Hoping to duplicate the success of Ducati's "Sport Classics" line, Moto Guzzi looked to the past while using modern amenities to design the 2008 V7 Classic.
One glance at the bike explains it: ample chrome, a flat bench seat, an upright riding position, analog instrumentation.
However, in contrast to bikes from 1969, Moto Guzzi wanted the 401-lb. V7 Classic to be easy to handle and easy to maintain. The trust factor comes in the form of the thoroughly modern 744cc air-cooled 90-degree V-Twin outfitted with Weber-Marelli electric injection and Euro 3-compliant exhaust, suspension by Marzocchi and braking via the Brembo Series Oro kit.
As the name suggests, the heart of the returning Griso 8v is Moto Guzzi's newly designed 1200cc Quattrovalvole engine, revamped with 563 new components and now putting out 108hp at 7,500 rpm and 79.5 ft-lb. of torque at 6,400 rpm. Power Moto Guzzi says will propel the bike to over 140 mph.
Other new additions to the Griso 8v: a new 8V logo and new Moon White color scheme, new handlebars in black anodized aluminum, a new sports style saddle, new streamlined bodywork, sportier footpegs and a full black powertrain.
The Piaggio Group has already earmarked Aprilia to represent the group in the high-performance motorcycle market. But, like a boy vying with his brother for an equal serving of desert, Moto Guzzi explains its development of the MGS-01 Corsa — the latest incarnation of the previously released MGS-01 — by pointing to the brand's 3,329 victories in international competition, including 14 world speed titles, 22 world records and 11 Tourist Trophies.
Moto Guzzi describes the MGS-01 Corsa as "an exclusive motorbike that is built with the care of craftsmen and intended for true motorbike enthusiasts." Thus each model comes with a book with the rider's personal details and frame number, the motorbike cover and the stand carry the MGS-01 Corsa logo, and even the packaging used to ship the product to the new owner is personalized.
Nice, but does it ride? The "standard" MGS-01 Corsa proved to be competitive when it won the 2006 and 2007 "Battle of the Twins" during the Daytona International Speedway Bike Week in Florida.
Powered by an air-cooled 1125cc 90-degree V-twin engine, this version is outfitted with a 43mm Ohlins fork that can be adjusted to three positions, a swingarm in boxed aluminum and a vertical shock absorber tucked just behind the engine. And, with power transferred through a 1450mm wheelbase, this 423-lb. bike will need the ample braking supplied by two 320mm discs up front and a single twin caliper 220mm disc in the rear.
Trivia: Opened in 1921, Moto Guzzi's plant in Mandello del Lario, Italy, on the banks of Lake Como, was the first motorcycle production facility to use a wind tunnel.