Friday, August 08, 2008

Motociclismo's Moto Guzzi V7 Classic riding impression

Only 49bhp, but for sheer Italian style, the Guzzi V7 Classic rules!
Pics: Motoblog

With its 1960s-style chassis and suspension and 49bhp air-cooled v-twin, the Moto Guzzi V7 Classic is not exactly in the same league as, say, a GSX-R1000. Instead, the Guzzi is probably meant for those who put a premium on sheer Italian style. The Guzzi V7 has that laid-back ‘ok-so-you’re-faster-than-me-but-I’m-so-much-cooler’ mien, and that can be so hard to argue with…

The guys at Motociclismo got a chance to ride the Guzzi recently, and here are some excerpts from what they have to say about the bike.

The V7 Classic is inspired by Moto Guzzi’s own V7 Special from the 1970s. It’s Guzzi’s way of capitalizing on their glorious past. A modern classic, the V7 has modern components that are much lighter and simpler than the 1970s V7. But the style essentially remains the same.

The V7 Classic’s headlamp, fuel tank, wire-spoke wheels, instrument cluster, chassis, twin rear shocks and the shape of the seat – all of these take their design cues form the 1970s bike, and without a doubt, Moto Guzzi have done a good job here.

Guzzi say the V7 Classic is also ideal for beginners...

While the aesthetics are spot-on, engine performance is, at best, subtle. With only 49bhp at its disposal, the V7 Classic can be reasonably good fun to ride at a mild pace – just don’t expect it to accelerate hard at any time. It needs 8.1 seconds to go from zero to 100km/h, and top speed is around 165km/h – figures that speak for themselves.

With the V7 Classic, Moto Guzzi wanted to make a bike that was quiet, easy to ride, and perfect for beginners, or for those looking for a bike that would allow them to cruise through the city gently…

At low revs, the V7’s 744cc v-twin offers adequate, seamless power – though, of course, there isn’t much of it available. The engine doesn’t like being revved hard and starts vibrating quite a bit if you push it too much. The best thing to do is to take it easy. The five-speed gearbox is adequately slick, and as long as you remember to downshift when you need to accelerate, the V7 will sing along without any worries.

The bike’s ergonomics are quite all right – the Guzzi is not too small or too big and riders of all sizes will find the bike easy to ride. The high-set handlebars are flat and narrow and the bike’s small turning radius makes it very easy to ride in heavy traffic at low speeds. The V7 weighs around 198 kilos fully fueled, though it actually feels lighter when it’s on the move.

The Moto Guzzi V7 Classic is probably not for those who are very demanding. Don’t expect sportsbike-like handling and power delivery, or tourer-like long-distance comfort. However, get used to what it offers, and you’ll have fun riding this bike.

Also see:
Memorable: The Bimota V-Due...
Riding the amazing Travertson V-Rex...
Suzuki Crosscage: Preparing for the post-GSX-R future?
Face-off: Ducati 1098 vs KTM RC8 1190
Honda CB1000R first ride...
Battle of the Blades: 1992 CBR900RR vs 2008 CBR1000RR!

External links:
In conversation with Troy Corser...


Bram said...

First off: I like reading your blog.

I noticed that you often refer to GSXR1000 as a benchmark when it comes to power and speed.

I used to be in awe of the GSXR as well. That is, until I bought one. Now I think it has no usable power below 5000 rpm. My K7 can't hold a candle to my old 2004 RSV1000R, which would wheelie in any gear, at any rpm, just by opening the throttle. My K7 just stumbles when you do that.

Sameer Kumar said...

Er.. yeah, well, I do love the GSX-R1000. My dream bike is a 2008 model GSX-R1000 with a full race Yoshimura exhaust.... :-)

Of course, I'm quite sure that your Aprilia must have been an amazing bike. In fact, I quite like the way the RSV1000R looks. If I had enough money, I'd buy one of both... :-)

All the best!

Random Ramblings