I was happy to learn last week that Norton Motorcycles have begun customer deliveries of the new Norton Commando 961 model. There had been some concern that the bikes weren’t ever going to ship due to financial issues but it now appears that, in true British style, they’ve hunkered down through the tough times and made it through. With a cup of tea in one hand and a biscuit in the other.
Clint Eastwood was well known for his love of cars and motorcycles in the ’60s and ’70s, he especially loved British marques like Jaguar, Austim Healy and motorcycle marque Norton.
The Norton Commando is easily one of the most famous motorcycles ever made, even people who know nothing about bikes will know the name and will probably mention the words “British”, “Café Racer”, “Vintage” and “Fast” in conjunction with the marque.
This 12 minute short film has no spoken dialog, instead it employs clever visual cues to tell a story. It takes place in London and follows a leather clad racer on his 1968 Norton Commando.
The 70’s were an iconic time to be an advertising man, political correctness was unheard of and all that was needed for a successful advertising campaign was a product with women on, in, under or around it. Or all of the above.
This bike is, without question, my personal favourite build yet from The Wrenchmonkees. Based on a Norton Commando the minimalist, industrial style appeals to me. Probably because it looks exactly like a stripped down racer you’d have seen parked en masse outside the 59 Club in the 1960s.
You know you’re a motorcyclist when you look at a picture like this and your first thought is “Goddamn it she isn’t wearing appropriate safety gear”.