Is there anything fundamentally different between the Vitpilen 701 Aero Concept and its single-cylinder naked sibling?
No, there is not. Except for the obvious, of course: the bodywork.
Husqvarna have been aggressively expanding their line of their so-called Real Street bikes in 2018. First came the Vitpilen 401 and 701. And then Husqvarna introduced the Svartpilen at this year’s Milan show.
All feature a stripped-down design and a back-to-basics aesthetic, but with modern motorcycle features. They all have a single-cylinder engine that’s been modulated for the street, have a lean-forward position that demands good handling, and aren’t chunky. They weigh in the area of 362 lbs wet (164 kilos.)
Now, in a hint as to where they might be going next, the Swedish company has shown the Vitpilen 701 Aero Concept at EICMA. This isn’t the first time they’ve toyed with this idea. In 2016 they rolled out a Vitpilen 401 Aero Concept.
That bike hasn’t made production yet, and maybe this one won’t either.
But it’s a clear indication that Husqvarna, with KTM’s guidance and financial muscle, are committed to stretching beyond dirt bikes and supermotards.
The Vitpilen’s basic nature — fairly lightweight, nimble and snappily responsive to the throttle — lends itself to other iterations. In the Aero’s case, they’re going the café racer route, which is the most natural direction since the basic Vitpilen rides like a naked café racer anyway.
The Aero Concept does have one unique feature beyond the fairing and screen. It’s a round full-color TFT screen that tucks into the cockpit.
Being a concept bike with an uncertain future, naturally there’s no price or production schedule for the Vitpilen 701 Aero. But given Husqvarna’s insistent move into “Real Street” bikes, we shouldn’t be surprised if it someday makes it to dealerships.