Gilera is an Italian motorcycle manufacturer founded in Arcore in 1909 by Giuseppe Gilera. In 1969 the company was bought out by the
Piaggio Group (maker of Vespa scooters).
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The history of Gilera...
In 1935 Gilera acquired rights to the Rondine four-cylinder engine. This formed the basis for Gileras racing machines nearly forty years. From the mid-thirties Gilera developed a range of four-stroke engine machines. The engines ranged from 100 to 500cc. The most famous of which was the 1939 Saturno.
After World War II, Gilera dominated Grand Prix motorcycle racing, winning the 500cc road racing world championship 6 times in 8 years. Facing a downturn in motorcycle sales due to the increase in the popularity of automobiles after the war, Gilera made a gentleman's agreement with the other Italian motorcycle makers to quit Grand Prix racing after the 1957 season as a cost cutting measure.
In 1992, Gilera made a return to the Grand Prix arena and Piaggio
continues to produce small-displacement motorcycles with the Gilera name.
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