British bike maker Norton unveiled its re-engineered flagship superbike, the V4SV. Few bike makers have such a tumultuous yet illustrious past as Norton. From dominating at the Isle of Man TT races to going bankrupt due to questionable management (à la Stuart Garner), Norton has seen its fair share of ups and downs. Recently, the brand was rescued by a TVS buyout.
Powered by a 1,200cc V4 engine making 187.5hp and 125Nm
Exotic, hand-built components results in exorbitant £44,000 price tag
Built entirely at new UK headquarters
Norton V4SV: offered in two variants
The first thing that strikes you about the V4SV is the beautiful and evocative design it possesses. It is utterly brilliant to look at with its exposed hand TIG welded aluminium frame, full carbon fibre bodywork and an under-braced billet aluminium single-sided swingarm. The 15l race bike-like underseat fuel tank is fully carbon fibre in construction with Kevlar reinforcement.
The rest of the industry is rushing to stick aerodynamic winglets on the side of their superbikes, but the Norton bucks this trend, with a clean, flowing and uncluttered look devoid of any appendages.
There are two variants on offer – Manx Silver and Carbon. Visual features common to both include full carbon fibre bodywork and a Union Jack on the tail.
The Manx Silver gets traditional Norton colours with red and carbon highlights on a polished silver base, a black number board on the front fascia as well as red forged aluminium OZ racing wheels.
The Carbon gets fully exposed carbon fibre bodywork and full carbon BST wheels. These are even lighter than forged aluminium units and should make this variant lighter on its feet. While Norton hasn’t given a price break-up for the two variants, it’s likely that the Carbon will cost more than the Manx.
Norton V4SV: engine and chassis
With a 72-degree 1200cc V4 engine featuring titanium valves and churning out 187.5hp at 12,500rpm and 125Nm of torque at 9,000rpm, it has more than enough firepower to back up its breathtakingly good looks.
Suspension at both ends is supplied by Ohlins – a NIX 30 front fork and a TTXGP rear monoshock that’s bespoke to this bike. Top-drawer equipment continues to the braking hardware as well to keep all that horsepower in check. The V4SV gets a full Brembo braking system with a radial master cylinder at the front paired to twin monobloc calipers clamping down on 330mm rotors. The rear gets a 245mm disc paired to a single piston caliper.
Is it a 21st century Norton?
In a nutshell, yes. The V4SV gets most of the electronic aids you’d expect on a flagship superbike today, with a 6-axis IMU (Inertial Measurement Unit) that facilitates lean-sensitive traction control, cornering ABS and three engine modes: wet, road and sport.
Full LED lighting as well as keyless ignition come standard on the V4SV. Something you wouldn’t necessarily expect is a rear-view camera whose functionality is controlled through the 6-inch colour TFT display.
Norton V4SV: price
Perhaps the biggest talking point about this bike is the eye-watering £44,000 asking price. So exorbitant is the price for the Norton that it surpasses even the monumental £35,000 price tag of the Panigale V4 SP2. For anyone other than the lucky few who are able to afford it, this will remain as unobtainable as six-pack abs on a diet of mozzarella cheese only.
Despite now being owned by TVS, Norton does not have a presence in India currently, so it’s highly unlikely you’ll see this bike on our roads anytime soon. Previously, it was brought to India as part of the now-defunct Motoroyale Group with other exclusive brands such as MV Agusta, SWM and FB Mondial.
Would you be willing to shell out the extra for this over the latest and greatest of today’s flagship offerings from other mainstream manufacturers? Let us know in the comments section below.