Magni Australia

 

 

 

Make Model

Magni Australia

Year

1994

Engine

Four stroke, 90°transverse V-twin,  OHC, 4 valves per cylinder

Capacity

992 cc / 60.5 cu-in
Bore x Stroke 90 x 78 mm
Cooling System Air cooled
Compression Ratio 10.0:1

Induction

Weber-Marelli  EFI

Ignition

Electronic injection

Max Power

75 kW / 102 hp @ 8400 rpm

Max Torque

88 Nm / 65 lb-ft @ 6600 rpm

Transmission

5 Speed

Front Suspension

FI Upside-down fully adjustable

Rear Suspension

WP Parallelogrammo

Front Brakes

2x 320mm disc

Rear Brakes

Single 230mm disc

Front Tyre

120/70-VR17

Rear Tyre

180/55-VR17

Dry Weight

200 kg / 441 lbs

Fuel Capacity

23 Litres / 6.0 US gal

 

 

Tts sleek styling, big V-twin engine and enormous rear tyre showed that this was a serious sports bike, but it was the red-and-silver paintwork that revealed most about the Magni Australia. Those were the colours of the legendary MV Agusta race team once run by Arturo Magni, the Australia's creator.

 

Magni had prepared the 'Gallarate Fire Engines' raced to glory by John Surtees, Mike Hailwood and Giacomo Agostini. Then, when MV stopped racing after winning 17 consecutive 500cc world titles between 1958 and 1974, Magni set up business with his son Giovanni to build high-quality roadsters from a workshop near Agusta's old base at Gallarate, north of Milan. Several used engines from Moto Guzzi, notably the 1990-model Sfida, a retro-styled sportster powered by the two-valves-per-cylinder engine from the Le Mans.

 

Two years later came the fastest and best Magni yet: the Australia, so-called because it was a direct descendent of a Guzzi-engined Magni racebike that had notched up a string of impressive results Down Under. The Australia was powered by the V-twin engine from the Daytona 1000, Guzzi's fuel-injected, eight-valve flagship. To ease homologation the 992cc 'high cam' unit was retained in its entirety from airbox to silencers.

Almost everything else was new, though, most notably the frame. In place of the Daytona's large-diameter spine was a more conventional arrangement, based on three 34mm diameter chrome-molybdenum steel tubes running back from the steering head. A pair of front downtubes helped secure the engine.

 

The swing-arm was a single-shock version of Magni's proven Parallelogramo design, created to combat torque-reaction. Rear suspension was provided by a single shock from Dutch firm White Power. The Australia's swing-arm was wide enough to allow fitment of a wide, 180-section rear tyre.

At the front were upside-down Forcelle Italia forks - adjustable, like the shock, for both compression and rebound damping. The 17-inch wheels held 320mm Brembo brake discs with four-piston calipers. Both mudguards were lightweight carbon fibre, helping to keep weight to a respectable 4501b dry.

 

The cylinder heads visible at each side of the Australia made the Guzzi connection clear, and there was no doubting the engine's origins when it fired up to send the bike rocking in characteristic fashion with every blip of the throttle. At most engine speeds the Australia had a wonderfully loose, rev-happy feel, aided by the Weber-Marelli fuel-injection's crisp response.

 

 

With a peak output of 95bhp, the slippery Australia had a top speed of about 140mph, plus generous acceleration from low revs. The Magni pulled strongly almost from tickover, with a slight surge at around 4000rpm that sent it charging along

with a rustling from the aircooled engine's sticking-out cylinders, and a typically long-legged Guzzi feel at high speed.

It was on a twisty road, though, that the Australia came into its own. Its Brembo brakes were superbly powerful, steering was light and the Magni could be cornered easily and with great precision. Suspension was compliant but very well-controlled at both ends, and the drive shaft barely noticeable.

 

That blend of good looks, effortless engine performance and nimble handling made the Australia a very impressive special, with a captivating blend of pace and grace. Its price was high - but not excessively so for a machine hand-built in tiny numbers. Especially when those hands had once built bikes for legends such as Surtees, Hailwood and Agostini.

 

Source Super Bikes by Mac McDiarmid