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MD First Look: 2013 Moto Guzzi V7 Stone, Racer and Special

As we reported last year, Moto Guzzi’s line of V7 entry-level retro 750s got a through re-do. Changes included big bumps in horsepower, torque, fuel efficiency and emissions. However, for almost a year, no word on when USA customers would get the new bikes, or how much they would cost.

Wait no more. The three new models will be coming to the U.S. as 2013 models, and there’s a lot to be excited about. At the bottom of the lineup is the V7 Stone, in a fetching matte black or glossy white paint scheme. It’s the cheapest way—at $8390—to get on board a Moto Guzzi. Like all the V7s, it uses the “short block” 90-degree, air-cooled, ohv two-valve motor, fuel injected with a single Weber-Marelli throttle body, hooked up to the two cylinders with dual intakes. Power output is claimed at 50 horsepower at 6200 rpm—not bad for a 30-plus year-old design, and not too far from the output of the Ed Milich-modified V7 Cafe we tested last year. Not bad for a claimed curb weight of 395 (which we think is measured with just a splash of gas in the 5.8-gallon tank). Seventies-look mag wheels are graced by Pirelli Sport Demon bias-ply tires—an 18-inch in front and a 17-incher in back. Braking is handled by a single Brembo caliper and 320mm disc in front, with a 260mm disc and Brembo caliper in back.

V7 Special

A little fancier is the two-tone $8990 V7 Special. It’s done up in a red-and-white color scheme, with spoked aluminum wheels. Accessory bags and windscreen can turn the little bike into a lightweight tourer (not a bad choice, given the claimed 310-mile range).

And to take advantage of the latest craze is the $9990 V7 Racer. It’s done up with a heap of period-replica cafe-racer accessories, including a chrome gas tank, fastback seat, number plates and fly screen, clip-on bars, gorgeous rearset footpegs (I saw these at Piaggio’s Technical Center in Costa Mesa and was very impressed with how nicely detailed and well-made they were, and Piaggio’s Erik Larsen says they are available for other models out of the Moto Guzzi accessory catalaog), red-painted frame, upgraded Bitubo rear shocks and other little touches. Do the Ton!

V7 Stone

Dirck and I were particularly smitten by the Stone and think it’s a great basis for a cafe-racer project…let’s see if Moto Guzzi wants to play along. I think the bike will be a big hit with younger buyers, who want modern convenience, retro looks, and exclusivity all at a relatively cheap price—compare it to Harley-Davidson’s $7999 883 Iron or Triumph’s basic-black $7699 Bonneville. The V7s will be in U.S. dealers in October, except for the Special, which will arrive in the first quarter of next year..

69 Comments

  1. Alan says:

    These new Guzzis are cute but can’t compare to the real thing. Consider the performance in 1973 of a V7 Sport. 125 mph, 13 second quarter mile. Think about that in the context of the times. Admittedly, at $3200 the V7 Sport was much more expensive in its day. But these are no more than pale, cosmetic copies of the immortal real thing.

  2. Daniel says:

    I just picked up the 2013 V7 racer two days ago and absolutely love the bike. It feels as if the bike was designed just for me. Even though the ouput numbers seem low, the bike has plenty of power and handles beautifully. Braking is not great IMO but it stops just fine. Guys and gals over 6′ might have a problem but at 46 years old, 5’8 and 150lb, the bike is perfect for me. Did I mention it looks incredible?

  3. Don says:

    Previous reviews from the European introduction indicated the bikes might be a little cramped for six-footers. The bike has everything I need in terms of power, styling, etc., but comfort is key. Any 6′ or 6’1″ guys gotten some ride time on one of these yet?

    • Al says:

      I’m 6′ and I’ve rideen the Racer and the Stone (I’m from Europe). No problems size-wise on both. Better ergos and way less cramped than for ex. a Triumph Bonneville SE. Found the ergos of the Stone model similar to the Kawasaki W800.

  4. Raimo K says:

    Not much power but check the torque, maximum at 2800 rpm!
    Test rode one last week, it sure is lively :-)

  5. Nocklhiem Verstadt says:

    Sounds like the claimed weight is close to reality. Currently riding a 1200 Sportster that weighs 500# and would definitely prefer a bike that’s a 100# less with better handling. I will check out this line of V7’s (hopefully there’s a dealer close to home.

  6. Scorpio says:

    The V7 Stone has my attention for a next bike. It even has almost all the accessories I require as factory options. This conversation has me concerned however about losing oomph compared to my Bonneville. Riding a 750 Breva back in ’04 left me underwhelmed…cramped ergos too. The new V7 would have to have at least a comparable power-to-weight ratio to the Triumph for me to send money to Italy; guess I’ll have to cadge a demo!

  7. Nocklhiem Verstadt says:

    Does anyone know what the actual dry weight of one of these Guzzi V7’s is? I’m guessing it’s quite a bit different than the manufacturer’s claimed weight of 395 pounds, which seems quite low.

    • Dave says:

      I bet that’s not too far off. It’s a simple air cooled bike. Not much to it.

      • bikerrandy says:

        When I bought my `04 750 Breva, the Guzzi factory claimed it weighed 401 lbs. Don’t know if that’s w/o liquids, but it is light compared to other MCs I’ve owned.

        • Scotty says:

          My Breva was claimed 182kgs, vs the Bonnie claimed 205kgs (I think). Most people who have ridden both the New Bonnies and the V7s say the V7s feel smaller and lighter, and the handling is more lively/natural. They lose out on power to the Bonnies, for sure. In my 16 years road riding, all 3 of my bikes have had the same power as the V7 and in all those touring miles, commuting miles, and just plain fun miles, I have not lust for a lot more power that often, yet I have often had cause to be happy about the light weight of the SRX600, SZR660 and the Breva750.

  8. ham says:

    I saw the cafe racer at Empire Cycle in Spokane two weeks ago. Very nice. I personally think Guzzi is on a role. I would forget about the high priced parts etc…those days are gone…this company is for real.

  9. Bob says:

    I know I cant be the only one who really likes the looks of these Guzzi’s because they look like a motorcycle should. Some of the new bikes out today just seem to try to out “style” each other with weird looking headlights, exhaust, and odd bodywork.

  10. barney says:

    These are beautiful bikes and Moto Guzzi will sell lots of them. Just as Triumph can’t keep up with the demand for their Bonnevilles and Thruxtons so too Guzzi will do well with these.

  11. SloJon says:

    Looks like a 17″ front on Stone; like Breva. Also like gaiters on forks. Cannot wait to test ride for comparison(have 04′ Breva). As to comparing apples & oranges- Ninja, Speed Triple, H-D,…..I have had Ninjas’, have Sportster, Speed Triple,CBR250,1125r, misc. Scooters….very fortunate. ALL machines get me excited; enough PuterMadness, time to clean one up & RIDE

    • Eric says:

      Am i missing something? For the 2013 engine, max torque of 42.7 ft-lbs is reached at 5000 rpm. While the 2012 engine (in Canada at least) had 40.3 ft-lbs of torque at 3600 rpm. The new engine has an increase oh power of 1,2 hp, 600 rpm lower than the 2012.

      I hope that the improvements of the power caracteristics must be somewhere else. Reducing vibration, fuel efficiency, etc. I wish! I have to admit that i never ride a Guzzi. But since the beginning of the year, the V7 looks tempting. Must take a demo ride for next year.

  12. Jeremy in TX says:

    The best thing about this bike (besides the snazzy looks) is that 5.8 gallon tank. I hate stopping for gas. Now if only they would replace that hamster wheel with an engine and put some decent brakes and suspension components on it… Then I would HAVE to buy one.

    • bikerrandy says:

      Obviously you haven’t ridden 1 of these Guzzis. If you want a race bike, then by all means do it.

      • barney says:

        This is the modern problem surrounding motorcyles. The majority of young or new riders often judge the worth of the bike based on the specs that advertising reliant bike magazines constantly play up and worship.
        I believe bike magazines have alot to answer for in terms of the over proliferation of the uncomfortable, unnecessary ubiquitous plastic covered sports bikes that litter the landscape. Don’t get me started on how ugly they are!

        • Brian Hansen says:

          @ Don’t be a Doosh

          Manufacturers race to SELL motorcycles. Are you so obtuse to not realize a lot of enthusiasts want a race bike for track days and that young men idiolize racers, and want to ride what they ride?

          Grow up a little bit and don’t mind what everyone else is riding. “WE” are all “motorcyclists” and “we have to stick together” – except for “Bikers”…they are a whole different story. Hahaha

  13. Provalogna says:

    The Stone indeed looks like the perfect mod platform. At my age I’d probably buy the sexy Sport and forget about major mods. Reminds me of BMWs Lo-Rider/Cafe Racer concept bikes they showed at 2007 Milan, but never appeared. http://images.motorcycle-usa.com/PhotoGallerys/BMW-Milan-Show-Concept-Lo-R.jpg The Cafe Racer looks positively irresistible, with performance and reliability to back it up. A spy image appeared in the last few months of such a BMW. Thinking about that BMW’s handling, torque, and visceral old-fashioned experience, combined with the modern convenience of FI and all the rest, with BMW luxury brand service, makes me lust for it.

  14. Provalogna says:

    Edit 2nd paragraph, last line:
    “…the tiny interest benefit is too small vs. the perceived risk of default…” (not “too high”)

    Guzzi shoppers beware: when I owned two Guzzis 12-15 years ago, parts prices were close to criminal, i.e. clutch lever about $117 ea. Reliability and parts availability left much to be desired.

    I owned about 80 bikes.

    • Kagato says:

      Thanks for the info–I get excited about the looks–and forget about the realities. Broke feller like me might be better off sticking to my Ninja 500

      • Scotty says:

        Guzzi shoppers take note – I have owned a small block since 2004 and its never let me down.:-)Keep the battery in good nick and ride it don’t treat it like a toy, don’t lug it, and you will be surprised by the new Guzzis. If you are dazzled by horsepower – look elsewhere. We’ll be riding.

  15. Provalogna says:

    It hit me after first mention of the new Guzzi 750’s MSRP in the USA.

    Re. the shocking inflation in motorcycle (and everything else for that matter) prices. There are many negative implications regarding ZIRP (zero interest rate policy and NIRP (negative interest rate policy, in which central banks actually pay subscriber banks to borrow money). Some postulate that ZIRP/NIRP negatively affect housing (and other areas) of the economy, because, from the bank’s perspective, the tiny interest benefit is too high vs. the perceived risk of default.

    Think about motorcycles for a minute. In regular interest eras, banks prospered by charging interest, resulting in better sales volumes. Now the interest avenue is gone, but profits must come from somewhere.

    Enter price inflation.

    The fact is, no matter how closely interest rates hover toward 0, the public, living with the sting of over-leveraging, has virtually no “interest” in the “interest”.

    • Dave says:

      European motorcycles cost a lot in America because the dollar is weak against the Euro. Adjusted for inflation, motorcycles are cheaper now than they were back before prices got “out of control”.

      • Brian Hansen says:

        The Euro is headed for Collapse – Stay tuned for liquidation prices when EU sales figures continue to drop. The car companies are losing $$$$ big time and the motorcycle companies will follow.

        There is no long term future for the Euro – Germany can’t afford to bail out all the P.I.I.G.S.

        When it goes down, we will have anothe Recession here in the states or worse.

        Printing Money has Consequences

        Have a Great Day!

  16. Charlie says:

    The V7 Stone is arriving at dealers across the US now.
    http://wildguzzi.com/forum/index.php?topic=57565.0

  17. Charlie says:

    Guzzi folks call these “small-blocks” not “short blocks” as the article states.

  18. MGNorge says:

    Since invariably discussions of most motorcycles center around published horsepower levels that’s what people use to compare. But a single horsepower figure is far from telling the whole story and that’s with any bike. Moto Guzzis have never been horsepower king contenders but instead feature very broad torque curves that are very satisfying to ride. While Moto Guzzi dealers are stretched far apart the best advice I can give anyone interested is to search out a dealer, I’m rather lucky as I have one little more than half an hour away. Take one for a test ride and see if it fits. I did 3 years ago and have been hooked ever since. I like all bikes, have a couple at the moment, but there’s something about my Guzzi that makes me want to climb aboard and go for a spin. Another factor is their relative ease of owner maintenance. That can save some rather large coin through the years plus you gain satisfaction that the job was done right.

  19. Kagato says:

    Yah! I saw the earlier release pics of the Stone and was vastly disappointed when it was missing from the US Guzzi website. That has now been corrected : – ) I’ve wanted a goose since reading a magazine article about a project race Guzzi named “Overdog”.

  20. ABQ says:

    Thanks for the the 5.8-gallon tank. Somebody is on the job, and listening.

  21. todd says:

    This bike should be able to do around 100mph. How is that not able to “keep up?” I ride small bikes around big bike groups all the time. I’m usually right in the middle/front of the pack. When you’re dragging your toes and pegs around corners at 50mph having more power is useless.

    The size and power of this bike is identical to my BMW R75/5. It seems about perfect for cruising/commuting/back road fun.

    Guzzi should learn something from Harley; never tell people how much power your bike has…

    -todd

    • barney says:

      As I can attest, it is way more fun riding a ‘slow’ bike fast than riding a ‘fast’ bike slow. Love my Bonneville! 60 hp. broad torque curve starts down low.

  22. soi cowboy says:

    The V7 is smallish in overall dimensions for north american physiques.

    • Kent says:

      My wife rides, and traded her Monster for a HyperMotard – she wanted to be more comfortable on distance rides. The HM was just a bit too tall for her to feel really secure on it, so she sold it. She has no interest in a sportbike covered in plastic, or a cruiser. The answer was a W650 Kawi, used of course. The Bonneville was another possibility.

      This would be great. It’s about as powerful as the W650, has good ergonomics, a real gas tank and looks good.
      I hope they sell teh hell out of them.

      If you don’t want a sportbike or cruiser, and are short, there’s not many options.

  23. goose says:

    I’m a Guzzi lover, these bikes are gorgeous, at least to my eye.

    Comments:

    Mickey, If you think an 850 Eldorado made 65 HP you are thinking of one with Turbo. Actual dyno numbers would be low to mid 40s, a little less then these bikes. And that was without emissions or noise requirements.

    It may be that HP isn’t relevant and I’d say comparing an air cooled, two valve engine with the little Kawasaki 300 is silly. But it would still be nice to see a few more HP. Maybe Guzzi needs to drop the Heron heads for something that breaths?

    Goose

    • mickey says:

      Goose I thought I remembered his having 65 hp, but saw your response, so I googled the specs and it was rated at 64 hp at 6500 rpm.

      If you are talking rear wheel it may be, but these 50 hp 750 Guzzis are only pulling 36 at the rear wheel according to magazines that have recently tested them. One pitted a Guzzi racer against a Thruxton, and the Thruxton was a lot more powerful.

      I’m a Guzzi fan, and test road a Breva before I bought a Triumph Bonneville in 2003 . The Breva was gutless, and even though the Triumph had more power, I sold it for a used 750 Nighthawk Honda with 75 horsepower….and it needs another 25 horsepower IMO, but I’d love to have a Guzzi in the stable. Like I said a Stelvio powered retro would tempt me to seek out a Guzzi dealer.

      • goose says:

        Mickey,

        I’m disagreeing with you on the on the amount of power the 850s made, not that the current 750 need more power.That 64 HP figure had more to do with the fantasies of the marketing department than actual power output. Great bike, just not a bike with lots of top end. As just one example of how the old touring Guzzi was tuned the 850 engine had 29 mm carburetors. The little Ninja 300 has 32 mm throttles, the new Guzzi cruisers have 40 mm throttles.

        Back to the subject, I’d love to see the 750s get pumped up a little more. Light, simple beautiful, cheap to buy, easy to self maintain. If Guzzi could pump them up a bit (I’m think more like 50 HP at the rear wheel) I might own a Guzzi again.

        Goose

  24. mickey says:

    Always loved the look of Guzzis and my brothers 850 Eldorado was a great bike. My complaint about these “little Guzzis” is the lack of HP. 11 more horses than the Kawasaki 300 with more than twice the displacement? That’s sad. Heck, my brothers 73 850 Eldorado had 15 more horsepower than these. You think in 40 years Guzzi would have been able to GAIN 15 HP instead of lose it. How in the heck does that happen? Now a Guzzi 750 or 850 with a hundred horsepower? Then you’d be talking! Think Stelvio motor in a retro standard.

    Awefully pretty bikes though.

    • kjazz says:

      I hear you, however, I’m wondering if this isn’t one of those times when a low HP figure really doesn’t hurt it. Particularly if the torque curve is suitable for the purpose. I have a Thruxton that doesn’t set the world on fire with HP, but it, nevertheless, is a very entertaining bike to run around on, even on an occasional track day believe it or not!!

      • Mark Pearson says:

        Could you talk a little more about riding track days on a Thruxton, please? I previously sold my street SV650 because I got frustrated trying to keep up with the four-cylinder guys. Now my F4i trackbike’s for sale because I’m tired of the never-ending equipment arms race.

        I want to get back to throwing the bike in the back of the truck and heading out for a track day whenever I get the itch to go fast. I also want something cool to bomb around town on. I realize touring would be torture on a Thruxton and I can’t expect to keep up with the cool kids at the track, but I don’t care as long as I’m having fun again.

        • kjazz says:

          Well, my Thruxton (bone stock except for Triumph TORS pipes and jets) isn’t gonna really get too exciting from an acceleration standpoint. But, it feels very solid on corners. AND…..if forces you (me in this case) to really think about lines through corners. You can’t screw up an entry and expect to hammer your way out on the exit. You really do get to know lines a bit better when you have the time and requirement to do so if you wanna set up for a smooth exit. Brakes are adequate, but again, you have to ride the bike within it’s set of limitations, but it can be very fun to do so. I also take my Speed Triple to the track and that’s fun too. In the end, I probably get more satisfaction out of riding a “slow” bike fast than trying to ride a fast bike as fast as it’ll go. If that makes any sense!!?

          • Mark Pearson says:

            Makes perfect sense.

            You have a Thruxton AND and a Speed Triple? Dude, you’re killing me! If you had to pick one, which would it be? Or, is there another bike you like even better?

            I’m looking to go back to one, do-it-all sporty bike, but it has to be cool – visually or mechanically, if not both. I love naked bikes, problem is I have a 36″ inseam so bikes like the ZRX (which I love) are tough.

            Right now I’m leaning towards either a Speed Triple or first-generation FZ-1, possibly even a Superhawk.

          • Ted says:

            Mark, my two cents… the first-gen FZ1 stock seat height is about 32″. I have one (and a 34″ inseam) and the bike fits well.

            The Suzuki Bandit 1200/1250 is also a fine choice as an all-rounder. Seat height similar to the ZRX at about 31″, and more roomy than either the ZRX or FZ1. On the Bandit, it feels like you sit a little farther back than the others, making you lean forward more while opening up the bend of your knees.

            Stock, the FZ1 feels lighter and has superior handling and top-end power; the Bandit 1200 has better low-end power and comfort. I enjoyed owning both. Good luck in the all-rounder quest.

          • kjazz says:

            Mark, I try not to think of life with only one bike in the garage. I ride my Thruxton, S3 and my GS Triple black weekly. They are all great for various reasons. If I had to live with only one bike though, the GS would be it. It can haul ass on city streets like nobody’s business!!! Could do around the world tour, or go for groceries. It is the ultimate in versatility. But still, I love my Triumphs!!!!!!!!

    • Dave says:

      The HP# s also tempered by the low rev limit of engines like this. Remember, to get the Kawi’s claimed hp you have to spin it up to 12k rpm. These 50hp 750’s probably have a redline in the 8k/rpm range and can make torque down in the 3k’s.

      • Zorecati says:

        Please don’t count out the street triple. I hear it’s amazing and having ridden a 675 daytona, I can only imagine how much fun the street triple is.

        • Zorecati says:

          Sorry, I wanted to reply to Mark Pearson

        • Dave says:

          No worries, the thread is pretty easy to follow. Street Triple is supposed to be one of the best sport bikes going.

          Another point about this bike’s apparent lack of power- It’s really pretty lightweight, in the order of 100lbs lighter than a Bonneville.

          I think customers that like this will likely not like higher tech bikes but as we’ve seen, some riders like all flavors and have the money/space to indulge.

        • Mark Pearson says:

          I prefer the weight and power characteristics of middleweights but they don’t fit my long legs. I’m 45-years old. I gave up my 501’s a long time ago. I’m tired of forcing myself into bikes that don’t fit.

    • Charlie says:

      The Eldorado did not make 15 more horsepower than these V7s. The factory “claimed” hp was 64, but in reality it was more like 50-55 brake hp.

      A better comparison: The current V7 dynos at around 38 hp at the rear wheel, your average ’70-’72 V750 Ambassador will crank out about 34. The 2013 V7 should have around 40 at the rear wheel.

      • mickey says:

        Charlie..according to your post the old Eldorado put out 55 horsepower and the 2013 V7s should have around 40 horsepower. So…isn’t 55 horsepower 15 more than 40 horsepower?

        • Charlie says:

          You’re mixing up brake hp and rear wheel hp. The Eldorado had 50-55 hp *at the crank*, with 40-42 at the rear wheel. About the same as the 2013 V7s.

  25. Tom says:

    Man, that V7 Stone looks like how a true motorbike should look!

    • Brian Hansen says:

      I agree – it is beautiful! The design is pure “Standard” with the Guzzi flair. I have been lusting over a Grisso 8V as a fantasy “4th” motorcycle. Too bad these 750s are so limp on power.

      I hope a lot of people buy these, because I want Guzzi to do well in the US. Some day I will have a Big Guzzi Standard.

  26. Ed says:

    Looking good….really love the round headlight, the twin rear shocks and flat seat. If only it came in blue, Oh well, a lot closer to my perfect bike than anything else out there. Yeah, I guess that makes me an old fart.

  27. kawatwo says:

    I miss the Breva 750. That was a pretty bike. Please bring it back :) All MGs are cool though!

  28. John says:

    Finally a V7 without the stupid “7” number plates. The fact that you want to convert the stone into what the racer is, supports my first statement. I don’t need 150Hp, 35-40rwhp is just not enough. Looks like Terblanche put his 1000sport fuel tank on the guzzis.

    Dear Moto Guzzi – Please make a lightweight fun to ride bike that can put the racer in cafe racer. Looks like I’ll keep my V11 until the V7 can at least keep up with a triumph.