sample the first article below!
6 Moto Morini returns
Riding the new kid on the block
18 Ducati – into the Future
What’s next for the boys from Bologna
The story of Laverda’s enduring legend
34 What’s happening at Aprilia?
All the latest since the Piaggio takeover
48 Puglia by Multistrada
Is this the best way to see Italy’s heel?
58 Moto Guzzi Breva
Testing the new big bore twin
66 Borile Supermoto
Hand crafted for riding pleasre
72 Call 999
Ducati’s supersport flagship evaluated
82 MV’s Brutal Beast
Running the rule over the Agusta Brutale
90 Down the line at Ducati
We get nosey in the Bologna factory
96 Motogiro memories
Looking back at the revival of the
102 Bimota DB5
Testing the super-slim Bim
110 Ducati Sport Classics
Behind the scenes with the new retros –
and meeting the man who inspired them
118 Club Italia
Sampling owners clubs – Italian style
124 MV Superbike
MV plan a return to the rece track.
We ride the bike
Moto Morini - back in business
Page 6 -moto italia
If you’re into Italian bikes, this must be the best news of 2005. Moto Morini
is back doing what it does best – building highly individual motorcycles.
Alan Cathcart investigates the flight of the Phoenix.
A small but illustrious member of Italy's
motorcycle business, Moto Morini has
been defunct for the past 13 years, ever
since the last Excalibur 500cc V-twin
was manufactured in 1992 by then-owners Ducati.
Now the historic company is back in business, with
the debut of the 1200 Corsaro V-twin naked
sportbike now entering production.
The chance to spend a day riding one of the first
bikes off the assembly line at Moto Morini's Reno
di Casalecchio factory in Bologna gave an insight
into what on paper shows every signs of being a
serious new contender in world markets.
Moto Morini rose from the dead at the Bologna
Motor Show last December, with the launch of two
new models powered by the firm's own brand-new
liquid-cooled 87-degree V-twin eight-valve
CorsaCorta (as in short-stroke) motor. It's planned
to produce this in various capacities to power a range of different models being launched in stages
over the next five years, all the work of Moto
Morini's designated stylist, Luciano Marabese.
Already a key player in Italy's design-led
motorcycle culture, Marabese has been responsible
for a wide range of models from different
manufacturers, including several Piaggio scooters,
the Moto Guzzi Centauro, Breva and acclaimed
Griso prototype, the Aprilia Atlantic scooter, and
several Gileras, including the best-selling Nexus.
By linking himself long-term to Moto Morini,
Marabese is set to give the new company's
products a strong identity.
That was certainly the case with the two prototype
bikes launched last year at Bologna - the rangetopping
twin-headlamp 1200 Corsaro ('corsair', or
'pirate' in Italian), a naked sportbike whose 1187cc
motor produces 140bhp at the crank and which has
already entered production, and the retro-styled 91/2 roadster, powered by a 998cc/105bhp version of
the same V-twin engine. The definitive version of the
91/2 will appear at the Milan Show in November,
and will enter production in February, with more
Marabese-designed CorsaCorta-powered models in
Moto Morini's rebirth is the work of an all-new
joint venture split 50/50 between Maurizio Morini
(great-nephew of the historic marque's founder,
and president of its previous owners, Motori
Franco Morini/MFM) and the three Berti brothers
Guido, Luigi and Gianni - former owners of
Sinudyne, Italy's largest manufacturer of TVs, DVD
players and home entertainment systems.
"For a while, it was very nice not to have to get
up early and go to work in the morning!" said the
youngest brother, 48-year-old Gianni, who, like his
brothers, is a diehard off-road motorcyclist. "But,
after a while, all three of us decided we wanted to
find a new stimulus.
Maurizio Morini had
reacquired the Moto Morini brand not long before,
and with both our companies based in Bologna,
we knew each other through common business
connections. So we started talking about ways we
could work together, and this is the result.
"MFM will develop and manufacture the V-twin
engines, and we are fully committed to making Moto Morini work - none of us now has any other
business activity to distract us, and we will be
using our experience to build up the company.
the home entertainment industry you live or die by
the dependability of your product and customer
satisfaction, and the pace of development is much,
much faster in consumer electronics than in the
We'll be bringing a fresh approach
to the whole business of conceiving, manufacturing
and selling bikes.
"I know it's very easy for me to sit here and say
this, but quite another to actually deliver on what
we're promising, but all I can say is wait, and
judge us by results. We want anyone who buys a
Moto Morini to be a satisfied repeat customer -
whether he or she lives in Torino or Tokyo, Napoli
or New York."
There's a temptation to look askance at such
ambitious promises - until you consider the story so
far. When plans to relaunch the Moto Morini
marque were revealed 18 months ago at a Press
conference during the Bologna Motor Show, it was
declared that a new range of motorcycles was
currently under development employing Morini's
own engines, developed in-house by legendary 61-
year old former Moto Morini chief engineer Franco
Lambertini, and his youthful R&D team.
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