IAs with many brand names in the motorcycle world the roots of the project are usually associated with the enthusiasm and passion of riders and this was no different with SWM motorcycles. Piero Sironi and Fausto Vergani were Italian and passionate about producing their own motorcycles. They founded Speedy Working Motors in Milan, Italy in 1971. They started to make a name in the fast exciting world of enduro and wanted to add another model range to the brand and moved into the trials world in 1977. This story would witness some very interesting twists and turns and would take them to the heights of World Championship winners before the
introduction of the mono-shock trials machines would put the final nail in the coffin for SWM. It’s common knowledge that Italian people have a passion for anything they become involved with and the world of motorcycle trials is no different. In a changing world where brands can become overnight sensations they
can also disappear just as quick. In the case of the SWM badge the dream lasted from 1971 until 1984. Words: John Hulme • Pictures: Andy Gregory, Eric Kitchen, Toon van de Vliet, Mauri/Fontsere Collection and the Giulio Mauri Copyright, Nick Nicholls Collection at Mortons Archive’, Yoomee Archive, SWM, Iain Lawrie n the crazy street world of Italy the young kids would start their two wheeled adventures at a very young age on mopeds and the great Valentino Rossi was no different! It was on the street where the SWM story would come to life when Piero Sironi and Fausto Vergani started manufacturing and selling mopeds and small engine capacity Sachs engine motorcycles. Soon they would move towards the off-road market with a range of enduro machines.
The reputation was soon becoming evident that the quality of engineering and finish on the SWM machines was bringing them racing success. It was an exciting time in the off-road world as Italy joined the ‘boom’ time including Fantic and Garelli but it would be the SWM name which would lead the way.
1978: Production at full speed in the factory near Milan Italy
1978: The first production 320TL