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Over a century of technique and sport
It all began with Giuseppe Bianchi who made bicycles. Then his son Enzo met Arrigo Tosi while he was on military service, married his sister Elda and they all decided to work together. Over 100 years after its foundation, the company is still a market leader in the motorcycle sector.
At the beginning of the decade the historic but now obsolete factory in Via Bellariva was abandoned and the company moved to Osmannoro. In 1966 a terrible flood raged through Florence, also causing severe damage at Beta, although the company was fortunate in that it managed to get back on its feet very quickly.The engines designed by the new group of in house technicians went into production.
Motorcycle sport had always been part of the company’s DNA.
It was a valuable tool for developing new models more quickly, testing new machines “live”, and increasing sales by showcasing the high quality of a product through success in competition.
A series of changes came at breathtaking speed. Motocross was increasingly being dominated by the Japanese manufacturers,so Beta decided to concentrate on trials. A series of machines were created that frequently managed to win the World Championship. However, there was a continuing commitment to all off-road machines, without neglecting the range of mopeds.
It was a milestone in the history of Beta when Lapo Bianchi joined the firm. The entire production and administrative structure wa supdated, with the aim of increasing its presence abroad while technical and commercial alliances were strengthened. There was continuing success in trials competitions, which had now become the “new frontier” for the company.
Far reaching changes within the company meant that it became possible to focus on foreign markets, while the number of models in the range was increased partly as a result of the important working relationships with KTM and Suzuki. At the same time, success in competition proved to be extremely useful as a means of developing business.
A decade marked by major changes. The scooter market was constantly evolving, sales of enduro bikes were increasing worldwide, while trial bikes were still selling but in much smaller numbers. Beta was now producing all of its two and four stroke engines inhouse. The company’s great commitment to sport brought more world championship wins including the manufacturers’ titles, which were even more prestigious and which the company had never won before.