Founded in Pesaro in 1911, the Benelli Garage originally repaired bicycles and motorcycles, but the firm also became increasingly capable of producing many of the spares required for the repairs. The first Benelli motorcycle of 1919 had a 75cc two-stroke motor bolted into a bicycle frame, but two years later Benelli built its first complete motorcycle using its own 98cc engine. Two years after that Antonio (aka ‘Tonino the Terrible’), the youngest of the six Benelli brothers, took to the track on a competition version. He displayed exceptional talent and embarked on a successful racing career which helped promote the company’s engineering and manufacturing capabilities.
Following the sales and competition success of its 175cc model, in 1936 the firm introduced a more powerful 250cc machine. The Benelli 250 TN (Tourism Normal) sold well, and sales were further boosted by an M37 military version used by the Italian army.
The 250 TN’s engine is a 246cc 4-stroke single with a 3-speed gearbox, while the frame is tubular steel double-cradle design, with parallelogram front suspension and a rigid rear end. However, the rare ‘Elastico’ version, as offered here, has a rear swing arm with shock absorbers.
This unrestored example is in lovely original condition having resided in the same collection in Italy for the past 40 years. It comes with a bill of sale.