Test riding the Moto Guzzi V85 TT

By A. NACHI | 1 August 2019

Moto Guzzi’s new V85 TT is definitely big in styling in terms of design and colour.

The bike comes with two colour options bright and loud which are red and yellow plus the macho looking colour which is black and grey with red frames.

Design-wise, the bike very much offers the retro look hence called Classic Enduro.

The LED twin headlights (I call it the bug-eye) are quite unique.

The minute I switched on the light, the running light comes in the shape of Guzzi’s eagle mascot.

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Meanwhile, the fuel tank is definitely old-school that will grow on you.

The simple design enveloped in modern technology is first of its kind for Moto Guzzi.

Being an adventure bike, the ergonomics of this motorcycle is spot on.

The riders triangle be it on or off-road is definitely well thought off.

The handlebars are easy to reach, it is not too wide neither too low.

The mid-mount foot controls and the well-placed handlebars allowed me to manage the bike while standing on footpegs.

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On the instrument panel, the motorcycle comes with a TFT screen that offers blue graphics.

On a sunny day, all the information shown on the screen is legible.

There was all the necessary information deemed useful to a rider like average speed, speed, fuel range, temperature and trip features.

And like most modern adventure bike there is an option to connect via Bluetooth to your phone.

The new Moto Guzzi V85 TT is mated on six-speed transmission.

The 90-degree air-cooled transverse V-twin in Moto Guzzi’s V85 TT offers 80hp at 7,750 rpm and 80Nm at 5,000rpm.

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Priced at RM79,094 (introductory price before SST) the V85 TT comes with three riding modes road, rain and off-road.

Once I thumbed the starter, Guzzi’s chassis rocks pleasantly from left to the right.

This is Guzzi’s engine characteristic is in every Guzzi.

Every time I upshift my gears on the open road, I could feel the slight rocking of the chassis.

It did not bother me at all. In fact, every time I start the bike, I look forward to the slight movement of the transverse V-twin from left to right.

My destination on this bike was KL-Kota Bharu-Penang-KL.

My riding mates and I decided to take the back roads on this journey.

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The only time we got on to the highway was during our ride from Penang to Kuala Lumpur.

While riding on the back roads of Kelantan, the bike absorbed all the imperfect roads and humps.

This would not be possible without the KYB suspension.

The 170mm travel on the upside-down fork did a great job.

What is even more pleasing while taking the corners, the back and front suspension gave me all the confidence I needed to accelerate and exit with grace.

During my first leg of my journey, from Kuala Lumpur to Kota Baru, I must say that the wide saddle was firm yet comfortable.

Not only it was comfortable and the saddle was wide enough for me to move around.

There where ample legroom which is extremely useful for long-distance of this sort to avoid any discomfort.

During my ride from Kota Bharu to Penang via the Banjaran Titiwangsa route, the bike was simply marvellous.

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The bike felt very planted even when I was way above the legal speed limit.

Despite being small, the windshield was able to protect me from the wind blast.

As the windshield's height was fixed, I would have preferred it to be taller.

The engine was torquey enough for the V85 TT to overtake any vehicle but does not behave like a sports bike.

Every time, I decided to overtake, the engine picks up smoothly without any delay.

The power band is wide thus there is ample punch for me to do what I need to do.

I did not feel any vibration on the bike even at high speeds.

From Jeli, Kelantan to Penang, I encountered a long stretch of road with corners and twisties of all sorts.

I was able to flip the bike effortlessly as I only had to steer the bike and shift my weight a bit. The rest was done by the machine. Simply amazing.

There was a great balance between engine performance and chassis agility.

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I worked the bike hard into corners with gusto and revved my way out with ease.

The bike responded well to any hard braking and acceleration.

Meanwhile in the city centre, even at low speed, the bike did not struggle.

It was a smooth ride all the way in the traffic jam.

There was no engine chatter due to the smooth fueling at low revs.

I was weaving in and out without breaking a sweat.

The slim body of the machine allowed me to tackle the traffic without any hesitation and not to forget the high handlebar of this Guzzi was above most of the car wing mirrors.

The front Brembo brake system is fitted with double 320mm floating discs, radial-mounted callipers with four pistons while the rear gets a single 260mm disc and floating calliper with two pistons.

These brakes are very light on the fingers and toes.

I did not have to slam on the brakes, gentle squeeze and lightfoot press are more than enough.

Meanwhile, on the off roads, the brakes were fantastic, the bite was spot on.

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During my ride, I encountered rain many times and I used this opportunity to ride in the rain mode.

No matter what speed I was during the rain, the rain mode worked so well.

The ABS and the traction control on the bike kept me safe during heavy rain.

This bike is a dual-purpose machine which is meant for street and off-road; I decided to take the bike for a short ride on a few back roads which was filled with sand as well as loose pebbles and stones.

Before taking the bike on an off-road adventure, I locked in the off-road riding mode and I was ready to take the fall while riding it.

Surprisingly after an hour of off-road, ride I realised that the bike was light enough for me (68kg) to manoeuvre through sand, pebbles and mud.

Not only that the front and rear suspension were simply super, thus making me want to ride even longer on this terrain.

On certain stretches, I had to steer the bikes while standing and it felt very natural like how I felt riding on the highway.

The reach to the handlebar and the standing position did not tire me at all.

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Engine: 853cc, transverse 90° V twin, two valves per cylinder (titanium intake).
Maximum power: 80hp at 7,750rpm
Maximum torque: 80Nm at 5,000rpm
Transmission: Six-speed

Front suspension: 41mm hydraulic telescopic up-side-down fork, with adjustable spring preload and hydraulic rebound
Rear suspension: Double-sided swing arm with adjustable spring preload and hydraulic rebound

Front brakes: Double 320mm floating discs, Brembo radial-mounted callipers with 4 pistons
Rear brakes: 260mm disc, floating calliper with 2 pistons

Fuel capacity: 21 litres
Range: Est. 400km

Wet weight: 229kg

Features: Rain, road and off-road riding modes, ABS, Moto Guzzi Multimedia Platform that supports music, calls, navigator and more

Price: RM79,094 (introductory price before SST)

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CarSifu's Rating: 7.0