MV Agusta’s classic four-cylinder dominated Grand Prix racing for a decade from 1956. When it was replaced by the new triple in 1966, Count Agusta decided to make the Four available in limited numbers as a production bike. To prevent privateers converting it into a Grand Prix racer that might embarrass the factory, he stipulated it should be 600cc and have shaft final drive. The touring 600 eventually evolved into the 750 Sport and GT, and finally the America, but MV Fours were always built in extremely small numbers. As befits an engine that handed multiple World Championships to John Surtees, Gary Hocking, and Mike Hailwood, the technical specification was staggering, and remains so to this day. This magnificent engine was always at the heart of the MV Agusta, and it was this engine that created and sustained the legend. One of the world’s foremost motorcycle historians, Ian Falloon is the author of several books on motorcycles, and has spent many years as a regular contributor to a number of motorcycle magazines worldwide, specialising in Italian marques, particularly Ducati, Moto Guzzi, Laverda, and of course, MV Agusta.
Ian Falloon was born in New Zealand and studied engineering and music at Victoria University, Wellington. After a motorcycle accident brought an end to his career as a symphony orchestra oboist, he began writing articles about motorcycles for magazines including Classic Bike, Cycle World, Motorcyclist, Two Wheels, Motorcycle Sport, and Australian Motorcycle News. His first book, The Ducati Story, has run to several editions and has been published in three languages. The success of The Ducati Story led to a series of Ducati books and histories of Honda, Kawasaki, BMW, and Moto Guzzi motorcycles including Motorbooks titles The Complete Book of Ducati, The Complete Book of Moto Guzzi, The Complete Book of Triumph Motorcycles, and The Art of Ducati. With an interest and passion spanning decades, Ian now concentrates on collecting and restoring older Italian motorcycles, particularly Ducati, MV Agusta, Laverda, and Moto Guzzi. He lives in Melbourne, Australia, and is ably supported in his projects by his family.