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Norton Motorcycles goes into administration!

  Brumas 23:00 29 Jan 2020

I am not a motor cyclist but I do appreciate them, especially the older models, so I am really sorry to see them go to the wall.

Growing up I can remember my older brother had two Norton Dominators, one in pieces and one he rode to work. I can remember pestering him for ages, I must have been around eight years old, for a ride on the pillion. Mum, of course forbade it, which made it all the more exciting when it actually happened however I wish I hadn't nagged him so much because, when it did actually happen ,I was petrified and couldn't wait for him to turn for home! He admitted to me years later he deliberately went fast so as to put me off asking again!

  qwbos 00:23 30 Jan 2020


My only motorcycling experience was at a very early age on the tank of my grandfather's Aerial, then later, when as a student, I'd hide in a bus queue to try and avoid becoming a pillion passenger on a friends Honda 50. Every time he went up a gear, I felt I was going to drop off the back!

I've always enjoyed watching MotoGP and World and British Superbikes. Far better racing than you'll ever see on 4 wheels. Road racing, especially The Isle of Man TT, makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up. Brave or mad?

If you're into the older models, Henry Cole & Sam Lovegrove's programmes make excellent viewing.

I suspect Norton will make a comeback in some form. [MCN article ]1

  Quickbeam 06:44 30 Jan 2020

They've been into administration a half dozen times over the century or so since the original company was set up, the first time around the great depression time. The name will reappear again, like Mini and Jaguar the Norton name is synonymous as a marque with being one of the best in Britain.

I had a couple of Norton singles in the '70s. I always preferred the basicness of singles over any of the Jap multies I had, I also had a single cylinder JAP speedway methanol burner bike too that I used for 1/4 mile sprinting and hill climbing. Motorbikes should be basic but fun.

  john bunyan 10:28 30 Jan 2020

I took my car and motorcycle tests in the same week in 1956 whilst on leave in RM awaiting deployment to operations. I have retained my full m/c licence, but have not owned one for years. I remember the Norton Dominator well . Triumph is another I remember . A pity that yet another iconic name might disappear .

  Quickbeam 10:32 30 Jan 2020

It wont disappear, the name still carries big kudos for anyone looking to make high end motorbikes.

Maybe not next week, or next year, but it'll reappear just like MG or Aston Martin.

  Brumas 17:32 31 Jan 2020

mrgrumpy, I totally agree with you.

  Quickbeam 21:13 11 Mar 2020
  Brumas 21:38 11 Mar 2020

Quickbeam, thanks for the link old pal - that's really good news.

  Quickbeam 06:27 12 Mar 2020

Norton are a marque that's desirable to those that invest.

They're the motorbike equivalent of Aston Martin with a long history of competition and top end consumer desirability.

  Quickbeam 06:55 12 Mar 2020

'twas the fabled Manx Norton's of the postwar years that cemented Norton's place in motorcycle history.

The then superior Reynolds framed handling saw the prewar designed 500 single able to compete and win against all the might of the Italian multi cylinder marques including the Moto Guzzi V8 in the mid '50s that reved to 18,000 rpm, could touch 180 mph but handled like a donkey!

  qwbos 00:56 13 Mar 2020

125000 rpm in the video - a bit optimistic - should be 12000 rpm.

MCN and BIKEEXIF give a more accurate account. Donkey?

The engine design was way ahead of it's time but must have been a pig to get set up and running with 8 carburettors. Screwdrivers, spanners and rapidly failing hearing rather than the laptop you see nowadays. The power was too much for the tyres and suspension available at the time. Given the materials, machine tools and lubricants available in the early 50s, it's a miracle the engines didn't grenade.

The tyre problem is the same in current MotoGP, only now, tyre performance is limited for safety.

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