In 2011 Piaggio had warned that they would be closing the historic Derbi factory in Martorelles, Spain and move production to Italy as part of their restructioning program, that would have left between 150 and 230 workers without a job, in an already hard hit Spain, whose unemployment rate is now a staggering 26%.
The Italian group, who bought Derbi (DERivats de BIcicletes) in 2001, did attempt to find a buyer for the facilities and were in talks with Swiss investment company Giba, who seemed interested in investing 100 million euros to produce automobiles at the Spanish site, but the deal fell through leaving Piaggio no other option than file ERE proceedings and terminate the workers contracts and shut down the plant.
Spain will have to say good-bye to the marque that gave the country 12 GP world titles and numerous wins with riders like Angel Nieto, Ricardo Tormo, Aspar Martinez and Alex Crivillé.
Source | plusmoto.com
It’s nice to know that European Union hasn’t cut back on everything and still believes in financing viable projects in order to help meet policy objectives, so their nonprofit long-term lending institution, the European Investment Bank (EIB) has lent the Piaggio Group (Piaggio, Vespa, Gilera, Aprilia, Moto Guzzi, Derbi, Scarabeo) a 60 million euro finance contract to support the group’s research and development projects.
The loan will be for a term of seven years and will be used for research and development projects to be carried out at Piaggio Group’s Italian sites. The investments planned by Piaggio over the period 2013-2015 will enable the Group to carry out and increase its R&D activities with the aim of offering on the market innovative, environmentally friendly motor scooters, motor cycles and commercial vehicles that are safer and more reliable, with better fuel consumption and lower emissions.
In particular, the projects will involve research and development in the following fields:
active, passive and preventive safety;
improving the energy efficiency of internal combustion engines;
developing electric motor, hybrid and alternative fuel technologies.
Designer Luca Bar introduces a captivating concept bike that envisages an hypothetical Moto Guzzi sportbike, a model that many fans of the Italian brand around the globe have been dreaming about for years. Mr. Luca has come up with a graphic concept that uses a modern and athletic frame hosting a typical ‘Guzzi’ V-Twin engine, and the result is pretty cool indeed.
The design of the chassis and the rear section are clearly inspired by the Aprilia RSV4, while at the front we have a Hossak-type suspension in place of a ‘regular’ fork that - in the worlds of the designer himself - “allows for a shorter wheel-base to the benefit of the bike’s overall handling, which is Guzzi’s usual weakest link.” The single-sided swingarm is a nice and classy touch, as are the carbon fiber fairings, also quite reminiscent of the RSV4.
The fact this Guzzi concept is so heavily influenced by Aprilia’s flagship actually makes perfect sense as both brands are controlled by the Piaggio Group: if the idea of a Moto Guzzi sportsbike is ever to be considered, having it growing out of the same project that generated the RSV4 would save the Piaggio guys a lot of money, but in reality the chances to see such a project taking off are quite slim, possibly not-existent at all. With Aprilia steadily established as the sport/racing brand of th group, the role of the Moto Guzzi brand within the group is still quite blurred and unclear. However, dreaming doesn’t cost a thing, does it?
via | Luca Bar
A while we talked about two brand new models from the Piaggio Group that were informally unveiled during a Dealer Meeting that took place in Montecarlo a few weeks back: the Moto Guzzi California 1400 and the Aprilia Caponord 1200. These two models should hit the showrooms next fall, but a few more sneaky pictures of the latter taken at a recent meeting with US and Canadian partners have just surfaced on the internet.
The Aprilia Caponord 1200 will take on one of the most competitive segment of the market, and - at a first glance - it seems to have all it takes to give the BMW R 1200 GS a run for its money. However, we will be waiting for more info about this model.
Photo | Aprilia Forum
Piaggio Group confirmed in a statement that Italian Police force ‘Guardia di Finanza’ seized a three wheels scooter called YB 250 ZKT produced and marketed by Chinese company Kaitong Motor through its subsidiary Yiben. The Police carried out the operation at Yiben’s stand at the 2011 EICMA.
Guardia di Finanza says that the aforementioned model appears to be a little too similar to Piaggio ‘MP3′, whose design and production rights are obviously owned by the Italian group. Thereby, the model has been distrained over allegations of falsification and copyright infringment. Here are the pictures, you can see that for yourself.
The Piaggio Group showcases many models from all of its brands at the 2011 EICMA. We already introduced Piaggio X10, Aprilia SRV 850 and Vespa Quarantasei, now let’s have a quick look through the other most significant ones.
Moto Guzzi V7 now available in three models: the V7 (a classic motorcycle), the V7 Special (for upmarket tourism and speed enthusiasts) and the V7 Racer (the highly advanced racing version), all based on the fully re-engineered 90° V-twin engine. The new Moto Guzzi Nevada, powered by the new 750 two-cylinder, retains the characteristic custom design but features a less laid-back riding position for greater control.
Piaggio presents the Beverly SportTouring, a sporty version of the successful Beverly with a completely new 33 hp 350 cc engine, a 150/70 rear tyre and a new look, and is also first scooter in the world with ABS/ASR. Then there is the revamped Fly, which has undergone a full restyling and will go on sale worldwide. Initially available in a 50 cc, 4-stroke, 4V version, it will later be joined by 125 and 150 cc models as well. Click the “Continue Reading” link below to find out about Aprilia and Derbi.
View the full Piaggio Group line-up at the 2011 EICMA photo gallery