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

2010 Superbike Smackdown VII Street

Monday, May 17, 2010
2010 Superbike Smackdown Street

Equally is impressive its the Hondas versatile suspension which is both comfortable and sporty at the same time.
The 2009 Suzuki GSX-R1000 cockpit ranks right up there in terms of comfort.
The ZX-10R offers excellent handling. It turns in sharp  its stable at lean and it drives off the corner well.
The 2010 Yamaha YZF-R1 sounds just like Valentino Rossis No. 46 M1 MotoGP bike!
The Pirelli Diablo Supercorsa SP tires provide racetrack-levels of grip.
The RSV4R comes with Pirellis excellent Diablo Supercorsa SP tires.
The RC8R features fully adjustable ergonomics which helps it fit a wider range of riders.
Dimensionally the BMW feels similar to the Honda only a little bit longer.
Envision accelerating from a standstill to 60 mph in under three seconds, slicing through traffic like you’re behind the stick of an F-16, and achieving a top speed so high that we couldn’t find a road long enough to uncover just how fast these machines are. This is the essence of Superbikes—the fastest, most agile production motorcycles known to man. Sportbikes engineered by the stopwatch but sold for duty on the open road. And this year Motorcycle USA has eight of them for its 2010 Superbike Smackdown VII Street Shootout.
 
Similarly to what we’ve done in years past, we’re bringing you two separate comparisons to better delve into the nuances of each bike as operated in your preferred theater of operations. While the 2010 Superbike Smackdown VII Track shootout revolves around lap times around the racetrack, that lingo doesn’t mean squat for us street guys.
 
Because on the streets it’s all about which bike looks best, sounds the meanest, rockets away from the stop light the quickest, hawks the longest wheelie, and pulls the hottest chicks. Meanwhile it still manages to deliver some degree of comfort and day-to-day practicality—not an easy task for any motorcycle. That’s why we’re here to sort out fact from fiction and to discover which of these eight masterpieces you absolutely won’t be able to live without.
 
Headlining this year’s shootout is the defacto standard in the class: the Honda CBR1000RR. In its current iteration, the reigning champ has won two years in a row confirming that it has the ideal combination of speed, agility, and comfort. Despite sporting minimal updates for ’10 the tried-and-true Honda is a proven winner and is the benchmark to beat.
 
After finishing second in the 2009 Superbike Smackdown VI Street comparison, Suzuki is making another appearance as a ’09 model. Due to inventory surpluses it decided not to import any 2010 street bikes into the US, hence the reason we are testing an ‘09 machine. Not a big deal though, as aside from color, the internationally available twenty-ten Gixxer 1000 is unchanged and will be competing with a favorable advantage in terms of price.
 
Our next contestant is Team Green’s Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R. Of all the Japanese bikes available this year, the ZX-10R sports the most mechanical and cosmetic updates. Will this be the boost needed for it to finally grab the No. 1 spot?
 
Last year Yamaha shook up the Inline-Four literbike world with its distinctive YZF-R1 and its crossplane crankshaft. By incorporating a unique engine firing order like the one used on the Fiat Yamaha MotoGP squad’s YZR-M1s, the R1 separated itself from the competition and gave riders a fresh option. Aside from the new color combos, the R1 is unchanged in 2010.
 
This year Europe is represented by not one, not two, but four motorcycles! Italian marque, Ducati, brought out its premium L-Twin powered 1198S Corse Special Edition Superbike. It’s dressed up in new livery with an aluminum fuel tank and is packaged with Ducati’s Race Kit consisting of a new ECU, slip-on Termignoni mufflers, and a rear stand.
 
This leaves us with the three newcomers to our Superbike Smackdown comparisons. First up is Italy’s second challenger in the form of Aprilia’s stunning RSV4R. Released as an all-new model for 2010, this machine is the only one in the group to feature a V-Four engine configuration. It’s based off the upscale RSV4 Factory but priced more reasonably due to its less expensive chassis componentry and engine’s fixed intake trumpets. We were immediately impressed with it during our First Ride, but will it be able to go head-to-head with the opposition?
 
Austrian motorcycle manufacturer KTM has long been known for its fabulous dirt bikes but with the release of its RC8R, KTM finally has achieved true Superbike levels of sportbike performance. Like the Ducati the KTM features a big twin-cylinder engine and steel frame hidden beneath sleek radar-reflecting bodywork.

Last but not least is German motorsports giant BMW and its fully kitted S1000RR. Like its four Japanese competitors the Beemer sports an Inline-Four engine with a conventional firing order and an extremely competitive price tag. In the superbike world BMW had yet to establish itself as a performance leader. Can the all-new S1000RR change all that?
 
To find out we assembled a diverse range of test riders—some big and tall and some short and small before hitting the streets of Southern California. Our route led us down many types of road surfaces that a sportbike enthusiast might encounter, from the concrete five-lane wide dredges of the 405 Freeway to rollercoaster-like twists and turns just north of Ojai. Additional time was spent slicing through town to learn what these machines are like to ride in the everyday world.

Each motorcycle was then rated based on objective performance criteria including: engine horsepower, torque, curb weight, quarter-mile acceleration, zero-to-60 mph acceleration, braking performance, MPG/Range, and MSRP. Bikes were also scored with subjective categories ranked solely on rider opinion including engine performance and character, drivetrain, handling/suspension, brakes, ergonomics, instrumentation/electronics, overall comfort, appearance, and preference. Points were then assessed based on a hybrid Formula One points scale with 10 points for first, eight for second, seven for third, six for fourth, etc, etc. with all categories scored equally. Points are then totaled giving us the bike’s finishing position and this year’s King of the Superbikes.

VideosOur Sponsor
2010 Superbike Smackdown: Street Video - Part 1
Click to view video
VideosOur Sponsor
2010 Superbike Smackdown: Street Video - Part 2
Click to view video
Recent Sportbike Reviews
2014 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R ABS Project Bike
With a few simple modifications we boost the acceleration performance of Kawasaki’s Ninja ZX-10R sportbike for track use.
Cheap Track Yamaha R6 Project - Part I
MotoUSA contributing editor Neale Bayly happens on a lightly crashed 2005 Yamaha R6 - an ideal platform upon which to build into an affordable, real-world trackday bike.
2015 KTM RC390 First Ride
KTM is bringing its single-cylinder RC390 sportbike to the States in 2015, and MotoUSA gets an early sampling on the backroads of Italy followed by laps on the Modena circuit.
2015 Honda CBR300R First Ride
Honda ups its game in the small displacement sportbike segment with its 2015 CBR300R, which features more juice than the outgoing CBR250R and styling to match its larger CBR siblings.
2015 Energica Ego First Ride
Motorsport and aerospace engineering group, Cevolini Rapid Prototyping (CRP) joins the electric motorcycle race with its Energica Ego Superbike.
2014 Honda VFR Interceptor First Ride
After a multi-year hiatus from Honda's US line-up, the VFR Interceptor returns to the American market with notable revisions in 2014. See how the new iteration fares on road in this First Ride.
2014 Honda CBR650F First Ride
Positioned between Honda's newbie-friendly CBR500R and racy CBR600RR, the CBR650F bridges the gap between the two with emphasis on street performance and comfort.

Login or sign up to comment.

Comments
adam - motousa -+1 on the m3  January 22, 2011 11:34 PM
m power for life
JOHN -CBR1000RR #2?  December 18, 2010 06:24 PM
i drive a bmw m3 and i give bmw props for coming out with this ltr bike..not so sure about it being on top of the cbr1000rr..a lot of the guy's i ride with mostly ride a cbr and theres a good reason why.its cheaper than the bmw,its faster according to ur super pole results,its the most comfortable bike,and it has its own unique styling..its own..unlike the bmw that looks like a yamaha r6..this is just my opinion..
bilal -250cc to 500cc sport bike rapsol  June 17, 2010 11:18 AM
i like this bike i want a bike in pakistan you tell me price and custom price
bazi -busa vs zx14  June 15, 2010 09:00 PM
i am a big fan of busa and zx 14 and of motousa but iam waiting when you will putt busa and zx14.
adam - motousa -just a joke  May 19, 2010 11:56 AM
but i wish it was real!
Bob -RC8R radar-reflecting bodywork.  May 18, 2010 10:39 AM
Is that for real or just a comment on the shape of the bodywork.