Indian Frame Info
Auto Products of India
Lambretta production started in India in the 1950's with Auto Products India (API) who had a licensing agreement with Innocenti. API's production began with Model D and LD scooters. Initially scooters were built from parts shipped in from Italy and assembled in India. However, as time went on the Indians moved into building the Series 1 Li 150 (4 pole) and then the Series 2 Li 150 (6 pole) and they began to manufacture their own parts and machines.
In 1973 after losing the right to use the Lambretta name, all Series 2 Li 150's built by API became Lamby 150's. Production of the Series 2 machine carried on until approximately 1992 when the last batches of machines were dispatched from the API factory. The Lamby 150 retained the 6 pole set up.
Interestingly, in the 1970's API produced their version of the Series 2 TV 175 and this was called the MAC 175S. These machines are very similar in looks, though the MAC has rounded side panels with no indents and no panel hanles. It also came equipped with a 120kph speedo.
Interesting Points to note:
All API machines came with single seats fitted.
The Series 2 Li 150's had speedos made under licence by Yenkay, Pricol and Rainbow. They display the API logo and are 100kph items.
Lamby Polo - produced as a design collaboration between API and the Japanese, the Polo was advertised as the Space Shuttle on two wheels. It had redesigned legshields, headset, sidepanels, horncast and other items and its engine came with 12 volt electrics.
Along with the Lamby 150, the last Lamby Polos were built and despatched in 1992
Scooters India Limited
Set up by the Indian Government in 1972, SIL undertook production of the GP range of machines during the 1970's, 80's and 90's. In the main thse machines are predominantly 150cc, with some 200's and very few 125 machines. In 1982 SIL produced their version of the 100cc CENTO though not many were built and production of them ceased in the same year.
The GP 150 had numerous names in India including; Vijai Super, Vijai Vulcan, Vijai Deluxe, Vijai Super (Mk 2), Vijai Super Grand Prix 150 and the Allwyn Pushpak. There are some differences between the Mk1 and Mk 2 machines.
Fixed front mudguard and 6 volt electrical system.
Turning front mudguard, indicators fitted (initially on stalks that were mounted under the headset, this changed on later models to indicators mounted on the legshields. They were also mounted on the sidepanels). The Mark 2 had a 12 volt set up.
Not really built for the Indian market as these were destined for export to Europe and the United States. Though some did end up in India. Essentially the scooter was the same as its Italian counterpart.
Very few of these machines were built. They were often simply modified GP 150's or were built partially from parts from the Innocenti factory.
SIL GP 125, 150 & 200's: When these machines were first produced the frame stampings remained almost as they had when the Italians built them. HOWEVER, whereas the Italian machines will have a DGM number after the frame number the Indian machines will not.
GP 125: Early SIL made GP 125's are stamped 22/1* and have frame numbers that started at 009. It is also important to note that later built GP 125's had the frame numbers preceded by a 2 digit number that denotes the country it was built for (this practice was also used on the GP 150 & 200 models).
GP 150: Early GP 150's were stamped 22/0* which was followed by the frame number. Later machines had the frame prefix, then a star then a 2 digit County identifier another star and then the frame number.
GP 200: Currently we have no information on what numbering sequence the GP 200's started at but they were stamped 22/2.
Later produced SIL frames were stamped (for example)as follows:
The 2 digit number after the frame number denotes the country that the scooter was built for. The countries being as follows:
|00 - not used
|09 - Thailand
|18 - Sri Lanka
|27 - Australia
|01 - USA
|10 - Iran
|19 - Nepal
|28 - South Yemen
|02 - UK
|11 - Japan
|20 - New Zealand
|29 - Bangladesh
|03 - Columbia
|12 - Pakistan
|21 - Egypt
|30 - Tawi Scooters Ltd
|04 - Singapore
|13 - Greece
|22 - Lucknow
|31 - Spain
|05 - Italy
|14 - Malaysia
|23 - Bihar
|32 - Sweden
|06 - Hong Kong
|15 - Indonesia
|24 - West Bengal
|33 - Belgium
|07 - West Germany
|16 - Mauritius
|25 - Kerala
|08 - Algeria
|17 - Switzerland
|26 - Syria
Laxmi 48 Autocycle
The Laxmi 48 Autocycle was produced by KGP Motors (Kirloskar-Ghatge Patil Motors), Kolhapur (Maharashtra) under license from Innocenti.
They still have a production plant in Kolhapur which now produces pistons & piston rings.
This story harks back to the pre independence era when rising India was striving for Swarajya from British rule. Hailing from Kolhapur in Maharashtra, it was during this period that the Ghatge family’s first generation of entrepreneurs struck a partnership with the Patil family in 1945.
Together they started a partnership firm for trading in spare parts and servicing vehicles in and around Kolhapur.
The headquarters of the present day business continues to remain at Kolhapur even today. As the Indian markets opened up and automobile manufacturing started in the country, this partnership firm bagged several sub-dealerships of Hindustan Motors, Mahindra & Mahindra and Massey Ferguson Tractors.
These turned out to be a stepping stone for acquiring the main dealerships for these companies along with the yesteryear Lambretta scooter. Additionally, auto component dealerships for Mico now Bosch, Lucas TVS, Cummins Engines and Exide Batteries also fell into their kitty.
The business thus grew from a small trading house to a big dealership network spread across south western Maharashtra and northern Karnataka with many outlets.
Split and consolidation of business
Thereafter the partners diversified into transportation of goods, auto component manufacturing and inter-city passenger bus operations with the second generation of the two families joining the family business.
In 1981, Satish Ghatge entered the business with his brother Mohan (currently Chairman of the Ghatge Group) following suit in 1983-84.
By 1990 the partnership firm split vertically with the two families –Patil and Ghatge dividing the business amicably. The automotive dealership chain went to the Patil family while logistics came to the Ghatge family.
The second generation of entrepreneurs then started consolidating the new verticals and in 1998 re-invested in the vehicle dealership business with Hyundai Motor India as its first customer. Mai Hyundai generated a revenue of Rs 3.02 crore within 5 months of 1998-99 growing to Rs 8.03 crore the subsequent year.
Later the family entered into the courier business as well.
Satish says that all the company dealerships except for Renault and Mercedes Benz that necessitated technical requirements to be filled while applying, was granted to them by the respective companies on invitation, as there were common acquaintances between them. TVS Motors is also one of their six existing customers.
In the meantime, in 2001 the Ghatge’s got the opportunity to represent Tata Commercial Vehicles in Kolhapur and with this the third generation also joined the family business.
Today Satish and his brother Mohan have taken over the corporate functions of the Group with an eye on identifying areas for fresh investments. The various business verticals are now run by different family members mostly from the third generation.
Laxmi Frame numbering: KGPV00****
Laxmi Engine numbering:
Pizzaz Frame numbering: BM-06305 = 1984
Pizzaz Engine numbering: BM-06442 = 1984