100 Years of Motorcycle Passion

POSTED: 13/12/2021


Moto Guzzi

1921-1945 - The legend is born

On 15th March 1921, the company “Società Anonima Moto Guzzi” was established in the offices of notary Paolo Cassanello in Corso Aurelio Saffi, Genoa, for “the manufacture and sale of motorcycles and all other activities pertinent or related to the metalworking and mechanical engineering industries”. The Company's partners were renowned Genoese ship owner Emanuele Vittorio Parodi, his son Giorgio and his friend Carlo Guzzi. Guzzi was a former comrade of Parodi’s in the Italian Air Corps, as was another friend, Giovanni Ravelli, a pilot like Parodi, who died on 11th August 1919 during a test flight. The eagle with spread wings on the Moto Guzzi logo is a tribute to his memory.

1946-1967 - The great victories

During this period, Moto Guzzi was particularly successful in the various races in which it competed with many of its historic models. The “season of great victories” began with the Gambalunga 500 - the first all-new race bike of the post-war period, designed to be used at mixed circuits - before continuing with the Motoleggera (also known as “Guzzino”), the Gambalunghino, winner of the first 250 title in its debut season and the famous Mandello twin, a success in terms of both its race results and its design. But it was with the 8-cylinder, which allowed for a top speed of 275 km/h,that Moto Guzzi entered the racing hall of fame. This gave life to one of the most efficient and profitable Guzzi bikes of the time - the 350 GP - which became an unbeatable title winner until 1957, when the manufacturer retired from speed racing. Over the course of its racing career, Moto Guzzi scored exceptional results, amassing a total of 3329 wins in official races, 14 world titles and 11 Tourist Trophy victories.

1967-2004 - The V engine

The 90° V engine has become an iconic symbol over the years, part of both Moto Guzzi and global motoring history. It has even served as the proud inspiration for a lifestyle clothing collection, designed by the Mandello manufacturer to 'export' a piece of the Moto Guzzi world to the casual clothing sector. An unexpected and original destination for an engine! Conceived by the brilliant designer Giulio Cesare Carcano in 1965, this air-cooled transverse 90° V twin went into production in 1966 and was on the market from 1967. Many models have mounted this engine, which has evolved over time despite essentially retaining the same framework, right up to the current V7 range, one of the Eagle brand's bestselling models. The Moto Guzzi V engine is a timeless classic, it has even been transformed into a stylised detail that enhances the line of Moto Guzzi Lifestyle clothing and accessories, reminding us each day of the brilliant solutions introduced by the Italian genius.

2004-2021 - Towards the future

In 2004 Moto Guzzi became part of the Piaggio Group, which led to a sharp upturn in the production of new vehicles. 2005 brought the Breva and the Griso 1100, which were followed, in 2006, by the 1200 Sport and the brand's return to the granturismo market. In 2007, and more active than ever, the Mandello manufacturer presented the Griso 8V, Bellagio and Stelvio, before celebrating the Eagle brand with the Moto Guzzi World Days (GMG), which would become an unmissable annual event for the world's Guzzisti. Various new models followed, including the V7 Classic and the V7 Cafè, the different V12 versions, the range constructed around the new 1200 cc V twin with 8 valves, and the V7 Racer, right up to 2011, when Moto Guzzi celebrated its 90th anniversary with a special edition of the California. Many other vehicles have been brought to the stage, but the important thing to remember is that, Moto Guzzi has sped up its development, driving towards a future that is bright despite celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, in 2021.

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