The Corpus Christi Old Car Museum Auction

Lot 213
c. 1953 Moto Guzzi Falcone Motorcycle

Selling on Saturday

c. 1953 Moto Guzzi Falcone Motorcycle

• Beautiful comprehensive restoration
• A landmark Moto Guzzi design
• Innovative reversed front forks lower unsprung weight
• Wonderful freshly restored paint is exceptional

499cc four-stroke single engine, 23 HP, four-speed gearbox, drum brakes, inverted front telescopic fork, rear friction shocks; wheelbase: 58”

Looking closely at a Moto Guzzi in this era you can easily see the Italian company went its own way with innovative suspension systems and exposed flywheels, though the exposed valve train with “hairspring” style valve springs was finally a thing of the past. Most single-cylinder motorcycle engines of the 1950s used an overhead valve (OHV) vertical cylinder. Moto Guzzi designs incorporated an unusual horizontal cylinder with a double overhead camshaft (DOHC) layout. Also unusual was their design which put a large flywheel on the outside of the engine, which after a time earned the motorcycles the “bologna slicer” or “bacon slicer” nickname. This design was produced all the way through 1967.

Giorgio Parodi and Carlo Guzzi, World War I veterans and mechanics, formed Moto Guzzi in 1921. Advanced for its time, Moto Guzzi introduced its first rear suspension system in 1928. It used an interesting “knee action” friction damper system typical of early cars and placed the springs almost out of sight under the transmission. Also interesting is that Moto Guzzi early on used what we now call “upside down forks” which reduce unsprung weight.

This landmark motorcycle has obviously been meticulously restored, with brilliant Rossa Red paint finishes throughout, and lovely emblems and tank details. It’s clean and correct, with new rubber components and tires. You’ll really feel like Italian royalty riding this bike, and the consignor reports it is amazingly comfortable and has plenty of power. It also happens to be an exceptionally easy bike to service, as all the major mechanical components reside outside the engine cases. It’s easy to see why Moto Guzzi produced this basic design for about 40 years. Perfect for an Italian vehicle collection, a great addition to a motorcycle collection, or even a touring bike for vintage events, this lovely Falcone is an amazing combination of robust performance and fine Italian design.

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