One-Off Moto Guzzi 850T Cafe Racer Looks Utterly Intoxicating From Every Angle

Moto Guzzi models featuring Lino Tonti’s fabled frame design are popular candidates for customization, especially when cafe racer styling is on the menu. This shouldn’t come as a surprise given their OCD-soothing anatomy, which is a perfect match for cafe builds which lean toward the vintage side of things. The bike pictured below provides an excellent example of what can be done with a Tonti-framed Guzzi.
Moto Guzzi 850T Cafe Racer 10 photos
Photo: Horizontal Moto
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It is the work of Horizontal Moto (HM) over in Vienna, Austria – a solo bike-modding endeavor run by one Paul Fuhrmann. With a background in engineering and an unfaltering love for the Moto Guzzi marque, Paul dove head-first into the custom motorcycle world a few years ago. He’s keen on Mandello del Lario’s classics in particular, especially those from the 1970s and ‘80s equipped with Tonti-designed frames.

Most of Horizontal Moto’s work is taken care of in-house, but certain fabrication jobs are sometimes outsourced to more experienced craftsmen. The project we’ll be looking at today started with an 850T from the model-year 1972, and it attained its current form around December 2021. When the antique Guzzi was being taken apart, Paul ditched all its stock bodywork along with the wheels, front brake, and rear suspension hardware.

Several other OEM components have also been eliminated, leaving him with a blank canvas awaiting the custom treatment. To get the ball rolling, Herr Fuhrmann shortened the motorcycle’s subframe with the intent of tightening up its rear-end geometry. Mounting points for the factory bodywork were rendered useless, so they’ve been chopped off before the entire frame was repainted gloss-black.

Then it came time to address the major fabrication work on this machine, and Paul called in reinforcements to make everything come together nicely. First, he reached out to Tab Classics over in the UK, ordering a custom aluminum fuel tank that would fit on the 850T’s skeleton without hassle. Once completed and delivered to the HM headquarters in the Austrian capital, the handmade tank received the finishing touches.

Moto Guzzi 850T Cafe Racer
Photo: Horizontal Moto
It is now home to brushed and polished surfaces alike, the latter appearing on the knee indentations to bring about some contrast. A Monza-style filler cap lies atop the alloy gas tank, while an all-new saddle can be spotted a bit further back. Upholstered by an Austrian leather expert who operates as Ledernardo, the seat is enveloped in high-quality black suede on its top section.

The rearmost portion is slightly raised, so as to create the impression of a cafe racer tail while offering some support for the rider. Unlike the upper part of the saddle, its flanks and rear section are wrapped in standard black leather. From afar, a simple front fender appears to be the only other bodywork item besides the fuel tank, but a closer inspection will a discreet inner fender at the back, too.

In terms of cockpit equipment, the reworked Guzzi comes with adjustable Tarozzi clip-ons and a Chronoclassic dial from Motogadget. The German accessories brand also supplied some fresh switchgear and mirrors, along with the tried-and-true mo.Unit controller. All the electronics have been rewired through the new control module, but none of the original lighting goodies made the cut.

Up north, they’ve been replaced by a seven-inch incandescent headlamp and bar-end turn signals. Dual-function LEDs take care of lighting duties at six o’clock, sitting on a swingarm-mounted license plate bracket built from scratch. Besides the clip-on handlebars, Tarozzi contributed a pair of CNC-machined rearsets and plain rubber grips to Paul’s cause.

Moto Guzzi 850T Cafe Racer
Photo: Horizontal Moto
Unsprung territory is occupied by laced Borrani hoops, whose rims are cloaked in grippy Roadrider MKII rubber from Avon’s catalog. In search of ample stopping power at the front, our protagonist installed floating Spiegler rotors, sturdier brake calipers, and a Brembo PS16 master cylinder. Unsurprisingly, the bike’s suspension was also blessed with a comprehensive makeover.

Its forks received modern Bitubo internals, while the standard shock absorbers gave way to YSS substitutes with progressive springs. Moving on to the powertrain-related mods, Paul showed the engine’s inner workings some much-needed TLC, but a thorough scrub on the outside was in order, as well.

He bead-blasted the V-twin mill externally and polished its valve covers to a mirror finish. The stock carburetors got deleted to make room for Dell’Orto PHF36 replacements, which breathe through billet aluminum velocity stacks. Last but not least, this ravishing 850T cafe racer needed a suitable exhaust system, so HM’s mastermind enrolled the help of Mass Moto to get the job done.

The new pipework was shaped out of stainless-steel, and it makes its way back to reverse megaphone mufflers on each side of the rear wheel. A considerable weight reduction occurred as a by-product of Horizontal Moto’s transformation, with the modded Guzzi now tipping the scales at just 190 kilograms (419 pounds) dry. All things considered, Paul Fuhrmann dialed this Italian stallion to eleven in just about every possible way!
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About the author: Silvian Secara
Silvian Secara profile photo

A bit of an artist himself, Silvian sees two- and four-wheeled machines as a form of art, especially restomods and custom rides. Oh, and if you come across a cafe racer article on our website, it’s most likely his doing.
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