MV Augusta make beautiful bikes. They’re a bit like the Alfa Romeo of the bike world though – beautiful, soulful machines that let you down in the ownership experience. You buy them with your heart, not your head. While the recent MV Augusta’s have wonderful engines (like their gorgeous triple), they’re let down by awful fueling and somewhat below par suspension (thought it is thankfully improving). Like Alfa’s of old, they have a fairly average reputation for reliability and their dealership network in the United States and many other parts of the world is below par.
A report released today by Reuters however may see things improve for the Italian brand. The Castiglioni family, who are the majority owners of MV Augusta, are allegedly looking to float up to 30 percent of the Italian motorcycle maker on the Milan stock exchange. But of perhaps greater interest is that German car manufacturer Daimler (they make cars called Mercedes, you may have heard of them) are looking at purchasing a ‘substantial’ minority stake in the bike maker.
Of the big three German car makers, Mercedes is the only one without a motorcycle arm. BMW has it’s own Motorrad and Volkswagen purchased Ducati in 2012 (who in fact were in competition with VW for that brand too). Given how good recent Ducati releases have been, it should be seen as a positive if Daimler end up buying an interest.
MV Augusta was last sold back in 2010 when Harley-Davidson offloaded it after a rather unsuccessful foray into the Italian brand.