The Moto Guzzi Griso 8v is perfectly potent – Telegraph | Motorcycles catalog with specifications, pictures, ratings, reviews and discusssions

The Moto Guzzi Griso 8v is perfectly potent – Telegraph

2 Mar 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on The Moto Guzzi Griso 8v is perfectly potent – Telegraph
Moto Guzzi V 75

The Moto Guzzi Griso 8v is perfectly potent

More images of the Moto Guzzi Griso 8v

The best-looking bike of the past couple of years for me has not been some high-performance superbike, exotic race replica, upmarket cruiser or hand-built special, but it was at least Italian. Moto Guzzi’s Griso started life as an improbable concept that turned to reality following enormous pressure from potential customers, and the old but turbulent factory found enough time to attend to a host of pleasing details while remaining faithful to the concept’s basic theme.

This year’s Euro emissions regulations have done for the Griso’s 1,100cc engine, however, so for the coming season the slickly styled bike is fitted with a new motor, and despite following the inevitable transverse-cylinder, 90-degree V-twin, air-cooled format, it’s considerably more sophisticated than before. Importantly, the bike has gained 21 horsepower in the process, up to 108bhp.

Would this mean a concomitant loss of low-rev torque to achieve it, so important to the Griso’s character and easy-riding nature? A switch from two to four valves per cylinder – hence the Griso’s 8v suffix – so often leads to a peakier power delivery anyway, but there’s no need to worry because the replacement engine also gains capacity, up from 1,064cc to 1,151cc, achieved by lengthening the stroke and leaving the bore alone.

As soon as you pull away, it’s clear the low- and mid-range torque are unaffected, and the engine feels much the same as before in terms of how hard it drives, only there’s a crisper, livelier edge to it that improves the bike around town and lends it a sportier feel on open roads. But it’s not until you’re revving the motor hard – 6,000rpm is hard for a big twin of this nature – that the power hike comes into effect, and at this point the Guzzi kicks you up to and beyond its 7,500rpm peak. It’s fast enough to be exhilarating here, although the vibration levels rise to intrude at times, and essentially it gives you an extra dimension to the bike’s performance, with no obvious consequential loss.

There are other changes aside from the 563 new components in the engine, which amounts to 75 per cent of the total, apparently. The exceptionally wide bars of the first Griso are narrower but still wide enough to take a little getting used to, while the footrests are slightly higher and farther back and the seat is reshaped to be more comfortable, which seems to work.

There’s a new pearlescent-white colour in addition to the black, the front discs are trendy wave-edged items – no real technical value but they look interesting – and the silencer has an odd Siamese appearance, allegedly to achieve a figure-eight end cross section. Oh, and you also get some tacky 8v stickers.

The rest is as it was, which means outstanding steering at low and high speeds, not fast but precisely neutral and obedient, so the bike sweeps and flows along twisty roads and around mountain hairpins effortlessly, until you try to hustle it when those bars ask for some muscular input. You could certainly go places on the Griso as well as use it locally, although the 3.7-gallon tank capacity is rather mean.

The bike is well finished, though, and Guzzi reliability is good these days, but the spares back-up is still patchy. It looks great too, with the powerful curves of that exhaust defining the left side, the mechanical muscle of oil cooler, motor and transmission exposed on the right and the slender tank draped atop the fat twin frame rails.

This is Guzzi – and bike design generally – at its best.

Moto Guzzi V 75

Moto Guzzi Griso 8v [tech/spec]

Price/availability: £7,400 approx on the road. On sale November. Contact: Promark, 01293 823890, .

Engine/transmission: 1,151cc, V-twin four-stroke with eight valves; 121bhp at 7,500rpm, 58lb ft of torque at 6,000rpm. Six-speed gearbox, shaft final drive.

Performance: top speed 145mph, average fuel consumption n/a.

We like: Engine, style, easy to ride.

We don’t like: Spares back-up, high-rev vibes.

Alternatives: Aprilia Tuono R Fighter, £8,025. BMW R1200R, £8,295. Buell XB125 Lightning, £7,745. Ducati Monster S4R, £7,995. Yamaha MT-O1, £9,349.

Moto Guzzi V 75
Moto Guzzi V 75
Moto Guzzi V 75
Moto Guzzi V 75

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