The first thing that struck me when I picked up the V-Night was how good it looked – so good, in fact, I walked straight past it into the shop as I was not expecting it to look as big and sporty as it does. Having been riding an older Honda CB250 around since I’d gained my learners licence and, despite seeing the photos in AMCN, I expected the V-Night, with its 150cc engine and super-skinny tyres, to be small and unimposing.
It was a very pleasant surprise to see the bike in the metal: great quality of finish, reasonably tall seat height, decent sized tyres and an aggressive look at first glance – unless you see the 150cc printed on the tail, you probably wouldn’t pick it as a LAMS-approved bike.
I’ve spent two weeks with the V-Night so far, mostly on my daily commute to and from work, as well as a few runs through the Adelaide hills. My daily commute is a reasonably busy industrial one (by Adelaide standards) and takes me along some pretty average roads to say the least. The real stand-out in this situation is how well the bike behaves.
The seat, while looking like it could be a plank, is really comfortable and the riding position is great for a sportsbike-style position. Having said that, I’ve discovered the angular tank on the V-Night is perfectly shaped to, er, let’s say, damage a bloke. If you are not vigilant about dodging pot holes and anything that looks like a decent bump, you are reminded of it pretty quickly, hence the bike being nicknamed the nutcracker in my household.
One other discovery is the gearbox on the V-Night forces you to be very direct; it has no patience for any sloppy gear changes. This took me only the ride home from the dealer to get used to but it was definitely noted with a few false neutrals going into second pulling away from the traffic lights – something that may loosen up with age. The bike is so slim and light it makes it very easy and inspires confidence to zip through traffic. Being a learner, the other thing I’ve found comforting is the nice bright halogen lights up front and the LED tail lights which make you feel more visible.
Taking the V-Night up through the hills further instilled how light and manoeuvrable this little sportsbike is. Predictably, to keep any respectable speed up, you do have to keep it revving, but after all it’s 150cc being ridden by a rider only 20kg lighter than the bike itself, so I couldn’t fault it.
It’s very confidence-inspiring for a road-riding novice and the few times I ran into some tighter corners a little hotter than I felt comfortable with, the brakes allowed me to scrub off speed with ease and bring things back under control steadily.
I can’t fault the V-Night. It’s great for a learner, it’s comfortable-ish, easy to ride, looks cool, has a great build quality and, it’s so well priced!
Cylinder head DOHC, four valves per cylinder
Bore/stroke 57 x 58.6mm
Compression ratio 10.5:1
Power 8.9kW @ 8500rpm (claimed)
Torque 10.8Nm @ 7000rpm (claimed)
Final drive Chain
Frame material Not given
Frame layout Twin-spar
Rake Not given
Trail Not given
Front: Telescopic fork, non adjustable,
travel not given
Rear: Monoshock, preload adjustment,
travel not given
Front: 17 x 1.85 Rear: 17 x 2.15
Front: 80/90-17 (44S)
Rear: 110/80-17 (57S)
Front: Single disc, two-piston caliper
Rear: Single disc, single-piston caliper
Weight 129kg (dry, claimed)
Seat height 800mm
Max width 705mm
Max height 1100mm
Fuel capacity 13L
Fuel consumption Not given
Top speed 150km/h (est)