Top 10 most anticipated motorcycles coming to Eicma

The most anticipated new motorcycles of 2018

Top 10 most anticipated motorcycles coming to Eicma

NEXT week's Eicma in Milan is the year’s biggest bike show and the platform where every major new model for 2018 will be revealed.

We’ve already got a good idea of some of the big hitters that will be launched at the show, and some have got us more excited than others. Some are common knowledge, and have been subject to the usual rash of teaser videos and leaked information. Others have yet to be confirmed by their manufacturers.

Here are our top 10 expected new models for Eicma. Read all about them here next week once they’ve officially debuted.

10: Suzuki SV650X

It’s no secret that we’ve got a soft spot for the SV650. It might be long in the tooth but a constant program of updates during its life means it’s still one of the best middleweights out there. The upcoming SV650X – revealed as a ‘concept’ (pictured) in September – will be revealed in production form (basically unchanged from the Tokyo concept) at Eicma. A café racer built on stock SV650 bones, it adds a much needed dose of style to a very capable bike.

We know that the changes to the Tiger 1200 and Tiger 800 for 2018 are more updates than all-new models but it’s good to see the firm paying some attention to its modern range after years of focussing on the Bonneville and its endless derivatives. The Tiger 800 is already one of the best sellers in its part of the market, and it’s getting a new look and new tech for 2018 that can only help strengthen its position. The Tiger 1200 – formerly the Explorer – will get matching changes.

This one hasn’t been subject to teaser videos, but we know BMW is launching completely new replacements for its parallel-twin F800 and F700 (pictured) machines at Eicma. And they’re likely to be a quantum leap forward from their predecessors. An all-new engine, new transmission, new frames and new styling mean there’s really nothing to connect them to their predecessors other than their ‘F’ nomenclature. We’re not even certain of the capacities just yet, but the bikes promise to be among the stars of 2018 already.

Anyone with an iota of inquisitiveness has got to be intrigued by the Niken. Previewed in Tokyo last week, its real debute will be at Eicma and that’s where we’ll get to discover its specifications and details. We’re familiar with leaning three-wheeled scooters like the Piaggio MP3 and Yamaha Tricity. We’re familiar with the Yamaha MT-09. But what’s it going to be like when that 115hp triple is stuck into a leaning trike chassis? This is the birth of a new type of vehicle altogether. It could be amazing (or terrible, of course!)

The Niken might have been shown just a week ago, but we were given the preview of Yamaha’s Tenere 700 12 months ago when the firm showed the T7 concept (pictured). Yamaha has said little about it since then, but it's likely we'll see the production version – surely called the Tenere 700 – at Eicma next week. It could be the bike to give BMW’s F-series and Triumph’s Tiger 800 a shock, particularly if it’s got the real off-road chops that the old Tenere 660 had. Combine that with a bargain price tag – as befits its MT-07 genes – and it promises to be a winner.

Another one shown 12 months ago as a concept (pictured), the KTM 790 Duke will be a massively important bike for the Austrian firm, with the new engine likely to power a whole new range of KTMs. 

Ducati hasn’t spoken about this one yet, but we revealed its existence back in July thanks to leaked emissions documents. Combining a revamped, lighter Multistrada with a larger, torquier 1262cc variable-valve-timing engine from the XDiavel (pictured) could be a masterstroke. The Multistrada is arguably the single most capable bike on the planet already – it’s superbike-fast, tourer-comfortable, fabulously well-equipped, stylish and even has some off-road ability. An improved version sounds like a winner to us.

Honda’s had a rough time recently but we’re hoping it can recover its mojo with the NSC (Neo Sports Café) production bike. We saw the concept version (pictured) in Tokyo last week and the teaser videos so far suggest the production model is nearly identical. In other words, it looks fabulous. Powered by an old-generation Fireblade motor, it should be no slouch, too. Alongside the newly-revealed 2018 Gold Wing, which sets out to re-establish Honda as a dominant force when it comes to technology, the NSC (effectively a replacement for the CB1000R) gives appeal in a completely different part of the range.

Even though it’s been a few years since the Kawasaki H2 was launched it’s still something special thanks to that supercharged four-cylinder engine. And in 2018 a new version of the motor is being bolted to a sports-tourer to create something a little more accessible and give more people a chance to experience that forced-induction grunt. Little is known of the H2 SX yet, but as the next step in Kawasaki’s journey to a supercharged future, it’s surely one of next year’s most important bikes. See it here on November 7.

We’ve got to wait until Sunday before we get our first proper look at Ducati’s new Panigale V4, (although the engine was revealed in September) but it’s already clear that rivals need to be worried. Other firms might make claims that their superbikes are ‘MotoGP-derived’ but rarely are they as closely related to their MotoGP cousins as the new Panigale V4. And unlike stuff like the RC213V-S or Ducati’s own Desmosedici RR, the Panigale is set to be a mass-made machine available to anyone who can stump up a fairly achievable purchase price. Bring it on.