And Moto Guzzi Invented the Swingarm.
Moto Guzzi has a venerable history of technological firsts. Many of the components now used on the majority of today's motorcycles were introduced for the first time in the historic Guzzi factory on the Lariano mountains. This was the case, for example, with the rear suspension with swingarm - also the origin of a legendary motorcycle raid in which Giuseppe Guzzi, the founder's brother and production engineer, played a leading role. In 1928, long-distance excursions were hampered by a serious technical flaw - the lack of rear suspension. The alternatives used until then were not able to maintain the frame under correct torsional rigidity and what was gained in comfort was lost in lack of handling. The inventiveness of the Guzzi brothers created an elastic frame with a sheet steel box enclosing four springs, together with a swingarm in tubes and sheet metal which they then used on the G.T. It was also the embryo of the first modern rear suspension and the basis for the first genuine Gran Turismo motorcycle. Original in everything, the Guzzi Brothers chose a highly particular test - a 4,000 mile journey from Mandello del Lario to Lapland in northern Norway, inside the Arctic Circle. A monumental enterprise, considering the disastrous condition of European roads at that time. But in four weeks, Giuseppe reached his destination. The elastic frame with rear suspension was so successful that it was introduced in production machines and the G.T. was named "Norge" in memory of that unprecedented feat. This is why Moto Guzzi decided to name the first "Gran Turismo" of the new era the "Norge".