Moto Guzzi California Trademark Renewed (2024)

Updated rights to name in the US signal a return of the Italian cruiser.

March 26, 2024

Moto Guzzi California Trademark Renewed (1)

The Moto Guzzi California name has adorned generations of bikes aimed squarely at the US market dating back to the early 1970s, but since 2020 the name’s been conspicuously absent from the company’s lineup following the demise of the 1,380cc “Big Block”–powered machines in the face of tightening emissions rules. Now a new bike carrying the same branding looks likely following an application to renew Moto Guzzi’s trademark rights on the name in the USA.

Moto Guzzi California Trademark Renewed (2)

There are plenty of companies that endlessly hoard old trademarks or file speculative applications for marks they might or might not use in the future. Triumph tends to keep a grip on unused model names, including Hurricane and Thunderbird, for instance, and BMW has regularly made trademark applications to cover broad arrays of alphanumeric combinations in line with its naming policies just to make sure nobody else snaps them up. Moto Guzzi’s patent firm Piaggio does the same and owns trademark rights on the Moto Guzzi California name in Europe until well into the 2030s. But the new application, filed on 1st March 2024, is in the USA where it’s not as easy to simply trademark brands on the off chance they might be useful in the future.

Here, there must be a definite intention to use a trademark, and while the new application for the Moto Guzzi California trademark is based on the fact that the company already owns the name elsewhere, the application filed by Piaggio is also specific that the company has “a bona fide intention, and is entitled, to use the mark in commerce,” suggesting a new Guzzi California model is part of the company’s plan and leaving a question over how the company will go about it.

Moto Guzzi California Trademark Renewed (3)

The last-generation California used the company’s “Big Block” V-twin, although its 1,380cc capacity doesn’t seem vast these days in comparison to some rivals. BMW’s R 18 might be the most obvious competitor, also featuring a longitudinal engine with cylinders poking out on each side, and it’s substantially larger both in engine size and outright dimensions. To compete with that machine, or similarly huge V-twins from Harley-Davidson or Indian, Guzzi would need to go back to the drawing board and develop a completely new engine aimed specifically at the California and perhaps successors to its spin-off models, the Audace and MGX-21.

Moto Guzzi California Trademark Renewed (4)

But that might not be the direction the company takes. Earlier iterations of the California were much smaller, with 850cc to 1,100cc versions of Guzzi’s signature V-twin and Guzzi’s latest engine—the 1,042cc liquid-cooled DOHC design used in the V100 Mandello and Stelvio—sits well within that bracket. It also slides neatly into current trends for liquid-cooled, smaller-capacity cruisers like Harley’s Nightster and Sportster S, and Indian’s Scout models. Launching the V100 platform, Moto Guzzi promised multiple models across different styles of bike over a five- to six-year period. We’ve seen the sport-touring Mandello and the adventure-style Stelvio (another revived name from Moto Guzzi’s past), so a V100-based California makes a lot of sense going forward.

Moto Guzzi California Trademark Renewed (2024)


Moto Guzzi California Trademark Renewed? ›

Moto Guzzi's patent firm Piaggio

Piaggio & C. SpA (Piaggio [ˈpjaddʒo]) is an Italian motor vehicle manufacturer, which produces a range of two-wheeled motor vehicles and compact commercial vehicles under four brands: Piaggio, Vespa, Aprilia, Moto Guzzi and Derbi. › wiki › Piaggio
does the same and owns trademark rights on the Moto Guzzi California name in Europe until well into the 2030s. But the new application, filed on 1st March 2024, is in the USA where it's not as easy to simply trademark brands on the off chance they might be useful in the future.

Is Moto Guzzi bringing back the California? ›

US trademark laws ensure that Moto Guzzi's California will make a comeback.

What happened to Moto Guzzi motorcycles? ›

For a time, even the Los Angeles Police Department used Moto Guzzis for its motorcycle fleet. Despite its successes, the company began to wane. Its founders died; its funding evaporated. Moto Guzzi endured decades of ownership changes before finally being absorbed into the giant Piaggio Group in 2004.

What is the price of Moto Guzzi California? ›

Special purchase from the #1 Moto Guzzi dealer in the USA. One available, brand new, original MSRP $18,490.

What does Moto Guzzi mean in English? ›

Moto Guzzi (Italian pronunciation: [ˈmɔːto ˈɡuttsi]) is an Italian motorcycle manufacturer and the oldest European manufacturer in continuous motorcycle production.

Do Moto Guzzi hold their value? ›

Guzzi's depreciate in value because most people want boring bikes and a dealer within 5 miles to check their tire pressures. That's cool for us because there's no substantive reason for Guzzi's to be so affordable. Take advantage.

How long do Moto Guzzi engines last? ›

Traditionally Guzzi engines last a very long time. Many would say that 15k miles is just about run in nicely! There's lots of very high mileage Guzzis out there and I know some owners are concerned the V7 mileometer can't read higher than 99,999 so at that point they will have to buy a new speedo!

Is Moto Guzzi a reliable brand? ›

Owners of previous versions rave about the reliability and finish of their bikes, the only grumbles being about the rear shocks – which are improved on the 850. Our 2021 Moto Guzzi V7 owners' reviews show two very happy buyers who haven't had any problems whatsoever.

Where are Moto Guzzi engines made? ›

Moto Guzzi's motorcycle factory is located in Mandello del Lario, Italy. As a small town on the shore of Lake Como, its residents have so embraced the company that they've officially named it, “La Citta della Moto Guzzi”—the city of Moto Guzzis.

Do Moto Guzzi overheat? ›

Overheating: Overheating is a common issue faced by Moto Guzzi owners, especially in hot climates or during long rides. This could be caused by a variety of factors, such as a malfunctioning cooling system or a clogged radiator.

Where is the Moto Guzzi factory? ›

The Moto Guzzi Museum is located in Mandello del lario, Lake Como, the original birth place of the Moto Guzzi Eagle which was established in 1921.

What size engine is in Moto Guzzi California? ›

The 1380cc twin is the largest v-twin manufactured in Europe. Still 90 degrees and cooled traditionally with a combination of ambient air and an oil pump system, everything else about the engine has been modernized. The electronic fuel injection system by Magneti Marelli is controlled through a ride-by-wire throttle.

What bird is in the Moto Guzzi logo? ›

The eagle with spread wings on the Moto Guzzi logo is a tribute to his memory. 15 March 1921: Moto Guzzi and the factory are established. 1921: The newly-founded company adopts an eagle as its logo. 1921: The first motorbike produced is the GP 500.

What is the Moto Guzzi logo? ›

The eagle in the Moto Guzzi logo is a tribute to Giovanni Ravelli, one of the company's founders who was also a pilot. After his tragic death in an airplane crash just after World War I, the remaining founders, Carlo Guzzi and Giorgio Parodi, decided to commemorate him by featuring an eagle in their logo.

Are Moto Guzzi liquid cooled? ›

Discover what makes it unique. The V100 Mandello is the first Moto Guzzi to be powered by the new compact block engine which respects the traditional 90° transverse V architecture with a shaft drive, but is liquid-cooled.

How reliable are Moto Guzzi? ›

It's not hard to get to most of what you'll need to be working on, and the parts are generally well enough built that there are few throw-away things on the motorcycle. A Guzzi is reliable. If you're squeamish about taking this obscure motorcycle on a long trip, don't be. These are very reliable motorcycles.

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