Moto Guzzi Motorcycles

Today in Motorcycle History

1956 Moto Guzzi 175 Lodola Sport

Carlo Guzzi, the founder of the firm, created the Lodola in 1956. It was the first four-stroke Guzzi motorcycle to abandon the traditional horizontal cylinder that had been the signature of the marque since 1921, and was one of the last motorcycles designed by Carlo Guzzi himself.

The direct competition for the Lodola Sport was Aermacchi's Ala Bianca.

The new overhead camshaft machine was named after a bird, as were the majority of Guzzi's. "Lodola" is the Italian name for Lark, a songbird with a fiery temperament. Technically, it was right up to date, and well attuned to the riding public's taste for fashionable 175cc sports motorcycles.

The first Lodola Sport of 1956 was priced at 249,000 lire, and was modernized in 1958 with a larger tank and aluminum full-width wheel hubs to replace the offset brake drums. Power was increased from 9 to 11 horsepower, giving the Lodola a claimed top speed of 120 km/h - a remarkable figure for a production 175 at that time.

In 1959 the 175 was replaced by the 235cc Gran Turismo which opted for pushrods and rockers rather than overhead camshaft, although the Regolità version, which amassed a brilliant string of victories in enduro racing, retained the SOHC configuration. The 235 Regolità remained in production until 1966, the GT until 1962.


Engine: Single cylinder two-valve SOHC

Bore & stroke: 62 x 57.8 mm

Engine Capacity: 174cc

Maximum power: 9 h.p. @ 6.000 rpm

Compression ratio: 7.5:1

Valvetrain: Inclined overhead valves actuated by a chain-driven single overhead cam.

Cylinder head: Light alloy with valves in oil-bath

Cooling system: Air cooled

Ignition: Marelli-type coil

Carburettor: Dell'Orto UB 22 BS 2A

Lubrication: Wet sump forced circulation with mechanical gear pump, capacity: 2.5 litres

Motor oil: Fitted with a Telescopic-type oil filter

Transmission: Gear primary, chain final

Clutch: Cable operated with multiple wet disc in oil bath

Gearbox: 4-Speed foot-change constant mesh sliding gears

Starter: Kick-starter

Throttle: Cable operated

Frame type: Duplex cradle in tubes and sheet metal

Front Suspension: Telescopic fork and shock absorbers

Rear Suspension: Swingarm with hydraulic shock absorbers

Front Brake: Drum, manual expansion

Rear Brake: Drum

Wheelbase: 1,314 mm

Front Tyre: 2.25 x 18 in.

Rear Tyre: 2.25 x 17 in.

Seat: Dual seat

Fuel tank capacity: 12 litres

Fuel consumption: 2.7 litres per 100 km

Top speed: 120 km/h

Weight: 109 Kg.

Price in 1956: 249.000 lire


  • Legend Bike Magazine: Volume 6. no. 61, October 1997, pp 4-11
    Motor Magazine: Volume 43. no. 49, 7 December 1956, pp 1664-1665

Source: Hessink's NL

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