PLANET MECHANIC ‘What advice have you got for Guzzi buyers?’
‘Since switching to fuel injection Guzzis have got better and better’
Paul Harris, 56, is coowner of Guzzi dealer Corsa Italiano in Surrey and has worked on the Maranello V-twins for 40 years.
“If you are interested in a day-to day bike rather than a £12,000 Le Mans Mk1, the newer the better. Since Guzzi switched to fuel injection they have got better and better. The Breva 750 was the first small-block engine to have FI in 2004 and it transformed the bike. Then the 2005 Breva 1100 brought Guzzis into the 20th century.
“A full service history is important, as DIY mechanics often think an oil change is enough. The paperwork will also let you see if there’s been any warranty work in the past.
“There were some cam and follower wear issues in the eight-valve engines fitted to the Norge, Stelvio and Griso models up to 2011, then they switched to roller-rockers and became bulletproof. In my opinion a possible cause was infrequent use that meant they never warmed up properly. Bikes with some decent mileage are a better bet than a ‘garage queen’, as any problems should have surfaced. But if you are unlucky with cam issues, Piaggio, who own Guzzi, will still supply the parts FOC.
“Lime-green V11 Sports with a red frame are getting popular and the 1200 Sport is a customer favourite. The Bellagio has contracted Katana syndrome. Poor sales meant it was dropped four years ago and now it’s getting a cult following.”