Lambretta Scarf

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lambretta on amazon

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Useful info about the History of the Lambretta

In 1922, Ferdinando Innocenti of Pescia built a steel-tubing factory in Rome. In 1931, he took this company to Milan where he built a larger factory producing seamless steel tubing and employing about 6,000. Throughout the Second World War, the factory was heavily bombed and destroyed. It is said that surveying the ruins, Innocenti saw the future of cheap, private transport and decided to develop a motor scooter - competing on cost and weather protection against the ubiquitous motorcycle.

The main stimulus of the design style of the Lambretta and Vespa dates back to Pre-WWII Cushman scooters produced in Nebraska, USA. These olive green scooters were in Italy in large numbers, ordered originally by Washington as field transport for the Paratroops and Marines. The Us military had used them to avoid Nazi defence tactics of destroying roads and bridges in the Dolomites (an area of the Alps) as well as the Austrian border areas.

Aeronautical engineer General Corradino D'Ascanio, accountable for and construction of the first modern helicopter by Agusta, was given the task by Ferdinando Innocenti of designing a simple, robust and affordable vehicle. It had to be simple to drive for both women and men , be capable of carry a passenger and still not get its driver's clothes soiled.

The style and design
D'Ascanio, who hated motorbikes, designed a revolutionary vehicle. It had been built on a spar frame making use of handlebar gear change while the engine mounted directly onto the rear wheel. The front protection "shield" kept the rider dry and clean when compared to the open front end on motorcycles. The pass-through leg area design was geared towards women, as wearing dresses or skirts made riding conventional motorcycles quite a job. The front fork, like an aircraft's landing gear, allowed for quick wheel changing. The inner mesh transmission eliminated the common motorcycle chain, an origin of dirt and oil. This basic design allowed a series of features getting deployed around the frame which would later allow quick continuing development of new models.

However, General D'Ascanio fell out with Innocenti, who as opposed to a moulded and beaten spar frame preferred to produce his frame from rolled tubing, allowing him to revive both features of his prewar company. General D'Ascanio disassociated himself with Innocenti and took his design to Enrico Piaggio who produced the spar-framed Vespa from 1946 on.

Into production
Taking a year longer producing, the 1947 Lambretta featured a rear pillion seat for a passenger or optionally a storage compartment. The actual front protection "shield" was really a flat piece of aero metal; later this developed in to a twin skin providing additional storage at the 'back of'/behind the front shield, the same as the glove compartment in a vehicle. The fuel cap was under the (hinged) seat which saved the expense associated with an additional lock on the fuel cap or requirement for additional metal work on the smooth skin.

Deriving the name Lambretta from the small river Lambro in Milan, which ran near to the factory, Innocenti started construction of Lambretta scooters in 1947 - one year afterwards Piaggio started manufacture of its Vespa models. Lambrettas were manufactured under licence in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, India and Spain, sometimes under other names but always to a recognizable design (e.g. Siambretta in South America and Serveta in Spain).

BLMC closure of Innocenti
As wealth increased in Western Europe during the late 1960s, the need for motor scooters fell because the small car became available to more and more people and Lambretta began to struggle financially as did parent Innocenti. The British Leyland Motor Corporation took advantage of Innocenti's financial hardships together with their production and engineering expertise and contracted Innocenti to create cars under licence from BLMC. The Innocenti Mini used the mechanical parts of the original but was in many ways more advanced than it.

Innocenti/Lambretta was eventually sold to BLMC. Unfortunately, lack of foresight had caused BLMC to take part in a fashion trend which was ending rapidly. Long industrial strikes in BLMC ensued; motor-scooter sales took a nosedive, and both Innocenti and Lambretta shut up shop in 1972.

Lambretta Scarf

Automobile Products of India / Scooters India Ltd Industry Scooter
Founded 1972
Headquarters Bombay / Lucknow, India
Products Lambretta, Lamby, Vijay, Vikram, Lambro
Website Scooters India

The Indian government bought the factory for fundamentally the same reasons that Ferdinando Innocenti had built it following the War. India was really a country with poor infrastructure, economically not ready for small private cars yet having a demand for private transport.

Automobile Products of India (API) began assembling Innocenti-built Lambretta scooters in India after independence during the 1950s. They eventually acquired a licence to build the Li150 Series 2 model, which was sold using the Lambretta Series 2 name until about 1976 and at a later point changed the name to Lamby for legal reasons as Scooter India Ltd acquired the whole Innocenti Unit in 1972. API also built the trademark model [API-175] 3 wheeler which was based upon Innocenti's Lambro. API continued to construct Lambretta-derived models until the 1980s but have most certainly been non-operational since 2002.

In 1972, Scooters India Ltd. (SIL) a state-run enterprise operating out of Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, bought the entire Lambretta manufacturing and trademark rights. Former Innocenti employees were utilised to set up an Indian factory as many of the manuals and machinery instructions were in Italian. The 1st scooter built was the Vijay Delux/DL, this was badged the Lambretta GP150 in export markets. This sold poorly because of build problems and was enhanced to turn into the Vijay Super. Further improvements were made in the ultimate years of production by incorporating a contemporary Japanese CDI unit and an advanced front suspension. SIL also distributed CKDs that were assembled in a variety of parts of India and sold as the Allwyn Pusphak, Falcon, and Kesri. They were of a lower quality compared to the SIL produced models and sometimes incorporated significant styling changes.

SIL production seems to have peaked during the financial year 1980-1981, with around 35,000 scooters being built. However by 1987 this had dropped close to 4,500 units with production finally ceasing in 1997. As of 2010 S.I.L.'s production now centres on the Vikram 3-wheeler, powered because of the Lambretta engine. SIL also produces limited spares for the GP/DL selection of scooters. [8] [9] There is also a well established export trade in second-hand Lambrettas (and their derivatives), primarily to the UK market.

Within the U . S ., Scooters India Ltd licensed the Khurana Group USA LLC to manufacture and distribute scooters under the Lambretta brand. The initial release in 2008 were rebadged Adly models [10] of contemporary design, including a 49 cc DUE50, a 49 cc UNO50 and also a 150 cc UNO150.

There are still clubs across Europe in addition to the UK, both national and local clubs, dedicated to the Lambretta scooter. The clubs still participate and organize ride outs and rallies which regularly take place during weekends across the summer months and still have high attendance, some rallies achieve 2,500 paying rally goers. Across the UK there are lots of privately owned scooter shops which deal with everything Lambretta, from sales, services, parts, tuning, performance as well as nut and bolt restorations.

(Artical taken from wiki and spun)

Lambretta Scarf

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