Leopoldo Tartarini, reduce da un trionfale giro del mondo in motocicletta nel 1957-58 con l'amico Giorgio Monetti, decide di intraprendere l'attività di costruttore e fonda la ditta Italemmezeta, con officina a Bologna in via del Piombo.
Le prime moto portano propulsori da 125 cc della ditta tedesco-orientale MZ. Tartarini riesce ad accedere al quasi inaccessibile mercato dell'est europeo e ai motori di aziende come Triumph, Honda, Yamaha, che mai avevano fatto prima forniture esterne.
Dal 1967 l'azienda si chiamerà Italjet, caratterizzandosi per una produzione accurata e innovativa, con modelli in tutta la gamma, dalle maxi moto ai ciclomotori pieghevoli. Sarà presente in prestigiosi mercati esteri, come gli Stati Uniti, accanto alle maggiori ditte italiane.
A Brief History of the Marque
Italemmezeta was the predecessor of Italjet, a firm established in 1959 with a workshop on via del Piombo, Bologna, by Leopoldo Tartarini, son of Italian racer Egisto Tartarini. In 1957-58 Leopoldo and his friend Giorgio Monetti rode around the world on 175cc Ducati motorcycles.
The first motorcycles built by the firm employed 125cc MZ two-stroke engines from East-Germany. These appeared in 1961, two years after the company was formed. A moped was released in 1962, followed by a sports moped in 1964, the Mustang. In 1967 the marque name was changed to Italjet.
Years ago, a neighbor gave us a moped he had sitting behind his garage. It had been given to him, and he had no information about it, what is was, or if it even ran. He knew we were into motorcycles, so thought he would add to our list of projects.
Luckily, the engine is in perfect condition, and the bike starts with little effort. The chassis is intact, with the exception of a missing throttle assemby, and the chrome bits are rusted beyond repair. It even has the original toolkit inside the toolbox.
All of the emblems have been removed, but from the sun fade in the paint on the tank, you can see that the emblem there read "Baby Italemmezeta". The emblem on the front fender is still partially there, and we are 95% certain that this read "Italjet", however there seems to be an extra letter after the "Ital" part. It is only half there, but looks to be an "o" or maybe another vowel.
This logo is the closest we can find to what this sticker is supposed to be.
What is an Italemmezeta?
Searching the Web, I have only found a handful of sites that even mention the word "Italemmezeta" and only a fraction of these have content or photos. Most of those sites are also requesting more information. I will add to as information comes in, complete with bibliography.
If you have any further information on this moped, Italemmezeta, or the history of Italjet, please mail me.