The Italian motorcycles of these years were produced within the context of a very unusual historical period. It was from 1930 that all motorcycles adopted the new configuration with the tank being installed on the top of the frame tubes.
This meant the end of the “underslung” era and the emergence of the rounded tank that is still prevalent today. The styling of the machines also evolved, with the introduction of models such as the powerful 500s that entranced the enthusiasts with their appeal and performance.
This was the sector dominated by the bikes produced by the “big five”: Benelli, Bianchi, Gilera, Moto Guzzi and Sertum. It was actually this last, today perhaps the least well known, that launched a fabulous 500 cc twin.
This book places the bikes in their historical and social context, offering an overview of all the various models. There are also features on technology, advertising, production data and military motorcycles.