Posts by tag: Moto Guzzi

Ghezzi-Brian January 19, 2022 posted by

As Rare As They Come: 2002 Moto Guzzi GHEZZI-BRIAN FOLGORE

Ghezzi-Brian is on of those amazing motorcycle stories that combines engineering ambition and raw talent into a winning product.  Always on the cutting edge and pushing the boundaries, the company started with a simple goal, to win races.  In 1996 they won enough to claim the Italian SuperTwin Championship.  In 1998 they started selling everything from components to fully built bikes to anyone that wanted to ride the ultimate Moto Guzzi powered motorcycle.  The efforts of Ghezzi-Brian lead to the birth of what many see as one of the most desirable Italian bikes, the Moto Guzzi MGS-01.  The company is still very active and continues to push what is possible out of these wonderful machines.

The example today is claimed to be one of 2 Folgore in the United States.  Other sources have made a similar claim, and some digging around for past listings has not turned up any other examples.  The Folgore featured some lighter wheels and other small but meaningful improvements on an already exotic motorcycle.  Some of the best braking and suspension components were used to ensure this package lived up to the expectations of offering extreme performance on the road and track.  Overall the bike weighs 55 pounds less then the V11 that donated it’s engine.

From The Seller’s Listing:

2002 Moto Guzzi GHEZZI-BRIAN FOLGORE, 2002 Ghezzi Brian Moto Guzzi Folgore One of two imported to the US. One owner. OZ magnesium wheels with perimeter brakes.  Stock MG V11 engine and 5 speed gearbox means its reliable and easy to service.

OZ magnesium wheels with perimeter brakes, Ohlins shock, Bitubo exhaust.  Stock MG V11 engine and 5 speed gearbox means its reliable and easy to service. CA title. ” The Super Twin is built around an air-cooled 1,064cc V-twin from the V11 Sport that’s had its flywheel balanced, and a new full exhaust added. The 87hp mill acts as a stressed member of the mono-beam chassis that houses the airbox and oil-tank. Connected to the race-developed frame are adjustable 41mm inverted Paioli forks up front and an Ohlins (or Bitubo according to some sources) monoshock. The race-replica’s giant 420mm perimeter discs — which are attached to the rim and not the hub — and dual-piston calipers help slow the 427lb (dry) machine — 55lbs less than the unfaired V11 Sport — from its claimed 140mph top-speed.” Google it for more details. Very unique.

When most think of perimeter brake rotors, they think of Buell, but Ghezzi explored the concept for a while as well.  Shock arrangement and frame design are also rather unique and really tell a story of unbridled engineering.  There is a sense that these were never meant for mass production or to suit a well rounded owner, these are focused and purpose built.  What makes this proposition even more appealing is the relatively low service costs.  This is now powered by some MotoGP race engine that needs pistons every other oil change.  The V11 Moto Guzzi engine is know for being reliable and easy to work on.

The bike is being offered by Pro Italia for $29,999.  Data is almost nonexistent for pricing, and while that sum is not insignificant a buyer would struggle to find a rarer or more interesting Italian exotic for that price point.   With something this rare it is hard to imagine another chance to add something like this to a collection, but if the opportunity passes there is always some of the original press documentation we could sit, read and enjoy.

 

As Rare As They Come:  2002 Moto Guzzi GHEZZI-BRIAN FOLGORE
Moto Guzzi January 3, 2022 posted by

Outstanding In Its Field: 1978 Moto Guzzi Le Mans 850

If you are among the many locked in by snow and ice, the photographs of this beautiful Moto Guzzi might just as well be an exotic model writhing on some sunny, tropical beach. And let’s face it, there is a lot to dream about when it comes to an exotic supermodel such as this Mark I Le Mans.

1978 Moto Guzzi Le Mans 850 for sale on eBay

Originally developed as a 1972 proof of concept show bike, the Le Mans officially became available to buyers in the 1976 model year. Based on the successful (and proven) V7 model, the Le Mans was festooned with hot rodder tricks to help bump horsepower; higher compression thanks to new pistons, better breathing with larger valves, and larger carbs and intake tracts to make use of the improved flow. The rest of the Le Mans was an impressive exercise in design, with tail, tank and bespoke bikini fairing providing an aggressive stance that strikes a pose even today.

From the seller:
Shown at the 2021 Greenwich Concourse for the 100th Anniversary of Moto Guzzi, it was the ONLY Lemans and placed second to a restored 1952 Falcone Sport.

This is a beautiful very original matching number Moto Guzzi Lemans 1 with 17,780 miles and original paint that runs well, has original switches and period correct upgrades of Tarozzi rear sets and Lafranconi exhaust.

Recent servicing includes new fluids, new rings and tires in the past (4) months.

More from the seller:
It is a wonderful example for an original (44) year old Lemans that has a beautiful aged patina. There are blemishes in the paint from a past owners tank bag and a few scratches here and there that would be expected in a motorcycle this age and mileage. The Browning side stand was removed prior to the Concourse and is not included.

The judges at the Greenwich Concourse were amazed at its originality and presentation. This is a bike that will appreciate in value (you know that if your read this far), that should be ridden and enjoyed and will stop traffic at any bike show or Bikes & Breakfast.

Thanks for looking and happy New Year!

Famed auto designer De Tomaso was at the helm of Moto Guzzi during this era, and his sport-oriented design certainly influenced the long line of Le Mans-based bikes to come. And while rare in the US, these first generation bikes were officially imported into the States – with some minor changes. US bikes can be identified by the solid sprinkling of side reflectors front and rear. Additionally, the original Aprilia-sourced headlight did not meet US standards, necessitating a larger sealed-beam unit; it was too big to fit into the original fairing, and required it to stick out like Pinocchio telling a whopper of a lie. This was largely masked by painting the front of the fairing and the headlight bezel black, camouflaging the effect.

Today’s Le Man is very, very original. This can be attested by the representation in the 2021 Greenwich Concourse. It can also be seen in the pictures. This appears to be an authentic, 17,000 mile survivor that has been shown much love and care over the years. If you are in the market for one of these fantastic Italian steeds, this Mark I model looks to be a great find. Check out all of the details here, and Good Luck!!

MI

Outstanding In Its Field: 1978 Moto Guzzi Le Mans 850
Moto Guzzi November 3, 2021 posted by

From Italy With Guzz: 1983 Moto Guzzi 850 Le Mans III

With a claimed 5,300 miles, this striking 1983 Moto Guzzi 850 LeMans III is a gem for a certain type of collector. The most BMW-like of the Italian set, Moto Guzzis take some getting used to – although many quirks are amazingly similar to the air-head set. Jump on a similar vintage Beemer and thumb the starter: the twin settles into a lumpy idle with requisite valve clatter. Blip the throttle and the bike wants to lean over all on its own, thanks to the crankshaft orientation and gyroscopic effect of the flywheel. Drop the tranny down into first gear with a solid thunk and drop the clutch – the rear end rises thanks to the shaft drive trying to climb the pinion. And when you’re done riding, don’t forget to shut off the fuel petcock lest the floats stick and drain gasoline over your boots. With the Italian bike the exact same caveats apply, except you are more likely to bang your knees rather than bark your shins due to the vee angle, and the gasoline will be deposited courtesy of Dell’Orto rather than Bing carbs.

1983 Moto Guzzi 850 Le Mans III for sale on eBay

Comparisons to the German marque go deeper than idiosyncrasies. Build quality is high, as the use of top shelf components are evident in both. Unlike some of the other Italian brands that only utilize Italian gear, Moto Guzzi presented a premium offering based on the best available parts and pieces. And like the BMW, the design goal was very much the same: high speed transport for extended periods of time rather than hypercycle sport bike. The cockpit is a comfortable place to spend a few hours, the instrumentation is adequate and the wind protection is much better than one might expect from such a small fairing.

From the seller:
1983 Moto Guzzi 850 Le Mans III in great original condition. Well maintained and stored. Runs great with no issues at all. Motor,gearbox and running gear all great. Starts on the button. Idles well. No smoke or funny noises.

An excellent survivor that can be shown or ridden.

By the standards of the competitive Japanese machinery, the LeMans must have seemed like an utter failure. It was heavy, was not particularly powerful (75-ish HP), was slow in the quarter mile, and lacked the razor sharp nature of the best sport bikes. But as if hewn from solid rock the Guzzi chugs along, making miles and providing the rider with a different type of experience. By today’s standards even the cutting edge Japanese machines of the era appear antiquated – but still the LeMans series has held up. The looks are iconic to be sure, and there is something stately about the presence of the overall design.

Reasonably rare due to high costs, marginal dealer network and lack of US interest, the LeMans of any vintage can be considered a collector. Sure, there are more valuable Guzzis than an early 1980s model, but the Mark III was perhaps the most modern of the line that remained true to the original. Prices are all over the map, but today’s seller is asking a cool $10k for this one. That is pretty big dollars, but then again we don’t see these all that often. Check out all the details here, and then jump back to the comments and let us know your favorite LeMans model. Good Luck!!

MI

Moto Guzzi April 29, 2021 posted by

A Long Time Coming: 1993 Moto Guzzi SP 1000 III

I love a good story – especially one with a happy ending. And this spectacular 1993 Moto Guzzi SP III has a great story to tell. But first lets start with the basics. Powered by a 949cc 90 degree vee twin longitudinally mounted in the chassis, the pushrod, two-valve air cooled and carbureted lump is good for just over 71 relaxed ponies. But it is the torque that makes the ride here, and with nearly 80 foot pounds of thrust, the big twin makes the most of what its got. The SP – or Spada (Italian for sword) – is a more upright than say a Le Mans, and is the bike on which Italian police steeds are based. So it is capable, comfortable, and not without the usual Moto Guzzi quirks which include shaft drive. But this particular example of the SP is rather special in that it was a dealer-constructed show bike, and the seller is someone who lusted after it for years before realizing the dream. Read on!

1993 Moto Guzzi SP 1000 III for sale on eBay

From the seller:
The Story of the 1993 Moto-GuzziSP III

From 1995 – 2008 I made an annual pilgrimage with some long time friends to Daytona Beach to watch the Daytona 200 motorcycle race. It just so happened… at the same time in Daytona each year…. a little party was also going on… a party called Bike Week. Now, not being the parting type (tee hee), our main focus was to cheer on our favorite riders in the annual superbike endurance hosted by the Daytona Motor Speedway and tour the back roads of Florida.

We all stayed in Deland Florida for two reasons: it was quiet and we did not have to mix with the Harley riders. Deland also hosted the Euro Bike show and Wood Brothers antique bike auction. Many cool Italian, German and Japanese bikes make their way to Deland on the final Saturday of Bike Week. It was a great atmosphere.

At the time I was driving a 1996 Moto Guzzi 1100 sport. Harper Moto Guzzi, from St. Louis, MO, always made the trip to Florida and had a booth at the show in Deland. I had a business relationship with them so on Saturday, I planned to visit them at the show. And that when I first saw it:

Harper’s Daytona show bike, a 1993 Moto Guzzi SP III 1100. It was beautiful and looked like it was going 100MPH just sitting there. I got excited and asked one of my best friends to take a picture of the bike and me. I said “I’m gonna own this sucker one day”

More from the seller:
The bike has a ton of custom Moto Guzzi farkle and a super rare, custom full Valtek Body Kit, the same faring used by the Italian motorcycle police, the “Carabinieri”. The bike wasn’t for sale (but I think they wanted $10 or $11 grand for the bike), which was a fortune for me in 1998. For several years we visited the show and I always visited “my bike”. As my kids and business grew my time got short the Bike Week trips faded away. I kept in touch with Harper’s as I was still driving the 1100 Sport.

For several years I clubbed raced motorcycles and attended many track events. Soon, my interests changed and by 2010 I was completely out of motorcycles and now into vintage car racing. Even the 1100 Sport had to go and my relationship with Harper’s was put on hold. Sadly, my interest in the SP III also waned and soon it became nothing more than a memory. My wife, however, was very happy that finally “the metal was wrapped around me not me wrapped around the metal”. Fast forward to 2015 and after missing my Moto-Guzzi 1100 Sport, and experiencing my 10th mid-life crisis, I found an interesting 1100 Sport for sale and bought it.

The bike was great but after a year of riding her it became apparent that my body did not feel so good after riding long (or short) distances. My 58 year old bones and a 20 year old Italian sport bike did not mix. Regrettably, I came to the realization that I needed a more comfortable ride.

More from the seller:
Suddenly, I remembered the SPIII from Harper’s. Six years later I immediately went to the internet and searched for Harper’s. At the first click I found the banner “Harpers closes its doors and liquidates all its motorcycles, will only sell parts”. My heart broke. I decided to give them a call and see if they knew anyone who would be interested in my 1100 Sport.

On the first ring, Curtis Harper, son of the founder picks up the phone. I introduced myself and he remembers me. I tell him I’m trying to sell the V 1100 Sport and was looking for a nice Italian Sport Tourer. He says “are you interested in a trade?”. I say yes….then Curtis says “Dad auctioned off all the bikes except the 1993 SP III show bike, he was saving that for a good home”

I was shocked, it was destiny! Within two seconds we made a deal and two weeks later I drove 15 hours to St. Louis and drove home with my dream bike. That was 2017, and I’ve had several good years with her and some nice local rides but now I’m 63 and ready to pass on the SP III on to an appreciative owner. My focus now is now English sports cars, heaven help me.

Summary:
Two basic owners since 1993;me and Harpers Motors
1.554 documented miles
Recent carbs rebuild in 2020
New Bridgestone tires in 2017
Show winner, people attractor
Rides like a dream
Collectable rare classic
Title in hand

Guzzis of this vintage are reasonably rare in the United States; the brand was simply not as popular as other European makes, nor did they have a large dealer network. However Moto Guzzi fans are rabid, and the longevity of the brand – as well as the bikes – is legendary. That would explain why this auction, even though it is in the mere $5,000 range at the moment, has a significant number of watchers. This is an extraordinary motorcycle that is truly unique, and has a very interesting history and story to tell. And I’m sure the next owner will become part of that story (and hopefully piles on some more miles). There is a reserve in place, so this one has some distance to run. Check out all of the details here, and enjoy this departure from the everyday superbike. Good Luck!!

MI

A Long Time Coming: 1993 Moto Guzzi SP 1000 III
Moto Guzzi April 27, 2021 posted by

Featured Listing: 1997 Moto Guzzi Daytona RS

Update 4.27.2021: This bike has sold to an RSBFS reader! Congratulations to buyer and seller!

Check out our criteria and get your own Featured Listing! -dc

The 1997 Moto Guzzi Daytona RS is probably the pinnacle of MG’s powers, and it’s a true emblem of the storied marque’s steadfast dedication to doing its own thing, consequence and technology be damned. The Daytona line was released in 1993 to celebrate Goose’s racing success with a privateer in the 1980s. If you can find one from any production year, they are magnificent machines, but the ’97 RS model adds some handling finesse and power the older bikes lack.

For ’97, the v-twin got a 12-horsepower bump to just under 110 horsepower, thanks to better breathing heads, Carillo rods and forged pistons, a lightened crankshaft and upgraded EFI. Braking was now handled by Brembo, and adjustable WP suspension front and rear kept the 500-ish-pound brute headed the right direction. Other trick bits included Marchesini wheels and an Bitubo steering damper.

Complaints at the time included notchy fueling from the big twin, but this bike has had its issued smoothed out with a chip tune from Creedon. The mod should bump power slightly as well as cure the throttle response woes.

From the seller:

Asking price for this beautiful, rare beast is $14,500 and it shows 13,360 miles. It’s not Ducati quick, or as precise and capable as a Japanese bike, but neither of those machines carries the same panache. Unless you’re a member of a well-heeled Guzzi club, the chances you’ll ever see another at the local cruise night are nil.

Featured Listing: 1997 Moto Guzzi Daytona RS
Moto Guzzi December 24, 2020 posted by

Live From New York: 1978 Moto Guzzi Le Mans

‘Tis the season for Guzzi here on RSBFS, and I couldn’t be happier. In general these are nostalgic way-back machines, using large displacement and low RPM to provide motivation to a long-wheelbase platform. The whole package is a lot heavier and a lot less sporty than more contemporary motorcycles, but in the day these were relatively fearsome machines with true street and track creds. Today these are also eminently collectible.

1978 Moto Guzzi Le Mans for sale on eBay

The Le Mans came into existence during the DeTomaso years (of Pantera fame – the car not the band), and represented a new, sporty and stylish direction for the brand. All the classic Guzzi elements were already there, but they needed shaping to create one of the most iconic motorcycles in modern history. Retaining the traverse 90 degree V-twin cylinder arrangement bored out to 850cc and paired with a longitudinal crank plus shaft drive, Guzzi was taking it to the likes of BMW and their R90S – who just so happen to have won the 1976 AMA Superbike class in America with Reg Pridmore aboard. And while the Le Mans was a popular bike for racers, it was also a huge success in the showroom, spanning multiple variants and lasting through the latter half of the 1990s.

From the seller:
1978 Lemans 1 – excellent 22,615 miles.
original seat
original shocks
complete tool kit
original paint (except for fairing)
newer gel battery
complete service
everything works

In today’s world, there is very little here that represents a sport bike. Not the weight, not the long wheelbase, not the tiny disk brakes, not the paltry 71 HP, and not the skinny tires on 18″ wheels. But put in context of the cataclysmal technology revolution that was the 1980s, this simple and solid, hewn-from-solid-rock feeling motorcycle was confidence inspiring and reliable. By today’s dollars, these Mark I bikes appear to be a pretty good investment. And with 22k on the odometer, this is an investment that you can ride and enjoy without fear that a few extra miles will detract from future value.

This particular Moto Guzzi Le Mans is a Series II version of the Mark I bike. The original 1976 models can be identified by the round taillight, and represent only the first couple of thousand bikes. After that we see the square lights in the rear as shown by this 1978 model. These also had upgraded headlights to meet American standards, as well as the funky side reflectors. Today’s example can be found in New York, and is listed for $18,500. It has lots of original patina, and does not appear to be a rapidly-restored and flipped model. Of course you are looking at an unrestored 42 year old motorcycle, so expect some character lines. You can check it all out here. Happy Holidays, stay safe, and good luck!!

MI

Live From New York:  1978 Moto Guzzi Le Mans
Moto Guzzi December 12, 2020 posted by

Tiepido – 1984 Moto Guzzi V65SP

Moto Guzzi can often be considered an Italian-flavored BMW. Excelling at rapid, long distance transport, Guzzi V-twins are well know – legendary even – for their bulletproof longevity; just like the German boxer twins. Think of today’s V65 as a pepperoni flavored bratwurst of the R65 variety. Pairing a basic air-cooled, two-valve approach that mimics the BMW (but with a 90 degree twist) with a stout 5-speed tranny, dry clutch and shaft drive (all like the BMW), the Guzzi takes a pretty standard approach to existence.

1984 Moto Guzzi V65SP for sale on eBay

The V65 moniker applies to the capacity of the bike – in this case 650cc (643cc to be exact). The engine itself is a bored and stroked version of the V50, but still decidedly over-square like both is smaller as well as larger bretheren. As stated above, breathing is done via two valve heads, fed by a pair of Dell’Orto carbs. Compression was set at 10:1, netting 50-ish horsepower at 7,000 RPM. But don’t expect drag race performance or two stroke revs out of this old Goose; modest HP, tractor-like power delivery and nearly 400 pounds of weight (wet) do not a rocket ship make. But if you just want to chug out the miles, this could well be your dream ride.

From the seller:
Up for your consideration, a beautifully kept 1984 V65SP with 10,100 miles.
We recently preformed a complete engine out service to replace the notoriously week stock clutch. At that time we also replaced all rubber bits and other items that should be replaced when doing a major service. The carbs have been tuned perfectly to the air filters and aftermarket exhaust. This bike sound great…
Tires were also replace recently with Pirelli Sport Demons.

Truly a beautiful, lightweight Italian masterpiece on two wheels.

This particular machine looks pretty good for an older girl. The paint is claimed to be original and does show well in the photographed light. The running gear has been serviced to a large extent, including a new clutch and a carb balance – the latter which is mandatory to quell some of the lumpy action of the Guzzi vee arrangement. The exhaust has been replaced with aftermarket, but the rest of the bike appears is as Guzzi intended, which is to say overbuilt and good to go for the next few decades of regular use. This bike has some serious character. The half fairing looks to provide some good wind protection, and the factory lowers help protect rider legs while also ducting cooling air over the cylinders and heads. Take that BMW! This 1984 Moto Guzzi V65SP has had few bids yet remains a bargain at time of writing. If you are looking for something interesting, this might be right up your alley. Stay safe and good luck!!

MI

Tiepido – 1984 Moto Guzzi V65SP
Moto Guzzi September 10, 2020 posted by

Florida Cafe: 1978 Moto Guzzi 850 Le Mans

For those readers interested in some old school cafe racer action, one need look no further than the classic original – the Moto Guzzi 850 Le Mans Mk1. These big, air cooled, v-twin cruisers are the antithesis of the smaller two stroke set (such as this Honda NS250F). Powered by a 850 cubic centimeters of push rod, two valve goodness, the Moto Guzzi is built to eat up the miles and excels at high speed runs.

1978 Moto Guzzi 850 Le Mans for sale on eBay

Although Moto Guzzi’s origins go way back to 1921, it was DeTomaso of the Pantera car fame that recreated Guzzi in the 1970s as the classic icon for which it is known today. This is the era that introduced the Le Mans series, based on the already successful V7 Sport model. So popular was the Le Mans that it spawned several different generations, up through the late 90s. Today, the earliest generation of the Le Mans models have become highly collectible, with rising prices to match.

From the seller:
For sale is a 78′ 850 LeMans in excellent condition.
MK 1 version of the Le Mans, built between 1976 and 1978
Everything works as it should, no issues
Recently services, new battery, new tires, fresh oil, etc.
Engine is perfect, very strong.
Take a look at the pictures and you be the judge.
If need more pictures or video just ask

There are actually two distinct types of the original 850 Le Mans model. For the initial production run the rear taillight utilized a round unit that was similar to the V7 in the home market. Estimates place that as approximately 2,000 units. The following 4,000-ish bikes have the more popular and stylized rectangular model and slightly altered rear mudguard. Those were the only changes during the original model run, with some conjecture that the earliest bikes were the rarest, and therefore worth a slight amount more. In truth, all of first Le Mans models are of high interest to collectors.

Today’s particular Le Mans, one of the later versions of the original model, is no exception to the “highly collectible” category. It looks to be very clean, pretty original, and not missing any pieces to note. The most substantial non-stock item that I can see is some metal polishing. That is only a problem if you consider overly-clean to be an issue – which usually is not a deal killer. The asking price is a lofty $17,900 which might be a deal killer for some, but the truth is that pricing on these models (and the early V7s) continues to climb. Located in Florida, the seller is open to offers so check out all of the details here and let us know what you think of this original bad boy. Good Luck and stay safe!!

MI