Ariel Ace

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Ariel Ace
Ariel Ace.jpg
Ariel Ace with girder fork
ManufacturerAriel Motor Co
Production2014–
Predecessornone
Classnaked bike
Engine1,237 cc (75.5 cu in), 4-valve liquid-cooled V4 engine
Top speed170 mph (270 km/h) (estimated)[1]
Power173 hp (129 kW) (claimed)[2]
Torque72 lb⋅ft (98 N⋅m) (claimed)[2]
Transmission6-speed, shaft drive, dry clutch, manual
Frame typeAluminium trellis
SuspensionFront: Girder fork or telescopic fork
Rear: monoshock
BrakesFront: Dual disc, 6-pot Nissin caliper
Rear: Single disc
TiresFront: 17 in (430 mm)
Rear: 17 in (430 mm)
Rake, trail21.8°–28.4° (adjustable)[2]
Wheelbase1,541–1,563 mm (60.7–61.5 in)[2]
Weight230 kg (510 lb)[3] (wet)

The Ariel Ace is a 2014 sports motorcycle that is manufactured by the British Ariel Motor Company in Crewkerne, Somerset, England. It uses the 1,200 cc (73 cu in) V4 engine from the Honda VFR1200.

It is the Ariel marque's first new motorcycle in more than 50 years.[4][5]

Design[edit]

Ariel Atom sports car with similar exposed frame

Ariel has a "long-standing relationship with Honda",[6] who were sufficiently impressed with Ariel's Atom sports car to allow them to use their VFR engine in the Ace. The V4 engine is suspended from "a huge, bridge-like aluminium frame" that resembles a trellis frame in appearance.[7] Trellis frames are usually fabricated from welded tubes, such as on the Ducati Monster, as well as for the chassis of the Atom.[1][8] The Ace's frame, however, is not made from welded steel tube; rather the frame sides are machined from a solid aluminium billet.[7] This gives the frame's diagonal stiffeners their distinctive triangular vee section, rather than the usual round-section tube.

The Ariel Ace comes with a choice of two alternative front suspensions; either a conventional upside-down telescopic fork, or Ariel's own girder fork. Rear suspension uses a single-sided swingarm. Final drive is shaft drive.

An unusual feature is that the rider's knees do not grip a shaped fuel tank; instead one's knees are alongside the frame, which is rather less comfortable.

Customization[edit]

Bikes can be ordered from the factory with various options, and upgraded over time. Options include front and rear suspension, handlebars, bodywork, fuel tank size, exhaust, wheels, seat, footrests, colors and finishes.[9][4]

Reception[edit]

Roland Brown, writing in The Daily Telegraph, concludes that the Ace is a "dramatically styled, cleverly engineered and enjoyably powerful V4 roadster that returns the renowned Ariel marque to motorcycling in impressive fashion".[1] Jensen Beeler, writing in Asphalt and Rubber, dubbed it "the most expensive Honda you will ever come across" noting its exclusivity.[7] Loz Blain in Gizmag called it "one of the best looking motorcycles I've ever seen", also noting the GB£20,000 price puts it out of reach for many riders.[10]

Gizmag and Jalopnik both noted the unique customization options available to create a cruiser, fully faired sportbike, or naked bike around a common frame and powertrain; the latter publication called it an "adult Lego set".[10][9]

A review in Road & Track compared the design to that of the Atom sports car, calling it "purposeful" but "not particularly pretty".[11]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Roland Brown (4 October 2014). "Ariel Ace review". The Daily Telegraph.
  2. ^ a b c d Jesse Kiser (30 June 2014), "Ariel ACE specs", RideApart
  3. ^ Farrell, Steve (20 July 2014), "First ride: Ariel Ace review—Who knew a VFR1200 engine could sound this good?", Visor Down
  4. ^ a b Jonny Edge (25 June 2014), "Ariel Ace (2015): new motorbike from makers of Atom", Car
  5. ^ "Firm to Make First New Bike in 50 Years", Western Gazette, Yeovil, UK, 3 July 2014, archived from the original on 29 March 2015 – via HighBeam Research, (Subscription required (help))
  6. ^ Joseph, Noah (24 June 2014). "Ariel gets back into bikes with customizable Ace motorcycle". Autoblog. Retrieved 30 March 2017.
  7. ^ a b c Jensen Beeler (25 June 2014), "Ariel Ace – A Very Expensive Honda from England", Asphalt and Rubber
  8. ^ Steve Cropley (25 June 2014), "Ariel reveals premium motorcycle: Makers of the super-fast Atom sports car have produced a bike that will cost around £20,000 and features a skeletal frame reminiscent of the Atom", Autocar
  9. ^ a b Michael Ballaban (25 June 2014), "The Ariel Ace Is Basically The Adult Lego Set Of Your Motorcycle Dreams", Jalopnik
  10. ^ a b Loz Blain (27 June 2014), "Ariel Ace: The massively configurable motorcycle platform", Gizmag
  11. ^ Kierstein, Alex (8 July 2014), "Ariel Ace: a user-friendly, highly-customizable 170 hp motorcycle", Road & Track

External links[edit]