Moto Guzzi V9 Roamer review, test ride

FIRST RIDE

The Italians have gone and done it again. They’ve presented us with yet another work of art on two wheels that is just stunning to look at. It’s not quite the conventional look you’d expect from a cruiser. Then again, would you really expect any less from a manufacturer that takes pride in producing these exotic, two-wheeled rolling sculptures? Sure, there are the almost forgotten decades of racing history and success of Moto Guzzi; but those are the days of the past.

Moto Guzzi has tapered off into a more relaxed tangent in recent times; one that has seen it keep the transverse-mounted V-twin engine alive since the 1960s. Now the V9 Roamer stands as a testament to the Guzzi heritage; it’s not about speed any more, it’s about being as aesthetically pleasing as it can be. But how does that translate into it doing what it’s actually supposed to do, simply be a motorcycle

When you approach the V9 Roamer, it just steals your attention away from all that surrounds you. In typical Moto Guzzi fashion, some will instantly fall in love with it, while others may take a tad longer. If you do fancy it, its charming retro-styling and stunning paint-schemes will have you standing and admiring it for good long hours before you actually decide to ride it. It’s got the single, circular headlight with a chromed lip, and the single-dial instrument

gauge that keeps things simple. Contrary to its retro theme, the speedometer gets a small digital display that has temperature, traction-control, odometer and two trip-meter read-outs. The switches on the roamer have a solid feel to them. It gets a concealed kill-switch, a flat button to toggle the speedo-display, as well as a tiny button on the inside of the left handlebar to switch between the 2-stage traction control modes. There’s also a USB port tucked away under the forward part of the fuel tank.

The fuel tank on the Roamer is its defining feature; it’s quite different from the regular cruiser-styled tank; with the stellar paint making it stand out even more. Deviating from the typical cruiser stance, it appears to resemble a pretty looking flat-tracker; with the engine cylinder-heads sticking out authoritatively from under the shapely tank. It gets a nice flat seat that is comfortable for a single rider; with a pillion on board, things do get rather cramped. Even the side panel on the Roamer reminds you of flat-tracker styling, with the integrated ventilation holes and old-styled badge. The tail ends in a nice swooping design that compliments the flow of the chromed-out twin exhausts.

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