Project C2 Is a Custom Moto Guzzi California 1400 Blessed With Cafe Racer Anatomy

Sporty isn’t a term you’d usually associate with the California 1400 – unless it’s this particular exemplar, of course.
Project C2 8 photos
Photo: Alex Logaiski
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There's something fairly distinctive about the one-offs made by Venier of Brooklyn, New York, and the shop’s build portfolio shows a strong inclination toward Moto Guzzi customs. Under the leadership of Stefano Venier, these guys will normally tackle one-of-a-kind projects tailored to each customer’s preferences, but what you’re seeing here was actually part of a limited series.

Dubbed Project C2, the specimen used to be a stock California 1400 from the model year 2013, and it was a local musician by the name of Andy Chase who commissioned this project. He got in touch with Stefano back in 2015, requesting for his beefy tourer to gain a sportier, cafe-style demeanor. Achieving this was no walk in the park, of course, but we’d say the end result speaks for itself.

Venier began by discarding the Guzzi’s factory bodywork, then they shaped foam mock-ups of what would later become its new outfit. The final steel parts come courtesy of a local collaborator specializing in metalwork, and they include downsized fenders, new side covers, and a curvy fuel tank that acts as the centerpiece.

Additionally, that two-up black leather saddle is also a one-off, as are the C2’s removable nose fairing and headlight bucket. All these bits and pieces give a radical twist to the motorcycle’s silhouette, but the Venier squad had a lot more in store for the unfolding transformation process.

Rear-end lighting consists of an LED taillight embedded into the seat, along with tiny aftermarket turn signals mounted on the subframe. The bike’s cockpit is a blast too, featuring a bespoke top clamp, Tarozzi clip-ons, and billet aluminum grips. Motogadget bar-end blinkers round out the new equipment in that area, while the instrument cluster has been integrated into the custom headlight housing we mentioned earlier.

The headlamp itself is the standard California 1400 affair, and the same goes for the wheels, brakes, and suspension hardware. As the donor was received by Stefano Venier’s specialists in near-perfect condition, the guys decided not to mess with its stock running gear – understandably.

A quick powertrain makeover was in order, though, followed by the installation of a premium exhaust system from MASS Moto. Project C2 was really taking shape at this point, though it wouldn’t be complete without an understated, yet strikingly elegant livery characteristic of Venier’s signature style. Black is the predominant color here, accompanied by a single grey tank stripe and shiny metal surfaces for contrast.

Now, it’s unclear how many C2s have ultimately been built, but Alex can take pride in knowing that he owns the very first one. We’ve no idea how much it cost him since Venier keeps that kind of info private, so you’ll have to reach out to them directly if you fancy a caffeinated California 1400 in your garage.
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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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