1947 – Gilera “500 Saturno Sport” – Italy
It’s considered a masterpiece of Italian motorbike production. According to experts it had just one rival: the Moto Guzzi Falcone.
Designed by Luigi Salmaggi in the late thirties and showed at the 1940 Milan Show as a successor to the Otto Bulloni, the Saturno is powered by a 4-stroke 500cc single-cylinder engine.
The outbreak of WWII delays the production that was postponed to 1946 (6 “Competizione” examples were made before the war).
The engine is a traditional pushrod single-cylinder Gilera engine, 500 cc displacement, with the “classic” 500cc Gilera bore and stroke, 84×90 mm.
The tube frame is made of a single open cradle ; it shows a Girder front fork, while at the back it features a couple of springs on each side of the wheel with compass dampers.
This system had been used by Gilera since the mid 30s; the gearbox has 4 speeds and it’s controlled by pedal.
Four were the available versions: “Turismo”, “Sport”, “Competizione” and “Corsa“.