Leopoldo Tartarini was the founder of Italjet, the small but highly innovative Italian manufacturer he established in 1960.
During its 44 years of existence, Italjet developed more than 150 different imaginatively designed motorcycle and scooter models, most of them personally created by Tartarini, in between running the company.
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In addition he undertook consultancy work for more than a decade with Ducati, for whom in addition to the Mk. 3 singles, 750cc Sport and 900cc Darmah V-twins, and the 350/500cc parallel-twin range, Tartarini produced the most iconic desmo V-twin motorcycle to emerge from the factory located the other side of Bologna from the Italjet plant in the suburb of San Lazzaro di Savena.
Namely the green-frame 750SS race replica street version of Paul Smart’s 1972 Imola 200-winning factory racer. This became the most notable of many desmo V-twin models whose attention-grabbing looks he was entirely responsible for creating.
Read more in January’s edition of TCM