Posts by Category: Gilera

Gilera November 8, 2016 posted by

Lightweight Single: Pristine 1990 Gilera Saturno Bialbero for Sale

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Looking very 80s, the Gilera Saturno Bialbero  could be mistaken for some sort of custom Ducati. But Gilera, of course, should be held in the highest regard by fans of this site, as they were the first company to slot an inline four into a frame transversely, solving in one fell swoop the difficult cooling issues that previously faced four-cylinder motorcycles. This bike has just one cylinder like the original Saturno and embodies the company’s racing ethos, stressing light-weight and handling.

In the 80s, Gilera was mostly producing a line of offroad-biased singles with a 350cc capacity that were obviously a far cry from their road-racing bikes of the 1950s. At the urging of a Japanese marketing company, they developed a retro-styled sportbike, and that updated Saturno sparked some minor interest worldwide.

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In most markets, the Nuovo Saturno was motivated by a liquid-cooled, 491cc version of the company’s four-valve, dual-overhead cam single, although a smaller 350 was available in Japan. In fact, the “Bialbero” designation helps to differentiate the bike from the earlier Saturno and refers to the number of camshafts: two. That engine put out a seemingly unimpressive 44hp, but the complete trellis-framed machine weighted in at a claimed 302lbs dry. That’s 250cc two-stroke territory, with the same claimed peak output and a much broader powerband. Suspension was simple but modern, with 17” Marvic wheels front and rear and a set of Brembo brakes to slow things down. The ‘box has just five speeds, owing to the package’s off-road roots, but the torquey engine should make any gaps easy to ride around.

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With just 72 miles on the clock, this may be the lowest-mileage Saturno on the planet, and you may be waiting a long time for an example this nice, regardless of miles: these very rarely come up for sale, as Gilera collectors aren't flavor-of-the-week types. It helps that the Nuovo Saturno was intended for collectors in Japan, and only a few made it to other countries: in 1990, just 50 were imported to the UK.  However, in spite of their rarity, they don't sell for huge money, making them a reasonable proposition for regular folks who want something out-of-the-ordinary.

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From the original eBay listing: 1990 Gilera Saturno Bialbero for Sale

I kept this rare machine in Germany for years before I was able to legally import it this year. I don't know of another one ever available in the United States. And this one can be registered and ridden. It is in out of the crate perfect condition.

Imported earlier this year from Germany. Comes with original German registration and U.S. Customs and Border Protection entry form (Form 7501).

The Gilera Saturno Bialbero 500 is a motorcycle road made the motorcycle manufacturer Gilera and marketed between 1987 and 1991.

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Bidding is just north of $3,659.00 with plenty of time left on the auction, if you're looking for something rare, affordable, and very fun: these are extremely nimble bikes that would make perfectly lightweight track or racing machines. If you're handy with a wrench, there's another, much less pristine 1988 Saturno for sale on eBay right now that'd make a pretty perfect foundation for racebike to compete in something like AHRMA's "Sound of Singles" class, but this one's simply way too nice to abuse.

-tad

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Lightweight Single: Pristine 1990 Gilera Saturno Bialbero for Sale
Gilera March 31, 2016 posted by

Slippery Stroker: 1991 Gilera CX125 for Sale

1991 Gilera CX125 R Side Front

The impossibly exotic Gilera CX125 still looks futuristic today but, while the fully-enclosed bodywork and unusual suspension appeared radical when new, the underlying mechanical bits are surprisingly pedestrian. Sure the bike handled well, but the 125cc two-stroke single powering the CX is far from the exciting, sophisticated engine you'd expect, considering the bike's striking design. The bike does have an electric start to get the bike snap, crackle, and popping so there's at least a nod to sophistication...

1991 Gilera CX125 L Side

At 300lbs wet, the modest 28 rear-wheel horses certainly moves the bike along, but performance couldn't be considered much more than "brisk," with a top speed hovering around 100mph. Of course, straight-line performance wasn't really the point.

1991 Gilera CX125 Dash

Single sided front and rear suspension mean that the bike appears to have no suspension at all when viewed from the right-hand side: the wheels just seem to float in space. The design of the front isn't as ambitious as something like the Tesi or GTS1000. It's basically just a telescopic fork with one leg missing and was developed by suspension specialists Paioli. It handles well, but that's likely due to the bike's light weight and sporty frame geometry: the advantages of this setup are mainly cosmetic, aside from the fact it should make for easy tire changes.

1991 Gilera CX125 Front

From the original eBay listing: 1991 Gilera CX125 for Sale

Located in Santa Ana, California. This bike has 3432 KM = 2059 Miles. I believe this bike is all original, but not 100% sure. I'm not a expert on these CX125s. Engine runs good, no problems. I think the bike is in good condition for it's age. This bike is being sold with a bill of sale only. I don't have a title for the bike and can not get one, so don't ask. All stupid questions will not be answered. More info is available on our website. If you overseas or Canadian buyer, you will have to make your own shipping arrangements. I can help USA buyers with the shipping, or you can arrange your own shipper. Bike is being sold as is, no returns. Ask questions and look at the pictures carefully before you bid. Again, this bike is being sold with a bill of sale only, NO TITLE.

1991 Gilera CX125 Front Suspension

Oh god, right there at the end: "no title"! Such a shame, since a CX125 certainly isn't much good for track work. Aside from some very minor imperfections, the bike appears to be in beautiful shape which is great because, unless you live in a state with a very permissive DMV, this bike is going to be on display in your home, not down at the local bike hang out...

1991 Gilera CX125 Rear Suspension

At a starting bid of $5,900 there are no takers yet. Certainly, you're not buying performance here, but that price does seem like a pretty fair price for such a rare and interesting machine. Even if you're forced to just look at it.

-tad

1991 Gilera CX125 R Side

Slippery Stroker: 1991 Gilera CX125 for Sale
Gilera August 25, 2015 posted by

Last gasp: 1992 Gilera CX125 in Australia

Here is one that ticks all the collector bells for me (and I think a lot of other people), a 1992 Gilera CX125.  Located in Queensland Australia, this is only the second Gilera CX125 to be posted on RSBFS.  The first appeared last September and was quite popular which was interestingly since the little CX125 wasn't a popular bike when it was produced.

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The little Gilera was part of a wave of bikes with fully enclosed bodywork such as the Honda CBR Hurricane.  However Gilera was also forced to comply with laws in Europe that limited the displacement of motorcycles that young riders/"learners" could get their hands on to no more than 15bhp.  Unlike the larger firms which could use existing designs as the basis of their learner bikes (ex:  Cagiva Mito based on the Ducati 748),  Gilera gambled on producing a totally unique 125 design.  The result was what was possibly the most outlandishly styled 125 sport bike of all time – the Gilera CX125.

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1992 Gilera CX125 for sale on ebay australia

Unveiled at the 1989 Milan EICMA show the CX125 concept was a tiny sport machine with fully enveloping bodywork that looked like something straight out of a design studio, in large part due its having  single sided suspension on both ends. But unlike a lot of concept bikes, the CX  hit the market in 1991 as an honest-to-God working motorcycle that featured the same space-age styling and radical suspension as its prototype.

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So what happened?  Well even though the CX had a unique look the design was actually pretty conventional.  Reviewers seemed to be disappointed in the bikes' being merely competent/"ordinary" on the road.  As one reviewer wrote, "It’s not that the CX was wasn't a good bike, but it felt far more conventional than the styling suggested.  It's essentially a bike that looks like something from the future but rides like something from the present."

It also probably didn’t help that popular opinion of the CX varied between “incredibly cool” and “tragically ugly”.  Production of the CX125 was discontinued after a year with only 1000 examples being made and parent company Piaggio discontinued Gilera’s motorcycle production in 1993.  The CX is often referred to as the last gasp for Gilera as a true motorcycle producer.

Note:  The Gilera brand was continued by Piaggio but only as a scooter lineup.

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Asking price is 8900 AUD/6500 USD.   Is it worth that? Honestly, I think it is.  The seller states it only has 5083 Km and condition certainly looks to be absolutely pristine.  While no service info is offered and the number of pictures is less than I would like, only 1000 were made for a single model year, the technology of both front and read single sided swingarms has yet to be reproduced except for perhaps the Bimota Tesi/Vyrus and perhaps most importantly, the CX125 pretty much marked the end of Gilera as a serious motorcycle manufacturer.

I think this one is a good pickup for a collector located in Australia.  To be honest,  if I could figure out a sure fire way to  get it into my living room I would be bidding.

-Marty

Last gasp:  1992 Gilera CX125 in Australia
Gilera April 8, 2015 posted by

Lightweight Italian: 1991 Gilera Saturno 350

1991 Gilera Saturno 350 R Side

Although forgotten now, Gilera was one a famous manufacturer of serious racing hardware, and this "Nuovo" Saturno was an attempt to revitalize the marque in the late 1980's. Now owed by Piaggio, Gilera was originally founded in 1909 and had a long history of high-performance motorcycles.

1991 Gilera Saturno 350 L Side Rear

These sportbikes were often based around big singles, sort of like an Italian Norton Manx, although they were also famous for circumventing the significant cooling issues that surrounded multi-cylinder engines by producing a transverse four-cylinder that dominated 500cc GP racing through the 1950s.

1991 Gilera Saturno 350 R Side Fairing

The reborn Saturno was powered by a big, liquid-cooled four-valve single that put power through a five speed gearbox. Most markets got a 491cc engine, although a smaller 350 was available for Japanese customers. This simple, robust powerplant was suspended in a lightweight trellis frame with modern suspension and brakes front and rear, with lightweight Marvic wheels that provided an all-in weight of under 300lbs dry.

1991 Gilera Saturno 350 Dash

From the original eBay listing: 1991 Gilera Saturno 350 for Sale

In the mid 80s Gilera collaborated with a Japanese company, C. Itoh & Co. Itoh produced a frame design and Gilera the powerplant. The frame was very similar to that of Ikuzawa. Gilera put the project in the hands of a gentleman called Sandro Columbo, who in the 1950s had been in charge of their race team.In August 1987 the bike was ready as a prototype and in March 1988 started the production. Two versions were built: a 350cc model only for the Japanese market and sold by Itoh, and a 500cc model for the rest of the world, sold through the Gilera network. The bike was by all accounts very expensive in its day and few were sold.

This is a 1991 example, which has travelled just over 5,100km or 3,100 miles and been very well cared for, and lightly modified with nice chrome high pipes and a bikini tail section. An rare opportunity not to be missed.

1991 Gilera Saturno 350 Engine

Very rare in any form, the Saturno is all about light weight and handling, with a look that, to me, is very purposeful and doesn't appear "styled" at all. As the seller mentions, the dual exhaust on this one isn't stock as they generally use a single exhaust on the right side of the bike, but it looks to be of high quality and does suit the bike.

1991 Gilera Saturno 350 R Side Tail

This bike is currently located in New Zealand, although the seller claims they also have a location in Texas. If you happen to live in New Zealand, or are able to register it in your state here in the US, this would make a great back-road bike. If not, this might make a very

-tad

1991 Gilera Saturno 350 L Side

Lightweight Italian: 1991 Gilera Saturno 350
Gilera September 13, 2014 posted by

I want it: Stock Gilera CX 125 in NorthWest Italy

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For a short time back in the 80's, bikes with fully enclosed bodywork were all the rage.  Bimota had the Tesi, Ducati had the Paso, BMW had the big K1, Honda had the CBR/Hurricane, etc.  At the same time numerous european countries passed laws restricting the displacement of motorcycles that new riders could own.  These "learner" models often had race-replica sport-bike styling to appeal to the 17 year old who had just gotten their license and wanted to look fast, even if their machine couldn’t have more than 15bhp by law. Also, most of these learner specials shared styling with their larger parent bikes so you could get a mini YZF-R, CBR, or even Ducati 916 (via the Cagiva Mito).

There was, however, one notable exception, one manufacturer that went all in and gambled on producing a totally unique 125 design. Gilera produced what was possibly the weirdest 125 sport bike of all time – the short lived and radically-styled Gilera CX125, which had some of the most futuristic design to ever grace a “beginner” bike.

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1991 Gilera CX

The CX concept was unveiled at the 1989 Milan EICMA show but was scarcely believable as a potential production machine. Here was a tiny sport machine with fully enveloping bodywork that looked like something straight out of a sci-fi cartoon, with a remarkable single sided suspension on both ends. But unlike a lot of concept bikes, the CX  hit the market in 1991 as an honest-to-God working motorcycle that featured the same space-age styling and bonkers suspension that the 1989 prototype had introduced.

Gilera CX125 Motorcycle Suspension Chassis

However, even though the CX had a unique look the design is actually conventional. In the press the CX was well received but there was a strained quality to the reviews that showed the reviewer’s apparent disappointment with how ordinary the CX was on the road, like they were desperately trying to find a way to make it sound as cool as it looked. It’s not that the CX was wasn't a good bike, but it felt far more conventional than the styling suggested.

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While the CX garnered attention due to its radical styling, it performed like its sister bike (the Crono model) but was slightly slower and cost more money. It probably didn’t help that popular opinion of the CX varied between “incredibly cool” and “tragically ugly”. Thus production of the CX125 was discontinued after less than a year with only 1000 examples being made. Parent company Piaggio discontinued Gilera’s motorcycle production in 1993 so the only Gilera you can get now is a small displacement scooter.

Here is the listing translated from ebay.it via google translate.

  • ORIGINAL GILERA CX 125
  • KM 15163
  • THE MOTORCYCLE HAS NO PART REPLACED
  • MOTOR ENGINE/PERFECT, SILENT
  • NEED FOR CLEANING VALVE OUTLET/DISCHARGE TO BE PERFECT
  • TIRES AND SUSPENSION DATE AGE 'AND INACTIVE' HAVE TO BE REPLACED OR REVISE
  • MOTO TORINO BRANDED ORIGINAL DOCUMENTS
  • NOT RESTORED HAS SOME SIGN OF USE
  • MISSING REAR WHEEL COVERS

 

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The bike is located in Northern Italy with about 15,000 KM . Asking price is a cool 4000 3800 euro,which is about 5000 USD.   Is it worth that? Well its a bit rough with no rear mudguard and the chain looks a bit slack. But the only other one I have ever seen is currently on display at the Barber museum in Alabama USA and only 1000 were made for a single model year. Therefore, the price may be about right.  All I know is if I could figure out a sure fire way to  get it into my living room I would be bidding.

 

-Marty

I want it:  Stock Gilera CX 125 in NorthWest Italy
Gilera March 3, 2014 posted by

1988 Gilera Saturno 500 available in California

Almost never seen in the US, and very desirable both here and abroad, the Gilera Saturno Bialbero 500 was part of an attempt by Piaggio to resurrect the famed marque in the 1980’s. The original Gilera Saturno’s sometimes show up on our sister site, Classic Sport Bikes for Sale, where their 1950’s singles can occasionally be found. The company began in 1909 and had a strong focus on racing, fielding one of the very first successful four-cylinder bikes that solved the traditional inline and square-four cylinder cooling problems by slinging the whole powertrain transversely across the frame. So all of you Japanese sportbike jockeys can take a moment to genuflect before this little long-lost child of the founder of the feast…

1988 Gilera Saturno 500 for sale on eBay

Gilera Saturno 500 for sale

But they built their reputation for their Saturno singles, and battled it out on racetracks throughout the 40’s and 50’s. The resurrected Saturno 500 featured a thumping single like its ancestor, in this case a liquid-cooled, four-valve 491cc single making 45hp, but everything else is modern spec: a fully-floating Brembo Goldline brake disc/caliper up front, trellis frame, and lightweight Marvic wheels. There are only 5 speeds in the gearbox, although it does feature that very cool open clutch. This combination is enough to push the claimed sub-300lb machine north of 100mph, but that’s really beside the point here.

In the US at least, the market for lightweight bikes with small motors and high-spec parts is relatively small, but bikes like this have definite value to riders who realize that there’s more to track and back road riding than huge power, and bikes like the Saturno, Ducati’s Supermono, and Bimota’s BB1 always attract a great deal of attention when they come up for sale.

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From the original eBay listing:

Very rare 1988? Gilera Saturno 500 Road Racer
I haven’t tried to start it so condition of the motor is unknown
This is an ex race bike so it is sold as seen
This has been stood unused for some time in a private collection
I have no idea of its history, please let me know if you have any info on it
Just in the same condition as the day it finished racing
I would recommend a complete recommission before use or just keep it in your collection
Has some spares for the motor and the clocks are in a box
Great opportunity to buy a valuable investment
Tank is a dummy cover over an alloy one
Has a carbon fibre seat & front fender
Custom built dual exhaust
Just a very cool rare bike
Bike is located in Sacramento CA

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Accounts differ as to how many were imported, but these are very rare in the states. The seller seems to be unloading a couple of bikes at the same time, including a Wood-Rotax SJ676 and bidding for this one is VERY low so far. Parts for a Gilera may be difficult to source here in the US, but it might be worth the effort to contact the seller and find out exactly which “spares for the motor” he has.

This particular example is in slightly rough shape, but Bialbero’s are collectable enough that it should be well worth a look. While clearly not a road bike, hese machines are very focused anyway and suited for the track. I’d be tempted to snap this up in a hot minute if bidding stays low…

-tad

1988 Gilera Saturno 500 available in California