In the end, ranking these four bikes was easier than we thought it would be. We assigned each of them the human characteristics they had exhibited in our test, then ranked them based on which ones we would least like to see riding away with our daughters on board.
Without question, the least threatening of the group is the Ducati Streetfighter. Its mannerisms are fluid, composed and predictable, and it’s sneaky-fast. All good traits, unless you are depending on it to back you up in a bar fight. Then comes the Speed Triple R, which definitely puts up a tough-guy image, flexing and posturing and proving its mettle more often than not; but it still doesn’t have the killer instinct we were looking for.
Perhaps the biggest surprise of all is the MV Agusta. It’s raw, a little unrefined and, at times, a bit sloppy, but when it’s time to tango, the Brutale is brutally effective. Don’t let its pretty face fool you: The MV packs a powerful jab, has a stout and precise chassis and is someone—okay, something—on which you never want to lose focus.
But our mission here was to finger the bad boy of the club, and the Aprilia Tuono is guilty as charged. Even after riding these and numerous other bikes for weeks on end, we would get back onto the Tuono and instantly be reminded of what a ruthless motorcycle it is. Everything about the Italian V4 is focused on going fast and getting there quickly. Its lightning reflexes, superb controllability, excellent rider intervention and knockout engine punch make it the nastiest naked we’ve ever ridden.
So, if you end up owning a Tuono—or, actually, any one of these hooligans—here’s our advice: Lock it up and throw away the key.