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Friday, October 11, 2019

Lambretta's winding history

For true scooter enthusiasts, the Lambretta name is certainly not strange. Yes, we are knew that Lambretta is the name of an Italian company which in its heyday was a rival for its compatriot scooter manufacturer Piaggio.
Innocenti Lambretta scooters, reliable and fun transportation that was affordable and revolutionary in design. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/2MsV6Kh)
Ferdinando Innocenti, the
founder of the Lambretta 
manufacturer. (Picture  
from:  http://bit.ly/35rwOZy)
But then the Lambretta scooters had disappeared of the world scooter market in quite a long time span. So it could make the Lambretta scooters as a figure of two-wheeled vehicles that are quite rare. Which then analogous by the world scooter fans as a diamond among the pile of gold, aka something very valuable.

At the beginning of its development, the Lambretta scooter manufacturer could not be separated from the compatriot manufacturer which was at the same time its rival Piaggio who later produced the Vespa scooters. At first glance, there are seen a similarity design between Lambretta and Vespa scooters. This can be seen directly in the physical form of the scooter produced by those two Italian manufacturers. This is not a coincidence, but there's a story that is quite interesting in it. Are you curious?

Lambretta's design was inspired by an American-made scooters 
Corradino D'Ascanio, the
designer of Lambretta and 
Vespa scooters. (Picture 
 from:  http://bit.ly/33jwL0a)
Before making a scooter, Ferdinando Innocenti first established an engine manufacturer named after his name, Innocenti SA. in the 1920s. 

Initially, the factory producing components for the Italian Air Force since 1922. When the war raged that factory was bombed to the ground by Allied forces. After the war, Innocenti needed to find a new product in order for his business to survive.

In the midst of the debris of his steel tube factory, Innocenti got an idea to create a cheap and resilient transportation ride, and then a scooter concept was born!! When the company decided to make a scooter, Innocenti knew if he had to find someone who could make the design of his dream vehicle.
The first Innocenti scooter designed by Corradino D'Ascanio. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/35puO4d)
Then Innocenti handed over those design work to an aeronautical engineer named Corradino D'Ascanio. It's strangely and funny as well, actually D'Ascanio doesn't like motorbikes due to previously he worked for Piaggio's aircraft manufacturer before and during the war.
The Innocenti Lamborghini scooter history. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/2IIuPGy)
At that time Innocenti told D'Ascanio if he wanted the design of a simple, resilent and affordable two-wheeled vehicle, so it was easy to drive by men and women also it wasn't easy to dirty the clothes when ride it.
1947 Lambretta 125M (A), the first Innocenti-made scooter. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/2MxiAxD)
In the process of the design work, D'Ascanio took the figure of the Cushman scooter that was made before World War II in Nebraska, the United States became one of the design references for the vehicle he was going to make. These American-made scooters were in Italy in large numbers, ordered originally by the United States military as field transport for the paratroops and marines.
1943 Cushman Airborne Military was one of the Lambretta scooter design references made by Corradino D'Ascanio for Innocenti SA. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/1zct9Yf)
It's known that the American soldiers had used those scooters to get around German defense tactics of destroying roads and bridges in the Dolomites (a section of the Alps) and the Austrian border areas.
1949 Lambretta 125M (B). (Picture from: http://bit.ly/2OFlvqH)
In order to fulfill Innocenti's desire for a good two-wheeled vehicles that able to keep the rider and passenger clothings in clean condition when riding it, then a protective part in front called a "shield" is deliberately formed.
1953 Lambretta LD 125 Mk.2. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/315xr7V)
Since then the company produced the Lambretta scooters over the years, and regarding to the scooter's name, it's taken from the Lambrate district name of Milan in northern Italy, which is near to the steel tubing factory location. 

The spar frame concept dispute made D'Ascanio turn back to Piaggio
In the development of the company, there was a dispute between Innocenti and D'Ascanio about the concept problem. Because Innocenti wants the spar frame to be produced from the steel tube plant of his. Before the problem found a solution, Innocenti revived his two steel factories in Milan which previously destroyed to the ground by Allied forces.
1959 Lambretta LI Series 1. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/311JuDj)
Somehow, then the dispute bears the separation. Which then makes D'ascanio finally turn back to collaborate with Enrico Piaggio. And in 1946, the results of his collaboration with Piaggio produced Vespa spar frames. On the other hand, after D'Ascanio left the company, the final design of the Lambretta scooter was completed by another engineers named Cesare Pallavicino and Pier Luigi Torre.

The first production of Lambretta scooters favored by the Italians 
Lambretta has a good milestone when starting marketing its scooters. Their first products named the Lambretta 125M (A) launched in the 1947 and were favored by the Italians so that the Lambretta's scooter riders population increased significantly in the country.
The first production of Lambretta scooters directly favored by the Italians. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/326Q2lk)
And a year before, Piaggio had launched their first Vespa 98 models. Then the first model of the Lambretta scooters came with two options, ie the seats for passenger or a compartment to store goods at rear.

This Lambretta 125M (A) scooter uses a 125cc engine with three speed transmission system and then its gear shift was on the foot where only the Innocenti Lambretta models have such thing.
1960 Lambretta TV175 Mk.2. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/316WAiD)
The front shield is made of aero metal materials which develops into leather. Uniquely on the storage drawer that is similar to a car dashboard. And by the late 1940s the Lambretta scooter was sold overseas. Innocenti became one of the new industrial giants of post-war Italy, and the scooterphenomenon was on its way to becoming a legend.
1967 Lambretta SX 200. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/315znNJ)
The scooters continued to produced in Italy until 1971, then the company did a massive expansion with the scooter production abroad under the full license, such as to Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, India and Spain, making it a worldwide brand.
1970 Lambretta GP 200. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/35pMOLE)
Lambretta scooters were also manufactured under licence by Fenwick in France, NSU in Germany, Serveta in Spain, API in India, Yulon in Taiwan, Pasco in Brazil, Auteco in Colombia and Siambretta in Argentina.

Lambretta had a long sleep before finally being reborn 
This Italian scooter brand had disappeared from circulation in the world scooter market. As it is known that in the 1970s The British Leyland Motor Corporation (BLMC) acquired shares of Innocenti. After experiencing a financial crisis and industrial strike at BLMC. By 1972, Innocenti had stopped production.
2018 Lambretta V-Special. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/2IIuPGy)
They had been bought by a large company who did not foresee the changes to come in the motor industry. Strikes and falling sales did for Innocenti, even in emerging markets like India, where cheaper Japanese motorcycles were better choices for consumers.

In 1972, the Indian government bought the machinery of the Milanese factory, creating Scooters India Limited (SIL) in order to produce the Lambro three-wheeler under the name Vikram for the domestic market and made them until the late 1990’s.

They seen never gave up and continue to struggle. Recently a Lugano-based Switzerland consortium purchased the Innocenti SA. which then directly owned those famous scooter brand. Now, we can see the Lambretta scooters back to enliven the competition in the world's scooter market by launching its newest Lambretta V-Special models with two engines options 125cc and 200cc. Will they be able to survive?
Kept spur your adrenaline on the power of two-wheeled monster and stay alive with the true safety riding. May God will forgive Your sins and so does the cops...... *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | LAMBRETTA STORY | LC | ACE SCOOTERS]
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