Timur Sardarov

In a recent interview with Motorrad magazine, MV Agusta CEO Timur Saradarov addressed the swirling controversy surrounding the partnership between MV Agusta and KTM, dispelling rumours of a potential takeover by the Austrian motorcycle manufacturer.

  • Partnership between MV Agusta and KTM began in November 2022.
  • KTM currently holds a 25.1-percent stake in MV Agusta. 


The partnership sparked speculation about KTM’s intentions to acquire a majority stake in the Italian brand with executives from Pierer Mobility, KTM’s parent company, had expressed their desire for a majority stake in MV Agusta, with an undisclosed timetable in place.

However, Saradarov remains unfazed by KTM’s ambitions.

“It’s nice that there is such a great interest from KTM in MV Agusta,” he said. 

Saradarov, who currently owns 74.9 percent of MV Agusta, expressed his intention not to sell and assured that nothing would change in the next three to four years.

*Lucky Explorer 9.5

Meanwhile, regarding KTM’s comments about MV Agusta’s Lucky Explorer model, Saradarov neither confirmed nor denied its inclusion in the lineup but revealed that the MV Agusta LXP series is in the works, with the 950 variant confirmed. 

Saradarov stated that the KTM portfolio is under consideration now that the two companies are in partnership, leading to the development of the MV Agusta LXP series, which will include the Lucky Explorer model.


Saradarov also provided insights into the forthcoming LXP series, stating that it will feature a completely different three-cylinder engine. The global unveiling of the LXP series is expected in late summer 2023, with MV Agusta aiming to produce 2,500 to 3,000 units this year.

(source: Motorrad)

MV Agusta CEO confirms that a new F4 superbike is in the works, and it will be an ‘ultra-premium’ halo model.


MV Agusta CEO, Timur Sardarov has revealed that the company received a total of 15,000 pre-orders for the upcoming Lucky Explorer range.

“We have already received pre-orders for 15 thousand units: in practice, two years of work.

“For all our models the market, in general, is receptive, we are seeing great interest from customers.

“And once the obstacles of the pandemic and the constraints on the supply chain have been overcome, we will be able to significantly raise our production levels,” said Sardarov.

Despite the Lucky Explorer 9.5 and 5.5 is only in a near-production stage, the two ADV motorcycles has received worldwide attention ever since its introduction at EICMA 2021.

The Lucky Explorer Project not only marks the Varese-based company new diverse lineup but also showcased MV Agusta’s strategic partnership with Chinese manufacturer, Qianjiang Motorcycles.

*Lucky Explorer 5.5

While the Lucky Explorer 9.5 is built entirely from MV Agusta’s new 950 platform, the 5.5 on the hand, is a direct result of the brand’s relationship with QJ Motor, sharing the same mill from Benelli’s TRK 502.

Despite the 5.5’s Chinese roots, both models will be built in Varese, Italy with Qianjiang also expected to manufacture and assemble the 5.5 range to ensure the affordability of the motorcycle for the Asian markets.

Meanwhile, Sardarov expected that the company will be able to manufacture more than 9,000 units of motorcycles in 2022, double the 5,000 units produced in 2021.

I’m here to stay, and the goal in 2025 is to bring MV Agusta on the stock exchange,” he added.

MV Agusta CEO, Timur Sardarov has confirmed that an all-new range of 950cc motorcycles is on the way.

The Italian firm CEO revealed the upcoming plans after an exclusive interview with Britain’s publication, MCN.

According to the reports, the new 950 range will use the 931cc three-cylinder motor found in the near-production Lucky Explorer 9.5 adventure motorcycle.

“The 950 product that we’re building is state-of-the-art.

“The 950 as an engine will also migrate into other platforms too, in a different spec.

“This is an adventure-spec engine, and you will see a more sporty, naked – there will be different variations,” said Sardarov.

Sardarov also unveiled that the current 800cc range will also receive the 950 treatment.

“The Superveloce, F3 and Turismo Veloce, are all going to migrate to 950.

“We will have an 800 and 950,” he added.

MV claimed that the 950 makes 121hp @ 10,000rpm and 102Nm @ 7,000rpm and able to reach a max speed of 250km/h.

Interestingly, the migration is made possible because the new engine shares the same overall dimension as the existing 798cc triple, making it possible for the new motor to be fitted with the same trellis frame and mounting points.

During the interview, Sardarov was also able to confirm that the new 9.5 adventure motorcycle would only arrive after April 2023.

MV Agusta has since steadily re-organised its company structure thanks to its new CEO, Timur Sardarov.

Under his stewardship, the MV Agusta has shifted its focus towards improving reliability and ownership experience while putting in a significant investment in expanding the current line-up.

“One of my first objectives was to resolve the situation of financial stress that the company was experiencing and lay the industrial and commercial foundations for its growth. Today, these objectives have been achieved and we can look to the future with renewed confidence, comforted by the success our new models are achieving.

“In 2021 we expect to exceed 100 million euros in turnover for the first time in history, and to triple this figure within the next three years,” said Sardarov.

The Varese-based company is currently busy updating its current model to meet Euro 5 emission; however, Sardarov revealed they would soon turn its attention to enter a new segment, particularly the mid-range market.

“A 550 and 950 [will come]. Both projects take 24 to 28 months from now to complete. Perhaps the 550 could arrive first,” he added.

Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif (CEO) MV Agusta, Timur Sardarov, mendedahkan perancangan syarikat itu dalam satu temu bual baru-baru ini.

Menurut Sardarov, MV Agusta bakal membangunkan motosikal adventure dengan dua platform, 500cc parallel-twin dan 1000cc 4-inline.

Cadangan memfokuskan pembangunan motosikal ADV itu dilihat langkah tepat dalam mengetengahkan jenama MV Agusta tatkala pengeluar lain sudah pun memiliki model adventure sendiri.

Ketika ini, MV Agusta hanya menawarkan tiga segmen motosikal; supersport, roadster dan touring.

*MV Agusta Superveloce 800

Sardarov turut mendedahkan mereka akan mengumumkan secara rasmi perancangan itu dalam tempoh tiga hingga empat bulan akan datang.

Ahli peniagaan itu mengambil alih MV Agusta pada Disember 2018 dari keluarga Castiglioni ketika masa depan MV Agusta berada dalam situasi tidak menentu.

*MV Agusta Brutale 1000RR

Bagi tahun 2020, meskipun dilanda pandemik Covid-19, MV Agusta telah pun melancarkan lima model baharu, sesuatu yang tidak pernah dilakukan jenama Itali itu.

Dalam perkembangan sama, Sardarov turut mendedahkan pihaknya juga sedang membangunkan enjin 950cc baharu manakala enjin 800cc sedia ada sedang dikemas kini bagi mematuhi piawaian Euro5. – Bennetts

MV Agusta is looking into revitalising the brand for the future and the one thing that got us excited more than anything is the prospect of a new F3. Regarded by many as one hell of a sexy supersport, it’s definitely in the to-do list of the brand’s current CEO, Timur Sardarov. (more…)

  • The Cagiva company has had a long and storied history.

  • They even owned the Ducati and Husqvarna brands before.

  • Where are they now?

Cagiva. A name as hallowed in motorcycling as is storied. The brand’s history had so plot changes that it’ll turn viewers’ brains inside out if it was made into a movie.

They were even owned by our Malaysian automaker Proton at one time. Hey, wait a minute there! Wasn’t that MV Agusta? Yes, it was MV Agusta but it was also Cagiva. We can see question marks popping up everywhere around your heads now.

And where is Cagiva now?

Okay, okay, we’ll spare you the torture, and here we go (along with a pot of industrial-strength coffee).

The name “Cagiva” was actually derived from the founder’s name and the location of the factory: CAstiglioni GIovanni from VArese, Italy. It’s a norm among Italian companies and certainly among automotive companies there. For example, the later Bimota was an amalgam of BIanchi, MOrri and TAmburini.

Anyway, the company began in 1950 as a producer of small metal components.

The company was purchased by the sons of Giovanni in 1978 and they began producing motorcycles when they purchased the AMF-Harley-Davidson/Aermacchi factory, also in Varese. Thus the eight 125cc to 350cc two-stroke bikes were rebadged as Cagivas. Sales hit 40,000 units in 1979.

Cagiva SST 250

By 1983, they began using 350cc and 1000cc four-stroke Ducati engines. 

Cagiva became one of the strongest companies at the time, which saw then grow to a conglomerate, like how KTM is today (which is probably like the Microsoft in motorcycling).

You see, Italy produced and still produces the most beautiful motorcycles that usually did well in racing, but the manufacturers inadvertently got mired in financial troubles, and ended up either bought out or folded up. Not so with Cagiva.

Within seven years of producing motorcycles, they bought the Ducati brand in 1985. The company decided that Cagiva and Ducati motorcycles were produced side-by-side since the latter’s name is more well-known outside of Italy.

The Group also purchased Moto Morini in 1985, followed by Husqvarna in 1987 and trademarks to MV Agusta in 1991.

The 1980’s was a heady time for the manufacturer.

They had produced dirt bikes and there began a massive campaign in North America to promote them. Their bikes were powerful and featured a number of innovations ahead of their time. Most notable among them were forks that was for preload in one leg while another controlled the damping. It’s only now we see “separate function forks” being popularised.

Armed with those weapons, Pekka Vehkonen and David Strijbos won the World MX 125cc titles back-to-back in 1985 and 1986. The company also secured the 125cc contractor’s title in 1987.

Cagiva 125 WMX

It was during this time that the factory made their forays into 500cc Grand Prix racing, employing Randy Mamola from 1988 to 1990. He achieved one podium finish. Eddie Lawson joined in 1991 and won the 1992 Hungarian GP. John Kocinski was the last addition in 1992, and rode the ever beautiful C594 to third overall in 1994.

Massimo Tamburini

It was also in 1985 that the most important motorcycle designer joined the Cagiva Group. His name was Massimo Tamburini.

Tamburini was one of the founders of Bimota. As with most designers in Italy, they are also engineers. But Tamburini was a hands-on guy as well, often welding the frames he developed at Bimota.

Tamburini welding a frame

He wasted no time and produced the Ducati Paso 750 in 1986. It may look ungainly (some likened it to a pregnant whale) with its fully-enclosing bodywork, but it went on to inspire other bikes which cemented Ducati’s name: The 851 and 888 superbikes, plus the 900 SuperSport/SS road bike.

1989 Ducati 750 Passo

The company set up the Cagiva Research Centre (CRC) in 1987, which Tamburini headed. This was why period Ducatis had CRC badges. There were also other well-known designers at CRC including Pierre Terblanche and Miguel Angel Galluzzi who joined in 1989.

1989 saw the birth of the first Mito. This zippy 125cc sportbike became the favourite of teens everywhere including one young Valentino Rossi. The model went through a number of iterations and became the main challenger to the Aprilia 125 Futura and then the RS125, albeit not on the tracks.

1989 Cagiva Mito 125

Cagiva kept a strong presence in the offload racing scene, contesting in the Paris-Dakar Rally. They were rewarded with a win by Edi Orioli on the Cagiva Elefant in 1990. The pairing would repeat the feat in 1994. The Elefant used a Ducati 90cc air-cooled V-Twin shared with the 900SS.

Cagiva Elefant 900ie

But the real domination period began when…… drum roll, please…. Ta-da! the Ducati 916 was unveiled in 1993 (for MY1994). The entire world went ga-ga, bananas and everything else in between! One journalist wrote that people only remembered the 916 in 1993/94 but couldn’t recall what else came out that year . The 916 would spawn the 748 a year later.

Ducati 916

While the 851 gave Ducati their first World Superbike title and was followed with two more by the 888, the 916 hit the tracks and dominated in the hands of a tempestuous and now-legendary rider, Carl Fogarty.

At the same time, Galluzzi designed the M900 which the factory’s test riders nickname “Il Monstro” (The Monster) due to its hooligan-inducing behaviour. It was thus known as the Ducati Monster henceforth.

But it seems that history has a knack for irony. While Ducati was kicking butts and taking names on the racetrack with the 916 and its later derivatives, they soon found themselves in financial trouble.

Sure, everyone had wanted a 916 but it was too expensive, hence the job of saving Ducati’s name fell to the Monster.

But it still wasn’t enough and soon, equity fund manager Texas Pacific Group Capital (TPG) bought 51% of Ducati’s shares from Cagiva.

While the 916 continued its form on the racetracks, Cagiva began to focus more on the MV Agusta brand. Cagiva finally sold the remainder of Ducati’s shares to TPG in 1996 and concentrated on MV Agusta. They also offloaded Moto Morini.

And in 1999, they released the show-stopping MV Agusta F4 Serie Oro (Gold Series), designed by none other than Massimo Tamburini.

1999 MV Agusta F4 Serie Oro

Since then, only the MV Agusta name was often used and the company itself went through many acquisitions, reselling and reacquisitions.

First, it was purchased by PETRONAS/Proton in 2004. But just a year later, Proton decided to let the brand go. Proton Chairman at the time Datuk Mohammed Azlan Hashim said that keeping MV Agusta would bankrupt the Proton. The company was sold it to the investment group GEVI for a token € 1.00 (excluding accumulated debts).

GEVI restructured the company and sold Husqvarna to BMW.

Harley-Davidson bought MV Agusta from GEVI in 2008 before being bought back in 2009 by Claudio Castiglioni.

But the Cagiva name lived on, contrary to popular belief, in the Mito which went on to the final model in 2012.

Fast forward to 2014, Mercedes-Benz purchased a 25% stake in the brand and marketed the bikes under the AMG banner, no doubt as to rival Ducati who are now owned by Lamborghini under Audi AG, which is itself under the VW Group.

But by 2016, the company was again in trouble which included a € 40 million debt while Mercedes absolutely refused to inject more capital into the venture. As such, Giovanni Castiglioni decided to buy back the shares but could not obtain the funds. The production line had stopped and there was no spare part for their customers. In view of this, the company filed for a temporary order to protect itself from creditors while attempting to look for investors.

Thankfully, the Black Ocean Group headed by Timur Sardarov (no “John Wick” jokes please, just sayin’) stepped in with the much-needed capital in 2016.

Since then, MV Agusta has grown from strength to strength and have just announced another round of investments recently. The company knows that only a select few could afford premium motorcycles hence tying up with the Loncin Motorcycle Company in China to produce bikes between 350cc to 500cc for the Asian market.

So there you go. While the Cagiva name is no more, MV Agusta is still Cagiva. And the other way around.

  • MV Agusta brand announced securing funding for the next five years.

  • The news also brought shake-ups in the company’s management.

  • The manufacturer is looking forward to invest more in the global network in the next two years.

Great new for the storied MV Agusta brand as it announced the securing of funding for the next five years.

The funding allows the oft-tumultuous brand to continue developing bikes into the near future. A new business plan is according drawn up and sees the manufacturer targeting an annual sales goal of 25,000 motorcycles next year.

They will continue to concentrate on premium motorcycles, but will add mid-sized bikes. The firm tied up with Loncin Motor Company in China recently to produce four motorcycles between 350cc to 500cc.

The plan also calls for “strong” investment in MV Agusta’s global distribution and service network over the next two years, focusing on the United States, Europe and Asia.

Following the news is also the announcement of a revision in the MV Agusta management line-up.

Giovanni Castiglioni will be moved to the role of an advisor after steadfastly holding on to the company’s helm for a number of decades. Timur Sardarov had taken over as Chairman of the Board and CEO in December 2018, since the funding comes from his family. He will be joined by Massimo Bordi and Paolo Bettin.

Massimo Bordi’s name should be no stranger to many. He was the father of the four-valve, liquid-cooled V-Twin engine for Ducati. It was he who challenged the convention put forth by Fabio Taglioni such an arrangement couldn’t be made.

Bordi will assume the role of Executive Vice Chairman. He had served as General Manager for MV Agusta and Cagiva during Claudio Castlglioni’s (Giovanni’s father) tenure.

On the other hand, Betting will be the new Chief Financial Officer.

Goh Brothers is now holding the role of official aftersales provider for MV Agusta in Malaysia. Will this plan also see them expanding to sales?

MV Agusta secures major financial deal with Russian investment firm Black Ocean.



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