Moto Guzzi V9 Bobber & Roamer: Tested

Riding the new Guzzi's in Italy's gorgeous countryside

V9 Bobber at Moto Guzzi in Mandello Al Lario
V9 Bobber at Moto Guzzi in Mandello Al LarioCruiser

We recently traveled 15 hours across the entire United States and over the Atlantic to beautiful Milan, Italy. We were then driven 60 miles to the beautiful town of Lecco to stay. All the travel was well worth it not only to see the gorgeous Country, but to also get familiar with Moto Guzzi’s new V9 models. Yes the reason we were in Italy was to ride Italian Motorcycles. I know rough life right?

Riding through the towns of Lecco and Mandello Al Lario and up into the mountains was some of the best riding I have ever done. The scenery was amazing with the huge snow capped mountain ranges surrounding us, and the beautifully massive Lake Como always in sight. Gorgeous winding roads through town, up the mountain and through tunnel after tunnel, kept me smiling the entire time.

Moto Guzzi has introduced the new V9 platform, housing two separate models. The V9 Roamer and the V9 Bobber. Both the Bobber and the Roamer are sporting the new, V9 model specific, 850cc Transverse V engine. The engine has 2 valves per cylinder. The new engine has a smooth power delivery and redlines around 6,000 RPM. Paired with that engine is a 6-speed transmission. Both models are equipped with a new single plate dry clutch. The Bobber and Roamer are shaft driven. They use new asymmetric double joint drive shaft and run through a new die cast aluminum swing arm.

Ripping up the mountain's windy road on the V9 Roamer
Ripping up the mountain's twisting road on the V9 RoamerMoto Guzzi

The V9 family members are also equipped with Dual Channel ABS. Moto Guzzi slapped on a Brembo brake caliper and front master cylinder to pair with the ABS. The v9’s have Kayaba shocks to maximize comfort. While both the Roamer and the Bobber are running 16” rear wheels the front wheels are different. The Roamer is equipped with the 19”front wheel and the Bobber with the 16” front wheel. The overall consensus between the editors riding the two models out there in the country side, was that the Bobber with the 16” front wheel handled slightly better in slow sharp turning situations than the Roamer.

Up front the V9’s are equipped with a singe communications unit with integrated features. The features of the dashboard are: integrated service lights, shift light, immobilizer, digital multi function display, and trip diary. It has a digital display box and analog speedometer. Both models have a USB port on the right side o the frame neck so you can plug in your phone for navigation etc. Moto Guzzi went a step further and built an app for your phone that works as a tachometer, roll, Acc, Torque, & Power. Get your self a phone mount for the handlebars and you are all set.

The V9 models are equipped with adjustable traction control. There are three settings of control, level one, level two and off. Switching is as easy as pushing a button and can be changed while riding. I noticed if you have it in the max setting, level two, in normal conditions, it will engage at un-ideal times. Passing a car on dry road for instance, as I went to rip around I shifted into third gear from a higher rpm and the traction control kicked in, giving a lag on power to ground. Lesson there is, know what level of traction control is on and adjust accordingly.

Riding past part of the massive Lake Como on the V9 Bobber
Riding past part of the massive Lake Como on the V9 BobberMoto Guzzi

The V9 Bobber is the more blacked out sporty and sleek model of the two. With drag style handlebars, slim bobber/café style two-up seat, mid controls, and a chopped rear fender, The Bobber is here to kick ass and take names. With 16” Alloy mag front and rear wheels the Bobber handles quite well. The Bobber has blacked out exhaust heat shields and mufflers and comes in two paint schemes, both of which are satin finished.

The V9 Roamer is the shinier long distance bike. With chromed high handlebars and a wider seat and mid controls the Roamer will take you far. The Roamer has a longer rear fender than the Bobber. Unlike the Bobber the Roamer doesn’t have 16” alloys front and back but a 19” alloy wheel up front and a 16” in the rear. The Roamer comes in two color schemes as well, but the difference being gloss colors. The Roamer has chrome exhaust heat shields and mufflers for that classic style.

Out of the two models we prefer the Bobber to the Roamer. The styling is more pleasing to us, but also it just flat out handles better than the Roamer does. I could take the Bobber a longer distance more comfortably than the Roamer.

The V9 models will be available in April 2016. The Roamer comes in at $9,990 and the Bobber at $10,490.

View from our room's balcony of Lake Como
View from our room's balcony of Lake ComoCruiser
V9 Bobber
V9 BobberMoto Guzzi
V9 Roamer
V9 RoamerMoto Guzzi
V9 models, Bobber left, Roamer right
V9 models, Bobber left, Roamer rightMoto Guzzi
Hitting some switch backs on the V9 Bobber
Hitting some switch backs on the V9 BobberMoto Guzzi
V9 Bobber sitting pretty
V9 Bobber sitting prettyCuiser
Buzzing by the lake on the V9 Roamer
Buzzing by the lake on the V9 RoamerMoto Guzzi
Another shot by the lake on the Roamer
Another shot by the lake on the RoamerMoto Guzzi