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Bonneville's golden anniversary

Triumph produces special edition designs

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, May. 30, 2008
Triumph Motorcycles is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the iconic Bonneville.

The very first Triumph Bonneville, the T120, made its debut at the Earls Court Bike Show in 1958 before being commercially produced the following year.

Over the years, the Triumph Bonneville has become one of the British manufacturer’s best-loved bikes, becoming the motorcycle of choice for Hollywood legends such as Steve McQueen, James Dean and Marlon Brando.

To mark the Bonneville’s golden anniversary, Triumph worked with Hollywood actor Ewan McGregor and motorcycle fashion manufacturer Belstaff to produce two specially designed Bonnevilles.Ewan McGregor chose an eye-catching copper tank in his design.

A noted motorcycle enthusiast, McGregor created a design that pays tribute to McQueen.

“I wanted to use a traditional waxed cotton material as it has such a resonance with the history of style in motorcycling and mix it with the tradition of coppering tanks,” says McGregor. “I am a huge fan of Steve McQueen and his films from the 1960s, and the font that I have chosen for the Triumph logo harks back to that golden era of biking.

“This is such an exciting project for me – the Bonneville has to be the ultimate in iconic British motorcycles, so the chance to create my very own design and see it through to production is amazing.”The gold trim on the Belstaff-designed Triumph Bonneville accents the bike's shape.

McGregor’s specially designed Bonneville will be sold for auction with the proceeds going to UNICEF.

The Belstaff Bonneville features a black and gold color scheme, including a gold seat cowl and a black and gold pannier bag.

“Being at the cutting-edge of design for motorcycle fashion, it’s a privilege to be asked to produce a special anniversary Bonneville,” says Belstaff designer Michele Mallenotti. “The Bonneville’s enduring popularity over 50 years is an amazing achievement. The timeless style and shape of the Bonneville makes it a pleasure to work with.”

The British design company is also producing a limited edition biker-style jacket for the anniversary.