In this next iteration on History of Motorcycles we are gonna look over Benelli.
So let’s get started!
Here's a brief summary:
Benelli was one of the first companies to start motorcycle revolution. It was a spring of 1911 in a small Italian town named Pesaro when the company’s roots founded. In the beginning it was just a Benelli Garage, which repaired bicycles, motorcycles, cars, guns.
During the First World War, the company focused on repairing motorcycles.
Eight years later in 1919, the first completely in-house engine was born. It was a two-stroke 75cc engine that was fitted into a bicycle frame.
Two years later in 1921, Benelli built its first real motorcycle named Velomotore, a lightweight 98cc two-stroke motorcycle offered in touring and sport model. The Sport model had a 125cc engine based on the 98cc engine.
After two years, Benelli entered motorsports with its 147cc track motorcycle with which Tonino Benelli started to win victories.
Few years later, Tonino became successful in motorsports and riding a Benelli 175 won him the Italian championship in year 1927, 28, 30 and 31. Sadly in 1932, Tonino died in a tragic road accident.
In 1934, Benelli presented two new 4-stroke racing motorcycles: a 240 cam and a 500. Same year Benelli also won European Championship with Benelli 175 ridden by a Belgium rider Yvan Goor(EVA KHOOR).
Six years later in 1940, Benelli introduced a four cylinder supercharged 250cc racing bike.
During the World War II, the company was at its peak of success but forced to produce only military motorcycles and production of civilian motorcycles was stopped.
Post war, Benelli started exporting their lineup to rest of the world and in 1949, Giuseppe Benelli left the company and founded Motobi.
One year later in 1950, Benelli racer Dario Ambrosini won the Isle of Man TT and MotoGP World championship in 250cc class.
In 1951, Benelli introduced 98cc and 125cc Lancino models in both two-stroke and four-stroke variants.
By the 60’s Benelli became undisputed in nearly every race and had won more the 1000 racing victories.
Benelli continues to won Championships with his riders Tarquinio Provini who won 250cc class in Italian Championship in year 1965 and Renzo Pasolini who won the Italian Championship in 250 and 350cc class in 1968 and 69.
Another excellent Benelli rider, Kel Carruthers in the year 1969 won the 250cc world title in MotoGP and Isle of Man TT.
60’s also saw Benelli range characterized from Scooters to a max bike named Tornado.
Benelli Brothers were also avid hunters and gun enthusiast. So in 1967, Benelli Armi was created.
In 1972, with fierce Japanese competitors, Benelli was brought by an Argentinian Entrepreneur and under the new owner Benelli launched the first six stroke 6-cylinder 750cc motorcycle to public. Later the brand was brought on its knees by Giancarlo Selci who targeted Benelli towards Scooter segment.
Benelli had to wait until 1995 to meet somebody who’s capable to revive the brand. It was Andrea Merloni. Under his supervision the company launched Superbikes like Tornado 900 Tre and TNT 1130 both with 3-cylinders.
At present, Benelli is a part of Chinese group named Qianjiang. Recently Benelli entered Indian market with DSK Group and sold more than 3,000 bikes in a very short time making Benelli one of the fastest selling premium motorcycle brands in India.
The current lineup includes: TNT 25, TNT 300, TNT 600i, 302R, TNT 600 GT, TNT 899, TRK 502, TNT R, ZAFFERANO and CAFFENERO.
As it often happens, the histories of great companies are born in garages.
The name Benelli has survived for over 100 years making them Italian oldest motorcycle manufacturer. Benelli will continue to work on its philosophy by bringing new technologies for both track and road motorcycles.
And that’s The History of Benelli Motorcycles. If you liked this video, do make sure to hit that like button and subscribe to my channel for more motorcycle content.
Thanks for watching, until then see you in my next video.
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Song: Italian Morning by Twin Musicom (http://www.twinmusicom.org) and it's licensed under a Creative Commons license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us/).
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