Gilera 1948 Saturno Sport 499 cc ohv single frame # 268654 engine # 269718
The Gilera Saturno was shown for the first time at the Milan show in 1938, the single unit engine designed by Guiseppe Salmaggi being a departure from the norm of the day; besides having clean lines most components were easily removable without taking the engine out of the frame. The main production ran from 1946 till 1958. In that period only about 6000 Saturnos were produced. Through the years of production four types were available: “Tourism”, “Sport”, “Competition” and “Race”.
The Saturno was equipped with a girder fork in conjunction with an unusual rear suspension. This was designed by Guiseppe Gilera in 1934 and it comprised vertical levers compressing horizontal springs enclosed in tubes integrated in the frame. The back of these tubes had another set of springs for rebound damping. A set of adjustable friction dampers was connected between the rear fork end and the back of the tubes containing the springs. This was quite a sophisticated design since most of the motorcycles of the time had no rear suspension whatsoever. The Saturno remained virtually unchanged until 1951, when the front forks became telescopic. In 1952 a new rear suspension system with a more modern swingarm and two telescopic dampers was introduced. The Saturno engine produces 22hp @ 5,000rpm which is good for a top speed of 135 km/h. This technologically advanced and good-looking Saturno has been restored and is all ready for the road.
For a comprehensive description of this thoroughbred Italian model you may visit: http://www.gilera-saturno.com