If you’re a motorcycle brand without a custom motorcycle battle, you don’t fit in anymore. The last couple of years, several brands had their own battle: we’ve had the Custom Rumble from Ducati, Project Scout from Indian and Operation Octane from Victory Motorcycles. Moto Guzzi started in 2016 with “Lord of Bikes” (with this awesome V9 as the winner). In this competition, Guzzi workshops all over the world battle against each other in five episodes to get five finalists. The bike you see here is the winner of the third episode. It’ built by Cafe Racer Napoli and is based on the (already cool) Moto Guzzi Griso.
Cafe Racer Napoli wanted to create a classic flat tracker, which is used in dirt track racers. Picking the Griso as a base bike for this is quite the challenge: the stock bike weighs around 222kg, not the mass you want to carry around on the dirt… So they’ve stripped the bike down to 170kg, a great ratio for the powerful 1151cc V-twin with 110hp. The bike is built in only 150 hours and is completed by a team of 5 mechanics with an estimated budget of only €3000.
Biggest challenge (after the weight reduction) was mounting a 19″ rear wheel. This required an extension of the swing arm. But extending a swing arm with a shaft drive is not the easiest task. But they’ve managed it with a lot of handcrafted parts
Another challenge was to change the aesthetics of the bike, since the Griso may look somewhat bulky. They removed the stock USD fork, put on a higher handlebar and created a beautiful rear section, matching fluently with the original gas tank.
The bike is called “Charlotte” after the name of a famous American dirt track circuit in North Carolina. The way I see it is that Charlotte stands for a (beautiful) women. And like a real tracker (and some women), it’s hard to stop since the bike has no front brakes! So it takes a real man to tame this beast!
You can follow the Lord of the Bikes battle here.