New Corsaro unleashed
Moto Morini are back with a new factory, big plans and the lightest, maddest super-naked they’ve ever produced. The new £16,750 ZZ is an evolution of the 1200 Corsaro produced before the Bologna-based firm went bust in 2009. It’s the bike that kicks off Moto Morini’s rebirth, hand-built at their new HQ in Trivolzio on the outskirts of Milan.
The 1200 Corsaro ZZ’S 137bhp, 1187cc V-twin motor remains, wrapped in a steel trellis frame, but the ZZ has been tweaked and honed to bring this noughties super-naked up to date.
The bombastic Euro4 spec engine is smoother than ever, and now has a slipper clutch and the six-speed gearbox is assisted by a quickshifter for the first time. But with no ride-by-wire, there’s no autoblipper for clutchless downshifts.
ABS is now standard and the ZZ comes with fully-adjustable front and rear Mupo suspension, revised steering geometry, M50 Brembo monobloc calipers, Brembo brake and clutch master cylinders, Accossato bars, LED headlights, a full colour AIM 5in TFT dash and lots of high quality carbon trinkets. Build quality is everything you’d expect for a pricey hand-made Italian machine like this and it doesn’t disappoint.
All the latest top-spec super-nakeds, such as the Tuono, 1290 Super Duke R, S1000R and MT-10SP are dripping in electronics, from riding modes to traction control and everything in between. Quickshifter and switchable Bosch ABS aside, the Moto Morini doesn’t have any of this silicone wizardry, but you know what? It’s refreshingly simple and analogue. It’s light, direct and a bit nervy, just like super-nakeds were a decade ago.
It also wheelies like a super-naked should. The old-school throttle cable seems to double up as a winch for the front wheel in the first four gears, without you having to stop and figure out which nanny state buttons disable the electronics, because there aren’t any.
On the flip side you have to ride with more care and respect. On the slippery, dusty roads near Morini’s factory it’s easy to get the rear Pirelli Diablo Rosso III spinning if you ask too much of the ZZ’S grunt-laden engine. But with such a sweet throttle and chassis set-up it’s easy to know when it’s going to break traction and control it when it does.
Peak power is at a lazy 8500rpm and it makes 92ftlb at just 6250rpm, so
the ZZ is all about low-down, earthtrembling grunt and you hardly need to stir the gears once you’ve quickshifted up to sixth. There are very few vibes to speak of and those huge underseat Zard pipes might meet the latest regulations, but they retain the Corsaro’s gloriously shouty, bass-heavy soundtrack.
Older Corsaros always felt a bit clumsy and V-twin cruiser-like, but the ZZ is light on its feet and more like a tough, single-minded straight-barred superbike. The riding position is roomy and natural, but the rear-set pegs and tilted-forward stance it places you in remind you this is a bike with the kind of performance and handling that can only be exploited on a track.
On grippier roads the Pirellis dig in impressively and the Brembos offer a tasty mix of feel and power. Born to scratch, the ZZ is supermoto-short, snappy and responsive in the corners. The Mupo forks and shock offer a plush, controlled ride, but at high speed the Moto Morini gets flighty.
Once you know it’s coming it’s fine and things never get completely out of control, but it’s hard to get to the end of fourth gear and beyond without the ZZ getting in a big weave. It’s the trade-off you have to live with for such a short bike and Morini say the next Corsaro evolution will have a longer swingarm and more trail for improved stability.
Compared to the cream of its supernaked rivals the 1200 Corsaro ZZ can’t compete in terms of sheer power or electronic toys. It’s in the price ballpark when you compare it against the fully-spec’d competition, so what you get for you money is exclusivity, highend build quality and more groundshattering wheelies than you can shake a breadstick at.
There are no UK importers in place yet, but an announcement is due soon, when you’ll be able to get your hands on the ZZ, or the firm’s existing Granpasso sports adventure bike and the Scrambler 1200.
‘Expect more wheelies than you can shake a breadstick at’
Accossato bars and a high-quality full-colour dash for the exotic Moto Morini
Fully-adjustable rear shock and forks from Italian suspension brand Mupo