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1984 Laverda RGS

1982 Laverda RGS1000

  • Price new - £2995
  • Engine – 981cc triple
  • Power – 83bhp
  • Top Speed – 130mph

Laverda’s Jota, a 981cc triple that sounded like thunder and went like nothing else on the road at the time, has become a biking icon.

Noise and emissions regulations meant the Jota had to make way for a different sort of bike. Launched in 1983, the RGS shared the same basic engine, but rubber mounted in a sports tourer package.
The last Jota came with half fairings but the RGS had enveloping bodywork, made from Bayflex plastic. It was claimed to be indestructible – and it needed to be, considering the cost of replacement.

Although the RGS was more sophisticated than the old triple it struggled to sell. Trouble was that an all-new breed of Japanese bikes, headed by the Kawasaki GPZZ900R and Honda V-fours, arrived at about the same time. In comparison, the Italian alternative looked expensive. Slow and outdated. The main problem was that customers preferred the raucous Jota.