The Piaggio Group recently held a big dealer convention in Monte Carlo. The main purpose of event was the introduction of a new generation of light vans and trucks that represents a profitable branch of activity for the Italians.
But there was also a section of the event “for Piaggio eyes only.” There, top management unveiled to Moto Guzzi dealers two concept models: the V7 Scrambler and completely new California 1400.
A section of the event was “for Piaggio eyes only” where the unveiling of two Moto Guzzi concept models took place.
The V7 Scrambler is based on the family of V75-powered V7 models and shares their 40-plus-horsepower “small-block” 750cc V-Twin and related frame. New are the taller suspension units with rubber-gaiter-style fork. The engine is made to look livelier by the adoption of a new, aggressive-looking exhaust system featuring a more elaborate manifold with the left cylinder’s header pipe crossing over to the right side of the bike. Arrow’s megaphone-style mufflers are located high, close to the seat. Semi-knobby tires are the final touch to enhance some kind of adventure look, even if the gas tank and sidecovers are derived directly from the V7 Classic.
The California 1400 is all-new. It is based on an enlarged edition of the “big-block” eight-valve Guzzi 90-degree V-Twin. Bore has been enlarged to the limits of the venerable block, from 95mm of the 1200cc edition to 104mm, while stroke remains 81.2mm. The block really is stretched to its limit, so we might expect great torque and power not exceeding 110 hp, since this edition should not rev higher than 6500 rpm to ensure proper reliability.
The California is a classic design, less custom-bike-oriented than the latest edition of the current model. Tenneco/Marzocchi supplies a very special 50mm fork that makes the front end look reassuringly massive. A neat-looking multi-spoke cast wheel and Brembo radial-mount four-piston brake calipers teamed with 320mm rotors directly bolted to the hub give that extra sophisticated touch.
The unveiling of these two concepts was intended to warm the heart of the Moto Guzzi dealers at the end of what was possibly the worst year ever (fewer than 3000 units sold) for the beloved make from Mandello del Lario. The cavalry had better rush to rescue.
Moto Guzzi V7 Scrambler