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Laverda 750S Sports Motorbike Review

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Laverda 750 S motorcycle review - Riding
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MCN overall verdict rating is 3

For a brief, mostly shining few years in the mid-to-late 1990s, legendary Italian marque Laverda (they of the 1970s Jota etc) was back. Trouble was, although the machines’ cycle parts were like an Aladdin’s cave of goodies, they handled superbly, looked decent and weren’t too exotically priced, the twin cylinder engines, though updated, were based on the 500 Montjuic of 1977 and were rough, uncompetitive and unreliable.

Engine

MCN rating rating is 2
Owners' rating rating is 3

Now water-cooled and grown to747cc, but the basic layout and engine cover shape mirror the Laverda 750S's famous predecessor. Fuel injection helps produce 92bhp at the crank, but the real power is located above 7000rpm so the Laverda needs to be spun to reach its 140mph-plus top speed and which is accompanied by quite a mechanical thrashing from the parallel pistons. Relibility iffy, too…

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 5

Laverdas have always been renowned for their precise Italian handling and this latest generation more than lives up to the reputation. A stiff aluminium beam frame and softish, but well-damped, Paioli suspension ensure corners are dispatched with all the precision of a Carol Vorderman

Equipment

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 4

A-list Italian hardware extends past the Paoli suspenders of the Laverda 750S to the Brembo brakes and Termignoni carbon exhausts. Instrumentation is quality, too. But remember, this is a loightweight (185kg dry), bare bones sports bike , so don’t expect too much in the way of comfort or frills.

Laverda 750 S (1997-2002)

Detail Value
Engine size 748 cc
Power 85 bhp
Top speed 140 mph
Insurance group 13 of 17
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 3 rating is 4
Engine rating is 2 rating is 3
Ride & Handling rating is 4 rating is 5
Equipment rating is 3 rating is 4
Quality & Reliability rating is 3 rating is 3
Value rating is 4 rating is 4

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 3

There’s no doubting the intention, merely the execution of the Laverda 750S. Top notch components everywhere, decent paint and finis, lots of lovely milled aluminium etc. But too limited development time, a plethora of subtly different models (see below) and traditional Italian build inconsistency means the Lav reminds very much of Bimota, for bgetter and worse…

Value

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4

The Laverda 750S is excellent value, if you’re feeling brave. Depreciation, for all sorts of reasons, was huge meaning that decent used examples can now be had for well under £2000 – and you’re getting a helluva lot of bike for that money. Just be aware you’re not getting Honda reliability or dealer back-up. Find a Laverda 750 for sale.

Insurance

Insurance group: 13 of 17

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Model History

1997: Laverda 750S launched, follows earlier 650 Sport and Formula, initially half-faired.
1998: Fully faired version launched.
now half-faired with 748cc engine and number of other minor mods
1998: Full faired Laverda 750 S launched
2002: Laverda 750S discontinued

Other Versions

Laverda 650 Sport: First model of new Laverda range, launched in 1994 (and actually 668cc).
Laverda 650 Formula: As Sport but with slight updates. Launched 1996.
Laverda 650 Ghost: unfaired roadster version launched 1996.

Specifications

Top speed 140 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 11.9 secs
Max power 85 bhp
Max torque 55 ft-lb
Weight 185 kg
Seat height 770 mm
Fuel capacity 16 litres
Average fuel consumption 38 mpg
Tank range 135 miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group 13 of 17
Engine size 748 cc
Engine specification 8v parallel twin, 6 gears
Frame Aluminium twin beam
Front suspension adjustment Preload, rebound, compression
Rear suspension adjustment Preload, rebound, compression
Front brakes 2 x 320mm discs
Rear brake 245mm disc
Front tyre size 120/70 x 17 in
Rear tyre size 170/60 x 17 in

Owners' Overall Rating rating is 3.5(1 review)

  • Brilliant handling

    richtea

    Average rating rating is 3.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    Brilliant handling. The frame could easily have handled more power with no problems, but the water-cooled twin only gives 85bhp. Some minor reliability problems, but not as bad as the 650s that preceded it, and if you buy it should have been modded/fixed. An excellent alternative to air-cooled Ducatis.

    21 February 2009

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