Moto Guzzi California Aluminum Motorcycles Reviews (2)
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2006-10-03 2003 Moto Guzzi California Aluminum Motorcycles View Listings

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I bought my Guzzi three and a half years ago after 20+ years of no riding. I was attracted to the uniqueness and Italian style, as well as a heritage that matches any other brand. I have been thoroughly pleased with nearly all aspects of the ride. I get very favorable comments nearly every time anyone sees it. Whether it's young kids, middle aged women in SUVs, hot rodders, or tourists, they all say 'what a cool ride'. I ride every day from April through October and weekends during the remainder of the year. It has only let me down once when my battery died. Otherwise it is extremely reliable and solid. The performance is very good and rarely have I wished for more. This bike is very flexible. I have gone on many errands picking up all kinds of large items. I have a backrest/rack that handles everything. In fact, I occasionally look like I'm in Thailand with a week's worth of groceries on the back. The only complaints are clutch adjustment, speedo cable, and slow parts delivey. Other than that, it is an excellent and unique motorcycle. I could take it to 100k miles and I couldn't be more pleased.
- Jeff J, San Diego, California

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2005-02-06 2003 Moto Guzzi California Aluminum Motorcycles View Listings

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I got an excellent deal on this bike. I live in Orange Couny, CA and the local dealer is apparently the largest in the US. They bought 40 aluminums direct from Italy, so a good portion of the volumne discount was passed on to buyers. I've riden for over 10 years, and my prior bikes included a Honda CM400E (beginner bike), Honda Goldwing (drove cross country in college), and most recently a Honda Nighthawk which my brother gave to me, and I subsequently sold to help purchase the Guzzi. Part of the reason I bought this bike (other than the very good price) was the character. You can see from my past that I was a plain Jane Honda rider, and the Nighthawk is as boring as it gets, even though it's a very reliable bike. I wanted something special. I looked at Harleys, but they are a dime a dozen, and more expensive. The Guzzi aluminum/stone/titanium look is right on in my opinion, so I couldn't pass up the good deal. I've put almost two thousand miles on the bike so far. It has performed without problems. I bought the sport windshield and it's very good at keeping wind off your chest, plus it doesn't ruin the look of the bike. I also purchased the passenger back rest, and it's especially nice since it has passenger hand rails. Next I will get the center stand, which will make it easier to clean (polishing the back rim is a pain when you can't twirl the wheel). The heated grips will probably come after that at some point. The side leather bags are very expensive at around $800, so I'll probably pass on those. I bought a $100 4-piece touring set that I can attach to the back rest so I'm all set for light touring. The ride is on the sporty side and the bike has very good clearance. The disadvantage of this bike vs. the touring Guzzi's is that the rear shock is not adjustable. I would like the ability to 'futz' around with it a bit, but it's really not that bad. Plus, Guzzi does have a "king and queen" touring seet on their web site that I might look into, although it costs about $500 and is intended for the touring Guzzi's (although my dealer said he could install it on the Aluminum). My only gripes are the following: <br /> <li>Sometimes the gas cap is difficult to remove. I believe this is called "vapor lock", and it may only affect bikes in California due to emissions requirements. Apparently there is a way to fix this and I'll need to do more research. It would suck to get stranded because you can't fill up, although I've always been able to remove it after some struggling. <li>For some reason the tachometer fogs up after riding a few minutes, then it goes away. This doesn't happen to the speedometer, which has the same type of housing. Very odd, but not a big deal. <li> The clutch is a bit tempermental at times, but I've heard it gets better over time, and it's not bad by any means. I guess I'm used to the Japanese shifters which are a bit more predictable. I've found that using the heal shifter is very useful, and it's convenient as well since you can just stomp on it. At first I thought I wouldn't like the heel/toe shifter but I've grown to like it. <li>The fuel light comes on too early (I think). Supposedly it's a 5 gallon tank, but my fuel light comes on after about 120 miles. When I fill up the tank it takes over 2 gallons. One of these days I'll carry a can of gas with me and find out the true range of the tank. A fuel light coming on with over 2 gallons in the tank seems a bit early to me. Well, that's about it. It's a good looking, torquey, sporty, great handling, character filled bike with shaft drive and fuel injection, at a great price (at least for me). And the best part is there isn't one at every corner. Thumbs up!
- Carl, Newport Beach, California

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