Moto Guzzi V7 III Special (2017) in the top test

Moto Guzzi V7 III Special in the top test

Fast and relaxed entry-level bike

The current entry-level series at Moto Guzzi stops under the traditional model name V7 and is now available in its third edition – with far-reaching changes compared to its predecessors. MOTORRAD put the Moto Guzzi V7 III Special through its paces in the top test.

The first appeared exactly 50 years ago M.oto Guzzi V7. A lot has happened recently with the current V7 series: The V2 engines got modern pistons and cylinder heads with correct combustion chambers. So far, pistons and cylinder heads were designed according to the Heron principle, i. H. the mixture burned in deep hollows in the piston crown. This was considered to be cost-effective and economical – at the expense of maximum performance.

Moto Guzzi V7 III Special in the top test

Fast and relaxed entry-level bike

More power + nice torque curve

Beyond the symbolic value, the changes to the Moto Guzzi V7 III bring tangible technical advantages: more power, for example – as the MOTORRAD test bench proves, even 2 hp more than indicated. In addition, a voluminous torque curve arches over the speed axis.

In combination with the smaller, albeit still stately, flywheel mass and the lighter pistons, there is a pleasant combination of full blow and noticeably increased revving. Even in sixth gear, the V2 engine happily cranks into the red area, which starts at 6,500 rpm; the top speed of the Moto Guzzi V7 III should in reality even be slightly above the specified 170 km / h, even taking into account the fact that the speedometer greatly exaggerates.

Of course, you don’t buy a Moto Guzzi V7 III to drive at a consistently high speed on the autobahn – but it could. The 744 does not develop too much braking torque when braking before bends and when turning in, and starts to accelerate gently from the middle of the bend, but without noticeable delay. This helps when driving relaxed country roads, if desired also when driving briskly.

Consumption and range

Nevertheless, the Moto Guzzi V7 III does not consume more fuel than its predecessor: the injection did not spray more than 4 liters per 100 kilometers into the combustion chambers during the consumption lap, while on the motorway at a constant 130 km / h it remained at 4.1 liters per 100 Kilometer. In sixth gear, the engine rotates around 4,900 rpm, which is at least on the threshold of the upper speed range. That speaks for a very efficient combustion.

The 21-liter tank will therefore last more than 300 kilometers, even with a high-performance driving style. The driver has to ignore the reserve warning, which lights up early, for a long time. During the test drives with the Moto Guzzi V7 III there were almost 5 liters of petrol in the tank shortly after the warning signal came on.

Power transmission

The small dip in the torque curve around the 4,000 mark indicates the area in which the modernized engine of the Moto Guzzi V7 III vibrates the most under load. Above and below, the mechanics are more noticeable in the form of a not unpleasant pulsation, they show the smooth running that one expects from a Guzzi. In contrast, the six-speed transmission of the test machine behaved much less rustic than expected. It can be shifted easily, precisely and quietly; Moto Guzzi would not be completely silent. Only sometimes does the driver have to shift back and forth between first and second gear in order to find neutral. However, this is due to the slight, almost invisible locking of the gear wheel pairs and not – as in motorcycles with oil bath clutches – to sticking friction discs. What should the washer of a dry clutch stick to??

The transmission of the Moto Guzzi V7 III is identical to that of the V9, but not the final drive. It is more delicate. Does it have anything to do with the fact that the V7 produces a much quieter running noise? Whatever the case, the grinding of the angular gear is always audible until the wind noise prevails at higher speeds, but it doesn’t sound as penetrating as it did with one or the other V9 test machine.

Chassis of the Moto Guzzi V7 III

In the course of the revision, the third edition of the Moto Guzzi V7 got a modified chassis; the steering head is now one degree steeper, the wheelbase has been lengthened by one centimeter, the suspension struts are shorter and are also steeper. As a result, the rear suspension travel is reduced from 118 to 93 millimeters. With this measure, Moto Guzzi has not achieved any improvement, neither in terms of driving dynamics nor in terms of comfort. The suspension struts should respond better now, but on the bumps on German country roads and highways, the rear wheel suspension quickly reaches the end of the spring travel or in strong progression, and then the rear tire is crunched heavily. This brings noticeable steering torque, and precision suffers as a result.

With longer struts and longer suspension travel, this whole chassis complex could be improved and the tight lean angle of the Moto Guzzi V7 III increased. Quite apart from the fact that the driver’s back would then have to take less pithy bumps.

The weakness of the hindquarters need not scare anyone interested in the Guzzi; the chassis reactions are not dangerous. But they stand out because you can hardly defend yourself against them. The seating position on the Moto Guzzi V7 III is a bit too casual, the bench, which has been lowered to 770 millimeters, is a bit too deep, and the footrests are mounted too far forward.

Braking performance of the Moto Guzzi V7 III

However, there is also an advantage associated with the low seating position, which increases the weight distribution, which is heavy at the rear: The Moto Guzzi V7 III enables brilliant braking maneuvers. Although the front wheel only has one brake disc, an average deceleration of almost 1 g, i.e. 9.81 m / s², can be achieved from 100 km / h. Nice to dose, thanks to the heavy stern very stable course and reliably moderated by ABS. In emergency situations, the Guzzi offers a reassuring measure of active safety. The prerequisite for this, however, is that the driver supports himself against the forces that he generates during such a braking maneuver. Occasional training is recommended in order not to be surprised by the severe delay that the Moto Guzzi V7 III can incur in an emergency.

Compared to the Conti-ABS, the two-stage traction control for driving on dry asphalt is too defensive. Even at the sharp level 1, it already intervenes at a brisk traffic light start if no tire slip is noticeable for a long time. Apparently, the sheer acceleration is enough to call the system to work. On a dry track, you can easily switch off the traction control of the Moto Guzzi V7 III, while level 1 offers sufficient safety for driving in the rain.

Conclusion from the top test

The Moto Guzzi V7 III has become a better bike than its predecessors, largely thanks to the new engine and brakes. Because of the tight rear suspension travel, the chassis is less convincing, but ultimately the easy curve swing of the Guzzi won the sympathy of the testers. The price is quite high for a simple motorcycle with just over 50 hp.

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