Author Topic: Moto Guzzi V85TT Travel Review  (Read 2966 times)

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Offline NH

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Moto Guzzi V85TT Travel Review
on: June 17, 2021, 07:07:59 PM
I've been asked to post my thoughts on this bike so here they are.  :002:

Moto Guzzi V85TT impressions after a 150 mile test ride

The demonstrator bike was new with only 50 miles on the clock and so I took it very carefully because:

•   It was a new bike
•   It wasn’t mine
•   Tyres were chunkier than I’m used to
•   They weren’t scrubbed in
•   I’ve never owned a twin

I rode a good mix of motorway, dual carriageway, towns, A roads, B roads, and country lanes with plenty of twisties and hills and stuck to the speed limits with no heroics in the lanes.

For the test ride I left it in sport mod.

The weight at 229kg was nice and it disappeared as soon as you got moving.

The bike felt very solid and the build quality looked very good, this was confirmed by a friend who’s a BMW/Ducati bike technician and recommended it to me.

I was not far off tiptoe but the seat might have adjustment to lower it a little although I found it fine (5' 10" and 32" inside leg according to my jeans).

Sitting on it and starting it up made me smile as it rocks gently from side to side and moreso when you rev it. Nothing bad it’s just the character of the transverse twin and quite nice, the rocking isn’t noticable on the move.

The clutch is excellent, light as a feather requiring hardly any pull and easy with two fingers.

The gearchange is a delight, it’s light, accurate with positive feel, and just a quiet click as it changes. There’s also a gear indicator on the TFT.

The front brakes are excellent and the rear brake is also really good and shaves speed of easily, it’s the best rear brake I’ve had on any bike.

The driveshaft is quiet with no obvious drive take-up.

The exhaust note when you open the throttle hard and the revs climb is great.

In the twisties the bike leans into the corners very easily with little effort.

The engine has masses of torque and pulled from sub 30mph in 4th gear on the flat. In 2nd, 3rd, and 4th gear acceleration comes in a whoosh and is very strong and overtakes were easy. Acceleration and overtakes in 5th and 6th were also strong and easy but I didn’t go much past 85mph on the motorway due to the wind effects. The rev limit lights starting flickering on at just over 5k and 80mph and light up the dash at around 85-90mph. I think you can change the rev limit lights starting point to your preference in the menu’s although I didn’t try. The redline is 8000 and the top speed is claimed as 100-105mph which in real world riding is perfectly adequate.
 
The Travel model has a lot of extras as standard which includes a taller screen. At 5’ 10” I found the screen position unsuitable and the wind battered my head at 70mph and above. I didn’t try adjusting the screen as it requires a tool but possibly a taller screen or clip-on top screen would cure the buffeting. I found this the only real negative on the test ride and I’d definitely have to get a better screen for 70+ riding when I buy one.

The fuel tank is large and holds 23 litres and fuel consumption over 150 miles ended up at around 68 mpg. The casual speed I rode at for a lot of the time and 30mph limits obviously contributed to this although motorways and dual carriageways were ridden at around 80mph. Other reviews show 45-55mpg if ridden hard constantly so that gives a good idea of the spread of mpg available depending on how you ride. 

The TFT dash could be a bit larger but is perfectly adequate and everything on it is clear to read. I didn’t try the cruise control on connectivity so can’t comment on those. It doesn’t have self-cancelling indicators which is a shame however most bikes don’t.

For such a vibey engine the mirrors were remarkably stable with no noticeable blur and rear view image was always clear. The size and shape is adequate however a bit larger would have been nice but that’s not a problem.

The seat was initially comfortable however after about an hour and a half I started noticing a little bum numbness . This was either caused by the normal engine vibration through the seat that I’m not used to, or perhaps the fact I just wasn’t used to this particular seat as the Triumph Explorer seat I’m used to is very comfortable. I occasionally stood on the pegs for about 5 seconds and that cured the problem so it wasn’t a big deal.

It’s a vibey motor and so I could always feel it through the bars but at no time did it ever cause me any concern or discomfort. It’s part of the character of the bike and not a buzzing vibe and I didn’t really think about it after the first half hour. I didn’t notice anything through the pegs that caused any concern.

You always feel the vibration on the move but in a good way, it’s what gives the bike it’s character. If you’re looking for a quiet smooth running refined engine then this is probably not the one for you. A straight comparison between this and most other adventure bikes wouldn’t be fair, it’s really in a class of it’s own as it’s distinctly different to most.

However if you want a bike with bags of character and individuality, something that stands out from the routine and identical crowd, and is tremendous fun in the twisties and country roads and makes you smile then it’s a bike you have to try. It’s also the one that will catch people’s attention when it’s parked at a bikers stop.

A lot of people have said that with 75bhp quick overtakes need to be carefully planned in advance rather than spur of the moment. I didn’t find this to be the case at all though and quick overtakes were easily achieved on normal roads due to the engine torque. It may be different doing it at motorway speeds or when fully loaded with luggage and a pillion, I can’t comment on that.

As a Triumph Explorer 1200 rider I’m looking for something lighter and different as a replacement. This is so different and entertaining to ride it’s almost certain to be my next bike.

When you buy a Harley Davidson you don’t just buy a bike, you buy into the Harley lifestyle. I think this is probably true of the V85TT as well, you don’t buy it to compete with other bikes, you buy it to be individual, enjoy the ride, and go your own way. 

That's it folks, I hope it was of interest.  :002:
Last Edit: June 17, 2021, 07:50:36 PM by NH
Never ride faster than your guardian angel can fly.

#1

Offline Captain Tom

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Re: Moto Guzzi V85TT Travel Review
Reply #1 on: June 17, 2021, 08:17:00 PM
Good report NH,

👍 enjoy riding your new bike and it would be nice to have an update after you put a few thousand miles on it.

Ride safe 🏍🏍

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Offline NH

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Re: Moto Guzzi V85TT Travel Review
Reply #2 on: June 17, 2021, 08:18:16 PM
A few points I missed out.  :002:

The suspension is really good and smooths out all but the roughest bumps and potholes.

The ride by wire throttle has a nice smooth and easy action.
Never ride faster than your guardian angel can fly.

#3

Offline marcos

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Re: Moto Guzzi V85TT Travel Review
Reply #3 on: June 18, 2021, 09:04:50 AM
 :464:

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Offline NiK

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Re: Moto Guzzi V85TT Travel Review
Reply #4 on: June 18, 2021, 10:46:52 AM
If I'm to downsize one day, this will be in my top 3 list (actually in n°1 position for now)!

Thanks for your thorough review!

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Offline NH

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Re: Moto Guzzi V85TT Travel Review
Reply #5 on: June 18, 2021, 11:25:36 AM
I rode a Tiger 900 GT last year and loved it, quicker and more powerful, a good few months waiting list though. As it’s the same price as the V85TT it does make it a hard decision though. However I’ve asked myself do I want a smaller version of what I have now or something completely different for a change. 🙂

I had fast performance cars for years but recently changed to a slower SUV. I was worried I might not like the drop in power but I quickly adapted my driving style and now I love it, less frantic and I really enjoy driving it. It’s nice to try something different, it’s too easy to stay in a rut and not realise it. 👍
Never ride faster than your guardian angel can fly.

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Online Will Morgan

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Re: Moto Guzzi V85TT Travel Review
Reply #6 on: June 18, 2021, 12:44:32 PM
My biggest reservation about a Guzzi is their parent company Piaggio's attitude to customer service & warranty claims. The difference between how they dealt with the 1200 8v Guzzi cam follower issues & how Triumph dealt with the early Tex head problems is chalk and cheese. Piaggio certainly don't do anything for goodwill, and recently heard a rumour of a warranty claim on a V85TT rejected because the bike was out of warranty when it was taken to the dealer despite the issue being reported before it was out of warranty (although of course that could be the dealer's fault). Piaggio's attitude to their dealers has meant some of the most experienced long-established Guzzi dealers have given up on the brand in recent years. However the V85TT engine & gearbox are basically the same as Guzzi have been making since the V50 in the late 1970s so are well-proven so I would be confident about the mechanical reliability, and build quality & finish have been very good for the last 20 years or so..

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Offline NH

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Re: Moto Guzzi V85TT Travel Review
Reply #7 on: June 18, 2021, 05:06:37 PM
I joined the V85TT facebook group about 6 months ago and have been following all discussions to research what they are like and what owners think of them, complaints, and any issues etc. I have to admit that I haven't picked up on anything regarding problems with warranty claims, general customer service, or attitude and it's a big international group. I suppose there are always some issues with all manufacturers and it is of course always a fact that if one person in a hundred complains about a problem it's always that one person you hear about not the ninety nine who are completely satisfied and happy.

I have a big dealer locally and a good friend of mine is a workshop technician there and recommends the V85TT so I'll go with it and hopefully be very happy with it for the next few years.  :467:
Never ride faster than your guardian angel can fly.

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Online Will Morgan

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Re: Moto Guzzi V85TT Travel Review
Reply #8 on: June 18, 2021, 05:30:28 PM
My opinion of Piaggio's attitude, customer service & dealing with warranty claims is based on personal experience of how they dealt with my Griso 8v. They lost a loyal customer = over the years I've had 7 Guzzis and while I still have one classic Guzzi I will never buy another new Piaggio product.  :151: When I want another Guzzi I will buy 2nd hand = and very likely it will be a V85TT  :001:

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Offline NH

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Re: Moto Guzzi V85TT Travel Review
Reply #9 on: June 18, 2021, 05:56:15 PM
Fair comment you can't argue with experience.  :002:

I just haven't come across much dissatisfaction in the owners groups which is a good sign as that's always where you'll find the complaints being aired.

Be assured I'll be back to whinge and moan if I get issues with them.  :008:

 
Never ride faster than your guardian angel can fly.

 



nonskid