Finally, it’s the Moto Guzzi California 1400

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The first all-new product of a recently reinvigorated Moto Guzzi, this California cruiser represents the future of the once great brand. These are the first official, high-res pictures of the Moto Guzzi California 1400.

Speaking to Piaggio’s VP of Design, Miguel Galluzzi, at Guzzi’s 90th birthday bash in Mandello del Lario last year, we learned that it’s the first bike to receive Guzzi’s all new, “big block” engine. A 1,400cc v-twin that’ll be rolled out across other models based on the California over the next few years.

“The new California will have a 1,400cc engine,” said Galluzzi. “The Guzzi engine doesn’t need a big displacement to have very high torque, so we are going to have a lot of fun with this bike. It’s like having a big block Chevy in a motorcycle. Production of the California will begin around the end of 2012.”

“We are going to have the small displacement (750cc) as we always have, we are going to have something in the middle that is going to be 1,200 or 1,300 and we are going to have the big block,” he continued. “From these three lines of engines, we are going to work to develop new models. The middle is going to be a big middle. Guzzi is about big torque engines.”

So what we can see here, in these quality photos, is the detailing that Galluzzi defines as a hallmark of the Guzzi brand. Witness the organic shape of the headlight and its LED position lights, the bronze-sheathed shocks with braided steel lines running to color-matched remote reservoirs and the polished black valve covers. This might be a cruiser, but it’s still an amazing looking motorcycle. Something all future Guzzis are going to be too.

Word from Piaggio Group’s annual dealer conference, which took place in Florida earlier this week, is that the new California will be arriving on American shores this fall.

  • caferacer

    I really wish they’d left that Bauhaus version of the logo back in the 80s and on the T5 and Mille. It was ugly even then.

  • Shaun Lewis

    The bike looks really good from the tank forward, good blend of classic and modern. But, from the seat back it looks like a high-end Korean scooter.

    Maybe it looks better in person.

    • Miles Prower [690 Duke, MTS 1200]


    • windmill

      I agree, the front half looks good,the rear is awful.
      One of the great things about the original California is that it’s a fully functional motorcycle with classic cruiser styling,This new version? a cruiser that handles like a cruiser? that would suck.

  • BigRooster

    This is a very important Goose and may be the one that lays the golden egg if sales are brisk. Like it or not, we all know cruisers sell all too well in NA, so hopefully this bike is a success so further interesting products will come of it. Further progression of the Griso, Stelvo, Norge, and V7 is always welcome and this Road King beater (hopefully) may help pave the way for that to happen.

    If nothing else, it looks way more civilized and “grown up” than that Victory Blackballs or whatever it was called the other day. I know JT will say this is a HD rip-off but at least it does it with some originality like that transverse mount twin.

    • AHA


    • Racetrack Style

      This Guzzi is more along the lines of a Victory Hammer than a Road King. i.e. I don’t know if the prospective RK buyer would even consider this bike until Guzzi comes out with the other CA ‘vintage’ model.

      Patiently waiting for an MGS-0″2″ for the street, but those heads look tall.

  • evilbahumut

    But does it RIDE like a Guzzi (zzzZzzzz)?

    • Lou

      You obviously haven’t ridden a Guzzi lately. G R I S O.

  • the_doctor

    A very good looking motorcycle. Hopefully the 3 engine strategy works well for Guzzi.

  • Charlie

    Ok, I’ll touch the hot stove. Why does a cruiser need to be heavy and ugly. Why not get light, fast and fugly like the Diavel? For me the Griso pushes the envelope – modern styling, heavy, but handles great. That’s enough “cruiser” for me. Otherwise, give me the heated seats and multimedia center on the K1600GTL. I would have preferred to see a V7 redux (like the quality of the modern Norton)

    • Gene

      I’ll bet those wheels are a right bitch to clean. Not that I’ve cleaned a bike since 1986. It does look comfy though.

      Do Guzzis have heavy torque reaction like BMW boxer twins? I remember blipping the throttle on a R1200C and “whoa!”

      EDIT: sigh. hit by the “reply to random comment” bug again.

  • Anders

    Like the engine

  • mikedard

    Nice looking motorcycle.

  • Barry

    With quite a lot of work with a sawzall, you could find a nice bike under all that. The wheels are at least visually interesting. I like where they’re headed with the valve covers. It’s far less heeedeous than the Griso. I give it a potential factor of 7 out of 10, maybe 9 out of 10 if you modify the frame.

  • oldblue

    This category is getting very crowded.

    You can’t help but get the feeling that we’ll look back in ten years or so at all these giant fugly cruiser things and say “what the hell were we thinking? Did we really WANT bikes like that?”

    But as far as cruisers go, I’ve seen worse. At least it’s something different.

    (Looks at shoes. Shuffles sales reports. Gets coat.)

  • Mark D [EX500]

    Get rid of the floor-board controls, and its much better looking. Still not my cup of espresso, but hey; buying a Moto Guzzi is always cool.

  • Kevin

    Add some more power to the Norge and give it cruise control, traction control and a better dash and that could be my next touring bike.

  • jason

    Why not a Daytona ?!?!? Something beautiful and worthy.
    The world does NOT need another fat assed geriatric sled.
    Moto guzzi drank the H-D koolaid.

    • BigRooster

      Guzzi has been building cruisers for as long as HD, they also build many non-cruisers unlike HD.

  • Rick

    una scrofa brutta

  • Joel

    Does it cause cruiserface?

    • Scott-jay

      Maybe it’s cruiserface that causes such motorcycles?
      : )

  • dux [87 CBR600, 95 XR600R]

    Looks like a Harley with a sideways engine.


    I’m not sure on this one. I like Guzzi’s, but this thing just looks too damn big. Really would have rather had a round headlight, more traditional tailight, and maybe smaller mufflers? But then again, I’m a big fan of their more traditional looking bikes.

  • Ben NYC

    Unique, but doesn’t seem to have the “wow” factor they accomplished with the Griso.

    Now, if only they could get some modern features on that bike like ABS and traction control…

  • Kerry

    think Honda Rhune.

    • mikedard

      You’re so right!

  • HammSammich

    Seems like an I-Talian flavored version of Triumph’s bloated T-Bird. Better looking motor in this, but please put it in something that doesn’t have chassis geometry designed for La-Z-Boy.

  • Keith

    Oh look…yet ANOTHER cruiser!
    Good thing too ’cause there’s just not enough on the market now ;)