Monday, May 21, 2012


The 1937 Mercury, with 596cc Scott twin-cylinder two-stroke engine, and all-aluminum body construction. One of perhaps 6 built by Mercury Motors of West Croydon, Surrey.
BMW, host of the Concorso d'Eleganza di Villa d'Este,  have graciously provided a 'sneak preview' of the motorcycles to be displayed over the weekend of May 26/27 at the Villa Erba, exclusively for use on The Vintagent.  The second edition of the Concorso di Moto promises an exceptional viewing opportunity; the grassy park at Villa Erba will be dotted with 'one-offs' and 'sole survivors' among the simply stunning and rare machines - which fairly describes all 36 of the entries.
The grounds of Villa d'Este on Concorso day (Jaguar XKSS and Lancia B20 Aurelia convertivle shown)
The motorcycles are classed by era and category; the Roaring Twenties, Stylish Thirties, Swinging Fifties (while 'sixties' is the usual tag for 'swinging', in this case it seems we have a clever pun on the universal adoption of 'swingarm' suspension in the 1950s), Design Studies, etc.  A few of the machines, which especially set The Vintagent's mechanical heart beating, are included for your delectation.  A full list of the Concorso machines can be found here.
Not to neglect the Lightweights; this 1960 Maserati T2/50/SS would look lovely next to the four-wheeled 3500GT of the same make!
2011 was the first time in its 'since 1929' history that two-wheelers were included in this most prestigious of motoring events, and the response - as seen in last year's report - was universally positive. Acclaim from both invited guests and the general public for BMW's spectacular display have encouraged a bit of pre-publicity this year, and best of all, the public has an opportunity to see the motorcycles in situ over the weekend, which is not the case with the automotive Concorso.
Swiss mix; 1921 Motosacoche 403 Supersport, a very advanced 495cc OHV racer
Limited space at the Villa d'Este means the ultra-swank Saturday event is strictly limited to entrants, BMW brass, and the press, while on Sunday the cars join the motorcycles on the grass at Villa Erba, and anyone can spend the afternoon strolling between the assembled rolling sculpture.  Arch-enthusiasts within an easy flight to Milan should mark their calendar, but if that's impossible, stay tuned to The Vintagent, as full coverage will be forthcoming later this week, from a Judge's perspective (that's right, we've been upgraded).
Sketch for the 3-cylinder, inverted-engine Nembo Super 32 of 2012, 1814cc !
The Nembo Super 32 in the metal; remarkable
Yes, we see photos and 1:1 scale reproductions of Harley Davidson 8-valve racers from the 1920s, but real ones are rare.  This one dates from 1922; a rare four-pipe road racer
Not often seen in person; the 1938 Taurus Sport 248cc
The double 'oil-boiler'; a super rare 494cc Bradshaw oil-cooled Zenith flat twin of 1923

1 comment:

Connie said...

Hi, your display of vintage motorcycles is very interesting and informative. I enjoy vintage machines, whether cars, motorcycles, steam engines, sewing machines, tractors, planes, etc. It is interesting to see how the age industrialism began. If you are into motorcycles check out this Steve built his granddaughter a wooden motorcycle rocking horse that is incredible. It will defiantly be a family heirloom. Have a great day . . . I enjoyed my visit and glad I found your blog. Connie :)