MOTO-GUZZI 1200 SPORT (2006 - on) Review
At a glance
|Owners' reliability rating:|
|Annual servicing cost:||£240|
Overall ratingNext up: Ride & brakes
The beleagured but charismatic Italian Moto Guzzi concern has been labelled many things in recent years but ‘sports’ has never been one of them. In truth, the Moto Guzzi 1200 Sport isn’t a sports bike either. Instead it's an aggressively styled roadster using a mix of the latest Breva 1100 and Griso goodies. Too heavy to be a street scalpel, but a great, old school roadster for manly types.
Watch the Moto Guzzi 1200 Sport against BMW's R1200R
Ride quality & brakesNext up: Engine
The Moto Guzzi 1200 Sport is a full-sized, heavy metal, 70s-throwback of a motorcycle, yet one sprinkled with the very latest and best in suspension and brakes. So, though cumbersome, it’s surprisingly effective and comfortable, too. Dwarfs or wimps need not apply, though…
EngineNext up: Reliability
Latest 1200cc version of the distinctive, classic but recently reworked Guzzi across the frame V-twin is one massive lump of metal. The Moto Guzzi 1200 Sport's 90bhp is nothing to get worked up about but it’s grunty enough, flexible, the shaft drive gives peace of mind and it’s a fabulous thing to behold.
Reliability & build qualityNext up: Value
If you’d asked that question four or five years ago, the answer would’ve been ‘dodgy’. Two takeovers (first Aprilia, more recently Piaggio) have seen production and quality control completely shaken up, however and Guzzis of the last couple of years now stand comparison with anything. Parts availability sometimes patchy, though…
Value vs rivalsNext up: Equipment
Whichever way you look at it, you’re getting an awful lot of iconic, charismatic motorcycle for your £7600-odd for the Moto Guzzi 1200 Sport. On the downside, sheer performance is nothing to crow about and Guzzi residuals can’t yet match, say, Triumph or Harley. But definitely worth considering… Find a Moto Guzzi 1200 Sport for sale.
In a word: ‘Bella’. The Moto Guzzi 1200 Sport is a Bentley, or Morgan maybe, among motorcycles. The style and engineering principles may be hewn from solid but the detailing and equipment levels are sublime. In the Sport’s case, that means delicious white-faced clocks, a neat seat hump, posj TiN coated forks and Braking wavy discs. Only thre plasticky mirrors and headlamp rim let it down…
|Engine type||8v transverse V-twin, 6 gears|
|Frame type||Steel tube double cradle|
|Fuel capacity||23 litres|
|Front suspension||Rebound, compression|
|Rear suspension||Preload, compression|
|Front brake||2 x 320 wavy discs|
|Rear brake||282mm disc|
|Front tyre size||120/70 x 17 in|
|Rear tyre size||180/55 x 17 in|
Mpg, costs & insurance
|Average fuel consumption||48 mpg|
|Annual road tax||£93|
|Annual service cost||£240|
13 of 17
How much to insure?
|Warranty term||Two year unlimited mileage|
Top speed & performance
|Max power||95 bhp|
|Max torque||74 ft-lb|
|Top speed||130 mph|
|1/4 mile acceleration||12.5 secs|
|Tank range||165 miles|
Model history & versions
2006: Moto Guzzi 1200 Sport launched.
2011: ABS model available for £9,674
Owners' reviews for the MOTO-GUZZI 1200 SPORT (2006 - on)
7 owners have reviewed their MOTO-GUZZI 1200 SPORT (2006 - on) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.
Summary of owners' reviews
|Ride quality & brakes:|
|Reliability & build quality:|
|Value vs rivals:|
|Annual servicing cost:||£240|
Best features: Can't stop looking at it. Torque across 6 speed.
Brakes can pull your face off. Once you're used to the low centre of gravity, it handles better than anything I've ridden. I can ride for days in comfort on this seat. For a fairly naked bike, it's like a couch. Very confident leaning and encourages fast exits on turns.
Torque, Torque, Torque.
Starting issue sometimes unless battery brand new. But after installing a starter by-pass, it has been spot on since. Bit of oil seepage from the oil pressure sensor on top but apparently that is a Guzzi thing. Heated grips work with maintained battery.
Easy to service myself so maintenance costs low. Parts can be pricey but are available local dealership. There are some aftermarket parts available now.
Manufacture's recommended tires are OK. Handled great on Pilot Powers. Back tire lasts longer on Pilot Road. Improvement from Power Commander 5 and Thestral exhaust. Added centre stand has simplified maintenance for me.
Buying experience: I bought mine used
Version: 4 valve
Annual servicing cost: £325
I'm struggling to think of what to change it for! It goes well, bags of character, shaft drive, panniers, reasonable economy (48 mpg) and what a sound! It's not a sportsbike though. It has taken me around the continent and also happily does a short trip to the shops. Took a while to get used to it and for the first month I thought I'd made a mistake but then.....it all 'clicked'. Just wish Moto Guzzi were going to build another large capacity roadster - I'd put a deposit down now!
Good comfort. Had a CBF1000 before that needed an Airhawk pad to do 50 miles! The seat is very good and overall riding position good for 150 miles before I need to stretch my legs.
The 4 valve head has some 'zip' when you getting revs up. Plenty enough power for me and overtaking is easy. Engine pretty smooth too.
Nice detailing and finish. Some issues with an oil leak but quickly resolved by the dealer
Worth keeping on top of the servicing
On board computer is a bit fiddly and the switchgear isn't the smoothest but these are minor gripes. I use Contimotions and find them a good balance between grip and wear. Mine has factory option panniers and ten fitting is neat and easy without an ugly frame on show when they are not fitted.
Annual servicing cost: £150
I live in the U.S. and do not see many 1200 Sport bikes. Great ride around town and good manners on the highway. The pushrod engine a real thumper. People are very curious about this machine and ask me all kinds of questions.
Good ride, really likes 60-85 MPH (100-140km). Fun in the corners. If you want a nuclear reactor between you legs, maybe not this bike. Good for long days in the saddle. Best seat and riding position ever!
Engine starts perfect every time. Smooth power delivered in every gear. Need some low end grunt around town? Give her a little juice, and she is happy. Need to pass the doof in front of you, twist down and the job is done! The power is balanced, easy to manage in all conditions. No surprises.
Good quality parts and fit in an attractive package. No corrosion, and never been on the ground in five years. Had a stripped oil drain plug so I had to do a heli-coil insert in the pan. Easy job, though.
This bike is easy to service compared to others I have owned. If you're handy, you can adjust the valves, change oil and fluids, then leave the carb sync to the Guzzi dealer. Got a flat tire?? Wheel comes right off. Gets 40-44 mpg and the 6-gallon tank goes beyond 200 miles every time.
All equipment works well together. I only wish it had a compass.
Have the bike 4 years now and have done 15000 miles on it. It is definitely an underrated motorbike which is very competent and under another badge, it would have sold much better. It is a softly sprung and extremely comfortable motorbike. I have done 400 miles on a day with most of them on b roads with only a little soreness on my wrists. I have changed the steering with that of the next model (4v) for a little more upright driving position but is still a bit of a reach, so there is some weight on the wrists. I have also fitted a custom made windscreen which does a good job of preventing the body and the helmet of the air pressure although it produces excessive noise on the helmet. The seat i like sitting on a sofa. The engine is quite smooth and linear. It works and pulls smooth from 1800 rpm and after 5000 it produces a heavy groar much like an old American V8 engine. You can feel a hole in the powerband on the two last gears between 3 and 4 thousand rpms and that's the only flow of the engine. Otherwise is a well tuned, vibration free engine with moderate but able performance. The rear wheel output should be around 75 horses but on b roads you never feel short of power. On the straight i have seen 131 mph and can cruise all day on 110 quite comfortably for both bike and rider (but with earplugs). The suspension is as plush as it gets and can absorb every bump you might come across. It is very economical and on b roads never exceeds 52mpg. It can use alot of fuel driving through the town especially on congestion. On the road the bike handles very safe. It is softly sprung so it is not accurate and have average feel from the suspension but if you overdo it, it slips very controllably and in a slow and composed manner which leaves you confident. It is a heavy bike but has a low center of gravity and the longitudinal placement of the engine add to a quite easy steering at least on turns of over 40 mph. On tighter turns of course you need to kind of wrestle with the bike. The brakes are exceptional with feel, progressiveness and strength. So far is a very reliable and qualitative motorbike which is also very easy to work on it. I recently did the valve adjustment by myself, which is a very simple procedure that can be completed in a little more than an hour. A beautiful roadster that really awakens your senses and touches your soul in a magnificent and unique way.
I teetered on the brink of the ubiquitous BMW 1200GS, the only thing putting me off the BM was really how common they are, on my commute I must see half a dozen. Changing from my Suzuki SV1000S to this has been brilliant, just what I wanted. The Suzuki was a good bike, versatile, powerful and reliable, but I have become increasingly tired of chain drive. I cover 1400 miles a month and maintaining a chain drive had become a tedious chore, particularly as the SV had no centre stand and I do not have a garage. The Guzzi has been a delight, softer sprung with a lovely comfy seat to pamper my ageing arse cheeks, easy handling, decent fuel economy and a whacking great tank too. I'm a big fan of v-twins but perhaps one of the few complaints I had was that this one sounded a little asthmatic - a Quill exhaust has remedied that and it now makes a beautiful deep burble. I did have a couple of oil leaks from the rocker covers, but thanks to the nature of the engine these are supremely easy to fix. All in all, I believe this is a much overlooked bike. People to often plump for the lumpen (or just plain ugly) GS when there is a svelte Italian just begging to be ridden.
I bought this bike within a couple of hours of first seeing her. I had no intention of changing my then current bike, but what can you do when face to face with such a beautiful Italian Stallion.
This is a quite remarkable deviation from main stream. I used to have a 1200 bandit, and for the first month I had this, I was wondering what I had done. 3000 miles later we have really bonded. I think it really is the best. I went hooning around mid Wales a couple of weeks ago on it and it is truly mermerising in the way, I suspect, no sports bike could be - got 58 mpg over two tank fulls - so more frugal than you might think. The onboard computer though that was only 46 mpg so something lacking there then. I commute on it most days - its fine in traffic unless the speed drops below 15mph when becuause if the lumpy V twin delivery it becomes necessary to slip the clutch and that puts more weight on my arms and the enjoyment soon fades. Also it has wide bars so filtering can be limitted. The speedo is MPH only, and the computer will show max speed and average speed in mph or kph, but not current speed, so if you go abroad no way of easily telling you speed in the local currency. Doesn't come with a centre stand so my dealer assembled one from Norge parts. There was no delay in getting the parts either... and the final idosyncrasy - When selecting fist gear from cold, keep the gear selector depressed as you let the clutch in or you will be in neutral for ever - you can feel the gear select. The gearbox is fine after a couple of miles. Would I buy another one? - Oh yes!