V85TT pinking

Morning all
Just a heads up for anyone who may have experienced a ‘pinkin’ noise under engine load.
My first V85 started to experience it after about 15,000 fully serviced miles, and my new Centenareo developed the same issue after only 1,000 miles.
Took it back into Teasdales who have diagnosed an issue with the valve guides (incorrectly drilled in factory) allowing pre ignition to take place.
Teasdales were very helpful (as always) and have replaced the cylinder head under warranty.
If anyone is experiencing this,its worth getting it checked out, as it seams to lead to valve seat burn out
Other than that, what a great bike
Regards from Cumbria


Hi, how are things with the new cylinder head(s)? I’m interested to know if this is a problem likely to show itself again as I appear to have similar issues with my Centenario after only 600 miles.
It’s also going up to Teasdale’s as soon as I get a spare half day.

Well after a thousand miles, the ‘pinking’ was back. So on the 8000 mile service I pointed it out to Teasdales and they checked it out. Turned out that the mapping update they did as part of the standard 8k service did the trick, so looks like it might just have been a mapping issue. Done 2k since the service with no sign of pinking and the throttle response at low revs is much improved.
Other than that, did the trip down to Mandello for the anniversary, and still think this is one of the best bikes I have ever owned.
Regards from Cumbria


Hi Tim
Thanks, that’s encouraging. I love mine and bought it with the intention of lifelong ownership but just occasionally find myself wondering…

I shall have it looked and then get on with putting some miles on it!



Hello All,

new to the forum.
I have a 2021 V85TT Euro 5. I had the same issues described here, first the valves needed replacing (general recall) , the pinking problem then solved at the 10000km service with the installation of the new map.
Otherwise a great bike, nearly a comfortable as my old GS over a long distance.
However, after the new mapping was installed, the cruise control adjustment stopped working. Dealer has no idea, I think it may be the new mapping ;:slight_smile:

I had pinking on my bike not long after I bought back in June when I was running it in which happened to be those few hot days we had back last summer. I put it down to not enough revs/still getting used to the engine characteristics (I’ve two other totally different bikes) at that time as the minute I pulled away it stopped. Apart from those few days when it was very hot I’ve not had it since.

Someone suggested I use E5 instead of E10 which they said would prevent the engine pinking but as the weather got colder and the engine loosened up a bit more it’s not happened since.

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Hi, relatively new owner here. Bought my 2019 V85TT, used, about nine months ago. I think it’s the best bike of the seven bikes and scooters I’ve owned in 23 years of riding. It does, however, suffer from the pinking issue, in heavy traffic, when hot. I’ve discovered I can ride around it by short-shifting into second, then third, at below 3k rpm. The ‘pinking zone’ seems to be at around 3k rpm. I hope to cure it if possible, though. It’s going to be serviced this week, and I’m hoping there might be an ECU update. If not, I’m thinking of trying a booster plug or a Rapid Bike Easy. Failing that, I might go for a diy remap such as Beetle Maps, but I’m a bit worried I might mess that up and brick the ECU.
Any other ideas? Thanks.

Have you checked the v85 thread on ADV ADV rider V85TT big thread

It is very very long :frowning: but has a lot of good information on pinking and other solutions.

My understanding is that Beetle has not been able to get into the ECM on the V85TT so you cannot use GuzziDiag and the only way to remap is the Up Map

Or use an ECM fooler

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I would raise the issue with the dealer doing the service, as, in my experience, the map update (as part of the service) cleared the ‘pinking’ issues , so hopefully you wont need to go to further expense to sort it. Mine has done a further 5K since the update, and absolutely no sign of it returning, and it runs just as well on E10 as on E5, although I do tent to run on E5 and premium(V power etc) whenever I can ( I’ve had too many mechanics tell me to steer clear of low grade fuels, and especially supermarket fuel).
Hope you get sorted. Happy riding

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there have been at least 3 or 4 updates since i got mine in 2021, and one if them caused an issue with engine warning light coming on. took it back and got that fixed in about 5 mins. definitely get the latest update put on at the dealer before you try any other solutions.
fwiw i have the v twin boost from Mistral and the effect is quite subtle, it does make a slight improvment but I didn’t install because of pinking, i wanted the bike to be less juddery at low revs in traffic. has not totally solved that issue, hoping the ‘velocity stack’ (an aluminium venturi basically) and cat delete will improve it further.

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Thanks for the suggestions. Service is on Thursday, so I’ll raise the pinking issue and ask about updates. If that solves it, great. If not, I’ll look at other solutions.
Incidentally, I don’t have a judder problem at low revs in traffic. In fact, the bike seems happy to be run on tickover with the clutch engaged, in either 1st or 2nd. I’ve got into the habit of doing that to try and keep the temperature down a bit.

Had the bike serviced at Central Bikes in Shepherds Bush yesterday. They confirmed there had been an update to the ECU map, and installed it. On the way home - only 5-6 miles, but in heavy rush-hour traffic, I didn’t experience any pinking. I need to do another run or two before I’ll feel confident the problem’s completely solved, but this is a promising start.


Just put 1800 miles on my V85 on a tour up to and around Scotland. The bike had 1400 miles on it previusly and i noticed it was pinking after being stuck in stationary start traffic on two hot afternoons.
Literally took my bike in for its annual service two days before departure and was told any updates would have been done at that time.

I’ve put about 2,300 miles on the clock since my last post, and still no pinking. I’ve been riding on some warm days (23-27 degrees), but haven’t subjected it to the most demanding scenario, namely hot weather plus idling/filtering for long periods in heavy London traffic. Nevertheless I’m certain I’d have experienced pinking during some of these miles prior to the update.
I think I’m getting a few mpg less than before - I get 61-62 now on the open road, compared to maybe 65-66 before (although it’s hard to compare like with like), and there might be slightly more or different vibrations at various rpm, but it’s worth it for the reassurance that it’s not damaging the engine.

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