Unveiled: Ariel Ace R

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Manufacturers of insanely fast and naughty cars, Ariel has just unveiled the Ace R: an even more lavish version of the Honda V4-powered supernaked that’s hand-built in Somerset. The standard Ace is nothing short of stunning and this ‘R’ model will have you running for the Kleenex. The best bit? We’ll be riding it early next year.

Mimicking the Atom’s trick profile, the R uses an aluminium frame, CNC machined from solid billet that’s been lightened over the Ace’s original item. There’s a special black pearlescent finish and new eccentric headstock bearings give sharper steering. The Ace’s usual feast of carbon fibre, Öhlins suspension, BST wheels and Nissin brakes join an exclusive carbon fibre tank in the R’s arsenal. As with any Ariel, the R can be personalised for every customer, so expect a girder fork option and various exhaust/suspension/cockpit choices.

Somehow, with the help of MotoGP’s Mark ‘Brains’ Woodage, Ariel has coaxed 201bhp from the VFR1200 motor and claim a 0-60mph performance of 2.7s – having ridden the original Ace, we can truly believe it. Special cams, cylinder head work and lightened internals are responsible, and there’s also the addition of a Translogic quickshifter.

Okay, so now the negatives: only ten will be produced (for now) and it’ll cost you £49,995, but Ariel is built on this very business model – high-end, low volume and exquisite finish. “Every Ace is unique to its owner, but we wanted to make a truly special bike that built on knowledge gained from other Ariel Limited Editions such as the Atom V8 and Mugen”, said Tom Siebert, boss-man at Ariel. ‘After 17 years slowly building Ariel to where it is today we understand low volume vehicles, as well as the customers that buy them, and we know that the extra performance plus our usual scrupulous attention to detail on this special motorcycle will be very appealing.”

The Ariel Ace R will be at Motorcycle Live at the NEC next week. Don’t forget your tissues…

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