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The S.P.A Bicicletto.

The S.P.A Bicicletto from Alessandro Camorali.

Narrated by Alessandro himself.

In 2014, when we created the Bicicletto®. I was the CEO and Design Director at Nuova Società Piemontese Automobili, the same roles I currently hold at the CAMAL design center, founded in 2008.

Before explaining how and why this project was born, we need to explain the operation that gave birth to everything.

“Società Piemontese Automobili  (known as S.P.A) was a historic car maker born in Turin in 1906, specialized in the manufacturing of motorcycles at first, then of cars and work/military vehicles. The first motorcycles in Italy were called motor bicycles (“bicicletto a motore” in italian language) and it is precisely this definition that I was inspired by the creation of the ‘Bicicletto®’.

In 2014, with a shareholder, I founded the New SPA S.r.l. With the aim of bringing the historic brand back into life and creating products and vehicles with a philosophy and retro look but with technological contents.

When I had to think about what the first brand revival creation would be, I had no doubts, it had to be a two-wheeled vehicle with innovative contents.

The first idea was to build an electric motorcycle, a vehicle that was still in the early 2014 and a few builders had explored. We immediately noticed however that it would only be a style operation, as the electric vehicles were innovative did not represent a novelty in the market. Then my aim was to design a new segment, a vehicle that could be placed between the bicycle and the motorcycle.

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In the 80s Italy, Piaggio conceived the CIAO, a bicycle with a motor or a pedal motorcycle, depending on the points of view. That Piaggio product was the first idea that came to me as an example to start the project. Another point of start was the historical past of italian motorcycle’s style. I thought of the 50s italian motorcycle, created with unique frame body and streamlined volumes. Right now we call them as “Cafè racers”.

I thought of replacing the classic engine with an electric motor and immediately the object we were talking about was proven to be an ebike.

The aim of the project was to create a better vehicle than any commercial ebike and to have the qualities and treatments typical to that of the motorcycle world. So thanks to my decade of experience in the creating sports cars, I started replacing the classic materials used in the automotive world and began to deal with volumes as if it was a luxury car.

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From now on I thought it would become something new, it was not a bicycle and it was not a motorbike it was just the first of its kind, the Bicicletto®.

Materials such as the carbon fibre monocoque for the chassis or the preformed texture fake tank, are material innovations for a product in this segment. I decided to take care of every detail, there should not be any screw or bolt to see, so each shell or fix was covered with covers or engravings.

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Each piece was thought of as an art work, such as the front light – a lantern that could be unlocked and used as a torch. The SPA symbol was also a touch sensor for powering up the entire electrical system.

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The attention to details is similar to that of a luxury car and the materials are the same as ones used in sports cars. Its weight of 17 kg is the best of the ebike category and when it was presented at the Milan Motor Bike show EICMA 2014, it was observed and accepted enthusiastically by many. The Bicicletto® could also be configured as a pedelec (using an assisted pedal) or as a moped (with accelerator and no pedals)

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My first goal was not to engage in pure style exercise but to show everyone that even a high-tech object can be beautiful. Even the future can thrilling as the past.

My idea was to create a new means for the future. A future where transportation will be more and more unitary and where physical movement can be combined with renewable energies. My thoughts were to bring objects and vehicles to suit man, without too much in terms of size or material, but to look for what will actually prove Practical to tomorrow’s man. The trend today is to build ever larger cars despite man not following the same scale in terms of proportions. The same happens with motorcycles or scooters, but by observing the past and taking care of our future we can more effectively utilize the resources of our planet without losing the creativity and beauty that characterizes the human being.

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Alessandro Camorali is the Founder and Design Director of the CAMAL Design Center, Turin.

www.camalstudio.com

 

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