A, and A+

I connected with the Michelangelo (now there’s an Italian name for you!), the owner of these two fantastic Model A’s on Reddit – where he posted the picture above. The model A – or Lambretta 125m as was the official designation – it only really became the ‘A’ when the model ‘B’ came along – is where the Lambretta story all began. Documented elsewhere on this site, and around the web, I won’t repeat that all here.

There were only about 9,000 model A’s made, so to have one is pretty special. To have two, is amazing. But to have one as special as Michelangelo’s second one, is very special indeed. No ‘ordinary’ A, this one (an Mk1) features some wonderful period features that elevate it from the standard model to ‘Sport’ or GT spec…

Like something out of a time capsule – some of the differences between a standard A are immediately obvious – such as the elegant long-distance fuel tank. Slightly trickier to spot is the rear suspension – a feature that was felt ‘unnecessary’ on the original model. But not only did this scooter have a rear spring, it appears to height adjustable.

Fitted with a pillion seat – and on this bike you’d need one, as it would be sure to attract admiring glances from pretty young signorinas that you’d want to give a lift to. The aluminum grab rail would give her something to hold on to!

The forks are also ‘specials’ and original to the machine – and give a glimpse of the elegant ‘design language’ of future Lambrettas models. Another contemporaneous modification – made when the scooter was new, or shortly after – is the hand gear change – remember, the A was the only Lambretta model to feature a foot change. So perhaps – who knows – this very scooter helped shape the future of all later Lambrettas?

Scooters like Michelangelo’s A Sport are the reason i do this blog – there is always something new to discover, and interesting people to meet. I love it when people are passionate and knowledgeable about their passion – so if you have pictures of your Lambretta – and it can be any model – and a story to tell about it – I’d love to hear it. You can get in touch here.

A big thank you to Michelangelo Merisi, aka @ilbreizh on Instagram (or Reddit) for sharing these pictures and an important bit of Lambretta history. Michelangelo is currently engaged in another fascinating restoration of another old Lambretta, that I hope to feature on the blog one day. Stay tuned!

Vintage Scooter Trailer

Found this PAV 40 Scooter Trailer for sale on eBay – well, I say Scooter trailer, because this is a Lambretta blog, but these Czech made trailers were originally made for Jawa motorcycles. These are now becoming sought after and – as well as looking rather cool behind your scoot are super useful for scooter rallies – if, and when they ever kick off again. This trailer is sold in ‘used condition’ but it looks pretty good for 60 years old. It’s on eBay for £1,500, here.

eBay Time… Innocenti Mini & Dealers Sign

Spotted this rather nice Innocenti Mini on eBay – it’s in the South of France, which has kept it rust free. Looks in good nick! on eBay for £9,900 here.

If you like that, you’ll like this, A genuine period Innocenti lightbox sign.rom a “longstanding southern Italian Innocenti/Lambretta dealership”. It’s pretty rare, as these would have only been available to big Innocenti dealers at the time. Afraid it doesn’t come with the model D! On eBay for £1,500, here.

What will the Vespa of the future look like?

Taken from the Industrial & Product Design blog Yanko Design, and suggested by my old mate Luke, This is a bit of an unusual post for the blog. The renders answer the question – What will classical Italian automotive design be in a hundred years? The designer, Artem Smirnov has distilled the classic Italian curves of yesterdays Vespa’s and created something radically different, yet still, somehow recognisable. Personally, I think that’s a design that’s maybe ten or twenty years away – not a hundred! What do you think? Like it? Loathe it? What would a Lambretta look like?

Original post, here.

Oh, and don’t forget about my Father’s Day Giveaway!

Father’s Day Giveaway

A while back, I wrote a review of Sticky’s excellent book. “Scooterboys – The Lost Tribe”.
He sent me a copy to review – and it took me about 6 months to write it. Check it out here. One of the reasons was laziness – well, a mix of laziness and life throwing a few curve balls, as it does. The other was I’d lost the book. Well, misplaced it. And, as a tight scotsman, I loathed buying another one, just so I could reveiw it. But eventually, I did. With Covid19 leading to a bit of tidying up, the original has surfaced. So I have a spare, and you could get your hands on it.

All you’ve got to do is “like” this post below, and then share it on social media – Twitter or Facebook. and your in. I’ll pick a winner at random, and get it posted out to you, hopefully in time for fathers day. It’ll make a great gift for any dad who’s been into the scene – or perhaps a little gift to yourself (whether your a dad or not).

If you don’t win, and you haven’t got hold of a copy yet, you can get one on Amazon Here.

Nuova Lambretta

It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything about the New Lambretta… The Vendetta, or V-Special as it is variously known. News has been a little thin on the ground, although I’ve spotted more than a few buzzing around. long term readers will know I’m more of a ‘classic’ man, but you’ve got to admit, if you’re in the market for a modern scooter, you won’t get a better looking one than a Lambretta… These images are from the Lambretta UK site.

You know that it’s being regarded as a ‘proper’ Lambretta when a company as well regarded as The Rimini Lambretta Centre gets involved – and, in the spirit of the great scooter dealers of the 60’s, makes a “Dealer Special” …and very nice it looks too. Check out their website, a must for all Lambretta fans,

Finally, for now, are some V-Specials in GP based paint, that seems to be an option for the Asian market only – for the time being at least. I’m sure there would be a great demand for them in the rest of the world too. I’m a particular fan of the grey. From the Nuova Lambretta Facebook page.

So, do you have a “Nuova Lambretta”? How are you getting on with it? Have you customised it? Got any pictures you want featured on the blog? Get in touch!

UPDATE: I’ve added a list of New Lambretta dealers (starting with the UK), here.

Cento advice needed…

Andres got in touch with pictures of a Lambretta he’d just become the proud owner of… asking for help identifying the model. I’m afraid I couldn’t help – although it’s clearly a variant on a Cento, with some ‘modernised’ bodywork. The closest thing I could find was something I featured on the blog back in 2016, a SIL Lambretta Sunny, which looks remarkably similar.

My other thought, as this has turned up in Argentina, was that it was a model manufactured their by Siambretta or in Brazil…

If you can shed some more light on this Lambretta ‘oddity’ please get in touch, either in the comments below, or by using my contact section. I’ll pass any info on to Andres.

RUDEBOY: The Story of Trojan Records

I missed any news of this movie on it’s original release in 2018. It’s available on Sky on demand, so if you’ve got that, give it a spin and let me know if you think it’s any good!

Among the cast of legendary artists featured are Lee ‘Scratch’ PerryToots HibbertKen BootheMarcia GriffithsDave BarkerDandy LivingstoneDerrick MorganBunny Lee, Sly & RobbieLloyd CoxsonePauline Black and Neville Staple they’ve certainly got the right people on board.

Here’s the intro from the film’s website.

undefined

RUDEBOY is a film about the origins and ongoing love affair between Jamaican and British Youth culture. A film that explores the power of music to break down cultural barriers and change lives and the eventual birth of a modern multicultural society – all told through the prism of one the most iconic record labels in history, TROJAN RECORDS. Combining archive footage, freshly shot interviews and drama – RUDEBOY tells the story of Trojan Records by placing it at the heart of a cultural revolution that unfolded in the council estates and shanty towns of the late 60’s and 70’s. The film begins in the 1950’s, as Jamaica is slowly transitioning to its eventual independence in 1962. We meet Duke Reid and his legendary Trojan sound system and explore the social and cultural conditions that give rise to the birth of the rude boy, the emergence of sound-system culture and the rise of the distinctive Jamaican sound ska. In Act 2 we land in Britain in the 60’s and look at the Jamaican immigrants’ experience through the eyes of a young Dandy Livingstone. We meet first generation Windrush immigrant Lee Gopthal and witness the birth of Trojan Records while Enoch Powell is giving his Rivers Of Blood speech. There is a growing market for imported ska and new rock steady sounds that Trojan records tap into. Act 3 tells a story of how working-class youth discover the sounds of ska and rock steady and the most the important subculture in modern British history is born, the Trojan Skinhead. A new sound Reggae emerges. Black and white unite on dancefloors as we build up to the landmark for underground skinhead culture and the ‘Spirit of 69’. From 1969 – 1973 Trojan becomes the most important Jamaican label in the world and is at the peak of its powers. The Tighten Up compilation series, spreads the Trojan word to the masses. The label begins releasing almost everything that is sent in as the volume of output becomes incredible. A new gold rush ensues with producers rushing over from Jamaica selling records to Trojan Desmond Dekker emerges as the first star of the underground scene. ‘Double Barrel’ by Dave and Ansel Collins give Trojan their first number 1 hit single. Ken Boothe inspires the lovers rock sound with Trojans second number 1 ‘Everything I Own’. Pop Reggae is born and Black identity and pride builds around these records as a new confident identity is cemented. But the good times can’t last forever as in 1975 the label over extends itself and folds. But the impact of Trojan records lives on, through the 70’s right up to the present day. Jamaican youth culture has flourished and is everywhere you look – it spawned 2Tone, the Notting Hill Carnival, Sound systems, the seeds of the Hip Hop revolution, club culture. The cultural impact of Trojan records has shaped the world we live in.

Grab the soundtrack

If that sparks your interest, you can grab the soundtrack on Amazon, here.