MOTO-GUZZI V7 CAFE CLASSIC (2009 - 2013) Review
At a glance
|Owners' reliability rating:|
|Annual servicing cost:||£50|
Overall ratingNext up: Ride & brakes
The Moto Guzzi Café Classic is a café racer version of the warmly received V7 Classic.
- Related: 2021 Moto Guzzi V7 review
Powered by Guzzi’s small block 750 Nevada V-twin powertrain in an old school twin shock chassis, it’s a dinky, cute runaround and almost embarassingly toy-like for anyone over 5’10”. But what makes it great is how beautifully and classily it’s put together which elevates the Café Classic above it’s fairly pedestrian abilities.
Ride quality & brakesNext up: Engine
On the move the Moto Guzzi V7 Café Classic is mostly sweetness and class. The steering’s sharp, the balance neutral, the single disc and fairly basic suspension up to the job and the overall ride both comfortable and easy-going, yet also sufficiently inspiring and engaging to take for a good old fashioned thrape.
EngineNext up: Reliability
As with the V7 Classic, the engine is the weakest link on the Guzzi Café Classic, although it’s only lacking when compared directly to more modern units. The 744cc transverse V-twin dates back to the 70s, and it shows in terms of outright performance. But its authenticity is also part of the Guzzi’s appeal and, day to day, is effective and flexible enough, pulls happily from as low as 3000rpm, and, as a bonus, sounds great when wound out to the top (7500rpm) of its usable power.
Reliability & build qualityNext up: Value
What sets the Moto Guzzi V7 Café Classic apart from more workmanlike novice machines is its sheer style and class. On board you’re presented with a birds-eye view of that long and slim, retro, V7-style tank swathed immaculately in curiously matt-finished golden green. Up front, equally tactile chrome clip-ons and mirrors, switchgear and evocative, Veglia style twin dials. In fact, everywhere you look there are pleasing touches, from the chromed brake pedal and pillion grab handles, to the retro-style horn covers to the wire-meshed side panels. This is a bike you can gaze at endlessly over a garage cuppa.
Value vs rivalsNext up: Equipment
The V7 Café Classic is not exactly cheap, but then, it’s not what you’d call expensive, either, especially when you remember a Ducati Sport Classic were initially sold for around a grand more when new. Considering the detailing, finish, style and quality of build and components, we reckon the Moto Guzzi is good value.
With its lower, faithfully-replicated, caff racer-style clip-ons, upswept exhausts, racy single seat and hugely evocative lime green paint (‘Legnano’, they call it, apparently), the Moto Guzzi V7 Café Classic not only immediately hits the mark visually, it’s also mouth-wateringly beautiful in its own right and gives the V7 an aggressive and purposeful demeanor lacking a little on the preceding Classic.
|Engine type||2v aircooled transverse V-twin, five gears|
|Frame type||Tubular steel cradle|
|Fuel capacity||17 litres|
|Rear suspension||Preload and rebound|
|Front brake||320mm disc, four-piston caliper|
|Rear brake||260mm disc, single piston caliper|
|Front tyre size||110/70 x 17|
|Rear tyre size||130/80 x 17|
Mpg, costs & insurance
|Average fuel consumption||46 mpg|
|Annual road tax||£96|
|Annual service cost||£50|
14 of 17
How much to insure?
|Warranty term||Two year unlimited mileage|
Top speed & performance
|Max power||48 bhp|
|Max torque||40.3 ft-lb|
|Top speed||120 mph|
|1/4 mile acceleration||15.56 secs|
|Tank range||175 miles|
Model history & versions
2009: Moto Guzzi V7 Café Classic introduced
Owners' reviews for the MOTO-GUZZI V7 CAFE CLASSIC (2009 - 2013)
2 owners have reviewed their MOTO-GUZZI V7 CAFE CLASSIC (2009 - 2013) 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:||£50|
Annual servicing cost: £50
It’s not a retro, it’s a recent version of a long running (form the 70’s) classic. It’s stunning, and gets so many comments wherever I park it. I traded a BMW R1100RS for the V7, in doing so, lost 120lb in weight and can now get my feet squarely on the ground.
Still raises a smile every time I fire it up. The soundtrack is lovely, with the occasional backfire on the overrun, adding character. I only ride it one up, that’s what a cafe racer is about!
Superb engine braking.. Grunt when you need it and excellent fuel economy, 65 around town and mid seventies on a run. You really don’t need more than 48hp to have fun. The motor ha slots of torque, it pulls from 30 in 5th gear, but when you need an overtake it can and does fly...
The chrome steel wheels started to rust, this required some anti corrosion treatment. Alloy rims should have been fitted from inception. The led light in the dash for the indicators gradually grew weaker then disappeared, daft thing is that the bulb cannot be replaced, a complete dash is required. Otherwise the build quality is good.
Simple air cooled ohv engine means home maintenance for th average home mechanic.
Pre dates the requirement for ultra lean burn to meet recent emission standards, so no problems it’s jerky running or the need to fiddle with the fuel system. It’s sweet right out of the tin... The handling is predictably and consistently good, no tweaks required here..
Buying experience: Used from a dealer, possibly paid over the odds Vs a private sale, but it worked out fine for m.
Now considering MCN's overwelming sway to the Triumph Thruxton when comparing it to a sportsbike rider who wants something different, I question why make such a comparison? Having owned and built anything from a 1950's classic bike to ridden some of the latest toys I have a good experience of what is on the market and try not to be swayed by own personnel opinions. However, after my own experiences of the bike and those who have also ridden the Bonnies I have to say that the general concensus is that MCN have got it wrong. The Guzzi is a cute little thing, remnicent of British bikes from the 60's and 70's, which unfortunately modern Bonnies do not achieve as they look like they have suffered a bad case of Botox and old-age gut-extension in the engine compartment (compare a 60's bonnie engine to the latets engine, it drawfs it!). Then, the simple equation of cafe racers, "stripped to bare essentials".You like at the V7CC and there is no extrenious bodywork, headlamp cowls et cetera, it's even single seat and a passenger would be extra weight and against the café personifer!. With this all in mind and how well it accelerates, handles, brakes et cetera, I am glad that my BMW is now gone and I have a beautiful bike in my garage that complements both my classic and modern bikes as well.