In 2010 I was in Spain to photograph at the Museu de la Moto in Bassella, a couple of hours drive into the mountains north west of Barcelona. Towards the end of the shoot I happened to find myself in the storage/workshop area and spotted a curious looking bike in the corner.
Closer inspection revealed a real gem – one of the handful (perhaps as few as six) of 200cc Coronats produced. Not that I knew the details then, I was just intrigued by the almost Art Deco lines of the bike.
You have to be fairly flexible in your approach to photographing collections as there are always numerous complications arising, so faced with such a unique bike I abandoned my plans to shoot a couple of Bultacos that were on display and set about cleaning the Coronat. An hour and a half later (such a glamorous life we photographers lead) I was ableto wheel it onto the backdrop.
The Coronat was designed and built by Jaume Liovera Morro in the town of Inca on the island of Majorca in 1955.
The standout feature of the design is way the entire engine/final drive unit pivots around the front down tube mounts.
A vertically mounted spring positioned behind the cylinder attempts to control the considerable sprung mass involved with this suspension system.
A bore & stroke of 62x66mm and a compression ratio of 6.5:1 produced a claimed 10hp – good for a top speed of 100kph and 2.7l/100km fuel consumption.
And that is about the sum total of what is known about the bike!
Interestingly the museum also has all the wooden moulds used in fabricating the sand-cast engine cases.
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