2017 Moto Guzzi Audace Carbon Preview

Evans Brasfield
by Evans Brasfield

Moto Guzzi clearly believes that naked carbon fiber is the new black. Just look at the 2017 MGX–21. Well, the Audace Carbon is following the same eye-catching design cues – which makes sense since both motorcycles are based on the same California 1400 platform.

2016 Moto Guzzi Audace – First Ride Review

For 2017, the Moto Guzzi Audace receives a few small updates in addition to the Carbon suffix. First though, as with the 2016 Audace, we need to note that the Audace Carbon is Euro 4 compliant – otherwise, it couldn’t be sold in Europe, which, you know, Italy is part of. The other changes to the Audace include a screen to protect the radiator in its low location right behind the front tire. The drag bar receives a new bend that places the grips lower and more rearward towards the rider for more comfort and control. The long reach of the previous bar made for a slightly tiring riding position during extended stints. It should also reduce the stretch on the outboard arm during U-turns.

The 2017 Moto Guzzi Audace Carbon bears a strong resemblance to the MGX-21.

When it comes to the Audace’s styling, two things jump out at the viewer. The red paint and offset machined aluminum of the Brembo calipers and valve covers. Last year, the only dollop of color was the red Moto Guzzi on the black cast aluminum wheels. This year, thanks to the dual discs and the famed Guzzi transversely mounted 90° V-Twin engine, the red highlights grace the Audace from front to rear. In a more subtle change from last year’s blacked-out Audace, the front fender and the panels on either side of the gas tank are constructed of carbon fiber, giving the Audauce Carbon a more aggressive, custom look.

2017 Moto Guzzi MGX–21 Flying Fortress First Ride Review

Functionally, the Audace remains the same. It should produce, the same torquey power curve that made it so fun to ride both around town and on the open road. The unchanged remote reservoir rear suspension should deliver the same sporty-but-not-harsh ride of the 2016 model. Ground clearance will continue to be the limiting factor in the Carbon’s cornering.

Follow the rest of our 2016 Intermot Show coverage for more information on new motorcycle announcements.

Evans Brasfield
Evans Brasfield

Like most of the best happenings in his life, Evans stumbled into his motojournalism career. While on his way to a planned life in academia, he applied for a job at a motorcycle magazine, thinking he’d get the opportunity to write some freelance articles. Instead, he was offered a full-time job in which he discovered he could actually get paid to ride other people’s motorcycles – and he’s never looked back. Over the 25 years he’s been in the motorcycle industry, Evans has written two books, 101 Sportbike Performance Projects and How to Modify Your Metric Cruiser, and has ridden just about every production motorcycle manufactured. Evans has a deep love of motorcycles and believes they are a force for good in the world.

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