Aprilia RSV Mille 2000

As you will remember I have not been getting on brilliantly with he GSXR on the track. With the modified footrests, one inch lower half inch back, I really liked the bike and was having fun at Cadwell but then I lost the back end at Mansfield. I thought it was the lower footpeg digging in and levering the rear tyre off the deck but now I’m not so sure. The next trackday I put the pegs back to the standard and while I stayed on the bike I couldn’t get on with the riding position. With my long legs and the pegs being so high I really couldn’t hang off the bike and I just couldn’t put a good lap together. Even though now after much thought I think that I probably wound on too much power too early which un-stuck the rear tyre I’m still not keen to take the GSXR back to Cadwell. So the quest for a new bike was started. I was after a bike that would have a bit more umph than a 600 (or at least my ZX6R) and handled and would take my large frame. So what should I go for………….. ermm………. welll………. theres a GSXR750….. Oh bugger…….. Hang on what about a Aprilia RSV decent-ish power, handling and built for the fuller figure!!!

So I started looking out for a RSV that was cheap, nearby and OK. Well there were millions before I started looking but now I wanted one, nothing. Then I spotted one one Ebay, it looked OK on the photos but was completely black , no stickers on it and it had bright in your face orange wheels. The bike was being sold by a dealer so I went to have a look on the way home form work, it was a little in the wrong direction but off I went. When i got there the bike seemed fine, some of the black body work was quite good and some seemed to have been done with a stick by a blind-man from 3 foot away! They were asking £1500 and said it was all HPI clear. I was thinking about it and then he checked the HPI, as he admitted he hadn’t really looked yet and was surprised to find that it was a Cat D. Looking at the bike again I asked how much he would take for it in the condition it was knowing that it was a Cat D. He suggested £1300 and I offered £1200 and I was surprised when he accepted. So I was the proud (ish) owner of a 2000 Aprilia RSV Mille in black with red brakes (The early ones were all like this!!)

So once I got the bike home I made a list of things that needed doing. The list was:

  • New rear tyre, I’ve already sorted this and I have gone for a Bridgestone BT016 Pro to match the front
  • Paint the red brakes another colour, I have yet to decide which colour but I am leaning towards Brembo gold
  • Replace the butchered rear mudguard – I have done this now, you can’t really tell from the outside but I know it has been done
  • Rear Seat Release – The whole unit is missing for some reason so will need replacing, at present you need to pull a cable tie attached to the seat release cable
  • Oil Change – I’ll have to order some as it takes 10W50 instead of the 10w40 that the rest of my garage takes, I will be using Motul 5100 as this seems to be a good cost effective oil (In my opinion) I have an oil filter in the garage from when i had the Tuono but I will need to make sure it is the right one. Aprillia did things a little different to to the usual spin on oil filters that every other manufacturer now used (including Aprilia now with the RSV4) They use filter elements that fit into a hole in the engine and then a cover fits over the top. At some point someone at Aprilia decided to fit a taller cover to the oil filter housing which means that you need a longer oil filter. So there is a 74mm high one and a 101mm high one. I must look which I have sand see if I have to order a new oil filter
  • Re-paint the panels that are a bit dodgy – I have been concentrating on this and have pretty much finished. Basically I have kept it black with various bits in satin silver such as the belly pan and the side panels
  • Stickers – unfortunalty the origianl sticker sets for Aprilias are ridculasly priced, one place asking £400!!! I did find some for a more reasonable price of just over £100 but still that much for stickers and I don’t really want them all. Another issue was that I seem to have the wrong bodywork for the year of the bike which means the stickers I was hoping to go for (Before I saw the price) would not fit as well as they should. So I am in the process of designing my own stickers, with Bladeberts very professional assistance. The idea is for the stickers to appear “Factory” spec but be cheap and easy to apply and of course cheap.
  • Sort out tank mount as one of the bolt holes into the frame has been butchered and then a helicoil has been fitted (badly) and then a stainless bolt has snapped off in it. I think this one is going to be a pain and involve lots of drilling but hopefully it will go OK. May try a different thread insert instead of the helicoil

I think that is it for now, there is no rush preparing for Trackdays as I don’t think I will be going until April at the earliest and maybe not even until May!!! I will hopefully get the GSXR sold and transfer the Insurance onto the RSV and I will put some miles on it on the road so I can get used to it and find out if there are any little problems, this is mainly why I keep my Track bikes road registered and insured etc. Imagine how depressing it would be to turn up to the track  with your dedicated track bike to find out that it doesn’t run well above 3500revs!!!! And yes i have seen it happen, after 2 sessions of about 3 laps each he packed up and went home the day for him was a total waste!!

About The Author


Ambitious Amateur Mechanic, with a slight (OK not slight) Suzuki bias