Q How does it feel compared to its nearest rival?

We compare the Mandello to its main Euro rival, the BMW R1250RS


The BMW is as wonderfull­y well-developed as you might expect. Every last flaw has been smoothed out through years of gradual evolution.

It’s sophistica­ted, refined yet still exudes character — and distinctly boxer-twin character at that.

The motor feels noticeably stronger than the Guzzi, especially in terms of torque and roll-on throttle stomp. The fueling is absolutely spot on. The work BMW has done with the electronic­s, no doubt with help from the car division, has made what used to be a crude-feeling engine layout feel thoroughly modern and astonishin­gly fast. The BMW’S long gearing makes cruising over distance a breeze and the clutch/ gearbox exhibit none of the slow-witted, clunky feel present on the Guzzi.

The BMW’S riding position feels sportier than the Guzzi’s too: lower bars and slightly more forward-tilted lean to the bars gives it a natural feel for A and B-road hustling that match its sportier performanc­e. Long-distance comfort is still good enough to see out a full tank of fuel at a time though.

There’s little to fault on the R1250RS, although the complicate­d switchgear does irk. It’s harder to fathom and use than the Guzzi’s clean and simple set-up. The price is a big issue, too. The R1250RS is £15,410 in standard form — only £340 less than an S model Mandello. You need to spend extra to spec the BMW up (and very few BMWS are sold without a healthy list of options added).

The bike we tested here costs £19,170: a huge jump from the Guzzi. We like the BMW a lot but we’d opt for the Mandello S — the higher specificat­ion offsets some of its disadvanta­ges compared to the 1250RS, and it’s still a great bike.

And £2000 left over to spend on a riding holiday.

‘We like the BMW but would opt for the Guzzi’

Kawasaki Ninja 1000SX From £12,349

140bhp 82lb·ft 235kg (kerb) Ballistica­lly fast sports tourer that’s surprising­ly well equipped — modes, cruise control, quickshift­er and connectivi­ty all standard. Not got the character of the BMW or Guzzi but is a superbly well-polished package. Comes in four options.

 ?? ?? We reckon the Mandello could be the best all-rounder of 2023
We reckon the Mandello could be the best all-rounder of 2023
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