Drag site icon to your taskbar to pin site. Learn More

2009 Aprilia Mana 850 Review

Monday, February 16, 2009
2009 Aprilia Mana 850
The Aprilia Mana 850 provides motorcycle performance and feel, but with its automatic Sportgear transmission.
The Aprilia Mana 850 will be a motorcycle of consequence. At least that’s the conclusion I come to while swooping through curves on Southern Californian backroads aboard the Piaggio Group’s pitch for the entry-level/crossover crowd. Corner after corner I dip the bike in, rolling on and off the throttle, no shifts to worry about, no clutch to pull.

Sure, the Mana and its unconventional automatic Sportgear transmission could just as easily flop - remembered as an oddity, an unsuccessful offshoot in motorcycle evolution. Yet, whatever its fate, here it is, the Mana, a full-fledged motorcycle flaunting the unofficial rule that twist-and-go simplicity always be relegated to the scooter realm.

The naked Mana is a motorcycle plain enough, with obvious chain-drive and a 90-degree V-Twin powerplant on display. Only closer inspection reveals the lack of a clutch lever, made possible by the Sportgear transmission, a CVT design with four separate drive modes.

2009 Aprilia Mana 850
The Mana's Sportgear transmission has four settings - three fully-automatic "Autodrive" and one manual sequential-shift mode.
The first three “Autodrive” settings: Sport, Touring and Rain, are fully automatic engine mappings, selected by the rider via right side switchgear button. The fourth setting, a manual sequential shift mode dubbed Sportgear, operates similar to a traditional gearbox. Seven gear ratios are modulated by a traditional pedal or +/- trigger switch on the left-side switchgear.

In practical application, the Autodrive settings make a noticeable difference in power delivery. In Sport the engine revs high, with quicker acceleration - at least we felt it revs higher, as the Mana has no tach to gauge the RPM. Rain mode, which unlike the others makes an audible clunk once selected, has a more relaxed throttle delivery for its intended wet-weather application. Touring is a happy medium and preferred default setting. In all three auto modes a rider can manually downshift, for better acceleration on passing maneuvers. But once committed to the mindless application of Autodrive, I found it much simpler to just twist the throttle and go.

In fact, the auto setting works so well I found little interest in operating in the Sportgear mode at all. The manual shift mode does a decent job simulating a regular gearbox with seamless upshifts, but I didn’t shift better than the computer – so what’s the point? The entire system, which is electronically controlled, is idiot proof. Even in manual mode the bike will downshift when it needs to and stalling the Mana is impossible.

Power delivery from the CVT is linear with smooth throttle response; the differences between the three Autodrive modes are palpable. We managed an indicated mid-110s for top speed and at 75mph there’s plenty extra for quick passes during freeway commutes.

2009 Aprilia Mana 850 dyno
Peak power numbers are well-suited to entry-level riders. Dyno stats courtesy of Mickey Cohen Motorsports.
The liquid-cooled 839cc Twin may not be the earth-trembling torque monster of its Italian brethren, but sticking the Mana in fourth ‘gear’ it spun the Mickey Cohen Motorsports dyno up to 54 hp and 39 lb-ft torque. While speed junkies will be underwhelmed by the SOHC four-valve Twin’s performance, it is more than adequate for spirited street riding and a playful match for the entry-level/intermediate riders it is marketed toward.

“For an entry level motorcycle the power is more than acceptable,” says MCUSA Video Editor Robin Haldane. “I found that the Mana Twin got you up to speed quickly but was very easy to control.”

“I was very surprised, actually,” says MCUSA Executive Editor Steve Atlas, a former professional racer and expert rider. “I thought I was going to hate it, but considering this goes up against scooters and is fully automatic, I was fairly impressed. The engine gets up and goes well for a CVT-driven auto.”

2009 Aprilia Mana 850
Yes, the missing clutch lever took some getting used to, but it didn't take long to get used to the Mana's auto transmission.
In general the public reaction to the Mana on our test rides could best be described as curious contempt, with comments like, “that’s that scooter-type thing right?” Skepticism toward the automatic transmission may hover about the Mana, but there’s just not much fault to find in the system. It’s an automatic motorcycle – big deal!

The biggest quirk we experienced was acclimatizing to the lack of a clutch. Approaching a corner at high speed it was unnerving to keep instinctively reaching for an invisible lever, but the rider adapts untill... Clutches, shcmutches. Who needs ‘em anyway?

“I kept going for the clutch over and over,” adds Atlas. “It’s embedded in my brain that I need to be using my left hand all the time on a motorcycle and it took some serious coaxing to get myself used to that. It did come in handy when I wanted to pick up Starbucks, though!”

One foible of the CVT system is the need for a parking brake, located on the left side of the engine/frame. But even that eccentricity, once accustomed to, became appreciated as a convenience – in particular while parking on a sloped surface.

2009 Aprilia Mana 850
No one will mistake the Mana's handling capabilities with those of a scooter once the road starts getting twisty.
The scooter stigma associated with the Mana is shattered in the handling department. There is nothing remotely scooter-ish about it. Sporting a 57.5-inch wheelbase, 24-degree rake and 4.05-inches of trail, the Mana is all motorcycle and a deft handler at that. The center of gravity feels quite low to the ground, with the Mana carrying rear-weight bias of 53.9% - the fuel stored underseat. The steering is quick, yet easy to control, and with a 491-lb tank empty weight, it still transitions side-to-side without trouble (the Mana weighed in at 516 lbs full of fuel).

The 43mm front fork is non-adjustable, with preload and rebound adjustment available on the rear shock. The front end felt reliable, with stock fork settings more than adequate for entry-level use - although faster riders will pine for adjustment options.

“Compared to a scooter, the handling is for sure its shining point,” says Atlas. “It’s a full-sized motorcycle with bike wheels and stickier tires and no scooter could keep this thing in sight.”

“At fast speeds in longer sweeping corners I found the Mana to get slightly uneasy, leaving me a little less confident than I would have liked,” admits Robin, before adding, “the chassis allows for quick side-to-side turns, however, allowing you to rock ‘n roll through a tight canyon road quite well.”
2009 Aprilia Mana 850 2009 Aprilia Mana 850 2009 Aprilia Mana 850
The front brakes on the Mana were more than capable (top). The quirky parking brake (middle) and trigger shifter (bottom) won't be found on any other ride.

The dual 320mm front discs brakes overachieved and display considerable initial bite from the radial-mount four-piston calipers.

“Good initial bite paired with great feel left me very happy with the brakes,” agrees Robin. “I was able to come up on a corner pretty hot and feel confident that I could slow down in time to make it through.”

“Great brakes, probably overkill even for this machine,” adds Atlas. “They have ample feel and feedback, plus way more than enough power.”

Hard braking before a corner actually exhibited another quirk, as there were a few occasions where my glove stuck on the throttle while pulling the brake. It’s a lazy riding technique, but you’d be surprised how often it would happen as most riders pull in the clutch downshifting while decelerating. It would make sense on the Mana to separate the right side controls, mounting the brake lever on the left handlebar, except that arrangement would be catastrophic when riders mistake it for the traditional clutch - which they undoubtedly would!

At 6'1", the Mana felt smallish to me, but not uncomfortable. The riding position is upright and standard, with a pleasant pinch of mild sportiness. Handlebar placement is natural, but taller riders will find leg room on the snug side. Those shorter statured, however, should get along well and not find the 31.4-inch seat height intimidating.

“The relaxed ergos are great for around town and help make the bike a lot of fun to ride,” agrees Robin, “however, during our long three-day ride I would have appreciated a little more leg room and maybe a small windscreen.”

Under the pillion seat is the 4.2-gallon fuel tank – good enough for about a 170-mile range with our observed 41.6 MPG efficiency. Oddly enough, there’s not a fuel meter on the Mana – that we could find. A lot of redundant info like real-time MPG and average MPG efficiency is available on the instrument console, but really, what possible advantage can a rider glean from momentary glimpses of fuel efficiency? The white background speedo is best feature on the so-so instrument panel.

2009 Aprilia Mana 850
A convenient commuter or weekend playbike, the Mana is an intriguing option for entry-level or scooter riders looking for a fun ride without stressing over a clutch.
We did, however, appreciate the unexpected storage where the traditional fuel tank would reside. Full-face helmet storage is possible, but while one rider’s medium-size Shoei would fit, my large-size modular wouldn’t. Still, the storage space is eminently convenient – boosting its commuter advantages.

Style-wise the Mana looks the part of a naked street bike. It would seem Aprilia designers were keen on balancing the unconventional drivetrain with a traditional motorcycle look and feel.

“Overall I would give the Mana a 6 out of 10 if compared to other motorcycles, but compared to scooters, I’d have to give it an 8 or 9 out of 10,” Atlas concludes. “For all you experienced riders looking for a sporting machine, this just isn’t it. But for those looking to ditch the scooter and make their way into the motorcycle world, this may be an ideal option.”

At $9899, the Mana MSRP is steep, in particular during these down economic times. Yet it seems like there has to be a market for the Mana, one that has been untapped for years. New riders will enjoy the innovative mount and I’d wager that even skeptical riders would admit grudging respect for the Mana after a day in the saddle. It is a refined package and worthy of a place on American roadways and dealer showrooms.
Videos Our Sponsor
2009 Aprilia Mana 850 Review
Click to view video
Aprilia Mana Review Photo Gallery
View Gallery
View Gallery
View Gallery
View Gallery
View Slideshow
Aprilia Sport Bike Motorcycle Reviews
2014 Aprilia Mana 850 GT ABS Comparison
Aprilia appeals to a different sort of rider with its Mana 850 GT ABS ($11,918.95 as tested). Outfitted with a CVT-style transmission the Mana gives riders the choice between manual or fully-automatic shifts.
2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R ABS Comparison
Aprilia boasts a history of bringing hard-edged track performance to the road with its Tuono streetfighter.
2015 Aprilia Caponord 1200 First Ride
Returning to the US after a multi-year hiatus, the 2015 Aprilia Caponord 1200 is designed to make a splash in the popular adventure-touring market.
2012 Aprilia Tuono V4R APRC First Ride
The Aprilia Tuono returns, redesigned around the World Superbike-winning RSV4. Motorcycle USA gets its first ride aboard the 2012 Aprilia Tuono V4R APRC.
2011 Aprilia Dorsoduro 1200 First Ride
We take to the streets with Aprilia's 2011 Dorsoduro 1200 to find out if this street bike offers the ultimate road-going supermoto experience.
Dealer Locator
Aprilia Mana 850 Specifications
2009 Aprilia Mana 850
Engine: 90-degree V-Twin
Displacement: 839.3cc
Bore x Stroke: 88 x 69mm
Max Dyno Horsepower: 54.24 hp @ 8,000rpm
Max Dyno Torque: 39.43 lb-ft @ 5,700rpm
Fueling: Weber Marelli EFI, with 39mm throttle body
Transmission: Sportgear CVT
Final Drive: Chain
Front Suspension: 43mm non-adjustable 120mm travel
Rear Suspension: Off-set shock, adjustable rebound and preload 125mm
Front Brake: Dual 320mm disc, 4-piston radial-mount calipers
Rear Brake: Single 260mm disc, single-piston caliper
Front Wheel/Tire: 3.5 x 17-inch, 120/70
Rear Wheel/Tire: 6 x 17-inch, 180/55
Wheelbase: 57.5 in
Seat Height: 31.4 in
Weight: 516 lbs (tank full), 230 front / 278 rear
Dry Weight: 491 (tank empty)
Fuel Capacity: 4.2 gallons
Available Colors:
MSRP: $9,899

Login or sign up to comment.

decayocaster -have one, love it  September 28, 2010 04:09 PM
I have 3k+ miles on the Mana 850 GT/ABS and as far as I'm concerned, it's the perfect commuter bike. I've owned real motorcycles and I've owned a Vespa 250, and this competes well against both of their strengths.

Handles like a dream in town and on the highway, plenty of speed (120 mph on this morning's commute - er, I mean, it's well able to go the speed of traffic), and no shifting when the traffic becomes stop and go and you're stuck.

Compared to the scooter? You just fire it up, hop on, and you're off without much more prep than the Vespa. My BMW always seemed like a production to get it moving, but this just goes. But no fear of being overpowered in traffic at speed, which was a concern on the Vespa, because the Mana's really a motorcycle.

The bike is great for the experienced rider who wants to be lazy, or for the rider who wants to ride to work at rush hour without spending all his/her time working the clutch, and who also doesn't want to be bounced around on the road. I'm a big fan.
Bob -Sounds like LX models to come  August 22, 2010 05:44 PM
I love the way the CVT on my car smoothly pours out power. As an over 50 rider I have no problem with being pampered and wouldn't hesitate for a second to give up the gear box. I'd be shocked (and disappointed) if CVTs weren't available on many touring bikes in the near future. Like my Dad used to say, by the time most people can afford a sports car they don't want one anymore.
jjsjjsva -The future  April 24, 2010 02:37 PM
"All things considered, a Mana buyer may be spending 10K for the admittedly cool cargo bay and a few avoided shifts in tight traffic. Is it worth it over the cheaper, better performing Aprilia Shiver 750?"

Actually, I read an online track test comparing the Mana vs. Shiver and the Mana posted quicker lap times (a few second) with it in sport mode. So much for paper specs vs reality.

Althought not a dual clutch system like Honda, the days of manual shifting on motorcycles are limited. Ferrari and Prosche use dual clutch autoshifting instead of a manual clutch and gear box system because it shifts faster. All performance bikes will be dual-clucth systems within 5 years.
Walter -Might be what I'm after  March 2, 2010 12:39 PM
Haven't ridden since getting pushed into a guardrail and suffering severe nerve damage 16 years ago. I have missed it but I haven't come up for a solution for not being able to close my left hand that I felt would really work. This might be it!

Prefer it to be less pricey but compared to the Hondas and the Yamaha FJ this is cheaper and an ideal size for a re-entry rider.
LT -Needs More Oomph?  March 1, 2010 12:10 PM
Seems to me the Mana is lacking a bit too much in power. While a bike with a commuter focus doesn't need any more than the Mana provides, the Aprilia is also marketed as a 'sporty' ride, and this is where it's 54 rear wheel horsepower and 39 lbs-ft of torque let it down. Sure the CVT makes up for some of that, but probably not enough to justify the cost. All things considered, a Mana buyer may be spending 10K for the admittedly cool cargo bay and a few avoided shifts in tight traffic. Is it worth it over the cheaper, better performing Aprilia Shiver 750?
J. -Love it!  November 11, 2009 02:25 PM
I have nearly 3,000 miles on my Mana and love it! I moved up from a scooter (a Vespa GTS 250), which I used mostly for weekend day-tripping in the 100-to-300-mile range. With the scooter, I liked focusing on the ride, the scenery and safety instead of being in the right gear. I also liked the peace-of-mind gained from knowing that, should an emergency situation present itself, I could concentrate solely on avoiding it without any fear of stalling out.

The Mana lets me continue with those automatic-shifting enjoyments and advantages, although taking everything to a whole new level of performance. I am especially pleased with the Mana's bigger tires and more capable suspension -- bridge grates and rough patches have become non-factors. The engine power's great, too. I now revel in taking interstate highways home (a white-knuckle proposition before on my scooter), which lets me extend my day trips even further.

I can't begin to describe my satisfaction with the Mana. It's an absolutely great, do-everything bike that's comfortable and practical in most all possible ways. 'Looks great, too, at least to my eyes. I just ordered the OEM side cases and top case to begin adding overnight jaunts to my riding repertoire.

If there were any complaints, it would be for Aprilia to offer a slightly lower seat option, like Piaggio does on most Moto Guzzi's, and to shave a few pounds to bring it closer to the Shiver's dry weight. A slighter bigger gas tank for greater range would be welcome, too. Otherwise, I'd highly recommend the Mana for those looking to upgrade from their scooters or entry-level motorcycles, for regular motorcyclists looking to "downshift" to more user-friendly riding, or really for most anyone else on two wheels. 'Couldn't be happier!
jms1996 -Thinking of buying the Mana  October 31, 2009 08:10 PM
Im not a rider but love bikes and at the dealer the salesrep showed it to me over a scooter and said it was a bike for a beginner like myself. My plans are to get one for the spring time.

JR -thinking about it  October 11, 2009 06:43 AM
I have an injury in my left wrist that sometimes prevents me from riding, or, sends me home early from using the clutch lever. Great alternative for me!
grrrrrr -sore wrist  July 2, 2009 08:35 PM
i have arthritis in my left wrist ... so im thinking automatic is what i need ... wondering why no one mentioned this ...
Scott -Harley die-hard loves it ...  June 29, 2009 09:39 PM
I've been riding for over 25 years. I saw the Mana 850 and got curious and torn, "The 2009 Shiver, Dorsoduro, or the Mana?" In their own right, these are seriously unique models by Aprilia. Long story short: Now over 2000 on the odo I have no regrets. The Mana is fun to ride across the spectrum. It won't win any contests, but it is a superb mid-gear performer, handles well, stops well, cruises well, and very importantly for me, behaves well in hot, humid traffic congestion. In addition, fuel consumption is quite good, and like most owners, I end up using the "Touring" mode almost always. Furthermore, its Italian design seems to attract many well interested comments from people at red lights - even Harley junkies. Recently, I swapped saddles with a Harley rider and he took the Mana for a spin. Riding his HD I couldn't keep up with him, however, the HD clearly won the exhaust tone contest. His verdict was simply awe. In regards to exhaust tone, the Mana is ultra quiet. That could have certain advantages. Many positive aspects that I did not expect. However, the notable negative is the somewhat "slushy" start-up in first gear. This is quickly overcome by its flat power manner, however, some traditional riders may shun this. Furthermore, tight, slow cornering requires a bit of throttle playing to keep the CVT engaged. No biggie, but certainly a different behaviour to get used to. I used to avoid urban commuting, but now I challenge it.
Elliott -Mana 850 GT announced  June 13, 2009 09:55 AM
Aprilia has announced the Mana 850 GT in Europe. Same bike, with with a half fairing and some other goodies.
Jim Weber -Perfect for beginners  June 7, 2009 08:06 AM
I put 780 miles on my mana,before that i never rode a motorcycle before. I drive through heavy traffic in Pittsburgh this bike has pleanty of power it pull's me i weigh 240lbs it goes 115 easily on the hi way, i tried it out once just to see how fast it would go. I am very pleased.PS the guy's from AF1 ran it on the drag strip it ran 13.4 in the quarter mile.
clevelander -mana  May 17, 2009 01:05 PM
This is a cool looking bike, and I want one badly. So what if it has a CVT? Most cars do. Would like to test ride one, but no motorcycle endorsement yet. At an MSRP of almost ten grand, maybe a little pricey, but have found them near me for nine. Keep the high-performance sportbikes with their manual shifts. Would like to see more cruiser-style bikes with the CVT. But for now, the Mana is my choice!!
Gen -Beginners  April 2, 2009 03:08 PM
Not so great for beginners, too heavy! Look at the specs it is over 500 pounds, it is way too much for beginner's bike.
cW -weight?  March 17, 2009 08:02 PM
I wonder what ratio of the weight is the trans. How much lighter would this be with a less hefty engine or smaller frame, or is that mass due to the does-it-itself tranny?
Stan -WTF  March 16, 2009 09:40 AM
I rode one of these at Daytona this year (2009). Blah... For one thing, a die-hard commuter like myself would want a full fairing and tall windscreen. Not very much power from this model, so maybe make it a 1000cc next, at least for 10k it should be? The website says it has optional side and top cases, but pics of these would be nice. The factory aftermarket windscreen is a cheap plastic that can be had from windjammer or the like. Why isn't this thing a shaft drive??? I mean if you're gonna make it automatic then sheesh people, go maintenance free with a shaftdrive! BMW manages to do this and still make it with a single sided swingarm and easy rear tire removal. (While in daytona I went to BMW on US1 and they had 5 2008 BMW K1200S for sale for $11k. Enough to make me think about trading in my Interceptor!) Guess I love my Honda Interceptor, but I would also like to see it come with shaft drive as well as 1200cc power. The one innovation that this bike has that should be an industry coming-of-age feature, is the false tank helmet storage. That trick pony stole the show at Daytona in ingenuity in my books!
junefour -aprillia mana 850  February 19, 2009 05:45 PM
my first bike was a piaggio fly 150 , i master that scooter in no time, so i bought a mana 850. today feb 19 2009 was da first time on a real motorcycle call da mana 850. its great fun to handle, even on rain mode, like da first time riding a bike like this was cool when riding on ride mode, u gave it gas,and at slowing down it went into like netral which i like coming up on da red light. im havin fun with it.
Shakes -Fairings?  February 18, 2009 11:36 PM
I love it! Shifting a bike by hand doesn't give you faster times! It's just an antiquated way of riding. Just throw some fairings on the baby and I'll be placing my order!
Admitted Newb -Just can't start here  February 17, 2009 03:02 PM
I just can't start on a bike that doesn't teach me to actually ride. I have done this in my car already. I learned to drive on an automatic, then I learned how to drive stick later. Big mistake, the bad habits I brought from my auto added to the confusion in the stick. I can't imagine learning auto on a bike then trying to switch to manual. Think about that first corner on your next bike.
David -MANA  February 17, 2009 10:56 AM
I rode the Mana last summer out of curiosity and based on the fact that 80% of my riding is in town. I came away extremely impressed and really could not find any faults with the bike. In fact if all of my riding was in town I would own one. The Mana is hands down the best commuting motorcycle to date, without question, period! I also think it is a great beginner bike although I believe that there is real value in learning to shift properly, at least until there is wider availability of automatics.
JSH -CVT's aren't just for scooters  February 17, 2009 08:59 AM
DBIKE magazine has an excellent article on clutchless transmission in the March-09 issue. They cover dual-clutch, CVT, and hydraulic transmissions. They also bring up the fact that F1 banned CVT's specifically because they dropped lap times too much. It will be interesting to see if the buying public will accept clutchless motorcycles. ABS has been slow to catch on and I'm sure some here will claim they can brake better than Honda's new sportbike ABS system. I agree with howard that the rejection of new technology has more to do with ego than reality. The funny thing is that if Honda fielded a CVT motorcycle in MotoGP; CVT's would be the new must have item for sportbike riders that buy bikes based on race results and spec sheets. I wonder if MotoGP bans CVT's like F1 does? The BIKE article did point out several automatic motorcycles in the works from Honda. (A V-Twin, shaft drive touring bike; 4 cylinder sportbike; and a longitudinal V4)
Marko -Aftermarket  February 17, 2009 03:31 AM
What might work is if they had dealer installed/aftermarket options to upgrade items as the rider’s abilities improve. Engine performance upgrades, better forks, better exhaust, etc. Sort of like the SV650 with a rich aftermarket to tweak the bike to the riders needs. This will allow the bike to change with the rider until they are ready for a “real” bike.
Bandeeto -leftovers  February 17, 2009 02:50 AM
I like this bike. I'm looking for something to commute on. Not having to shift is key. Don't care how good a rider you are, the less you have to do the better chance you have of making the correct descision in an dangerouse situation. This is true for any risky activity, much less one in which the biggest risk constantly surrounds you (cars). I agree that shifting a motorcycle can be enjoyable, but try getting stuck in bumper to bumper traffic, 100+ degree weather, in a state that doesn't allow lane splitting. Not that enjoyable. It's situations like that where I wouldn't mind letting the bike do a little of the work for me.
Jimbolaya -Nostalgia  February 16, 2009 09:55 PM
Closest bike I can think of to this in power, torque & weight is a '79 Honda CX500 (estimate a bit lower in all three categories). Don't laugh, the CX may have been my second favorite street bike.
wllrjstn -disabilties  February 16, 2009 05:51 PM
I think this bike is great. A rider that lost his left thumb or messed up his left foot could still ride something besides a scooter. That would make the Mana priceless for me if I were in that condition. I also think this is the only motorcycle I could ever see my wife riding. She can't even drive a stick shift car, much less a bike with a traditional transmission.
thesoapster -Interesting bike...  February 16, 2009 02:03 PM
If I was looking for something automatic with two wheels I'd choose this before any scooter. That said, I quite like operating the transmission myself. Not to mention this bike is down on power...seems to be best suited for a commuter. It's a bit pricey for a beginner, even though it sounds like it would fit a beginner well. Also, after watching the video... Bart, don't sound so enthused!! (just kiding)
Desmolicious -1 journo is not conclusive  February 16, 2009 12:22 PM
Just because one journo went faster on the Mana does not mean anything. Skill levels vary. If a whole bunch of skilled riders went faster, then that's a different story.
darragh howard -mana transmission  February 16, 2009 10:17 AM
i have ridden a Mana for about 400 miles and the ability to downshift even when in any of the automatic modes is key. The downshifts are silky smooth (smoother than you could replicate with a clutch) and the upshifts take care of themselves and again are much more efficient than you could do yourself with a clutch. While some die-hards will think they can upshift and downshift better with a clutch, they are wrong (just sad victims of their egos). There is an interesting test I read by an Italian journo who tested the Mana and the Shiver. The Shiver has 20 more horses and he ended up lapping the Pirelli testing facility faster on the Mana at the end of the day. The Mana's transmission gives you full power when you want it ALL THE TIME. Just not possible when you're working the gears on a conventional box. Personally, I believe we'll start seeing a lot more CVTs in the motorcycle world. OK.. I think Aprilia will bring out a motorcycle version of the MP3 three wheeler and maybe mate it to a CVT..!!
Desmolicious -A good deal considering  February 16, 2009 09:56 AM
$9899 is not bad if you consider it to other full size scooters like the Burgman 650. Those cost about the same but have much lower spec motors and running gear. This bike will appeal to those who are commuters, maybe would consider a cruiser in this price range, or for some that are looking for a unique machine. The storage space is great. So, if a 'small' mfg like Aprilia can make this bike for $10K, how on God's green earth can Honda justify asking $15K for their automatic bike, which has zero storage space and a smaller/weaker engine?
Kirk -Maybe  February 16, 2009 08:32 AM
Depends on what you want from motorcycling. If you're intent is to commute and do inner-city stuff then this might be perfect. But if you intend to play hard in the twisties it sounds like the suspension would be a pitfall for you. You must, also, think about the level of control you get by shifting a bike in panic situations vs just pulling the brakes on the CVT bike. Beginner bike it may be, but is it perfect and will it suit your needs- only a test ride will answer that.
Shaswata Panja -For Beginners  February 16, 2009 04:56 AM
Can the Mana 850 be considered a perfect motorcycle for beginnners? I am very curious about it