Thursday, 2 August 2012

The V8 Moto Guzzi found on a yacht in Hout Bay

I have done a blog on this bike before but until yesterday I have never seen one.

Here it is, on the bulkhead of a visitors boat!

This in a motor bike!

To introduce the bike, and build publicity, Moto Guzzi's racing team manager, Fergus Anderson, released a letter to the international motorcycle press announcing Moto Guzzi's plans for the 1955 Grand Prix season -- attaching a drawing of the new Otto and challenging them to guess the configuration of Moto Guzzi's then very secret racing bike. Very few guessed correctly, and the Otto made a stunning public debut a few months later.

The engine and the bike were without precedent: a water-cooled, 500 cc (31 cu in) V-8 motorcycle -- with dual overhead cams and a separate carburetor for each of the eight cylinders. Weighing only 45 kg (99 lb) (overall bike weight 148 kg (330 lb)), its miniaturized components tightly packaged, the engine produced an unprecedented 78 hp (58 kW) at 12000 rpm. The motorcycle proved capable of achieving 172 mph (280 km/h) -- 20 years before the speed was reached again in Grand Prix motorcycle racing.