Born in Spain in 1912, Giovanni Parrilla built his first motorcycle in 1946, dropping his surname’s second ‘r’ to call the machine a Parilla. Parrilla ran a business on the outskirts of Milan repairing diesel injector pumps and was also a distributor for Bosch spark plugs. Although influenced by the Manx Norton, the first Parilla motorcycle – a 250cc OHC single-cylinder racer – was a more modern design with unit construction and geared primary drive. Production of road and race Parillas began in 1947 and later that year a twin-cam Bialbero racer appeared.
Although small capacity 2-stroke powered machines were Parilla’s bread and butter, it was the 4-stroke machines that most enhanced the company’s reputation, both and Italy and in the US where Parillas achieved much success in the club racing scene, both on tarmac and in off-road scrambles.
Based on a single-cylinder 4-stroke Parilla 175 Speciale, the machine offered here is a one-off handbuilt special, modified in period with a bigger cylinder head along with many other changes necessary for off-road competition. It was raced in the Italian MX championship and owned by the rider’s family until six years ago, when it was purchased by the current owner. In original, unrestored condition, this bike oozes history and enthusiast passion.