Moto Guzzi digs into its Dakar racing past for the 2019 V85 TT
Dubbed as a classic enduro by Moto Guzzi, it created quite a sensation when it was unveiled as a concept last year at the EICMA show in Italy. The V85 TT is an 850-cc adventure bike, built around the V9 series engine, reworked for a substantial power boost and destined to lead a new model family.
Older Paris-Dakar fans might see something familiar in its distinctive yellow patches; also the name, V85 TT, should ring some bells. According to Marco Lambri, Piaggio Group Director of Design, the new motorcycle is inspired by the V65 TT that Claudio Torri had raced at the 1985 Paris-Dakar.
This styling choice was made by Moto Guzzi in order to emphasize the off-road side of the V85 TT, as it is not designed to be another tall, heavy, over-equipped and all too powerful member of the Adventure class. It is supposed to be the exact opposite. Simple, rugged and friendly off the asphalt.
The motorcycle is powered by the air and oil-cooled 853-cc transverse twin of the V9 model family, which in this case peaks at 80 hp (59.7 kW). Given that originally this engine makes just 54.2 hp (40.4 kW), a lot must have changed in it. Indeed, at the Open House event in early September it was revealed that a lighter crankshaft, wider fuel intakes, bigger valves and shorter-skirt pistons play their parts in this transformation. All these point to a higher-revving motor, a rather logical path to take in the quest for more horsepower from the same capacity.
The engine fits as a stressed member in a brand new steel trellis frame and is complemented with a very typical kit, including adjustable long-travel suspension all around and four-pot radial Brembos, rolling on 19 and 17-inch wheels at the front and rear respectively.
Fuel capacity is set at 21 liters (5.5 gal), and Moto Guzzi suggests that the V85 TT will not exceed 200 kg (441 lb) on the scales.
In terms of equipment, it features the typical electronic gear we find on most new motorcycles, such as ABS, traction control, selectable riding modes and a little treat in the shape of cruise control. There's a color screen bearing all the necessary instrumentation, which should also allow for smartphone connectivity with the optional Multimedia Platform, a feature that spreading quickly across the Piaggio Group's range.
With the V85 TT, Moto Guzzi aims squarely at that part of the mid-sized adventure bike clientele that will not be put off by the absence of liquid-cooling, three-digit power figures and electronic suspension.
The air-cooled engine can apparently survive in the Euro 4 world when there's no need to play power games with the competition. In fact, 80 hp is enough for the reality of a motorcycle that should travel comfortably, tackle off-road treks without intimidating its rider and offer a decent level of practicality. Building on a powerplant that produces plenty of low-end torque – in V9 guise it peaks at just 3,000 rpm – also seems to serve this purpose diligently.
According to Moto Guzzi, the engine that debuts with the V85 TT will power several new models in the near future. Rumors suggest that a "road version" of the V85 will be introduced in concept form at the upcoming EICMA show in November.
The V85 TT is expected to start rolling off production lines in January 2019, with first deliveries in Europe planned for February. Reports from the local press that had the chance to test ride a pre-production version set the retail price in Italy at €11,500.
Source: Moto Guzzi
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