The Audace Carbon is Moto Guzzi's take on doing a Diavel / VMAX-type muscle bike. The 200-section rear tyre looks the part, too, though 96bhp may not be nearly enough
According to Moto Guzzi, the new Audace Carbon - freshly unveiled at the Intermot in Cologne, Germany - is the one bike in their line-up that has the strongest and most rebellious character. It expresses 'dark soul,' they claim, and emphasies the sheer performance of its made-in-Mandello 1380cc transverse V-twin. Indeed, the Audace Carbon has no shiny bits of chrome anywhere - it's all dark black, with matt-red for the engine's cylinder heads and front brake caliers. And bits like the front mudguard and the sides of its fuel tank are actually made of carbonfibre.
'I believe that this bike, today, speaks louder than any words about the more modern soul and future of the brand from Mandello. Sitting astride this imposing bike, starting the powerful V twin and riding down the road is all you need to understand what Moto Guzzi represents today. Audace is a perfect interpretation of the most genuine Moto Guzzi spirit,' says Miguel Galluzzi, who heads the Piaggio Group's Advanced Design Center in Pasadena, California.
Changes on the new Audace Carbon, as compared to the older, regular Audace, include a Euro 4-compliant engine, platform footboards replaced with sportier footpegs, rocker gearshift control replaced with a classic gear shifter pedal, a lower, sportier seat unit upholstered in eco-leather, with exposed red stitching, reshaped handlebar (lowered and extended towards the rider), a new cruise control system and improved ergonomics overall.
Other notable bits on the new Moto Guzzi Audace Carbon include a 200-section rear tyre and three riding modes that help tame the V-twin's 96bhp and 121Nm of torque. Of the three modes, Veloce offers maximum engine response and direct power deliver, Turismo scales things down a notch and Pioggia is for the city and/or wet weather riding conditions. The chosen mode also affects the levels of electronic intervention from the bike's ABS and traction control systems. The new, full ride-by-wire throttle provides smooth, consistent throttle response at all times while the optional MG-MP (Moto Guzzi Multimedia Platform) allows the rider to connect the bike to a smartphone for Internet connectivity.
The 2017 Moto Guzzi California Touring is all about taking it easy and enjoying the good things that life has to offer. In about 30 years or so, we should be ready for this bike
For those who want something that's a bit more relaxed and laid-back as compared to the Audace Carbon, there's the new Moto Guzzi California Touring, which gets added luxury and more refinement for 2017. The Italian tourer is powered by the biggest V-twin ever made in Europe - a Euro 4-compliant 1380cc V-twin that delivers 96 horsepower and 121Nm of torque. And despite its classic styling, the bike is fitted with some advanced electronic rider aids, including a ride-by-wire throttle, ABS and a traction control system.
The new California Touring is available in two colours - red and black - and features bits like a 21-litre metal fuel tank, integrated passenger backrest, chrome grab handles, a 200-section rear tyre, LED DRLs and turn-indicators, a new cruise control system, redesigned lightweight alloy wheels, preload adjustable suspension, 35-litre side panniers and a an elastic kinematic mounting system for the twin-cylinder engine, which reduces noise and vibration, and makes for a smoother ride. The bike's kerb weight of 346 kilos is substantial, but if you're man enough to handle it, this Italian job should definitely be more interesting than a lot of Harleys and Indians etc.