Moto Guzzi flew us to its factory in Mandello del Lario on the shores of Lake Como to sample the two latest members of Guzzi’s popular California line of motorcycles. In this video, we take the Audace through its paces in the towns and mountains near Guzzi’s legendary facility.

2016 Moto Guzzi Audace – First Ride Review

In case you haven’t yet read our review of the Audace, here’s a quick primer. The Audace is based on the California 1400, which won our 2013 Best Cruiser Award. Utilizing the same 90° V-Twin – updated to Euro 4 emissions – the Audace’s power is the same torque-filled bottom end and silky smooth vibrationless powerplant on the open road. With electronic rider aids usually reserved for top-shelf sportbikes, the Audace has sorted the throttle response to a much more refined level than previous generations of this engine.

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Looking to capture some of the urban bad-boy market, the Audace has a drag bar and a slightly feet-forward riding position to place riders in an optimal stance for supporting straight-line accelerative forces. Although the wide drag bar makes tight corners and U-turns a challenge, the additional lean angle on the Audace translates into more cornering fun. Brakes, with the mandatory European ABS, do an admirable job of stopping the bike’s 700 lbs. quickly. Though the riding position won’t lend itself to touring, the Audace is fun to ride on backroads and in more urban wilds.

2013 Moto Guzzi California 1400 Custom Review

If you’re interested in learning more about the Audace, head on over to the full test to find out why you might want to be waiting at your local Moto Guzzi dealership when the Audaces start arriving in dealerships this July.

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  • 12er

    All I can see is a fancy Tote Gote… That extra long body piece under the seat seems so boxy. Cool app though.

  • Old MOron

    Hey Evans, for fun maybe you could do these video narratives in the style of Jacques Cousteau. He always spoke of the sea creatures in anthropomorphic terms, and you could do the same for the motorcycles. Work on your French accent, too.

    “As Troy and ze crew returned ze motorcycles to storage, I wondered what zey might be thinking about their MOronic viziteurs…”

  • Max Wellian

    Cept for the drag bars and spray can paint job I like it. The touring model would still get my money as it is just so much more functional. Would love to know it they incorporated the fueling changes into the new touring model too.

  • notfishing

    I just hope someone will make a kit to move the pegs & controls back under me. While the “Sons of Anarchy” feet forward position may look cool some of us wish to crouch over bad roads and steer more with weight shifts. It’s a Zen thing (balance in steering).

    • Reid

      There are a ton of cruisers (heh heh heh get it) that would be made instantly cooler if the peg location was moved back.

  • Ducati Kid


    A commenter advised exchanging the ‘Audace’ Headlamp with Mandello del Lario’s Eldorado sibling correcting functionality.

    This led me to revise M-G’S ‘Audace’ product for overall appearance!

    Enjoy …