Based on designs suggested by English importers of the Italian Laverda brand, the Jota delivered exactly what the British motorcycle-enthusiasts were after in the later ‘70s and early ‘80s. Speed, precision, and ridability, the Jota 1000 had it all.
Laverda’s Jota 1000
Although Laverda was originally founded to create farm engines and agricultural equipment, the engine inside the Laverda Jota is anything but that of a tractor or harvester; it is a high-speed, high-performance manifestation of speed.
In fact, the Jota 1000 secured for the Laverda brand the title of fastest production motorcycle in the world from 1976 until the end of its production in 1982, one of the only motorcycles ever to hold this title for the entirety of its production term.
Built for the Masses
The goal behind the creation of the Laverda Jota was to fill an underserved market niche in the English motorcycle industry and that’s exactly what it did. Based on the designs of the earlier Laverda 3C models, the Jota was a total powerhouse capable of unparalleled speed at the time.
The designs of the Jota heavily improved the engine of the 3C through an almost total redesign combined with modernization efforts. This led to a superbike capable of maintaining speeds over 130 miles per hour, setting the record for fastest production motorcycle in the world.
Many Models Under the Jota Name but Only One Jota
There are about half a dozen models with “Jota” somewhere in the name; however, when people mention the Laverda Jota, they’re typically thinking about the Jota 1000 produced from 1976 to 1982.
- Laverda Jota 1000 (1976-1982)
This magnificent racing machine was brought to England in the late ‘70s based on the suggestions of prominent Laverda importers in the region. These specifications caused the Jota to become something extraordinary with a legacy that lives on today.
By using a four-stroke, transverse three-cylinder, DOHC engine with two valves per cylinder, a displacement value of 980 cubic centimeters, and a compression ratio of 10.0:1, engineers and designers were able to manufacture a motorcycle capable of producing 97 horsepower at 7,800 rpm with 66.3 pounds per foot of torque.
This generated an incredible level of speed and control that was never before seen in any production motorcycle.
On August 29th of 2018, hotcars.com included the Laverda Jota in its listicle of “20 Motorcycles Fast Enough to Outrun Their Own Shadows (and the Cops),” further testifying to the speed of the Jota.
Not Much in the Realm of Popular Media
There has been strikingly little inclusion of the Laverda Jota in pop culture. It’s surprising to see that such a fast, powerful, and successful model as the Jota would not find its way onto so much as a single TV episode about classic motorcycles, but maybe somebody will pick up on this piece of history.
Just as with the lack of film and TV credits, the internet and social media also show a disturbing lack of social groups and forums dedicated to the Laverda Jota.
Laverda Jota – An Underappreciated Classic
Despite the lack of representation of the Jota in film and social circles, it’s good to know that this underappreciated classic still finds the appreciation that a motorcycle of its caliber deserves in Italian circles of people who love powerful, lightning fast motorcycles, superbikes, and scooters.