BSA Bantam

The original design of the BSA Bantam came from a German design, the DKW RT 125 that was received as part of war reparations. This fact was not made widely known until long after the demise of BSA and for many years the Bantam was thought by many to be a 'truly British' lightweight motorcycle despite the original DKW design being taken up by two other manufacturers - Harley Davidson for one. The BSA Bantam designers converted the design to meet British conventions - creating a mirror image - and into Imperial measurements for manufacture in Birmingham. This original BSA Bantam, the D1, would continue to be produced for several years. Subsequent members of the Bantam range differed markedly in frame but their engine was a development of the original. The first Bantams were available only in all-over "mist green", and sold for 60 plus tax. Later models changed distinctly from the original; over the years it gained improved suspension including a rear swinging arm, electrics and the engine size increased from 125 to 175 cc.


Photo from kind permission of the Motorbike Search Engine

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