Details: Moto Guzzi V12 Le Mans concept

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Here’s the first studio photos of the Moto Guzzi V12 Le Mans concept
ever published. There’s an awful lot going on here, so we had Pierre
Terblanche talk us through all the details. >

Frame: made from rotational moulding nylon polymer, it’s more resilient than steel and easier to produce, while weighing in about the same. It’s a monocoque design that incorporates the airbox at the rear.

Tank/Seat Unit
: this hinges at the front and opens via remote control. Underneath is storage space and access to common maintenance parts. “You know, you can stop at the bar and if you want to get your pack of cigarettes or sunglasses it just pops up and lifts up and really cool,” says Pierre.

There’s two layers of access to mechanicals here. The first contains the common stuff you’d want to access quickly. Underneath that is the more complex things that you won’t need to get to often or that require more advanced knowledge to service.

Top Clamp: there’s two knobs here. The small one to the left of center adjusts the rotary steering damper integrated into the clamp.  The larger one to the top right adjusts the height of the bars and screen up or down by 50mm.

Footpegs: no mechanical connection is made between the foot levers and the shifter or the rear brake. Instead, electric sensors integrated in the pegs actuate electric motors that then perform the required function. Doing this eliminates the need to keep linkages aligned and allows the designer greater freedom to place the pegs in an optimal position for the rider. Levers adjust by spinning around the peg mount.

Shock: located on the swingarm instead of in front of it, the shock works normally through linkages, this is just a packaging solution that enables the ABS unit and other electrics to be housed in the space usually occupied by a vertical shock. This helps reduce the overall length of the bike.

Heat Sinks: the finned metal sections on the sides of the engine aren’t oil coolers, they’re heat sinks just like you’ll find on your computer. The pipes connecting them to the heads don’t contain fluid or air, but are instead heat pipes which transfer heat energy through thermal conductivity.

Rearview Cameras: Pierre says these are 100 percent production feasible with a reasonable cost. They work like you think, displaying their images on the screens mounted where mirrors would traditionally be.

Filler Cap/Start Button: The two metal discs on top of the tank are a filler cap and starter button. The larger of the two screws off to reveal a classic aluminum funnel while the smaller is the start button. As long as the key’s in your pocket, pushing it will turn the bike on or off.

Make sure you check out our interview with Pierre Terblanche and Miguel Galluzzi on the future of Moto Guzzi.

Note to other publications: feel free to republish these images. We included subtle watermarks in the hope that you’ll link back to us.

  • Hayes

    Eh – I’ll stick with the V7 classic. Not feeling the design and seems like tech for the sake of tech. I guess this is progress. I am more old school.

  • Guzzi Mutt

    I’m in…check book is out sirs
    who gets it

  • Brennan

    Whoa. That is a lot to take in. I think i like it.

  • CMC

    I don’t know what to make of the plastic frame, but the rest of it is fantastic. I love the idea of adjustable bar height. Sometimes you want sporty, sometimes you want more comfort… brilliant. And if the cameras give a better field of view than regular mirrors would, that’s a plus for sure.

  • UglyDuc

    put some clothes on that tractor engine

  • the_doctor

    Wes, I started with part 2. I understand the need for a rearview camera.

    This is also hot. Kinda chunky, but I dig it.

  • Michael Uhlarik


    I hope they find time to paint the pinkish-beige, milled Renshape oil pan and swing arm parts before the next press release.


  • HammSammich

    Looks like the power to weight will be way better than the V7 Cafe. Also, nice to see clip-ons paired with rear-set foot controls – the V7 cafe is horribly uncomfortable, pairing clip-ons w/ standard foot controls.

  • Richard Gozinya

    I dig it, funky, high tech, but still very Guzzi.

  • ramiro

    awesome.. Cant wait to get one

  • pauljones

    Back up cameras. On a motorcycle. I cannot, for the life of me, figure why you would need backup cameras on any kind of motorcycle. Also, I don’t like the idea of the lack of a mechanical connection of the shifter and rear brake. I understand the practical and ergonomic advantages of it, but I just don’t like the idea of electronics that unnecessarily complicate the bike. If there is a mechanical problem, you may be able to diagnose and repair it yourself, or at least jury-rig something long enough to get you back to the mechanic. If there is a failure of the electronics, you’re screwed.

    Technology is good…in moderation.

    • EWL

      I disagree…rearview cameras, which would be used all of the time (not just when backing up), could be more functional than most traditional mirrors. Anyone who’s ridden a modern sportbike knows that the majority of side mirrors are functionally useless (all they usually do is provide you with a good view of your elbows). This would allow you to independently position the cameras and screens to give you the best possible pictures and viewing position (mutually exclusive on most current sport bikes).

      • pauljones

        You make a fair point there; I’m just afraid that it would eventually have the same impact that reverse cameras and sensors seem to have had on cars; people just don’t look any more. I know your car has all sorts of fancy gizmos, but that’s no reason to get lazy. There’s no substitute for turning your head and looking. That goes double on a motorcycle

    • Sean Smith

      This is a pretty serious case of tech gone crazy. The cameras, the shifter and brake, the remote operated seat unit, it’s all super lame. On a gold wing? Fine. Hell, I’m sure the rear-view cameras might even be alright on your harley. But it’s counter intuitive on a naked standard that leans toward sporty. When the point of the bike is to be simple, minimalistic and quick, adding extra stuff turns the bike into a hypocrite. And nobody likes a hypocrite.

    • HammSammich

      I definitely agree with your points about the lack of a physical connection on the controls. While I’m somewhat willing to let it slide with the shifter, I’m really hesitant to give up a mechanical connection to the brakes.

  • chili sv

    Heat pipes – rad!

  • Chuluun

    Way to go Pierre, this is hot and modern but still unmistakably Guzzi. Really looking forward to the finished product.

  • Anders

    There’s potential here. I see this as a first step towards a revitalized Guzzi. Some details I might disagree with (headlamp & fairing looks a bit alien compared to the rest, the mirrors a bit odd), but the overall direction is exciting. Most importantly it looks like a Guzzi. It looks unique.

  • Will

    Tail sections on all bikes are interchangeable exept for this one, which is like an origami spire. And that rear shock is SINCERE. Love it.

  • Ian

    Am I right in thinking the original (also Pierre designed) Ducati MHE900 concept had a rear view camera too?

    Some interesting ideas. Liking the potential for the plastic frame and I’d LOVE to see how effective the heatsink cooling is but sorry, that front end is as pretty as a bucket of smashed crabs.

  • JRl

    I’m diggin’ it. Is the series of headlights in the shape of a smiling mouth? I hope then it will have “mirror” mounted turn signals so if you have the hazards on, it will look like a blinking smiley face! awesome.

  • Chris

    I’m not really getting it, despite being a huge Guzzi fan. Take out the engine and it could be a bike from anyone, and it certainly doesn’t have the visual stopping power of the V7.

    Seems that car manufacturers (Mercedes, Bentley spring to mind) have much greater success in producing ultra-modern designs that also instantly evoke past glories.


    • Wes Siler

      That’s just it, there’s no visual features that currently distinguish Guzzi from any other bike besides the engine. Even the V7 fails in its attempt to mimic retro design features, it doesn’t have the straight, horizontal frame tube.

      These concepts are attempt to give the brand a new design language that it can make its own.

  • ram

    i love it.. I want one now

  • alex

    I will give you five dollars if you sneak up during eicma and attach a real hell for leather sticker to the lower kick plate

  • Chris

    The trouble is that there is no design language—the only unique item is the headlamp plate, and that’ll disappear if this gets anywhere near road-ready. There’s a hint of Griso in the lower tank area and that’s it.

  • Scott

    this concept is busy.

    sell the MGS-01 & call it a day.

  • Ben Branch

    Are these going into production?

  • the other larry

    +1 on the MGS-01 as per Scott.

  • Fatrod

    I just threw up in my mouth…a little…

  • CubanSandwich

    Really liking it, BUT:

    Cameras, LCDs, Linkage-less shifter and rear brakes… THEY HAVE TO GO. NO THANKS. KEEP IT STUPID SAFE SIMPLE.

    Can live with: Shock-Swing Arm Combo… as long as it works properly. Wierd no one said anything already about swing arm looking HEAVY…bet it is.

    Heat Sinks…LMAO REALLY!?… does it actually works OR is this just like ear rings on a girl ? Just use motor oil like Suzuki’s simple and effective SACS System and call it a day.

    Plastic frame, handle bar adjuster, etc…..bring it. Might as well have something new around such a Stone Age Engine.

    P.S: Don’t like that asymetric Y exhaust, Kinda disproportioned all to one side.
    BMW’s R1200S routing looks classier and symetric.

  • Mike S

    Nice, I long ago tired of seeing my elbows in the rearview mirrors… at long last I’ll be able to see my knees instead!

  • Sledgecrowbar

    This bike makes the oil pan in my truck feel small.

  • TJ

    HAve seen some really beautiful Guzzi concept bikes over the years but ultimately what goes into production is the same old concervative style that is MOTO GUZZI!

  • joh

    this is shit it will not sell,,,,a production MG S 01 would be “A GOOD THING”,,,IT WILL SELL!!!only bikes that SELL will HELP MOTO GUZZI