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Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by skysailor, May 11, 2013.
And the winner is? And why?
I had the Bonneville, and would take the V7.
I had a '06 Triumph Thruxton with a handle bar conversion. Great bike. Should have never sold it.
Have a V7C and it's a great bike too. Smaller than a Bonneville for sure.
My buddy Tom has a Bonne and he's a big guy. He took my V7 up the Skyway and while he liked the bike, it didn't fit him. It was too small for him to be comfortable.
You need to give both a test ride if you can. I have a friend that purchased a Guzzi Nevada and hated the side to side torque. He sold the bike after a couple months. Too bad he didn't test ride it before he purchased it.
Good feedback there Toad. The fuel tank isn't an issue with me as I've been blessed with a bladder the size of a humming bird's. The shaft is an issue worth thought. The Goose dealer network is a bit worrisome, as is parts availability......but it that really worried me, I'd just grab a Sportster.
Here's a review of the Bonnie, the Guzzi and the Harley...
I 've owned both a Triumph Scrambler and a Guzzi V7. In the end I sold the Guzzi and kept the Scrambler. This is a comparison I did of the two on another board:
I've put a bit over 1000km on the little Guzzi in under a week and I thought I'd share some impressions. The first service is due at 1000km, and as riding season is rapidly drawing to a close here, I thought I'd get the service done and put her away with fresh oil etc.
I'll make some comparisons to the Triumph Scrambler, as I own one as well, and I know the Triumph Bonneville variants will be compared to the V7 Classic.
I'd read as many online reviews and tests as I could to have some idea of what to expect. My take is as follows:
Looks are completely subjective, but both of these designs are winners in my eye. When the Scrambler came out in 2006 with those high pipes and traditional Triumph lines I wanted one baaad. It took me two years to succumb, but there have been absolutely no regrets. Based on appearance and size, the Guzzi is perhaps truer to the models it emulates while at the same time being very sophisticated in detail. To borrow someone else's analogy, while these are both cover versions of the original songs, the Guzzi has put together a slightly better remake.
The Guzzi is cold blooded, and a couple of reviews said it is hard to start from cold. I discovered the trick to getting it to light up. Ignore the fast idle lever on the bars and crack the throttle open ever so slightly when pressing the starter. Touching the throttle is generally a no-no on FI bikes when starting, but it works like a charm. My Scrambler is of the carbed variety, but the choke can come off after a minute or so. They're equal here.
The different Bonneville variants claim horsepower in the mid fifties to mid sixties, with weight around the 450 lb mark. The V7 claims 48 hp with a weight of 401 lbs. The Scrambler definitely accelerates faster and the engine is a smooth, vibration-free marvel. It rivals an inline four with the character of a twin. The Guzzi vibes more at idle and smooths out at speed, but never equals the Triumph. I should note that the Scrambler has the 270 degree crank, so matches the firing characteristics of the 90 degree v-twin in the V7 . The fuel injection on the V7 is very well sorted out, and once warm it will pull from less than 2000 rpm. Fortunately peak torque is squarely at cruising speed, which helps overcome the horsepower deficit. Although the V7 is tractable with adequate power, the Triumph has enough extra ponies to make passing less of a gamble and the smoothness of the engine is superb for a twin. The Scrambler takes this one, but with the advantage of an extra 121cc.
You'll want to stay on the Guzzi's throttle to use the available power, however that is a good thing. I did not know factory exhausts could sound this good any more. It has a muted "Ducati on aftermarket pipes" growl that is intoxicating, without being loud. To get the same melody the Triumph requires an accessory exhaust, which will invariably be louder. Big win for the Guzzi on exhaust note.
It took the first couple of hundred km for the V7 clutch to bed in and now it's light and positive. A bit lighter than the Triumph, which has a broader engagement point. The Triumph clutch is a bit smoother in use.
The stock Guzzi Brembos are far superior to the stock Triumph brakes. I put an aftermarket EBC floating front disc and pad set on the Scrambler; that is probably close to being the Guzzi's equal. Stock, the Guzzi wins hands down.
An annoyance on the Triumph is the idiot lights can't be read in full sunlight. I replaced the bulbs with aftermarket LEDs, and now they are fine. The Guzzi's instruments and idiot lights are all LED lit, and are adjustable for three levels of brightness. The V7 LCD odometer in the speedo is matched by a similar info panel in the tach that has time or temperature. The odometer starts to count up distance travelled on reserve once the yellow light comes on. The yellow light does flicker on and off a lot before it decides to stay on. The Guzzi instruments, while retaining a nice traditional look, are a lot more sophisticated. Guzzi wins here.
Cycle parts: The paint and finish on the Triumph is very nice, but the chrome, while bright, is thin. I make it a point to never ride once winter salt goes on the roads. In spite of this, the rims on the Triumph got so rusty in one year that Triumph has authorized a warranty replacement. Kudos to Triumph for stepping up to the plate, but the rims shouldn't have rusted in the first place. The finish on the Guzzi is superb. Pearl coat paint looks inches deep, and small touches abound like the finishers placed over the joints where the frame bolts together where the Triumph has none. The Guzzi comes with a full, useful tool kit, the Triumph has an allen wrench under the side cover that is used for the laborious process of removing the seat. One turn of the key and the Guzzi seat is off. The Triumph has a separate steering lock (and key) for the fork lock, which is identical to that on a /5. The Guzzi lock is integrated into the ignition. Although both bikes seem well turned out at first glance, the V7 is much more refined based on details.
The Guzzi handles like it is on the proverbial rails. Steering is razor sharp and the suspension is perhaps too taught. One review I read said the factory sets the bikes up for carving the Italian Alps. I backed the preload off on the shocks and it is now much more suited to bumpy North American pavement. My Scrambler, as delivered, had extremely harsh damping in the forks and not enough in the shocks. I remedied that by going to lighter fork oil and Ikon shocks. I went for a ride on the Scrambler immediately after coming off the Guzzi and it felt like an RT by comparison. As delivered, the Guzzi is superior to the Scrambler in comfort and handling. Right now the Guzzi wins in the handling department with a 'tighter' feel, but the modified Scrambler is more comfortable. I'll fiddle with the Guzzi suspension to see if I can improve comfort without compromising handling.
Of course the V7 is shaft drive, and due to what must be a heavy flywheel there is a sideways bob when the throttle is blipped, familiar to BMW boxer owners. Due to the modest power output rear end jacking is minimal. The Triumph has a high quality X-ring chain and didn't require any adjustment in a 6500 km trip. Modern chains are nothing like those of decades ago and are now quite viable for a touring bike. That said, there's no need to carry lube or large size wrenches for adjustment on the Guzzi, so it gets the nod here.
The new Bonnevilles have built an enviable reputation as being as bulletproof as anything being built these days. The V7's "small block" power plant has been around for a few decades now, and all the bugs seem to be well worked out. We'll call this one a tie, with maybe a whisker of advantage to the Triumph if I can believe all the stuff I've read on the 'net. So far the accessories I've wanted for the Guzzi have been back ordered, whereas those for the Triumph arrived quickly or were in stock. Triumph has a more extensive dealer network, but Guzzi is undergoing a major expansion now that it is in Piaggio's hands. We'll give Triumph a win in the factory support column, but Guzzi's are a rarer bird.
So no mention of the Guzzi transmission shifting problems? The motorcyclist online article really talked about that a lot.
Another advantage to the V7 is you can so all the work on it yourself, and its very easy and quick.
Screw and lock nut valve adjustments out there in the open, plugs are easy to get to, and the only other thing is changing the oil...
The stock seat has got to be better on the V7, the Triumph seat was BAD.
my ride on a V7 guzzi took about two miles to get used to the shifting - not sure what it is that they are complaining about? It was just the same moving from my EX500 to the B12S - shit shifting for about the first day, then you figure out that you have to stroke the shifter more, and thats that, problem solved.
The Guzzi is not the smoothest trans, but it is far from as brutal as these clowns seem to think it is
I'm in the process of making the same decision except that I may be buying in the U.S.
Note that the closest Canadian Triumph dealer to you is in Winnipeg, whereas the closest Moto Guzzi dealer is in Sudbury, although there are also Moto Guzzi dealers in Minnesota and Wisconsin.
Also, have a look at the difference between Canadian and U.S. MSRP for these bikes. Moto Guzzi Canada wants an extra $200. Interestingly, BMW Canada's spread is the same. Triumph Canada, despite the fact that the currencies are at par, wants an extra 13 1/4%. For that reason alone, I would not consider buying a Triumph in Canada.
As a kid, I spent my summers on Lake of the Woods (Mackies Island). Good memories.
I can live with an extra 200$. Excalibur in Thunder Bay used to carry Gooses. I'll check with them. I really don't mind heading stateside for work if I need it. I think it's a really cool little bike. Like the fact it's "open" to work on.
As for paying more in Canada.....Honda wants 13600 for the new CB1100 up here....Honda is off the menu.
If you import, the Registrar of Imported Vehicles charges $195 anyway :)
I guess it might be more practical to trailer the bike, but that would be a beautiful ride.
On the merits of these bikes, the Moto Guzzi and the various flavours of Bonneville all have different ergonomics.
For me, at 6', 195lbs, the standard Bonneville feels too small, and the Thruxton requires a more aggressive rider position than I want. If I go with Triumph, it will be a T100. The ergonomics of the T100 and the V7 Stone and Special are similar, but not identical. The V7 Racer is different again.
There seems to be pretty much universal admiration for the V7's looks, but personally I'm undecided. If anything, I'm sort of leaning toward the T100, but that could change tomorrow :)
On looks, the Racer is for me problematic. I like the painted frame, but there's stuff on that bike that I'd remove immediately (like the numbers and the fake tank strap). And I'm not sure what I'd say, if someone asked me, seeing "V7 Racer" on the bike, how fast it goes, although I suppose one could remove the side fairing:) The whole concept of the Racer, from the name to the tarted up body, rubs me the wrong way, and is adversely affecting my view of the brand. On the other hand, there's fake stuff on all of the Bonnevilles, which at least is not the case with the V7 Stone and Special.
P.S. If you want info and pricing on OEM accessories for the V7, go to http://af1racing.com.
They are both winners. Just by looks I would have a very hard time deciding between them. I would have to go with the one that fit me the best, which to me means the one with the most upright riding position. Aside from the aforementioned looks, comfort is everything for me. I'm sure neither one have any flaws serious enough to make it unacceptable. But neither one is likely to be as seamless as a Japanese bike. Which I don't see as a bad thing.
Of those three it would be the V7 for me, but throw a Bolt into the mix and it could be a tight race.
Really? The Bolt has less horsepower than the V7 or the Bonnie and weighs more than either one of them. Must be all aesthetics.
The bolt makes more power and is 200cc's bigger.
With an extra 200cc's and a modern motor design, its going to have a very wide power band.
The V7 is a lot lighter though, which pays off in more then a drag race.
Ease of use, better braking, better mpg, better handling.
I struggled finding HP numbers on the Bolt. Everything I found said 47hp. 540 lbs. was given, though.