Moto Guzzi is known today for its long-legged and long-lived line of v-twin, shaft-drive machines. But before the introduction of their twin in the v700, Guzzi was famous for its successful line of horizontal singles. The Egretta [“Egret”] was a prewar model only made for two short years, and less than 800 were built before the improved Airone [“Heron”] superseded it. It lacked rear suspension and featured the 247cc single that would power the later Airone in various iterations until 1957!
Although later models with this engine did have more modern, enclosed valvetrain, this early version features an exposed rockers and hairpin springs that are clearly visible in a number of the photographs, as well as Guzzi’s signature “salami-slicer” external flywheel. The “horizontal” single allowed for a very low center of gravity and excellent airflow to cool the engine. The exposed flywheel allowed the correct mass for rideability and performance, while keeping weight of the engine case castings low.
From the original eBay listing: 1939 Moto Guzzi Egretta for Sale
This is a very special & very unique opportunity to own one of the rarest of the rare Moto Guzzi Vintage Classic Originals. Only made for TWO YEARS and only 784 EVER MADE, the pre-war 1939-1940 Egretta is the pièce de résistance for any Guzzi aficionado. It even has the original license plate!
This gem is about as original as I can describe…and as you know, a bike is ONLY ORIGINAL ONCE. There are some paint nicks all over and some very minor dings on the mudguards, but the tank is straight. The chrome and paint are obviously 85 years old but remarkably intact for being that old. Previous owners have tried to cover up some nicks with paint here and there.
There is nothing like riding a motorbike this old and this Egretta runs well. However, don’t plan on breaking any speed records.
As the listing mentions, you may not be winning any top-speed contests on this, but the Guzzi’s famous flexibility should make it fun to ride within its modest limits: the singles were famous for their roadholding and locomotive torque, which made them competitive on both road and track. They can chug happily along in top gear at nearly any speed, making gear selection virtually superfluous.
If you’re looking for something very rare for your collection in original condition, this might be your ride.
Now here’s a bike you don’t see every day: a “loop-framed” Moto Guzzi cafe racer. If something looks a bit different about this particular Guzzi custom, it’s because it was built from the earlier V700 touring model, rather than the more sporting models that featured the later, Lino Tonti-developed frame from the V7 Sport.
Prior to the Sport, v-twin Guzzis were employed extensively by police and military organizations, in addition to the public, but saw little use on the race track as they were tall and relatively heavy. While the origin of the V700 powertrain was a very odd light military tractor, it was simple, durable, and powerful, with shaft drive and a simple pushrod valvetrain. The longitudinal engine configuration in v-twin Guzzis does lead to some “torque-reaction” where the motor twists along the axis of crankshaft rotation when revved, but it’s mostly a characterful difference and has little impact on performance.
Most cafe Guzzis are derived from the Tonti-framed T-series machines: they’re relatively cheap and plentiful. The new arrangement moved the alternator from the top of the crankcase to the front of the engine and set the powertrain in a brand new frame designed with a low center of gravity. This particular machine goes for a more classic look [excepting the tail section] by using the earlier model.
From the original eBay listing: 1969 Moto Guzzi V700 Cafe Racer for Sale
Rebuilt motor and lowered front end by Guzzi Classics in Signal Hills CA.
Powder coated frame and parts.
Custom seat with integrated led light, flashing brake led lights.
New front brake pads rears are good, Duralast Extreme Battery, Bosch Coil and new wiring.
Runs great and sounds amazing!! Tons of torque and Great handling. Everything is in great working order
Suspension Front: Adjustable Gsx R front fork with hydraulic damping
Rear: Swing-arm with 2 V-Rod hydraulic shock absorbers
The result here is definitely less sleek than the usual Guzzi custom, but has a more traditional style: the term “cafe racer” gets thrown around these days to describe any old garage-built sportbike with clip ons, rearsets, and a set of megaphones. But this one is much closer to the real look and style of all those Tritons and home-brew road-racers that really best embody the era.
Compared to other classic bikes, maintenance on a Guzzi is a snap: gust look at those cylinder heads sticking out in the breeze! Now picture how easy it would be to adjust the valves. And when time comes to lube the chain… Wait: there is no chain! While shaft drive is intrinsically heavier than a chain, loop-frame Guzzis can be made to handle. Just check out this clip of Japanese shop Ritmo Sereno’s loop-frame custom out on the track.
The value of classic Guzzis begin to increase, and now is you chance to grab one before prices climb out of reach. While a more original example might make better sense in terms of value, you certainly won’t find a bike that will better express your desire to stand out in a crowd.
Every time a Tonti-framed Guzzi comes up for sale, particularly the T-models, I feel the need to launch into my spiel about how they’re such a great platform for customized café bikes and roadsters because of their sleek silhouette and low stance. Well, with this 1977 Moto Guzzi T3, it looks like someone’s already done the work for you, and the results speak for themselves.
For the uninitiated, Lino Tonti’s new frame was designed in 1971 to house their v-twin in the V7 Sport. It was designed to provide rigidity, a low center of gravity, and ease of service, with lower frame rails that detached so the engine can be easily removed. It was so effective that Guzzi was able to use it for the next forty years in various iterations of the Sport, Le Mans, and T-series bikes, and this allows for pretty good parts interchangeability between models.
With pretty good aftermarket support, a solid range of performance upgrades, and classic good looks, these Moto Guzzi models provide an excellent platform for building everything from a really great resto-mod backroad blaster to a vintage track bike.
From the original eBay listing: 1977 Moto Guzzi 850 T3 Custom Café Racer for Sale
This is the custom Grey Dog Moto built Moto Guzzi 850 T3 featured on Cafe Racer S4 Ep1. The episode and bike can be viewed on YouTube.The Guzzi GP racer Ben Bostrom test rode at the Alameda Naval Air Station at 114 mph and commented was one of the best bikes he had ridden for the Cafe Racer show.
Not a huge fan of the tail section and I’d prefer a different gauge: you should be able to ride a big Italian twin without one eye on the tach, but I prefer a big rev-counter just for aesthetic reasons, something by MotoGadget if I wanted modern multi-functionality or a big, white Veglia for classic style. But that tank and paint look perfect and this should be tons of fun to ride, combining Guzzi’s famous long-legs with modern-ish performance and very modern brakes, courtesy of the R1 front end and brakes.
And if you want to get a good idea of how much care really went into its creation, you can just watch the show! Seriously, even if I had the money to buy and any interest in those overstyled chrome abominations from Orange County Choppers, I’d never buy one after seeing how they build them…
$18,000 is pretty steep for a T3, but if you think of it as a one-of-a-kind motorcycle you could ride every day, it starts to make more sense. The seller describes it as a bike to ride, not for one show and we wouldn’t want a Guzzi any other way.
The Little Guzzi trend continues with this nice, restored 1966 Moto Guzzi 125 Sport, also known as the “Stornello.” Don’t let the bright red paint and Italian style fool you: this was designed as practical, reliable transportation for the masses. The dash of style just helped move product out the door and differentiate Guzzi’s bike from competing bikes.
Its 123cc pushrod single made a modest 7bhp, but that number doesn’t tell the whole story. The little Stornello had a supremely flexible powerband and Guzzi’s characteristic spread of usable torque, perfect for the commuting and general riding duties for which the bike was intended.
From the original eBay listing: 1966 Moto Guzzi 125 Sport for sale
I am selling my rare and collectable Moto Guzzo 125 Sport, I have too many bikes. The bike is completely restored. The engine was bored to .040 with new piston, rings, pin, new valves and guides. The carb is original, gearbox is smooth and has a new kickstart spring and seals. Original exhaust system in beautiful condition. Frame was media blasted and powdercoated in black. Tank, fenders, and all sheet metal are original and re-sprayed with PPG in original color. New Michelin tires and tubes, new battery. Seat was rebuilt on original seat pan. The ignition/light switch in not functional and the lights run off the battery-no recharge. This is a beautiful and nice riding bike and a true collector machine. No starting price but there is a reserve. I would prefer that the buyer pick up but I could crate if you arrange shipping. I have a clear Texas title. Bid high-this is a sweet Guzzi. Buy yourself a Xmas gift.
These little Guzzis aren’t particularly exotic in Europe, but here in the land of 800 pound motorcycles, they didn’t sell too many, and they’re correspondingly rare as a result. The 125’s are very robustly built and reliable, as they were intended as sporty commuters, not highly-strung racers, but parts to keep them running can prove difficult if you plan to ride, rather than show your bike. This looks to be a fun one, and bidding is still south of $2,000 with two days left in the auction.
Moto Guzzi traditionally named their small-displacement bikes after small birds, in this case the bunting, a colorful little thing that looks like this:
It was launched in 1953 and featured a 98cc completely square 50mm x 50mm bore and stroke put a mere 4bhp through a three speed box, but it made up for a lack of outright power by being highly flexible, reliable, and economical, injecting a bit of style and class into the budget-minded small-bore class.
From the original eBay listing: 1956 Moto Guzzi Zigolo for Sale
It is un restored, unmolested, and as far as I can tell 100% original. It has been sponge cleaned. Ride or display. I have not started it. The brakes work (albeit not as you would expect from a modern bike), the throttle grip turns, and it turns over. The electrical wires are in place but disconnected in order to ship from Italy. I have not started it.
Tires are holding air, are not significantly dry rotted. I imagine the speedometer reading is wrong but it is titled and registered with that reading. It has been stored and parked in the US inside and under cover, mostly in a living room.
It has some of the patina and dings of a 57 year old motorcycle, but in good non abused condition. No seat tears (very minor, small tuft seen in photo, size of a 12 font O). Inside tank seems fine. It is a clean and rust free example with all the original bits, including an old satchel of tools. I have the grab cable for passenger, not seen in photos. This is the only part I am unclear if original from manufacturer.
The “Lusso” model like the one for sale was red, the standard model was a more subtle grey. Spares can be very difficult to find for these, and they’re certainly not capable of anything like modern, high-speed travel. But they’re charming and well-made, and would certainly be way more fun around town than a modern scooter…
There’s very little time left on this auction, with very little interest so far, which seems a shame. Move quickly if you’ve got room in your garage for this little survivor and the skills to get it back on the road where it belongs.
Oh look! A shiny Moto Guzzi Le… Hmmmm… What’s this? It’s really a T3? Moto Guzzi’s line of Lino Tonti-framed sports motorcycle stretches back to the original V7 Sport and includes the iconic LeMans models. Less well-remembered are the T-models, with their slightly bland looks and very 70’s color palette. But these bread-and-butter bikes, aside from their cheaper suspension components and slightly detuned engines, are basically built on the bones of their more exciting brothers.
I’ve mentioned before the interchangeability of parts for these bikes, how easy it is to recreate one of the more collectible Guzzis from a more pedestrian model, if one were so inclined and felt like hunting down the requisite parts. Replica fuel tanks, side panels, exhaust systems: everything is easily found online and relatively affordable. A big-bore kit and a good mechanical freshening and you could have yourself a very authentic looking and performing classic without the “numbers matching” expense.
I’ve been planning to do this myself, have the T3 all picked out and everything, and this one looks pretty much like what I’d… Wow. $8,000 Buy It Now? That’s pretty steep.
From the original eBay listing: 1977 Moto Guzzi 850 T3 Le Mans for Sale
BASED ON A 1977 MOTO GUZZI 850 T3 THIS 850 SPORT/LEMANS CLONE .IS SUPER FUN BIKE TO RIDE. PULLS LIKE A FREIGHT TRAIN GREAT EARLY PRODUCTION MATCHING #s 103002
- CORBIN SEAT
- TANK FENDERS & SIDE COVERS ALL HAVE FRESH PAINT
- FRAME PAINT IN A MATTE BLACK
- REBUILT DELLORTO 30MM VHB
- REBUILT TRANSMISSION (CHARLIE COLE)
- NEWER TIRES
- ALLOY WHEELS
- STAINLESS SPOKES
- LOW MILES
- NEW BATTERY
- REBUILT FRONT FORKS
- NEW PROGRESSIVE SHOCKS
- SCOTTS STEERING DAMPNER
- HIGH PERFORMANCE LAFRANCONIA EXHAUST SYSTEM
- TAROZZI REARS SETS
- TAROZZI CLIP-ONS
- POLISHED TREES
- REBUILT BREMBO BRAKE SYSTEM
- STAINLESS STEEL BRAKE LINES (UNLINKED)
- READY TO RIDE
I think his buy it now price is pretty optimistic, given the parts involved. It’s a really great-looking bike but I think the seller might have his/her sights set a bit too high. There are some pretty fire-breathing, hot-rod Guzzi’s out there with high-compression, big-valve 1000cc engines. One of those might be worth the nearly $8,000 “Buy It Now” price, but it feels a bit high for a “Le Mans Mock I.” Pricing for nice T’s is on the rise though, so I’ll be interested to see how the bidding goes on this one.
The Moto Guzzi Zigolo is really a “sportbike” only in a loose sense, but fun, frugal and hey, it’s a Guzzi. The Zigolo was a small-displacement, two-stroke bike launched in 1953 as a follow up to the Guzzi’s “Guzzino 65″ an extremely frugal machine that helped get Italians back on the road after WWII, with over 200,000 produced. The Zigolo was a much more sophisticated machine: more “small motorcycle,” less “bicycle with a motor.”
The seller has some good information about this model and this particular machine in his original eBay listing: 1959 Moto Guzzi Zigolo for Sale
My understanding is that the Zigolo was never officially imported and that consequently there are very few in the U.S. I mean very few like a dozen. Maybe some Guzzi expert will see this and shed some light; what I do know is that I’ve had it in a couple parts of the country and of all the hundreds of people – expert or otherwise – who just have to approach me every time I park it, no one has ever seen one in person, if at all. I’ve never cared about how rare it may or may not be, I just love the bike and have tried to honor it. I feel pretty safe in saying that, with a couple small exceptions, this is a 100% unmolested original. I replaced the tires, brake, throttle and clutch cables, all of which were basically unsafe when I bought it. I’m pretty sure the spark plug and wire have also been changed, but not by me. I think you should be able to see by the tire photos how many miles I’ve put on it. Of course you can’t be sure because there is obviously no odometer, but suffice to say not many.
As you may know, many of the Guzzi’s of this era were named after birds. Zigolo translates to Bunting, which is what you see where the speedometer would ordinarily be. I can tell you without hesitation that of the half-dozen or so vintage bikes I’ve owned, this is without question the most reliable. Even at times where it hasn’t been ridden for 6 months, it starts in about 6 kicks. Seriously. It’s hard not to wear a smile on this thing, but at 54 years-old and 98cc’s, you’re not going to be setting any speed records. I don’t really know what to tell you about it that you can’t generally see. It’s a pretty straightforward 2 stroke single and it runs like a top. It’s my belief that the seat will be structurally useable, but the upholstery is definitely shot. It has numbers on the frame and the engine, which match.
The Zigolo had a horizontally mounted motor like it’s bigger, four-stroke brothers for a low center-of-gravity and good cooling, and put its modest power through a three-speed box, with top speed about 50mph. It was lightweight, reliable and relatively fast for a machine of its class, with a powerband defined by a surprising flexibility. In 1958, the Zigolo became first series production bike to use a chrome plated cylinder removing the need for a cast-iron liner. With the revised motor, 100mpg was easily achievable.
The seller claims that these are extremely rare in the US. Assuming you keep the limitations of a 1950’s 100cc motorcycle in mind, this is a very useable little bike: the Zigolo was designed as practical transport for the masses. Parts availability may be an issue, but I doubt that many bikes this old don’t present at least some problems in this regard.
Plus: you’ll have a rare as all get-out bike with a tiny bird plaque instead of a speedometer!
I’m a huge fan of Moto Guzzi’s V7 Sport, and I can never pass up the opportunity to post them up when I find one for sale! It just has the perfect combination of low and lean looks, v-twin sound, and solid engineering that, to me, captures everything I love about vintage bikes.
Although they do seem to pop up for sale with startling regularity, considering their relative rarity…
The V7 Sport was the first in a line of sporting v-twin motorcycles. It used the existing motor, with displacement reduced slightly and compression bumped to provide a genuine 52hp at the wheel. The real innovation was Lino Tonti’s frame, that gave the bike it’s unmistakable silhouette and handling to compete on the world stage. After the initial run of nearly hand-made, red-framed Teliao Rosso bikes, the V7 Sport went into serial production.
From the original eBay listing: One-Owner 1973 Moto Guzzi V7 Sport for Sale
Purchased new in April of 1973, meticulously maintained for years; rubber fittings, tires and hoses, cables, etc renewed as required; re-painted and re-chromed in the 90s. Just completely gone over last month by Eric at Speed Demon Cycles in Bloomfield, CT (~$1200 invoice available by request).
Runs strong and looks good; some minor rust and pitting; needs detailing for a truly great appearance
The pipes and starter are replacements, but everything else is kosher and I have the original Silentium mufflers, pipes and crossover, the original carburetor stacks and an after-market chrome luggage rack to fit.
Also have the rider’s handbook, tools (but not the fabric pouch), a xeroxed shop manual, applicable Chilton’s Guide, the original Premier Motor Corporation color one-page and several magazine reviews.
This one has the earlier drum brake. It’s reputed to be pretty effective when set up correctly, and offers more classic looks, but the later twin discs are probably a better bet for back-road scratchers…
Considering how many of these weren’t made, compared to more pedestrian versions like the touring-oriented T3, there are a surprising number of V7’s that come up for sale in good condition. As always: caveat emptor. It’s possible to make a very nice-looking replica Sport from the lesser models and many have done so.
This one seems to have a nice patina. It’s not perfect, but it looks like a well cared for, original machine. New paint is mentioned in the ad, but it’s clear that the bike hasn’t been over-restored. I’d just track down a set of pattern “shark-gill” mufflers to complete the look and go for a ride!
This 1978 Moto Guzzi LeMans 1 may be from Italy, but there is something about the Red and Black combination which makes it more then just an Italian bike. It looks tougher, more rough and ready to rumble. Not something you think of when you think of Italians.
From the seller
As the saying goes, “the bike is only original once!”
GOOD LUCK EVER FINDING A LEMANS 1 THIS ORIGINAL AGAIN!
I PURCHASED THIS BIKE IN JULY 1978 IN LOS ANGELES WITH 3,000 MILES FROM THE ORIGINAL OWNER (A CALIFORNIA HIGHWAY PATROLMAN WHO WAS HOT TO GET THE NEW 1978 SUZUKI GS1000 SUPERBIKE)
THIS BIKE HAS COMPLETELY ORIGINAL PAINT (FRAME, PLASTICS, RED TANK, EMBLEMS ETC)
OTHER THAN THE FOLLOWING:
The black paint on the top and bottom of the tank is new due to old tank bag wear marks, ORIGINAL RED PAINT IS PERFECT!
The Orange of the front faring has been painted black as well as the inside
THE ORIGINAL OWNER DID THE FOLLOWING:
The alternator and valve covers have been painted a textured semigloss black
There is black pin stripeing on the wheels (very hard to notice)
There is some red detailing on some of the brake banjo bolts and rotor bolts
First offered in 1976 the Le Mans Mark I did not get its moniker until 1980 when the Mark II came out, but was know at the factory as the 850 Le Mans. The first generation was broken up into series 1 with a rounder tail light, and this apparent series 2 with a square tail light. 71bhp delivered from the Mark I engine would deliver the rider and bike at about 130mph, a factory café racer which did the job.
This 1978 Moto Guzzi Le Mans 1 is offered up by its long time owner. Check out the auction for more pictures an a little more description of what to expect when it rolls of the transport into your garage. BB
This one’s on the edge of acceptably “classic”, but it’s an interesting bike and pretty rare. It was also my riding buddy’s first bike: no Suzuki GS500E for him! No, he had to have something Italian, a nice Moto Guzzi V65 Lario that I had to drive all the way to Washington DC to pick up for him…
The V50 that preceded it was sweet-handling but underpowered. A bump in displacement didn’t help much on its own and, to my knowledge, we didn’t get those in the US anyway. The V65 Lario hoped to address this lack of performance with an update from two to four valves per cylinder. Unfortunately, lubrication was not increased to handle the additional moving parts, and failures resulted.
Although these are very likely to have been fixed under warranty by now, you might want to pop the valve cover off one of the heads, just to be sure. Black-finished cam followers will indicate the work has been performed.
The move to four valves had just the effect you’d expect: little change at low rpm, and better breathing as the revs piled on. The bike could reach almost 115mph, not a bad figure for a 650cc twin. Unfortunately, the 16″ wheels on Guzzi’s of this era were a bit of a fashion statement, as the frames were not really engineered with geometry to flatter this tire: handling was universally twitchy and the bikes had a tendency to stand up under braking, characteristics at odds with traditional Guzzi stability.
From the original, naturally all-capital eBay listing: 1986 Moto Guzzi V65 Lario for Sale
1986 MOTO GUZZI V65 LARIO, BIKE IS IN OVERALL NICE CONDITION, 21,131 MILES, THESE ARE RARE BIKES AND DON’T COME UP FOR AUCTION OFTEN. I PURCHASED THE BIKE FROM THE SECOND OWNER WHO HAD IT FOR THE LAST 22 YEARS,AND WAS ALWAYS DEALER MAINTAINED,, BIKE SAT FOR THE LAST 5 YEARS IN A HEATED WAREHOUSE, SINCE I PURCHASED THE BIKE I HAVE GONE THROUGH THE CARBS ,INSTALLED A NEW BATTERY,CLUTCH, FLYWHEEL AND STARTER, BIKE RUNS GOOD, SHIFTS GREAT , BRAKES ARE GOOD AND THE LIGHTS WORK,,,BIKE IS LIGHT AND NIMBLE AND IS A BLAST TO RIDE… MILEAGE WILL CONTINUE TO INCREASE AS I DO RIDE THIS BIKE..IT ALSO HAS DYNA COILS AND IGNITION,ACCEL 8.8 PLUG WIRES AND K&N AIR FILTERS, THERE ARE A FEW BUMPS AND BRUISES ON THE PAINT AND PAINT PEELED ON FRONT FENDER, BUT PRESENTS VERY WELL AND GETS LOTS OF COMPLIMENTS..THE CENTER STAND HAS A SMALL PIECE MISSING AS SEEN IN PICTURE, TIRES ARE ABOUT 75% NEUTRAL LIGHT IS NOT WORKING,INSIDE OF TANK HAS NO RUST, BUT THERE IS SOME RESIDUE FOM OLD FUEL,I INSTALLED INLINE FILTERS AND IT SEEM TO BE GETTING CLEANER EVERY TANK OF FUEL I RUN THROUGH IT..ALSO I WOULD RECOMMEND A NEW GAS CAP,,,PLEASE LOOK AT PICTURES CLOSELY AND ASK ANY QUESTIONS YOU MAY HAVE, THANKS AND GOOD LUCK BIDDING..
The seller has also helpfully posted a video of the bike running: 1986 Moto Guzzi V65 Lario Start Up and Walk Around
The V65 Lario came fairly late in the production-cycle of these smaller twins. Despite a familial style and configuration, they shared few parts with their bigger brethren, so be careful assuming parts availability will rival the larger Guzzis. But take idiosyncratic handling into account and ride your sweet little Guzzi on a Sunday afternoon. Be happy your friend didn’t lose the really cool key these Guzzi’s came with. Watch the revs build on that gorgeous, white-faced Veglia tachometer and smile. You certainly won’t see yourself around every corner, and the styling of these 80’s machines is finally starting to be appreciated.