Italian Motorcycles

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Meteora Motorcycles

A Brief History of the Marque

Founded by Angelo Zanasi.

Manufactured at via Melloni 3, Monteveglio, Bologna, 1953 to 1956, and then at Via San Mamolo 154, 1956 to 1990.

Angelo Zanasi was born to a modest family in San Giovanni in Persiceto in 1899. He developed an interest in motorcycles and became a skilled technician and was an active sports rider in the 1920s. After the war he entered business, and in 1953 his company built the first Meteora using an OHC 175cc single-cylinder engine, the design for which he had bought from Enzo Mengoli. Some 30 of these were built. [1]

Meteora later produced a 125cc machine, a 50cc Grillo powered machine and two 50cc Pony mopeds using FBM engines, and the NSU-powered Poker. A 150cc model arrived in 1957 powered by Minarelli.

Zanasi retired in 1957 and the company management was then headed by signora Isora Negri for some years, with the company name changed to Zanasi Angelo di Negri Isora. The company changed hands again in 1967 and moved to Riale di Zola Predosa, building Franco Morini-powered machines including the Arrow, the Mini Sebring and the Minimet. Other models in this period were types 47 Turismo 3M, Meeting, 4M Turbo, and Cross 4M; types 49 Molleggiato Gyromat, Minimet, Indipendent, Gim Cross, and Cross 5 M.

In 1975 Meteora formed an agreement with Motobécane to built lightweights for the export markets, and after 1980 [2] they ceased producing machines under the Meteora brand and supplied other companies including Malaguti, Malanca, SWM and Moto Villa. After 2000 they worked with Honda assembling Japanese machines for the Italian market, and also assembled LEM motos and the Beta Minimoto.

1. The engine was named O.Me.S - Officina Meccanica Specializzata, owned by Amedeo Rocca.
2. Use of the Meteora name may have ceased in 1985

Sources: Tragatsch p208, MC Storico Conti,, Museo del Patrimonio Industriale, Bologna,, et al.

sjthorpe at
Morini Meteora
Hi there,
I've just bought a Morini Meteora, 50cc race bike, and I was told it was very rare and built by Meteora in 1974 and I'm told it's no19 of the production line. Can you confirm how many of these bikes were made and a little bit more about them.
Steven Thorpe

Fri May 28 2010
hlovell7<at>aol dot com
Motori Morini Franco Moto Meteora moped
Can anyone help with some history and a book on the 50cc engine?

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