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Wheels on Reels

Classic motorcycle videos selected by the editors of Motorcycle Classics


The 1974 Laverda Lineup

by Richard Backus


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1972 Laverda 1000 

Introduced in 1972, the three-cylinder Laverda 1000 (top) was the bike the boys at Breganze were really hanging their hopes on. Although a little heavy for track work, the big triple was successful in the European endurance circuit. More importantly, it was an excellent high-speed touring machine, equally at home blasting across the U.S. desert Southwest or carving corners in the Swiss Alps. Dual front discs were new for 1974.

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1974 Laverda 750 SF 

The Laverda 750 SF was Laverda’s bread and butter bike, a well-engineered, well-made parallel twin. European buyers tended to favor low bars, while American bikes, like the one shown here, carried taller bars to suit our presumably longer rides. Bosch electrics meant reliable starting and charging, and Nippon Denso gauges provided clear information. 1974 SF2s sported dual-disc front brakes and a new exhaust with a balance pipe.

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1974 Laverda 750 SFC 

At the top of the heap was the 1974 Laverda 750 SFC. Although very limited in production, they were highly touted in company ads. While all Laverdas were more handmade than most, the SFC took that to a different level, with each engine assembled by one person. Finished engines were then tested on the factory dynamometer to verify output. Each bike was road tested, usually with an older gas tank to avoid damaging new parts.

Here is a video demonstrating the magnificent sound of the 1974 Laverda 750 SFC:

david_5
11/10/2011 5:08:36 PM

I always wanted a Jota. Had to "settle" for a Trident. Still, there's something special about a triple.


andrew macpherson
11/10/2011 8:46:07 AM

My first Laverda was a '74 3CE that I bought in the spring of '77. I rode and raced it for two years, and even once won a club race at Mallory Park on it. I really loved it, and after it was stolen in '80 I bought a Jota 180, which I liked a lot, but really missed the prettier styling of the 3C. Before leaving the UK I had a string of other Laverdas, including another 3C which lived in my hallway most of the time for a few years, but when I emigrated I only brought my hand built Saxon Motodd racer, built around a Jota 120 motor, but with a 1200 conversation. Motorcyclist did a feature on it, and I kept it in my hallway too for many years, but the lack of mechanical support and fear of dropping it here in LA led me to see it after a few years, but Laverdas are still the bikes I love the most - thank you for rekindling the memory this morning!


andrew macpherson
11/10/2011 8:45:53 AM

My first Laverda was a '74 3CE that I bought in the spring of '77. I rode and raced it for two years, and even once won a club race at Mallory Park on it. I really loved it, and after it was stolen in '80 I bought a Jota 180, which I liked a lot, but really missed the prettier styling of the 3C. Before leaving the UK I had a string of other Laverdas, including another 3C which lived in my hallway most of the time for a few years, but when I emigrated I only brought my hand built Saxon Motodd racer, built around a Jota 120 motor, but with a 1200 conversation. Motorcyclist did a feature on it, and I kept it in my hallway too for many years, but the lack of mechanical support and fear of dropping it here in LA led me to see it after a few years, but Laverdas are still the bikes I love the most - thank you for rekindling the memory this morning!