Classic Bike Guide

Model 20 (Matchless G9)


498cc (66 x 72.8mm} ohv twin || 410lb || 60mpg || 90mph || 1948-61

AMC’s twins are unusual in remaining reasonably priced among British twins for reasons that are unfathomab­le. The engines are unusual in having a third main bearing between the cylinders, and separate barrels and cylinder heads. Not especially sporty, these were twins for the everyman. The engine is a clean design, with no external oil plumbing to spoil the lines and leak lubricant, apart from the pipes from the tank. The twins all had rear suspension with AMC’s own Jampot design, replaced by Girling units in the late 1950s. The switch from a Burman gearbox to one of AMC’s own occurred in 1956. That gearbox was ultimately found to be strong enough to handle the power of the 850 Norton. This is a good and reliable, if conservati­ve, motorcycle. Late ones are rare and very good, with alternator electrics and excellent duplex frames.

Prices: low £3000 || high £4500

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