With its trademark “flying” V-Twin with air-cooled cylinder heads jutting outward from beneath the sculpted fuel tank and its classic styling, the Moto Guzzi V7 has been an iconic Italian motorcycle for nearly six decades.
Paul d’Orléans, founder of The Vintagent and curator of numerous motorcycle exhibits at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles, chose a 1975 Moto Guzzi V7 Sport as part of the “Silver Shotgun” exhibit that highlighted Italian motorcycle design in the 1970s.
The latest iteration of this legendary model, the Moto Guzzi V7 Stone Corsa, made a surprise debut during the 2023 Moto Guzzi Open House, captivating thousands of enthusiastic fans who gathered in Mandello del Lario, Italy, for this highly anticipated event, a favorite of Guzzisti worldwide.
The Moto Guzzi V7 Stone Corsa represents a return to the V7’s classic sportiness with modern amenities, marked by its elegant lines that flow from the small fairing to the solo-style saddle (the passenger portion forms the cafe racer “hump”). These design elements evoke the thrilling ambiance of bygone racing eras, which was rekindled in 2019 with the Moto Guzzi Fast Endurance – a single-brand racing series that has allowed many riders to enjoy the thrill of racing on V7 machines.
The V7 Stone Corsa has a vibrant two-tone livery, with a metallic gray color accentuated by a bold red stripe that runs vertically along the top fairing, extending to the lower part of the fuel tank and to the side panels. To complete the racing aesthetic, an optional color-matched cowl is available for the rear portion of the saddle, enhancing the single-seat configuration.
The equipment package further elevates the V7 Stone Corsa’s aesthetics and performance, with bar-end mirrors, a black anodized billet aluminum fuel cap, and a distinctive plate on the handlebar clamp denoting the Corsa’s special status. The fork gaiters found on the standard V7 Stone have been removed to give the V7 Stone Corsa a sleeker appearance.
Powering the V7 Stone Corsa is an air-cooled 853cc 90-degree V-Twin with 2 valves per cylinder that makes a claimed 65 hp at 6,800 rpm and 54 lb-ft of torque at 5,000 rpm, and it has a 6-speed transmission. Suspension consists of a nonadjustable 40mm fork and dual preload-adjustable shocks. It rolls on cast wheels – 18-inch front, 17-inch rear – and has Brembo brakes, with a 4-piston caliper squeezing a 320mm disc in front and a 2-piston caliper squeezing a 260mm disc out back.
Standard features include ABS, traction control, and LED lighting. The V7 Stone Corsa has a 30.7-inch seat height, a 5.5-gallon fuel tank, and a wet weight of 481 lb (tank 90% full).
The 2024 Moto Guzzi V7 Stone Corsa will retail for $9,690. Find out more at the Moto Guzzi website.
“I would know the sound of a big Guzzi in my sleep. It concentrates its aural energies in your upper chest, ringing through your bones. It is … the sound of joy.” — Melissa Holbrook Pierson, The Perfect Vehicle: What It Is About Motorcycles
When we find joy, we hold it close and nurture it. Woven throughout Pierson’s book, arguably one of the best ever written about motorcycling, is a romance between the author and Moto Guzzi. When searching for her first motorcycle, it was love at first sight: “a 500cc V-twin Moto Guzzi, red-and-black, a workhorse, and I thought it was beautiful.”
Like any true love, Pierson’s passion for Moto Guzzi ran deep and transcended appearance. She fell under the spell of the Italian V-twin’s syncopated beat. She dedicated her mind, body, and spirit to learning to ride, doing her own maintenance, and enduring long hours in the saddle through stifling heat, bitter cold, and drenching rain.
Moto Guzzi is a storied marque that celebrates a century of continuous production this year. Every Moto Guzzi — from the 1921 Normale, a 498cc single, to the 1955 Otto cilindri, a liquid-cooled, DOHC 500cc V-8 GP racer that topped 170 mph, to present-day models — has been built in the factory in Mandello del Lario, Italy, on the shores of Lake Como.
Three models — V7 Stone, V9 Bobber, and V85 TT — are available with a special Centenario color scheme for 2021 that pays tribute to the Otto cilindri. Their silver fuel tanks are inspired by the racebike’s raw alloy tank, their green side panels and front fenders are a nod to its iconic dustbin fairing, and their brown seats and golden eagle tank emblems further set them apart, though all 2021 models/colors display 100th anniversary logos on their front fenders.
Over its long history, Moto Guzzi has designed and built many notable models, but the V7 is a true living legend, the very soul of the brand. After two decades of building small, inexpensive motorcycles after World War II, Moto Guzzi became the first Italian manufacturer to offer a large-displacement model when, in 1967, it introduced the 700cc V7. It was the genesis of the engine configuration that came to define Moto Guzzi: the “flying” 90-degree V-twin, with its air-cooled cylinders jutting outward into the wind and its crankshaft running longitudinally. The V7 also had an automotive-style twin-plate dry clutch, a 4-speed constant mesh transmission, and shaft final drive.
Today’s V7 maintains a strong connection to the original, from its round headlight, sculpted tank, and upright seating position to its dry clutch, shaft drive, dual shocks, and dual exhaust. The V7 Special ($9,490) is classically styled, with spoked wheels, chrome finishes, dual analog gauges, and a traditional headlight. The more modern-looking V7 Stone ($8,990) has matte finishes, a single all-digital gauge, black exhausts, cast wheels, and an eagle-shaped LED set into the headlight.
I’ve ridden a variety of Moto Guzzis over the years — the Norge sport-tourer (named after the Norge GT 500, which Giuseppe Guzzi rode to the Arctic Circle in 1928), the carbon-fiber-clad MGX-21 Flying Fortress hard bagger, the classic California 1400 Touring, and the red-framed, chrome-tanked V7 Racer, among others. Each was unique, but all shared the distinctive cah-chugga-chugga sound when their V-twins fired up and the gentle rocking to the right side when their throttles were blipped at idle.
Riding a Moto Guzzi feels special. It’s a visceral, engaging, rhythmic experience. The V7 Stone brought me back to the simple pleasure of motorcycling — the feel of the wind against my body, the engine’s vibrations felt through various touch points, the exhilaration of thrust. Although the new V7 has a larger 853cc engine, variations of which are found in the V9 and V85 TT, output remains modest — 65 horsepower at 6,800 rpm and 54 lb-ft of torque at 5,000 rpm, measured at the crank. But that’s enough. The V7 is one of those motorcycles that gives you permission to relax, to take your time and really savor the moment. What’s the rush?
Moto Guzzi made many useful, subtle updates to the V7 platform. Reduced effort from the single-disc dry clutch. A stiffer frame and a bigger swingarm with a new bevel gear for the cardan shaft drive. Revised damping and a longer stroke for the preload-adjustable rear shocks. An updated ABS module. A wider rear tire (now 150/70-17). Vibration-damping footpegs. A thicker passenger seat.
All are appreciated, but if I’m honest, I thought about none of them as I rolled through curve after curve on California’s Palms to Pines Highway, climbing higher and higher into the rugged, snow-dusted San Jacinto Mountains. For the better part of a day, I just rode the V7. I didn’t try to figure out its riding modes (it doesn’t have any), nor did I connect my smartphone to Moto Guzzi’s multimedia app. I rolled on and off the throttle. I shifted through the gears. And I smiled. A lot.
The V7 Stone is solid, predictable, carefree. Its engine doles out torque nearly everywhere, but it feels happiest chugging along in the midrange. Throttle response is direct, the exhaust note is soothing. Thanks to its modest weight, low seat, and natural ergonomics, riding and handling are effortless. Braking, shifting, suspension — everything dutifully meets expectations. Like the Guzzi that stole Pierson’s heart, the V7 Stone is a workhorse, and it’s easy on the eyes. Well, except for its peculiar-looking taillight, which has a constellation of red LEDs that look too sci-fi for this style of bike.
The V7 Stone Centenario carries the weight of Moto Guzzi’s century of history with confidence. The brand is an acquired taste, favored by connoisseurs rather than the masses, and it inspires a cult-like following. When I interviewed Melissa Holbrook Pierson for the Rider Magazine Insider podcast, I asked about her first encounter with a Guzzi. “It was chance,” she said. “I just happened upon the bike that was literally perfect for me.”
2021 Moto Guzzi V7 Stone
Base Price: $8,990
Price as Tested: $9,190 (Centenario edition)
Website: motoguzzi.comEngine Type: Air-cooled, longitudinal 90-degree V-twin, OHV w/ 2 valves per cyl.
Bore x Stroke: 84.0 x 77.0mm
Horsepower: 65 hp @ 6,800 rpm (claimed, at the crank)
Torque: 54 lb-ft @ 5,000 rpm (claimed, at the crank)
Transmission: 6-speed, cable-actuated dry clutch
Final Drive: Shaft
Wheelbase: 57.1 in.
Rake/Trail: 28 degrees/4.1 in.
Seat Height: 30.7 in.
Wet Weight: 480 lbs.
Fuel Capacity: 5.5 gals.
Moto Guzzi is celebrating 100 years of continuous production this year. Its updated V7 Stone is available in a special Centenario edition for 2021 that’s a tribute to Moto Guzzi’s Otto cilindri V-8 GP racer, which went over 170 mph in 1955. The Centenario livery, with a silver tank, green fenders and side panels, a brown seat, and special badging, is also available on 2021 Moto Guzzi V85 TT and V9 Bobber models for an extra $200.
For 2021, the V7 Stone ($8,990) and V7 Special ($9,490) have a larger 853cc V-twin that makes 65 horsepower at 6,800 rpm and 54 lb-ft of torque at 5,000 rpm, measured at the crank. Other updates include reduced effort from the single-disc dry clutch; a stiffer frame and a bigger swingarm with a new bevel gear for the cardan shaft drive; revised damping and a longer stroke for the preload-adjustable rear shocks; an updated ABS module; a wider rear tire (now 150/70-17); vibration-damping footpegs; a thicker passenger seat; an updated styling.
The 2021 Moto Guzzi V7 Stone is solid, predictable, carefree. Find out more by watching our video review:
Moto Guzzi’s top-selling V7 will finally get a modified version of the 853cc engine from the new V85 TT adventure bike.
The fourth iteration of their best-selling model will still be called a V7, not V7 IV.
Unfortunately, Moto Guzzi Australia says we will have to wait until the middle of 2021 for the updated model to arrive. Meanwhile, we expect the prices of the current model may drop significantly.
There will be two versions, the alloy-wheeled V7 Stone and the spoke-wheeled V7 Special.
While power in the V85 TT is 59kW (80hp), the new V7 will only be 48kW (62hp).
We’re not sure why it has be detuned, but it is still up 25% from the current V7 III.
Torque will be 73Nm which is up from the current output of 60Nm, but not as high as the V85 TT with 79Nm.
There are no other tech details yet, but expect a full suite of electronics.
Hopefully the bigger engine doesn’t come with more kerb weight as it is already a hefty 198kg. If it is lighter or the same weight, let’s hope it isn’t at the expense of the generous and practical 17-litre fuel tank.
Thankfully, it’s not water-cooled and retains much of the original styling that has made the bike such a popular stalwart of the Mandello manufacturer on beautiful Lake Como in Italy’s north.
The biggest changes are the sturdier looking rear end with a 20mm wider 150mm rear tyre visible under a shorter rear guard, chunkier cordon shaft drive and a more robust pair of Kayaba shock absorbers with longer travel.
Moto Guzzi has also beefed up the front with steel elements in the headstock and the seat now as a higher rear section.
They now come with LED lighting that includes a daytime running light in the headlight in the shape of the Moto Guzzi Eagle.
There are also new instrument clusters.
On the Stone it is a single dial that is slightly off-centre a bit like the popular Ducati Scrambler, although not quite as asymmetrical.
The V7 Special gets dual dial analogue instruments with a separate speedo and tacho.
V7 Stone will come in three satin-finish colour schemes: Nero Ruvido (Black), Azzurro Ghiaccio (Blue) and Arancione Rame (Orange).
V7 Special will be available in Blu Formale and Grigio Casual.
Since Guzzi brought the V7 back to market almost 15 years ago little really changed over that time but 2021 sees a major overhaul of the most affordable Moto Guzzi platform.
The 52 horsepower 744 cc engine has been retired and in its place a new 850 engine based on the unit we have already sampled and praised in the V 85 TT. The manufacturer describing it as the most modern engine build from Mandello.
The new donk sees torque increased from 60 to 73 Nm. More than 80 per cent of that number is delivered to the revised shaft drive system and wider 150/70 rear tyre by 3000 rpm.
The V7 doesn’t get the fully 80 ponies of the V 85 TT as the V7 version of the motor, which Guzzi state is only based on the V 85 architecture and design, rather than an exact copy of that motor. The V7 engine is pegged back to 65 horsepower. Poo. On the upside it promises much smoother running with reductions in NVH, greater efficiency and reduced maintenance.
The rear shocks are updated with a new set of longer travel Kayaba items.
Styling also tweaked with a shorter rear mudguard and new side panels.
Guzzi promise better comfort due to new foot-pegs and two-tier seat.
The new V7 comes standard with Moto Guzzi’s switchable traction control system.
The roman numerals are dropped from the name, with the bikes featuring 850 on the bodywork instead. Two versions will be made available at launch:the minimalistic V7 Stone while the V7 Special gets a bit more of the classic treatment.
A full LED headlight including a DRL in the shape of the Moto Guzzi Eagle lights the way forward on the Stone.
Moto Guzzi also kept the dash simple on the Stone with a new circular LCD.
The Special receives a conventional set of dual clocks and rides on classic spoked rims.
The 2021 Moto Guzzi V7 Stone will be available in three satin colour options: Nero Ruvido, Azzurro Ghiaccio and Arancione Rame, while the V7 Special will be available in Blu Formale and Grigio Casual.
We’re still waiting to see full specs, and Australian pricing and availability.