The Gilera brand, owned by the Italian scooter powerhouse Piaggio (see our article dated July 25, 2001) is developing a 90 degree V-twin, which will be displayed for the first time in Milan this September. The motor is believed to have been developed in two basic displacements, including 850cc and 1000cc.
Designed potentially for both scooter (scooter displacements are ballooning) and motorcycle use, the larger engine could potentially displace as much as 1200cc. Gilera, which is expected to introduce a 600cc sportbike soon (perhaps, with a preview at Milan this September), using a Suzuki engine, is serious about developing its own engines. Backed by Piaggio, it has the finances and engineering expertise to do so. Expect Gilera to rise quickly in the motorcycle world, and become a well-known manufacturer within the next twelve to eighteen months. Motorcycle models utilizing the big V-twin should see production in the 2003 model year.