We’ve always considered naked bikes as the most versatile, well-rounded segment of motorbikes out there. In our previous articles, we’ve highlighted how naked bikes can serve as the perfect blank canvas for you to transform into your very own motorcycle. In fact, here at MotoDeal, nearly all of us who ride motorcycles have at least one naked bike in our collections.
Not only are naked bikes one of the best ways to get into big bikes, they’re also perfect for stepping up into, especially when it comes to performance. Today, let’s take a look at some of the best intermediate naked bikes with displacements ranging from around 800cc to 900cc, so we can determine which one is best fit for your riding style and budget.
Let’s kick things off with the only Japanese motorcycle worth mentioning, the Yamaha MT-09. At P629,000, it’s one of the more affordable bikes in this list, but comes outfitted with all the technology you could ever ask for. The current generation model gets the same chip found in the YZF-R1, so it flaunts cutting edge features like lean-sensitive traction control, ABS, and even front end lift control. Furthermore, Yamaha has thrown in an up and down quickshifter as standard.
It’s powered by the evolution of Yamaha’s tried and tested CP3, inline-three-cylinder, liquid-cooled, fuel-injected engine. Now displacing 890cc, it packs quite a punch, with 117 horsepower on tap. Needless to say, the MT-09 is by far one of the best Japanese middleweight naked bikes out there, and that’s the reason why it’s the first entry on this list.
KTM 790 Duke
Moving up the tech and performance features just a tad, the KTM 790 Duke has been around for four years now, but continues to be a heavy hitter in the performance-oriented middleweight naked bike segment. Having ridden this bike on the track at full tilt, I can confidently say that it still has what it takes to put some of its newer contemporaries to shame. It packs a six-axis IMU with built in traction control, cornering ABS, multiple ride modes, and even launch control.
The 790 Duke makes power via KTM’s 799cc LC8 parallel-twin engine, with around 105 ponies propelling your forward straight from the rear tire. An up and down quick shifter allows you to seamlessly bang through the gears, while the bike’s compliant WP suspension package keeps things dialed down, even at the most aggressive of corners. Surprisingly, at just P599,000, the 790 Duke is the most affordable bike on this list, cementing it as unbeatable value for money in the intermediate naked bike segment.
Triumph Street Triple RS
Triumph has long been synonymous with the three-cylinder engine. In fact, two of the other bikes on this list have drawn inspiration from Triumph’s three-cylinder engine. That said, the Street Triple RS needs no introduction. Out of all the bikes on this list, the Striple is essentially the most race-oriented bike of the lot. It literally uses a Moto2 engine—a 765cc inline three-cylinder engine. In RS trim, it pumps out 126 horsepower, making it one of the strongest bikes on this list, as well.
In terms of features, Triumph has thrown in everything you could ask for. Multiple riding modes, ABS, traction control, and fully adjustable suspension are all available just to name a few. The bike also boasts a full aluminum chassis, meaning it tips the scales just north of 400 pounds with a full tank of gas, ready to ride. It’s a bit pricey, retailing for P795,000, but the price is well justified given how much performance the bike brings to the table.
Up next, we have yet another icon in the naked bike world, the Ducati Monster. In its 937 avatar, the Monster is sharper, lighter, and more balanced than ever before. It draws power from a 937cc, Testastretta L-twin engine with Desmodronic valve actuation, liquid-cooling, and four-valves per cylinder head. Pumping out 111 horsepower, it’s certainly a performer, and it has even more electronic goodies to back it up.
Ducati has thrown in a full suite of electronic rider aids consisting of ABS, traction control, and multiple riding modes, all governed by a superbike-derived six-axis IMU. All this tech and performance comes at a price, though, as the new Ducati Monster 937 retails for P950,000–that’s even more than most liter-class naked bikes from Japanese manufacturers.
MV Agusta Brutale 800
The last bike on our list shouldn’t even be considered a middleweight naked bike anymore, as it pumps out almost as much power as 1,000cc naked bikes. The MV Agusta Brutale 800, with its 140-horsepower, 798cc, inline three-cylinder engine, blurs the line between a street-focused motorcycle, a rolling piece of art, and a superbike. Retailing for P1,100,000 to P1,200,000, it’s also the most expensive bike in the list—and for good reason.
Apart from its super potent engine, the MV Agusta Brutale 800 boasts cutting edge electronics. Everything is controlled by its super smart ECU which boasts a six-axis IMU in charge of handling cornering ABS, lean-sensitive traction control, a slew of riding modes including a custom mode that allows you to save your settings, as well as fully adjustable suspension. Needless to say, the MV Agusta Brutale, as the name suggests, is a brutal naked bike, and is by no means for the faint of heart.