Aprilia left MotoGP in the year 2004 and concentrated its energies on the two stroke racing categories of 125cc and 250cc where it enjoyed a monopoly with itself and its sister brands, Derbi (in 125cc) and Gilera (in 250cc). Aprilia also hit financial troubles and was taken over be Piaggio along with Gilera and Derbi. In the last couple of years Aprilia entered World Superbikes with its RSV4 machine that proved to be the best of its class and won a World Championship with Max Biaggi in 2010. It was believed that Aprilia homologated in World Superbikes a motorcycle that was almost a prototype with the intention of capturing the title which it did. It may have repeated the feat if not for injuries plaguing Biaggi this year. Aprilia’s participation in GP racing has come to an end with the 250cc class being abolished after the 2009 season and the 125cc class after the 2011 season. But Aprilia is coming back into MotoGP in the CRT category. But it is doing so differently. Thus far engines of the BMW S1000R motorcycle and that of the Kawasaki ZX-10R have been announced with chassis from Suter and FTR respectively. Aprilia’s engines have been chosen by a few teams such as Aspar and Aprilia is building its own chassis which is different from the chassis that it homologated in World Superbikes and therefore qualifies to be called a prototype chassis. So in effect those teams that choose Aprilia will get a whole package from the manufacturer itself.
Here are pictures of the Aprilia CRT being tested with Bridgestone tyres by Alex Hoffman