This is the second review of my ongoing ownership of a 2009 Moto Guzzi V7 Classic. For the first part of the review, click here.
My second week of ownership of my V7 started with a rain day on a Saturday. It rained so hard that I decided that I wasn’t going to ride until Sunday, where I would make a nice loop going to the Full Moon Cafe on Highway 41, then riding up to the Sly Fox Inn in Wheaton, Wisconsin before taking a bunch of back roads to my home in Oak Park.
It’s a nice loop to make. The route involved a ride up the 294 towards Milwaukee and then dropping off at Deerfield road for the rest of the ride North on Highway 41. After hanging out with the other 50-60 riders that show up there on Sundays, I planned a trip up to the Sly Fox where Vintage riders meet for Brunch and tire kicking. Then the ride home involves skirting the lakes along the Wisconsin/Illinois border and then dropping down into Arlington for a jaunt down the 355/290 and home. I think it’s about 200 miles or so.
I’ve ridden the bike just close to 800 miles now. It’s had the 600 mile service done at Rose Farm Classics, which is a godsend to have as a dealer, resource and friend. I dropped the bike off and he gave me a loaner 1200 Sport overnight while he did the necessary work.
Arriving the next day I found the bags installed, Guzzitech sump in place and the bike ready to go. Of course everything was fine, and of course it took me forever to get out of there because Jim’s a great conversationalist, has interesting people show up, and now he had a beautiful white Cal Vintage in his showroom that a customer was to take delivery of next week. We spent at least an hour discussing the merits of the Vin and the V7C with each other.
800 Miles and it’s all Smiles
After 800 miles, I can tell you that the V7 has no shortcomings for me. It holds its own on the freeways with ease. It handles the hideous street conditions in Chicago like a Hummer. It gets awesome mileage. It’s completely and totally comfortable, easy to ride for a beginner and for more advanced riders it rewards with a lightness, agility and very healthy torque curve. It makes you look cool without being threatening or looking like you’re compensating for something. It says “I have everything I need”, not “I can have anything I want”.
The Moto Guzzi V7 Classic has absolutely the best gearbox that I’ve ever felt on a Moto Guzzi. It shifts like a Japanese bike – snick snick. Braking is predictable, and the Metzler tires are a great match for the chassis. My only complaint is the instrumentation is rather busy and hard to read when you’re speeding down the road. I don’t like to take my eyes off the road for any period of time, especially in traffic, and it’s taken some time to get used to just glancing at where the needles are pointing and registering it in your head. I do like the ambient air temperature guage — nice touch.
The riding position is super for me. I didn’t know what I’d think about such an upright position. I mean, I expect it on my Eldorado, but on a modern bike positions are usually a lot more dramatic, either in the relationship of seat to gas tank, riding lean, peg location, whatever. The standard seat is absolutely perfect for the city, and out on the highway, the wind blast is minimal (I wear a full face helmet).
It’s raining today and I have the bike is at rest till the weather clears. I’m surprised at the size of the V7 with respect to the Eldorado. It’s at least the same size, maybe just a little larger in some regard, although it is most definitely narrower. I think you sit at about the same height, but you definitely notice the lightness of the V7 Classic and it’s handling is much, much more modern in its implementation.