The euro cruiser is 40 years old
You who come to read our review of the Moto Guzzi California Vintage already know that it is probably the last of the most faithful descendants of a line appeared in year 1972 to 2012, will indeed arrive a new California on all new technical bases. For that reason, we couldn’t leave it spinning the last of the historic California without going back his family tree. Get out the handkerchiefs.
Do not be deceived
Moto Guzzi California is almost the oldest European Bike still in production – the oldest of all being the Royal Enfield. But even if it was announced already succession of California for 2012, its likely 1 400 cm3 complies with new anti-pollution euro 4 will probably share much less with its prestigious predecessors than the last V Twin 1100 which purrs in the California Vintage 2011 we just test for this reason, we absolutely wanted to pay tribute to this mechanical legend on Moto – Station.com. And to this end, we asked Chris’ Delahaye, eminent Tester motorcycle and the Italian specialist
The V7 Special for mechanical foundation
The first of the series is developed in 1971 on the basis of the V7 Special 757 cm3 and 45 HP, the big V-twin 90 ° to Mandello, drawn six years earlier by engineer Carcano. But the California was born in 1972 in 844 CC the race is passed to 78 mm alongside the new 850 GT. This V Twin facing 850 CC produced 6 additional CH 51 HP din altogether, receives a new camshaft improving flexibility and above all, a box five reports. Other brand, California has its famous and wide windshield how “shovel pie”, running boards, a double selector branch, a wide Saddle buddy-seat bicolor and suitcases. The “Italian Harley” monkeys also initially the Police model designed for Americans.
Between Harley and BMW, here’s the California 850
However from 1972, the Moto Guzzi California will forge its own personality, hesitating still over the decades between the US and European style. Massive, with oversized equipment inspired by the automobile, this bike inspires confidence with its transmission shaft and shaft, its crankshaft on bearings, its igniter Marelli Fiat 500, its electric starter, his battery of 32 Ah!, his indestructible twin-plate dry clutch, its swing arm mounted on conical bearings, among others. Easy maintenance is also the other big argument from California at the time: the mechanic or owner can disassemble valve, cylinders, connecting rods and pistons without descended the framework engine, or inspect the crankshaft from below! Truly designed to shoot down for miles, the Moto Guzzi 850 California finds its place between a BMW and a Harley-Davidson in rolls always. With a full, it can cover 400 km of a single deals by offering every comfort to its lucky driver.
The year 1975 of the rail
In year1974, the large double drum cam diam. 220 mm gives way to a 300 mm disc – nothing too to stop the 253 kg dry of the Calif’. In 1975, the range of Guzzi modernizes and style is no exception. On the T3 California, note especially the arrival of the brakes integral braking system coupling the disc left front and rear disk in the right foot for a better distribution then appeared on the Convert 1000 with a automatic transmission, a four at the time. A 300W alternator replaces the dynamo, which allows to adopt the more rigid framework of the V7 Sport; the lubrication circuit includes a filter cartridge. This Moto Guzzi 850 T3 California offers 59 ch and a much better road behavior than the previous. It will elapse near 12,000 e.g. until 1982, and this version will much contribute to the reputation of “rail” that the California grew to many riders.
Breast enhances for California II
The California 1000 II 1982-1987 is actually the third generation. Completely redesigned, it adopts the framework of 850 T4 and engine 948 cm3 to 88 mm bore to the angular fins rather than rounding. The power of the Moto Guzzi California moves to 65 HP, the torque rises meanwhile to 7.7 mkg at 5 RPM. Carburetors Dell’Orto HBV passes to a diameter of 30 mm, but ignition circuit is retained. The swing arm is lengthened; the Italian star inherits rims to branches and wrap-around mudguards. From 1982, a recycling of oil vapors allows him to pass news and binding US emission standards. Its reservoir increases to 25 liters. Three colors are available for California 2, white, black or red a very elegant Calif’, perfectly collectible today, produced to 9,600 units, and which enjoys a quality of manufacturing on the rise.
Place the “Iniezione” California
The California 1000III style 1987-1992 is in total with what one knows about the II, very “custom” with a rotund tank type water drop and a saddle two-storey. The least beautiful of the Moto Guzzi California inherits even a hideous full fairing on the model CI. The design shows no change, just a few improvements: separate counters and modern handlebar control Kit, fork diam, tubes, 40 mm instead of 35, semi-floating discs, and so on.
First version Iniezione IE of the Calif’ in 1990 wait to see the, which Weber Marelli injection improves the flexibility. The same year released catalogue a California Classic IE, without windscreens or suitcases and pare-cylinders, which foreshadows the sober Jackal. In 91 released a limited edition 70th anniversary. In 92 limited with the 71 engine CH of the SP3, that team eventually almost the entire range California in 1993.
In year 1994, new increase in displacement with the California 1100 as 1994-1997, this climbs to 1,064 CC with a 92 mm bore. It is available in version CardBus (Dell’ 36 mm Dell’Orto), injection-being. It also without windshield and luggage, but with a sissy bar and a wheel from 17 inches to the rear, its weight down to 245 kg. A two-tone version “Anniversary” was released in 1997 for the 75th anniversary of the brand.
California 1997- More than a uncomplicated “EVo”
The 5th generation of the Moto Guzzi California enters the scene in 1997. If evolution is discrete, the EV 1100 take not less than 151 changes! Given for 73 HP and 9.4 daN.m at 5,000 rpm / min., the Calif’ EV inherits a sequential multipoint injection, injectors Weber, electronic ignition Marelli, new rods, optimized brakes (front disc dia. 320 mm, 4 piston calipers), of new suspension (fork diam. 45 mm, shock absorbers WP), all for 251 kg dry. The capacity of the tank is more than 19 liters. Aesthetically appealing, the Moto Guzzi California 1100 EV will give birth to a dive of special versions-first the Special 1999 to 2000, then the Jackal 1999 to 2001, a version very stripped down and uncomfortable! for a tight, price reduced its accessories, private full brakes and centre stand. Very “class” Moto Guzzi California EV 80 in 2001 celebrates the 80th anniversary of the brand with the Touring, more a luxurious leather Bordeaux signed Poltrona Frau Accessories.
The 2000 Calif- undresses
Moto Guzzi 1100 California Stone (2001-2005) the bare concept of the Jackal. This is the “Calif’ poor unless the poor the team richly behind! The California Stone Metal 2002 to 2003 is distinguished by a chrome tank. The Special Sport 2001 to 2006 adopted a new livery and a double disk at the front. Finally, the California EV Touring 2001to 2007 is equipped with a large bubble fork and leg-head. The P.I. EV 2002 takes advantage of hydraulic tappets finished rocker settings. Include the little EV “Aluminium” from 2004 to 2005.
Vintage, the last of the authentic
End of 2005 in Milan, Guzzi launches the Moto Guzzi California Vintage 2006 to 2008, a retro version that takes over the aesthetics of the 850 T3 California. The massive use of chrome and metal revives the tradition. Its engine is the one of the 1100 Breva 75 HP and 94 daN.m, equipped with a digital electronic ignition type dual ignition. The Vintage double 1100 California Touring model 2006-2008, a full-equipment with suitcases, top box, fairing version. In 2006, first return of the Jackal concept in the guise of beautiful California Classic models 2006-2008, in 2-tone livery, great handlebars, pare-legs, steps and double disc and history is an eternal repetition, a “Jackal III” returns in 2009 to a Matt Black livery, mode requires, renamed “Aquila Nera” (2009-2011). This avalanche of special series hides most: the absence of technical developments since 1997. Without doubt is the California Vintage the last of the series of the 1100, the closest in the spirit of the historical models of the series. For its 40th year in 2012, California should probably miss the opportunity to come back to us in a new version, profoundly transformed… Follow on the station, naturalmente…
By Rana, constructor photos, bikesdoctor.com and Bikez.com
With the invaluable assistance of Motobel, your local Moto Guzzi in Levallois-Perret 92