In case you lost track of the dozens of custom build contests zinging around the country of late, here’s another one to put on the list: Guzzi’s V9 Pro Build series, which the manufacturer launched last year to create buzz around its 850cc Bobber and Roamer models. And buzzy it has been because the chosen builders—Untitled Motorcycles, Moto Studio, Rodsmith Motorcycles, and Revival Cycles—all came up with some absolutely stunning builds.

Moto Guzzi V9
Moto Studio’s urban-flavored Braapster is minimal but mean, with all kinds of performance upgrades tucked into that spartan look.Courtesy Moto Studio

Tops for us, though, was the urban-flavored Braapster. Lean and clean but definitely still mean, this minimalist masterpiece from Miami-based Moto Studio is all attitude and sinew. But then what would you expect from a shop led by former F1tech Bruce McQuiston?

Sachs Formula Matrix
Would you believe a Sachs Formula Matrix four-way damper handling rear suspension duties? It’s race car-spec refabricated for use with the Guzzi’s monoshock.Courtesy Moto Studio

The resulting build has all the hallmarks of a builder whose life was spent in the paddock. Because even though the styling skews scrambler, McQuiston made the Braapster’s performance focus pretty clear; just look at that Sachs Formula Matrix four-way damper out back. It’s designed for a race car, but was refabricated to use with the Braapster’s monoshock setup and Moto Studio-fabricated rear swingarm. And the rest of the bike ain’t just knobbies and high pipes either. All the underlying components were overhauled for a truly custom build.

2-into-1 exhaust
That sweetly kinked 2-into-1 exhaust under the seat was hand-built by Bruce McQuiston himself.Courtesy Moto Studio

McQuiston says his goal was to embrace the look of a Guzzi but bring in the feel of a Moto Studio motorcycle, as the Braapster was designed to handle all kinds of urban surfaces. Over-the-top touches include a crazy-plush 8 inches of suspension travel from the upside-down fork, as well as that totally wild Sachs Formula Matrix four-way damper.

Dell’Orto PHF 36 carbs
We don’t need no stinkin’ fuel injection; the Braapster’s transverse twin breathes through a set of Dell’Orto PHF 36 carbs.Courtesy Moto Studio

The 853cc engine was reworked too. First, it was stripped of all modern electronics—even the fuel injection. Guzzi's cool transverse twin cylinders now breathe through a set of Dell'Orto PHF 36 carbs mounted on a gorgeous Moto Studio intake, which provides a classic 1960s feel. And check out that beautiful 2-into-1 exhaust under the seat; it was hand-built by McQuiston himself. A Radical Guzzi ignition box takes care of the firing.

Allstate Dirtman tires
The Braapster’s all business up front, with an inverted fork, Brembo brakes, and killer black wheels wearing Allstate Dirtman tires.Courtesy Moto Studio

The spareness of the engine continues on to the bodywork, which was fabricated in-house at Moto Studios. Highlights include that wide fuel tank (with a gorgeous gas cap), an airy, suspended tailpiece, and a custom black leather seat. A flush-mount headlight sports a grille built out of machined Guzzi parts, and Renthal bars are dressed with a Motogadget tach and Domino parts. The stunning black wheels are shod in Allstate Dirtman tires. So if you can’t tell where the Guzzi look ends and the Moto Studio feel begins in this custom, well, Bruce McQuiston would tell you that’s exactly the point.

Renthal bars
Things are kept super tidy up top, too, with a flush-mount headlight, Renthal bars, and a Motogadget tach.Courtesy Moto Studio
850cc Moto Guzzi V9
Just by looking at it, you’d never guess this was an 850cc Moto Guzzi V9. And that’s the point.Courtesy Moto Studio