Italian motorcycle manufacturer Moto Guzzi began in business producing a utilitarian road going 500cc horizontal single cylinder powered machine called the Normale, but soon followed up with a range of sporty roadsters and racing machines. A famous name in pre-war road racing events, Moto Guzzi were soon on the rostrum at many international racing events, including a win in the 1935 Isle of Man TT, with the late, great Stanley Woods riding.
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Producing machines for the Italian forces throughout the war, Moto Guzzi returned to road and race bike manufacture soon afterwards. In the 1940’s and 50’s, much of Moto Guzzi’s production was made up of smaller capacity machines, but increasing competition from Japanese manufacturers in the late 1960’s saw the company becoming State run. In this period the company produced several small capacity machines, but also developed a new aircooled 90° V-twin engine which would be used in many of their later bikes. Starting out with a 700cc capacity, this engine was continually refined and developed into 750, 1100 and eventually 1200cc versions powering such iconic motorcycles as the Moto Guzzi V7 Sport. By the late 1970’s development of a new ‘small block’ engine, the 350cc V35, had begun. This motor was eventually developed into 500, 650 and 750cc versions (the V50, V65 and V75), though by the early eighties versions with four valve cylinder heads were developed which produced significantly more power.
Still very popular with motorcycle enthusiasts the world over, the current Guzzi range includes custom styled bikes including the Nevada Classic 750, the Norge 1200 tourer, the 940cc Bellagio, the retro styled California, plus the 850, 1100 and 1200cc Griso ‘naked’ bikes.