I’m going to preface this by saying that my wife, Sheila, believes the old adage stating, “If a man gives advice to a tree in a forest, he’s still an idiot”. She’s probably right, so I’m basically going to line up my assumptions from a few women that I’ve shown pictures of Moto Guzzi’s new V7 Classic to and discussed it’s features with. I also OWN this bike so it’s the coolest thing on the planet as far as I’m concerned.
The Moto Guzzi V7 Classic
Moto Guzzi introduces the V7 Classic this year to its line-up. It’s a standard motorcycle in the 750cc class that has tapped into the “retro” look that has become increasingly popular. It’s also a nice “standard” bike that is, according to Moto Guzzi, “A stunning mixture of modern tech and retro styling, based upon the 1967 original (see my Eldorado).
Although, I’m feeling like it has a lot of the V7 Sport in it, which is fine by me as it is one of the very best looking bikes ever, that is, in my opinion of course:
Making the dangerous assumptions.
In no particular order, and “shotgunning” the info given me without filtering it through my “guy brain”, the women I spoke to were looking for a motorcycle that is:
- Easy to handle — It has to be light, low in the CG department, and be easy to maneuver around at speed
- Easy to parking and nimble with respect to low speed moves.
- Most Women I talked to wanted a “Standard” upright seating position, not too far forward like a sport bike, and many weren’t thrilled with a laid back cruiser position.
- Lower seat height. 100% demanded this.
- Good “grunt” — Most that I talked to didn’t care about absolute top speed or eye-blurring acceleration — I heard, over and over again, “plenty of power” to get in front and out of the way of heavy traffic and dangerous situations. They wanted to “feel” that it could reach “mature speeds” quickly, especially on freeway ramps and exits.
- Reliability was also a big issue. I even heard a few say that they wanted to be able to do light maintenance themselves.
- Scaled to fit. The bike had to have proportions that matched the rider. They didn’t want to look “swallowed up” in the bike.
- Clean lines and looks — no flames, dragons, weird eyeballs or transformer-toy looks.
OK. I’m not going to spin this and make this posting longer than it should be. I’m going to state the facts about the V7 Classic and discuss what I currently know about the bike and promise to ride it as soon as there’s a good thaw in Chicago.
Here’s the raw facts:
Fuel Tank: 4.5 Gal, .7Gal res (figure 50+mpg on a very bad day)
Motor: 90° air/oil cooled transverse v-twin with 2 valves per cylinder.
Weight: 401lbs (about 100 lbs more than the typical MSF training bike!)
Seat Height: 31.7 in.
And a few more pictures:
This bike is going to be docile at low speeds, light enough to maneuver around easily in neutral and parking situations, and it is going to handle very predictably at speeds, especially with the low seat height and “standard” riding position. You’re not going to run circles around the sportiest models, but driving with skill, this bike will stay up with those in it’s horsepower class, and look damned good doing it. This particular motor’s been around since the late seventies, and it has gotten better and better, more refined and evolved over this time. It’s reliable, easy to maintain, not messy because it has shaft drive instead of chains that must be lubricated and adjusted regularly, and there’s just not a lot of moving parts to break. With a better-than-10:1 horsepower to weight ration, it’s going to accelerate well and scoot up to 100, but the 48 horsepower is not going to get too much attention from John Q. Law.
It’s a great bike that falls into a “first bike” class, yet it’s not something that you’ll “grow out of” or want to replace with something bigger very quickly, if ever. There’s always room in every garage for a nice practical standard, and that’s why I’m looking VERY hard at this bike to add to my collection in the spring. I believe that it’s going to be great for “the other gender” to get around in the city with, and I’ll be happy to pull up at Chicago eateries astride this extremely cool, retro bike.
Guzzis are known for low-end grunt, and this bike has the DNA — As soon as I put some miles in, I’ll verify what I’ve predicted here, and see if I’m correct. Please feel free to comment and let me know what you think, I’m truly interested and will answer any and all questions.