Ten thousand Moto Guzzi fans descended on Mandello del Lario last week to celebrate the immortal charm of one of the most glorious motorcycle brands in the world and more than eight thousand people visited the factory and the Historic Museum. The traditional Moto Guzzi Open House weekend, which calls out to bikers and enthusiasts every September, exceeded last year’s success, aided by weather that enhanced the natural beauty of the lake in late summer, and provided a chance for everyone to admire the most recent arrivals in the Eagle brand family, from the luxurious California 1400 to the young and agile V7 in the three versions: Racer, Stone and Special.
The first bikers began to arrive on Friday morning, but the bulk of the festive “army” on two wheels peacefully invaded Mandello on Saturday when almost 4,000 visitors arrived at the entrance to the historic plant on via Parodi. This was an extraordinary influx that was repeated again today for a total of just over 8,000 visitors, including members of a convoy that arrived from Mantua, departing from Motoplex, the Piaggio Group concept store, as well as travellers from Guzzi dealers in Syracuse, Lucca, Milan and Bari.
The most visited locations were the Historic Museum (which houses more than 150 motorcycles, from the original GP to the MGS01, as well as the first Normale made in 1921), the assembly lines where Moto Guzzis for all the markets in the world are born and the always fascinating Wind Tunnel.
The road tests met with great success, giving more than 500 guests the chance to ride the latest arrivals in the Italian manufacturer’s family: from the three versions of the “small” V7 to the California 1400 flagship, powered by the largest V-twin engine ever produced in Europe, as well as the great Stelvio touring bike and the spirited Griso 1200.
The Custom Area was quite popular among enthusiasts, where they admired the most prestigious “Special” units created based on small and big blocks by some of the most famous “custom made” shops in the world: RossoPuro, South Garage, Millepercento and Radical Guzzi. And on hand to spend time with some of the most skilled customisers was Miguel Galluzzi, the Argentinian designer who is the “father” of the most recent California 1400 who flew to Mandello from Pasadena, in California, where he manages the Piaggio Advanced Design Center, the place where, along with Moto Guzzi, many of the Piaggio Group brand vehicles are designed and born.
The Moto Guzzi plant in Mandello is one of the symbolic locations in Italian motoring history and one of the most famous in the world. Since 1921, the year it was founded, Moto Guzzis have been manufactured non-stop here. It is a place rich with heritage that has accompanied Italian industrial development and the establishment of the eagle brand on a global level, one of the most beloved brands by bikers on every continent. Legendary models such as the Falcone, the Galletto, the V7 range, the Le Mans and Imola sport bikes have come from here, all the way up to the modern, brand new and technologically advanced V7 and California 1400 models. And it is here that the competition Moto Guzzis were born, dominating the glory years of motorcycling and winning 15 championship titles (8 rider and 7 manufacturer) in Grand Prix Motorcycle Racing.