Strom 800 adventure bike and GSX-8S naked bike, but is distinguished by a full fairing and racey ergonomics befitting its sporty positioning.
Motivating the bike, which tips the scales at 205kg with its 14-litre tank filled, is a familiar 776cc parallel-twin engine generating 61kW and 78Nm.
GSX-S1000GX: Suzuki will release its all new GSX-S1000GX adventure tourer in 2024, priced from $25,890 rideaway.
The Suzuki GSX-S1000GX is billed as something of a cross between the GSX-S1000GT sports tourer ($21,990) and the V-Strom 1050 adventure bike ($22,290), with tall and comfortable ergonomics matched with a sporty powerplant and chassis.
While very much related to current GSX-S series models, the GX is distinguished by longer travel suspension, a more upright riding position, increased ground clearance and the inclusion of electronic suspension.
EICMA 2023: Triumph
Tiger 900: Triumph’s 2024 Tiger 900 range is expected to hit Aussie stores before year’s end, bringing significant performance upgrades and a higher level of standard equipment across the line-up.
For 2024, the Triumph Tiger 900 will be available in three variants: the GT ($21,850 rideaway) and GT Pro ($24,790), as well as the off-road-focussed Rally Pro ($25,950). This means that the regular Rally variant has been discontinued with the 2024 model update.
Speed 400 and Scrambler 400 X: Triumph has confirmed that its new single-cylinder Speed 400 and Scrambler 400 X models will hit Australian showrooms in January, priced rideaway from $8990 and $9990, respectively.
The Triumph Speed 400 is arguably best positioned to compete with Royal Enfield’s Hunter 350 ($7590), while the Scrambler 400 X should take on the Indian brand’s Scram 411 ($7990), among other small-capacity retro-themed models.
Also: Triumph’s new Scrambler 1200, now including an entry-level X variant, will be available in Australia early next year priced from $22,600 rideaway.
EICMA 2023: Yamaha
MT-09: Yamaha has revealed significant updates for its MT-09 middleweight naked bike range, including the flagship MT-09SP variant, which is expected to hit Australian showrooms in the first half of 2024.
The first major update to the MT-09 platform since 2021 is headlined by new design elements, including a redesigned fuel tank, a more compact LED headlight unit and bodywork said to have drawn inspiration from Yamaha’s YZ motocross models.
Interestingly, Yamaha has explained in a press release that the new fuel tank and grille, which also hides a revised airbox, accentuates sound to provide the rider with amplified tones from the bike’s carry-over triple-cylinder engine (889cc, 87kW/93Nm).
Meanwhile, the higher-spec MT-09SP adopts all of the above upgrades, as well as four customisable ‘TRACK’ rider modes, Brembo Stylema brake calipers, a fully adjustable Ohlins rear shock, a keyless ignition, upgraded KYB forks and a brushed aluminium swingarm.
XSR900 GP: Stealing the show was Yamaha’s XSR900 GP, a new variant built on its heritage middleweight naked bike platform that harks back to Grand Prix racebikes of the 1980s.
The 2024 Yamaha XSR900 GP is distinguished by a large cowl and unique bodywork, among other upgrades, that are reminiscent of Wayne Rainey’s 500cc Grand Prix winning racebike as well as the brand’s FZR and TZR production sportsbikes from the same era.
Also: To celebrate the brand’s 50th anniversary, Yamaha has released a range of YZ motocross bikes complete with retro graphics that hark back to 1993.
EICMA 2023: Zero
DSR/X: Electric bikemaker Zero revealed a new Black Forest Edition of its DSR/X adventure bike.
Following a brief hiatus from the Australian market, Zero Motorcycles has announced its return to local showrooms via new partners Peter Stevens Motorcycles, which will distribute the electric bike maker’s complete range of products.
Zero Motorcycles’ range includes its dual-sport DSR/X, DSR, DS and FX, as well as road bike models SR/S, SR/F, SR, S and FXE.
Spencer has a keen eye for hard news, and does some of his best living on deadline day. He loves more than anything to travel on his motorcycle, and is adamant that Melbourne Bitter is a world-class lager. He also knows how to operate the big computery thing in the office. By night, Spencer plays guitar with Melbourne punk outfit LOUTS.