• Year of manufacture 
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    United Kingdom


1978 MV Agusta 832cc Monza
Registration no. REB 696S
Frame no. 2210336
Engine no. 2210336

• Exclusive, last-of-the-line, limited-edition model
• Three owners from new
• Current ownership since 1982
• 10,825 miles recorded

The limited-edition MV Agusta Monza offered here represents the culmination of the legendary Italian factory's range of four-cylinder superbikes. Developed from its long line of highly successful multi-cylinder racers, MV Agusta's first road-going four - a twin-carburettor, 600cc tourer - appeared in 1965. But the public demanded something more exciting from many-times World Champions MV, and the Gallarate manufacturer duly obliged in 1969, upping capacity to 743cc and further boosting maximum power (to 69bhp) by fitting a quartet of Dell'Orto carburettors to the revised 750GT. Equipped with shaft rather than chain final drive, the 750 four arguably was more of a tourer than an out-and-out sports bike. Not that many people got to find out for themselves, for the MV was hand made in limited numbers and priced accordingly.

Also in the line-up was the more sporting 750S, a high-speed symphony in red, white and blue. Although no lightweight - it weighed nearly as much as a Kawasaki Z1 - the 750S gave little away in outright performance terms to such larger machinery, thanks, no doubt, to its engine's Grand Prix heritage. Testing a 750S in 1975, Bike magazine found the motor very powerful. 'Surprisingly it also has great reserves of torque, and pulls happily from four thousand. It's probably the most powerful 750cc motor made; in a straight drag with a Z1 it lost only a few yards up to 100mph.'

The 750S continued in production after the GT's demise in 1973. Its replacement - the 750S America - was introduced for 1976. Bored out to 789cc, the America produced a claimed 75bhp, an output sufficient to propel the Italian sportster to 100mph in around 13 seconds and on to a top speed of 135mph. The next stage of development was the Monza. A stretched (to 832cc) version of the 750S America, the Monza had started life known as the 'Boxer' until complaints from Ferrari (whose sports car had prior claim to the name) forced a change. Cast-alloy wheels, triple Brembo disc brakes and a fairing - all optional on the 750S America - usually came as standard on the Monza.

Motor Cycle magazine's tester John Nutting wrung 144mph out of a Monza, making it the fastest production machine in the world at that time. It was also the most expensive, costing almost twice as much as a comparable Japanese superbike. The Monza though, would prove to be short-lived, and relatively few were made; by 1977 MV's motorcycle division was in administrative receivership and production ceased at the end of the following year.

One of the last MVs to leave the Gallarate factory, 'REB 696S' was first registered in September 1977 and had had two former owners when it was registered to the current vendor in March 1982. Original and un-restored, this beautiful machine is offered with sundry invoices, an old-style V5 registration document and two expired MoT certificates, the most recent of which was issued in 1996 at 9,390 miles (the current odometer reading is 10,825 miles). Re-commissioning is advised before returning it to the road. A rare opportunity.

Bonhams 1793
101 New Bond Street
United Kingdom
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Bonhams Collectors’ Car department