Morini (Moto) - GP
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Morini (Moto) D2-492-19-04
Photo ou archives : F-M. Dumas

Capacity : 125
Model : GP
Production : 1949 - 1952
Category : (R) Racing


125 GP - 1952

Fast but quickly outdated

Alfonso Morini was a first-class rider who knew what it took to make a good racing bike. In 1949, he developed the 125cc Morini, which was an instant challenger for the twin-cam MV Agustas and Mondials that dominated the category. In the Morini's first season, Masetti became Italian champion and Magi finished second in the world championship, an encouraging result for this single-cam machine.

Lack of Finance

In 1950 and 51, however, only second-rank riders were in the works team, and they failed when faced with such giants as Carlo Ubbiali and Gianni Leoni. The factory lacked the finances to sign well-known riders and had to find a talented unknown among the up-and-coming young Italians. It seemed that Emilio Mendogni was the answer. Iris Morini won the last two Grand Prix of 1952, in Spain and Italy, against the best in his class, and the coming season was awaited with impatience.

NSU Rules the Roost

Sadly, 1953 saw the arrival in strength of NSU with a new rising star, Werner Haas, in the category. Even the MVs and Mondials received a drubbing, and the best result that Mendogni could achieve was a second place in Italy. Discouraged, the little Morini works decided to cut its losses at the end of the season. It lacked the funds to revitalize its 125, whose girder fork and double-cradle frame had become outdated. In the future, Morini concentrated on the larger-capacity classes, in which it achieved some brilliant results.


Engine: 123cc (52x58mm) air-cooled single-cylinder four-stroke; dry-sump lubrication

Power Rating: 16 hp@ 9500 rpm

Valves: single overhead camshaft

Fuel System: carburetor

Transmission: 4-speecl; chain final drive

Suspension: girder forks (front); swinging fork (rear)

Brakes: drum (front & rear)

Wheels: 4.00x21 inch (front & rear)

Weight: 176 lb

Maximum Speed: 100 mph

Powered by an excellent engine, the Morini never lived up to its early promise as the little factory lacked the necessary finances to hire top riders.

Motorcycle encyclopedia Moto Passion, realised by François-Marie Dumas, include almost 2000 photos presented with an exhaustive history of the motorcycles exhibited.

This unique collection has been realised with the participation of many specialists. With many thanks in particular to Yves Campion, Michael Dregni, Didier Ganneau, Jean Goyard, Helmut Krackowizer, Michel Montange, Christian Rey, Bernard Salvat, Mick Woollett, etc

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