Recently, many old school Italian bike brands such as Battaglin, Torelli, and Tommasini have either been reborn or made popular again by cycling enthusiasts. Benotto, first started in 1931 and ridden by many of the cycling greats, including Eddy Merckx, Greg Lemond, Ole Ritter, and Rebecca Twigg, is now making a comeback in the USA.
Benotto America launched in back in May and will focus first on delivering comfortable commuter bikes. While still paying homage to their original heritage in racing, Benotto America now mainly wants to see people enjoy cycling and get out more.
The Benotto America collection features the classic style cruisers as well as more artistic and fun styles such as vintage floral and plaid. Much as an Italian would not be caught dead wearing the same outfit as another, each of the more artistic bikes will be limited edition pieces to ensure you won't be caught riding the same bike as other commuters.
The Torino 7 step through city bike (pictured above) features a lightweight alloy frame and parts coupled with Shimano 7 speed drivetrain. The Vintage Floral pattern on this practical cruiser model takes you where you need to go in style. The Torino 7 retails for $435.
The Cortina line, named for the Dolomites region of Northern Italy, offers trekking style models for an upright comfortable ride. The Cortina 21 commuter bike features a lightweight aluminum frame and 21 gear Shimano drivetrain that can handle even the toughest hills. The Cortina 21 retails for $399.
The Benotto America bikes are sold through independent retailers so inquire with your local bike shop as to availability. What are some of your favorite old school Italian bike brands?