The MV Augusta 750S America was built to fulfill a request from the company’s U.S. importer, which bet that the market would sustain an outrageously priced luxury motorcycle with bona-fide superbike specs, right-hand brake, and vastly upgraded instruments and controls over the standard 750S
As James McBride of Silodrome points out, “The performance figures for the 750S America were only surpassed by the two-stroke superbikes of the 1970s, and even then not by much more than a whisker.” Indeed, independent tests confirmed the bored-out bike’s chops: Cycle Magazine tested the bike and found a top-speed of 130.4 mph; and it clocked a standing quarter-mile in 13 seconds, crossing the line at 105 mph. But despite the storied race pedigree and undeniably exotic mystique around this red-hot sexpot of a motorcycle, it didn’t sell very well. The bet lost.
It was largely an issue of relativity. In 1976 a brand new Honda CB 750-Four cost $2,190. The MV Agusta America edition was $6,500—or about $30,000 in today’s dollars. That bad bet was a harbinger of doom for MV Agusta, which went under in ‘78. Smart money, however, would have bought one anyway. Today a mint MV Agusta America will fetch north of $100,000.
The Ducati Story
Ducati 350 Mark 3-D (1968-1972)
Ducati 350 Desmo (1971-1972)
Ducati 750S (1972-1974)
Ducati 750SS (1973-1974)
Ducati 900SS (1975-1982)
Ducati Darmah (1977-1982)
Ducati MHR (1979-1984)
Bonus: The Benelli 750 Sei