2023 Moto Guzzi V100 Mandello S Review [16 Fast Facts]

2023 Moto Guzzi V100 Mandello S Review: MSRP

After a century of business, you might have thought you knew everything about one of Italy’s most storied marques. However, the all-new 2023 Moto Guzzi V100 Mandello isn’t here to maintain the status quo. No, it skillfully spins a yarn, tying the past to the future with innovative features and new-to-the-fold technologies that dictate the next chapter for Moto Guzzi—one that the brand hopes to ride for another 100 years at its historic Mandello del Lario factory, as the name suggests.

A roadster gone sport-touring, yet more versatile than both, the V100 doesn’t adhere to stone-carved motorcycling categories. Instead, it marches to the beat of its own drum in the inimitable Moto Guzzi V-twin fashion. Pioneering active aerodynamics and introducing its first production water-cooled engine is enough to pique anyone’s interest. At the same time, a thoroughly modern riding experience is a clear sign that Moto Guzzi is looking ahead.

With the brand’s historic plant as our backdrop, we saddled up on the up-spec 2023 Moto Guzzi V100 Mandello S, exploring scenic Alpine routes surrounding majestic Lake Como. Now, time to get on with the Fast Facts.

  1. The V100 Mandello is available in two flavors: Standard and S. Coming in at $17,490, the S model boasts several features that elevate it above the standard sibling. To that end, the S features semi-active Öhlins suspension, an up/down quickshifter, tire pressure monitoring, heated grips (quite toasty), and Bluetooth connectivity via the Moto Guzzi MIA smartphone app. Lastly, the S is available in a couple of two-tone liveries. Meanwhile, the standard model saves coins with its $15,490 price tag and relies on adjustable conventional KYB suspension. Everything else can be added as options sans the Öhlins kit.

  1. A 1042cc liquid-cooled DOHC 90-degree V-twin flexes contemporary tech while retaining Guzzi soul. We’ve given up pushrods to usher in a revolutionary era, yet the iconic twin-cylinder silhouette and sultry rumble will make any Guzzisti feel at home. Engineers employed a modern lightweight finger-follower valvetrain and a bevy of low-inertia internal components to ensure its 115 horsepower and 77 ft-lbs of torque are snappy as can be. Lovely torque is accessible on a whim, and the broad power is only rivaled by its appeal, thanks to newfound athleticism. That inviting character always manages to hit the spot, staying civilized at ultra-low rpm or using its bountiful midrange in the canyons.

2023 Moto Guzzi V100 Mandello S Review: Upright sportbike

  1. Guzzi’s all-new Compact Block V-twin has performance and ergonomics in mind. Keen observers will note the cylinder heads are rotated 90 degrees these days, which takes care of two birds with one stone. First, the intake manifolds and throttle bodies are relocated between the V, where they can’t conflict with our knees. On the performance side, this design creates a shorter and more direct air/fuel path into the intakes and combustion chambers, netting horsepower gains. Carrying on with the compact theme, every component is redesigned and slimmed down, resulting in an engine 4.1-inches shorter than the V85 TT’s powerplant. Trim and lean as it is, it’s balanced, too, so much so that the rubber-capped footpegs deliver little more than a pleasant thrum. We only noticed ambient heat while riding at a snail’s pace or stopped.

  1. Clever engineering overcomes gyroscopic forces on the 2023 Moto Guzzi V100 Mandello. See, transverse-mounted engines display a quirky trait when the crankshaft is oriented longitudinally and, when whirling at high rpm, will physically pull to the right, subtly influencing the motorcycle’s handling. The V100 will have none of that, as a secondary counterrotating shaft removes those forces from the equation. Don’t worry; you can still feel a hint of the charming Guzzi tug when revving with the six-speed gearbox disengaged.

  1. The V100 is shaft-driven, as is tradition. The Cardan drive is emblematic of the eagle-emblazoned brand. Yet, this generation differs in that its sizeable single-sided swingarm is offset to the left and its pivot point is remarkably low, preventing shaft jacking. The swingarm is angled six degrees outward to accommodate the 190/55 Pirelli Angel GT II and keeps the chassis’ waist slimmer than what you’d see during Milan Fashion Week. While some driveline lash isn’t uncommon with shaft-driven motorcycles, Moto Guzzi engineers’ new damping strategies do their best to minimize the effects.

  1. A wet clutch brings refinement, and the quickshifter is yet another first for Guzzi. Ditching the porky single-plate dry clutch and adopting one of the multi-plate wet varieties has improved transitions between gears noticeably, especially when using the light-pull, torque-assisted hydraulic clutch. The aforementioned lash might factor in the quickshifter’s behavior, which could benefit from a little algorithmic TLC due to jumpiness at lower rpm and smaller throttle openings, specifically in the first half of the gearbox. Twist the grip with intent to load the drivetrain or clear 5000 rpm, and it’ll treat you right. Conversely, hammering the quickshifter like you’re riding a supersport is met with shifting hesitation, but when an engine makes over 80 percent of its available torque at 3500 rpm, that’s never warranted.

  1. Four selectable ride modes alter the 2023 Moto Guzzi V100 Mandello S’s personality on the fly. Sport, Road, Touring, and Rain are your all-encompassing modes that alter well-sorted throttle maps, engine braking strategies, traction control settings, semi-active suspension, and deploy the automatic aero deflectors. Tailoring each mode is accomplished via the bright five-inch TFT display. Sport tightens it up to a perky affair and a light grip on the electronic nannies; some might even want its sportiness dialed down a shade, though I wouldn’t. Road and Touring share a throttle map and soften the whip’s initial crack, while Rain is self-explanatory.

  1. Technology for the new age: A full suite of IMU-supported rider aids is standard. Whether we’re talking about the non-adjustable cornering ABS or four-level TC, all the aids work flawlessly and come in handy while hitting random Italian cobblestones. Adding to the niceties are all-around LED lighting and an adaptive headlight, reinforcing Guzzi’s modern mission. Oh, and there’s cruise control.

  1. Öhlins semi-active matches this machine’s versatility. The Smart EC 2.0 system is in play on the NIX fork and TTX shock with two semi-active and two manual modes. Spring preload is dialed in manually, and the shock features a snazzy remote adjuster. The OBTi’s (Objective Based Tuning interface) tuning parameters are paired down for this road-going application, offering a sliding scale for “front firmness,” “rear firmness,” and “brake support.” Dynamic (A1) has curvy roads and high-speed pastures in mind, keeping the chassis steady while peeling through curves and keeping everything on the street-minded side of the sporting fence. Comfort (A2) works as advertised, gobbling up every spot of gnarled tarmac and keeping the ride serene. Two manual modes are available if you want to fiddle with electronic clickers.

  1. Sure-footed handling is a hallmark of the V100 Mandello. The sweet handling from this steel-trellis frame is partly due to the greater Piaggio Group brain trust, where comparisons to Aprilia sportbikes don’t seem far-fetched. A wheelbase figure pinched from sport-touring spec sheets offers nothing less than pure stability on the edge of the Pirelli Angel GT II rubber, making quick work of tight, sinewy switchbacks or flowing corners. Steadfast is the operative word, and that’s quite a statement, considering its 514-pound curb weight. The V100 is seemingly eager to tip-in at lower paces, which is beneficial when dispatching hairpin turns.

  1. Did you expect anything less? Brembo stoppers are in store. The tried-and-true M4.32 4-piston calipers clamp onto 320mm rotors with excellent results, and feedback at the radial master cylinder receives top scores. In the rear, it’s the same story.

  1. Adaptive aerodynamics are the most interesting features I’ve seen in years. Watching the winglets deploy is almost uncanny at first, and according to Moto Guzzi, the system reduces rider air pressure by 22 percent. It aims to achieve a best-of-both-worlds solution, recognizing that absolute wind protection isn’t always advantageous. That explains why the winglets aren’t set to extend at low speeds, though one can customize which mode and at what mph they’ll extend. Modest-but-tangible sums the experience, and I’ll take anything I can get on longer rides.

  1. An adjustable windscreen adds to the wind protection. Flicking through the TFT screen controls will let you find a submenu to raise and lower the windscreen, though we prefer a dedicated switch. The low setting works just nicely for my height, and there is a pleasing lack of turbulence in the cockpit. Overall, protection from the elements is high, even if Guzzi’s tastefully nude appearance suggests otherwise. The fairing, windscreen, and engine jugs do their part, with the adaptive aero being the icing on the cake.

  1. Ergos bridge the gap between casual and sport riding. Standing next to the 2023 Moto Guzzi V100 Mandello, the first thing you’ll notice is its relatively svelte size; a touring land yacht, it is not, though not as compact as a race replica. It settles in the middle without making compromising ability or comfort. An approachable 32.1-inch saddle height is made more inviting by the slim chassis, allowing riders of many sizes to reach the deck easily, and I never once second-guessed the foot-to-seat distance. Meanwhile, tapered-aluminum handlebars, which could have been lifted from a Tuono V4, allowed me to get my elbows out in the canyons, yet keep weight off the wrists when cruising.

  1. Build out the V100 to suit your needs. A plethora of accessories are available, including engine protection and centerstands. My money would be spent on the panniers, which are ready to go and cleverly locked in by the pillion seat; MSRPs are pending.

  1. If the 2023 Moto Guzzi V100 Mandello S is a glimpse into Guzzi’s future, things look bright. Navigating heritage is no small feat, and designers have retained that unmistakable Guzzi charm in the face of the V100 Mandello’s modern amenities. The S’ semi-active suspension and IMU electronics push that narrative, as does the first-ever adaptive aero. Sure, the quickshifter needs another gander, and low-speed heat dissipation quibbles do come to mind. Regardless, the sporty liquid-cooled V-twin is pure class and paired to a chassis that never skips a beat. What’s more, is its sheer versatility on the road, and the same can be said of luggage or accessories. Roadster, sport-tourer, call it what you will, but I’ll stick with impressive.

Photography by Alberto Cervetti, Marco Zamponi, et al

RIDING STYLE

  • Helmet: Arai Regent-X
  • Jacket: Alpinestars Solano
  • Gloves: Alpinestars Morph
  • Jeans: Alpinestars Copper V2
  • Boots: Alpinestars Radon Drystar

2023 Moto Guzzi V100 Mandello S Specs

 ENGINE

  • Type: Transverse 90-degree V-twin w/ longitudinal crank
  • Displacement: 1042cc
  • Bore x stroke: 96 x 72mm
  • Maximum power: 115 horsepower @ 8700 rpm
  • Maximum torque: 77 ft-lbs @ 6750 rpm
  • Compression ratio: 12.6:1
  • Valvetrain: DOHC; 4 vpc
  • Fueling: EFI w/ 52mm double throttle body
  • Cooling: Liquid
  • Transmission: 6-speed w/ quickshifter
  • Clutch: Hydraulically actuated wet multi-plate w/ assist and slipper functions
  • Final drive: Shaft

CHASSIS

  • Frame: Tubular steel
  • Front suspension; travel: Fully adjustably Öhlins NIX Smart EC 2.0 semi-active 43mm inverted fork; 5.1 inches
  • Rear suspension; travel: Linkageless, cantilevered, fully adjustable Öhlins TTX Smart EC 2.0 semi-active piggyback-reservoir shock; 5.1 inches
  • Wheels: Aluminum
  • Front wheel: 17 x 3.5
  • Rear wheel: 17 x 6.0
  • Tires: Pirelli Angel GT II
  • Front tire: 120/70 x 17
  • Rear tire: 190/55 x 17
  • Front brakes: 320mm floating discs w/ radially mounted Brembo M4 4-piston calipers
  • Rear brake: 280mm disc w/ 2-piston Brembo 2P floating caliper
  • ABS: Cornering-aware Continental ABS

DIMENSIONS and CAPACITIES

  • Wheelbase: 58.1 inches
  • Rake: 24.7 degrees
  • Trail: 4.1 inches
  • Seat height: 32.1 inches (31.5- and 32.9-inch optional seats)
  • Fuel capacity: 4.5 gallons
  • Estimated fuel consumption: 50 mpg
  • Curb weight: 514 pounds
  • Colors: Verde 2121; Grigio Avanguardia

2023 Moto Guzzi V100 Mandello S Price: $17,490 MSRP

2023 Moto Guzzi V100 Mandello S Review Photo Gallery