The history of the brand - primarily the story of one man, its founder and general director Leopoldo Tartarini, great designer and ingenious designer. Son of the famous Italian 30s motorcycle racer, Tartarini in the early 50s and he started his racing career, which led him to the factory team "Ducati». But soon Leopoldo taste for self-development work and eventually founded his own company. I must say that Tartarini before the 80s maintained close ties with Ducati, participated in the design of many legendary bikes of the brand, and even collect some models "Ducati" at the factory.
The key to success Tartarini picked peculiar: cheap motors from Eastern Europe plus quality Italian components and modern design. His first motorcycle, which was released in 1959, was equipped with a 123 cc two-stroke engine MZ capacity of 6.5 hp But if the "donor", with its mass of 107 kg and a rear wheel suspension McPherson was archaic even by the standards of the late 50s, and beauty does not shine, the elegant creature Leopoldo different "race" appearance, this time on a modern chassis and weight only 75 kg. A version of "Junior» with uprated to 11 hp engine develops a maximum speed of 120 km / h! As the first on the German and Italian machines are used only MZ engines (since 1960, except for the 123 cubes and 172 cc), the Tartarini called his company Italemmezeta.
Model range in 1964, added a light motorcycle with a spinal frame and the two versions of a 50-cc engines - "Mustang» with Italian engine "Minarelli" and "Export» with the Czech motor Jawa, who had a horizontal cylinder. Because now Tartarini not oriented only to motors MTset, he changed the name of his company to Italjet.
In the autumn of 1965, in Milan motosalone Leopoldo unveiled a prototype motorcycle "Griffin» with 490 cc two-cylinder overhead valve engine of the English company "Triumph» . Moreover, he has made from the English law officially use these engines, which until they provide none. "Griffin" went into production in 1966, but with a more powerful engine "Triumph», 649-cc 50-strong unit.
A series minibike company introduced in 1967. "Go-Go», «Scout» (Italjet Scout) and "Ranger» had a 49 cc two-stroke engines "Minarelli" in the block with the four-speed transmission, open-top two-way frame and 10- inch wheels. The difference between them was limited to various forms of the fuel tank, steering and cladding. The development of this series was in 1969, a miniature "Kit Kat» (Italjet Kit Kat) on a 7-inch wheels with a horizontal 49-cc engine under the floor. Latest motorcycles with engines from the "Eastern bloc" became the model "350" in 1968 with a two-cylinder two-stroke 344 cc engine "Jawa» (Jawa) and the model of the "Rally 125» (Italjet Rally) in 1969 with a single-cylinder two-stroke 123 cc engine ChZet.
New niche for their products Tartarini opened in the early '70s, beginning training for children's sport bikes. The first of a new series began in 1971, is designed for children over 7 years old model "Junior Cross» with a 48 cc engine without gearbox and 14-inch wheels. In 1973, it was followed by "Mini Bambino» for children from 3 to 7 years, 8-inch wheels and a similar power plant, and the Mini Enduro for children older than 10 years, with 70 -kubovym engine, four-speed transmission and 16-inch wheels. Range of machines for motocross and enduro competitions supplemented in 1975 of trial "Mini Trial» and "Junior Trial." In parallel, the company produces a wide range of light 125 cc motorcycles, sports cars for motocross and enduro motorcycles dual purpose, as well as road sports model Buccaneer with a two-cylinder two-stroke 123 cc engine Yamaha capacity of 18 liters .c. The pinnacle of the series minibike was presented in 1979, Pack, a folding machine for 6-inch wheels, with such a great design that it won inclusion in
collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
In the early 80s the company continued to produce a wide range of bikes for children's events, chose a more narrow specialization in "adult" motorsport. In place of the former motocross bike enduro and came of trial motorcycles with two-stroke engines in working volume of 49 to 326 cm3. Completely replaced in 1982 by a road scheme. In place of the old light motorcycles have a new family of dual-purpose motorcycle in the style of "enduro" and "trial" with a 326 cc two-stroke and 322 cc four-stroke engines. Unfortunately, this family, despite the perfect technical stuffing and trendy, reaching the extravagant design (or perhaps just because of it), not like customers. Then broke down and cost-effective communication with "Ducati» , passed under the control of the concern Cagiva.
Exit from a difficult situation Tartarini found by referring to scooters. In 1989 he debuted two models with 49- two-stroke engines and automatic V-belt variator - "Reporter» (Italjet Reporter) on 10-inch wheels and the "Shopping» (Italjet Shopping) on the 16-inch. In 1991, they were followed by a sports model "Pista» and "Scoop» - the latter with the original "motorcycle" landing. I must say that here Tartarini went on "Asian" way, using components widely Taiwanese and South Korean production, and some of its models of those years were just rename machines from Southeast Asia.
Absolutely original scooters Italjet appeared in 1993 in two completely distinct variants. Model "Velosifero 50» performed in the spirit of Italian scooters 50s. Scooter "Formula 50» (Italjet Formula 50), in contrast, emphasized avant-garde as externally and technically. So, its front suspension is made on the trailing arm with a cantilever mount wheels. A year later, this original car was shown with 114-cc two-cylinder 13-hp two-stroke liquid-cooled engine designed specifically for this model by "Franco Morini».
Debutant, 1995 - Scooter Italjet Dragster - continued the line of "Formula", but his appearance with the open space of the tubular frame even more avant-garde. At first, this machine was used only 49 cc two-stroke liquid-cooled engine, and in 1998 she received a two-stroke engines with liquid cooling Piaggio working volume of 123 cm3 (15 hp) and 176 cm3 (21 hp) . Model and still remains the benchmark sports scooter, possessing unsurpassed dynamics and handling.
City scooter "Torpedo» (Italjet Torpedo) on 16-inch wheels in 1997 debuted with 49 cc two-stroke engine. A year later, there was a version with a 124 cc four-stroke engine, and in 1999 - with four 49-cc. In the same year, the program has added a scooter business class "Millennium» (Italjet Millennium), can be combined two-stroke (101 cm3) or four-strokes (124 and 152 cm3). In the fall of 2000 in Munich motosalone was submitted scooter cruising class "Jupiter» (Italjet Jupiter) with the 249-cc four-stroke engine with liquid cooling. This joint development Italjet and Chinese corporation Jincheng. By the 2002 season produced a new version of this machine with a 125-cc and 150 cc engines.
Italjet scooters are in great demand in Europe, America and Japan. They ride sports stars, movies and music. But Tartarini this does not calm down. In autumn 1998, the company introduced its 125-cc motorcycle racing for performances in the World Cup. And in 1999, showed a prototype motorcycle "Griffin". It was equipped as a model of the same name 35 years ago, the motor "Triumph", this time - a modern 900 cc three-cylinder liquid-cooled unit.
New products in 2001 became the scooter Jet-Set with a unique design, reminiscent of today's cars Audi, and a large selection of power plants. While the company offers a four-stroke engine capacity of 125 and 150 cm3, but the production version is prepared with 50 cc two-stroke engine.