1996 BIMOTA SB 7 SPECS AND REVIEWS
Engine and transmission
|Displacement||749.0 ccm (45.70 cubic inches)|
|Engine type||In-line four, four-stroke|
|Power||132.0 HP (96.4 kW)) @ 11500 RPM|
|Torque||83.4 Nm (8.5 kgf-m or 61.5 ft.lbs) @ 9500 RPM|
|Valves per cylinder||4|
|Transmission type||Chain (final drive)|
Chassis, suspension, brakes and wheels
|Front brakes||Dual disc|
|Rear brakes||Single disc|
Physical measures and capacities
|Dry weight||186.0 kg (410.1 pounds)|
|Power/weight ratio||0.7097 HP/kg|
See Maintenance Specs*
*Always verify maintenance and service data with the bike owner’s manual.
MORE PHOTOS OF BIMOTA SB 7
PRICE AS NEW AND USED OF BIMOTA SB 7
Private Price Guide
Price as new
REVIEWS AND COMMON PROBLEMS WITH 1996 BIMOTA SB 7
BIMOTA SB 7 Review
The SB6’s replacement featured one major difference: a fuel-injected GSXR750 Suzuki motor that produced even more horsepower.
Bimota took another step forward in perfecting their distinct concept of what the ultimate sportsbike should be all about with the SB7.
In every other sense, the SB7 was identical to its predecessor: a breathtakingly gorgeous, hand-crafted, personalized missile. The SB7 was designed for riders who wished to delight themselves at high speeds at any cost. It is extremely light and has excellent suspension and brakes.
It was almost the perfect road, and the SB7 was almost the perfect bike for it. The road back to Rimini from the hilltop principality of San Marino was a mix of fast and medium speed turns split by short straights, with a racetrack-like surface and scarcely a car in sight.
The Bimota devoured it, relieved to be back on proper tarmac after the tighter, bumpier country roads that had been significantly less comfortable (in more than one way) earlier in the day. The SB7 sped up to its 14,000rpm redline through the lower gears on the straights, switching crisply back down the close-ratio box before slicing smoothly into a turn. Then it howled again, the fat Hi-Sports clutching tightly and the tacho needle never dropping below eight or nine grand.
All too soon, I was back at Bimota’s camp, removing my helmet to brag about the ride and discovering that I’d just hammered down factory test-rider Gianluca Galasso’s favorite local stretch of road. They told me that the SB7 had been developed partly here but mostly on the racetrack, which explained a lot about the most determined of this year’s new Bimotas.
Although the SB6 powered by a GSX-R1100 engine is a blindingly fast, no-compromise sportster, the SB7 – powered by a modified version of Suzuki’s GSX-R750 SP’s watercooled motor – is revvier and even more narrowly focused. It’s more of a road racer, intended to serve as the foundation for the machine that Bimota thinks will be a contender in the World Superbike title next season.
Aside from the paintwork, the SB6 and 7 are very identical in appearance. The twin-spar alloy frame, which uses “Straight Connection Technology” to connect the steering head and swing-arm pivot directly, changes only in a modest modification to clear the smaller motor’s oil cap.
Cycle parts are also interchangeable. That means a horizontal Ohlins rear shock on the right side of the bike, multi-adjustable and linked to the swing-arm. Up front are a pair of 46mm front forks produced by Paioli to Bimota’s specifications, with sliders comprised of an aluminum and carbon-fibre composite.
One significant distinction is that, unlike the SB6, the Seven has a TDD engine management system that monitors rpm, ignition advance, ambient air pressure, and intake air and coolant temperatures. (Bimota attributes the SB7’s late delivery to frigid winter weather, which slowed the system’s final development.)
The engine is essentially the SP or Sport Production version of the GSX-R, which isn’t officially imported into the UK. The 749cc SP engine is remarkably identical to the normal watercooled 16-valver, with the exception of a close-ratio gearbox. Bimota adds its own camshafts, each with greater lift and duration, as well as colder plugs and a slinky exhaust system that culminates with twin alloy cans hidden under the self-supporting carbon-fibre seat assembly.
The finish on this pre-production bike was not up to Bimota’s usual excellent quality, but it still looked the part and felt lean, light, and low. It weights 186kg dry, which is somewhat heavier than a Fireblade but 22kg less than a normal GSX-R. It has a 1390mm wheelbase, which is 15mm shorter than the Honda’s and 45mm shorter than the Suzuki’s. The reach forward to the bars is smaller than on most race-reps, and the seat height of 755mm adds to the feeling that this is a tiny motorbike.
This bike was built for speed and smooth conditions, and its Ohlins shock, in particular, was tough enough to transfer every road bump right to my kidneys as I pobbled around Rimini’s outskirts. The SB7 felt considerably better once out of town and into its stride, though the shock was still too stiff for the rougher portions of local backroad. With no C-spanner on hand, I backed off the shock compression damping (which, unlike the rebound knob alongside the hot exhaust, is easily accessible on the remote reservoir), which made no impact.
The best bet was to just send some force into the shock, which worked better the harder the SB7 was ridden. The Bimota cranked well over, the motor screaming at five-figure speeds, and its hot 180-section rear Hi-Sport keeping it all in line, the bike felt beautifully taut.
The hefty Paiolis were also set up stiff, but not too so (compression and rebound damping are tuneable, but you had to pay extra for a preload adjuster…). The steering felt light and neutral, as you’d expect on a bike with rake and trail statistics of 23.5 degrees and 94mm. The fork angle is adjustable by half a degree either way, and the Bim performed admirably with the normal setup.
Some of that was due to the 120/70-section front Michelin on this bike, which provided a considerably more comfortable sensation than the 120/60 tyre on the SB6 I’d previously rode, especially when entering tight and unexpected turns. The lower profile Hi-Sport is more stiff and so more suited to a track, although it has a tendency to flop into slow turns. The Bim simply went where it was pointed with the taller tyre, except when a thick mid-bend tarmac seam caused a little wobble.
Despite the obvious parallels in size and capability, high-speed stability was faultless, with no Fireblade-style twitchiness. And fast speed was clearly the SB7’s favorite. If the revs were maintained high, the fuel-injection system delivered a beautifully sharp response that sent the Bimota hurtling towards a top speed that exceeded the GSX-160mph. R’s
Its large horsepower live at the top of the rev range, with the purported maximum output of 132bhp hitting at 11,500rpm, just like the ordinary GSX-claimed R’s 118bhp. The close-ratio box made it simple to keep the engine warm, and on the right road, the Seven seemed quick enough to keep up with just about anything.
The Bim required a good amount of aggression to pull from below 5000rpm once out of its tall (but not RC45 tall) first gear, merely stuttering and croaking until it reached that figure. Bimota’s argument is that the sizes of the fuel-injection butterfly and exhaust pipe are quite large in order to perform best at high rpm.
Even though the significant acceleration didn’t arrive until 8000rpm, the midrange response above five grand felt very decent by 750cc sportster standards. The SB7 was also quite smooth, with some characteristic four-cylinder tingles but less buzz than the GSX-R11-powered SB6. The occasional fuel hunger when accelerating rapidly with a half-full tank of gas was less impressive. The fuel pump on this prototype was installed at the front of the tank, but the pump on production versions will be located at the back.
The huge 320mm Brembos and four-pot calipers provided predictable braking force, but after a series of hard stops, the system produced enough lever travel to bother riders who brake with with one or two fingers. Excessive lever travel has plagued numerous recent Brembo-shod sportsters (916 included), indicating that there is still space for development.
The simplest approach for Bimota to increase the SB7’s appeal would be to lower the price, which, at £17,000 on the road, is £1000 more expensive than the SB6 and nearly as pricey as Honda’s RC45. However, while the SB7 is not a cheap roadster, its high price is unavoidable considering that only 15 will be imported this year, out of a total production run of 200 required to homologate the fuel-injected 750 for next year’s Superbike championship.
Make no mistake, this bike was designed with one goal in mind: to reclaim the road-race glory that Bimota last experienced with Virginio Ferrari’s Formula One title win in 1987.
KNOWN 1996 BIMOTA SB 7 MODIFICATIONS AND TUNING
Modification 1 - Bimota SB7 MAGNUM BrutaliTune Tunable Motorcycle Performance Exhaust Muffler
The BrutaliTune tunable motorcycle exhaust is specifically designed to provide maximum performance potential gains for your Bimota SB7. It outperforms every other high flow bike pipe on the market today. Its Triple Perf-Tube technology, which includes tunable rotary disks, allows for fine-tuning of horsepower delivery for various types of riding and terrain. The exhaust is one of the most effective modifications powersport and automotive enthusiasts make to their vehicle, regardless of vehicle type. It’s one of those things that gives you instant gratification; mash the throttle and hear the exhaust system note come to life. It’s a general rule that removing a stock exhaust system increases horsepower significantly. Mufflers, resonators, headers, and full exhaust systems all contribute to sound, potential performance, and restriction. This free flow exhaust pipe is intended to improve engine air flow.
Competent in both racing and tuning. On stock motorcycles, this Bimota SB7high-flow performance exhaust can add 7% more pony and torque. What if your Bimota SB7 is already tuned or you intend to tune it later? The gas restriction on your non-tunable exhaust will no longer be optimal. If you want a powerful engine with excellent engine response throughout the RPM range and no flat spots, the BrutaliTune is the best option. Non-tunable exhausts are fine for mild tuning, but they don’t offer as many performance and sound settings as our Bimota SB7 tunable motorcycle free flow pipe. This tunable high flo exhaust is not compatible with the Bimota SB7. It is installed using Weld-on universal installation, which may necessitate exhaust modification. Please compare the dimensions of your factory exhaust muffler to the BrutaliTune specifications before purchasing, or contact our Product Specialists 7 days a week.
Get it here:
Bimota SB7 MAGNUM BrutaliTune Tunable Motorcycle Performance Exhaust Muffler (magnumtuning.com)
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*All motorcycle specifications (also called SPECS) on our pages are provided by the respective manufacturers.
**Motobase reccomends to install your tuning parts and modifications only at authorized workshops.
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