pl en
Your web browser is too old or does not support JavaScript. This page will not display as intended.

The Ducati Cucciolo was a 4-stroke clip-on engine conceived during and shortly after World War II by a Turin lawyer, Aldo Farinelli, and developed with a self-taught engineer, Aldo Leoni.


Cucciolo history (based on Wikipedia and articles)

[img] During the war, Aldo Farinelli began working with the small Turinese firm Siata (Societa Italiana per Applicazioni Tecniche Auto-Aviatorie) with the idea of developing a small engine that could be mounted on a bicycle. Farinelli’s and Leone’s first prototype was running on the streets of Turin in Autumn of 1944. The yapping sound of the engine's short stubby exhaust inspired the name Cucciolo ("little puppy") for the motor. Weighing a little over 17 pounds (7.7 kg) and giving 180 miles per US gallon (77 km/l) when installed in a bicycle.

[img] „Immediately after the armistice, Farinelli secretly began - against Government directives - to design a small-displacement auxiliary motor to be applied, without major conversions, to the frame of an ordinary bicycle. He understood the need for a small, simple and reliable means of transportation, suitable for meeting the need for mobility that would arise at the end of the conflict. The extremely difficult economic conditions would not allow many people to purchase a costly vehicle, not just in terms of price but also the difficulty of obtaining fuel: thus the essential aim was to ensure the lowest possible fuel consumption. This feature could be achieved only by a small, four-stroke motor, capable of adapting to various types of fuel thanks to its low compression ratio. Compared to the competition, the Cucciolo was more powerful and got better mileage: 100 km to the liter in ideal conditions...” (from

[img] On July 26, barely one month after the official liberation of the country, Siata announced their intention to sell Cucciolo engines to the public. It was the first new automotive design to appear in postwar Europe. Some businessmen bought the little engines in quantity and installed them in frames, thus offering for sale the first complete units. Soon demand outstripped the limited production capabilities, so Siata found a manufacting partner in Borgo Panigale, near Bologna: Ducati. It was a well-known name in electronics and appliances. The Second World War was extremely hard on Ducati: the Borgo Panigale factories were razed to the ground in 1944. In the post-war torn Italy, Ducati was seeking new opportunities to employ its workers and facilities, so a licensing agreement with Siata was reached. Production rose from 15 units in 1946 to over 25,000 in the following years, when Ducati reached an exclusive agreement for the production.

[img] In 1952, with 200,000 Cucciolos already sold, Ducati finally offered its own complete moped based on the successful little pull rod engine, the model 48 (produced until 1954) and model 55E and 55R. The following models were becoming more and more real motorcycles, with pressed-steel frames. The engine capacity grew to 60cc (models Ducati 60 and Ducati 60 Sport) and finally to 65cc (65 Sport, 65T, 65TL and 65TS). The Cucciolo engine was gradually replaced by the 98 model line which started in 1952 and its production ended when the 65 line was dropped in 1958.

[thumb:img_6.jpg] [thumb:img_7.jpg] [thumb:img_8.jpg] [thumb:img_9.jpg]