Italian motorcycle brand Gilera finds its roots all the way back to 1909, in Arcore Italy. With a rich history in the world of racing, particularly in the 500cc class in the 1950s, Gilera’s success was rather short-lived, as it faced financial struggles and was eventually acquired by Piaggio in 1969. Under Piaggio’s wing, the brand had a second wind in the racing world, with notable wins from Manual Poggiali in 2001 and the legendary Marco Simoncelli in 2008.

Despite the brand’s success in racing, it wasn’t quite able to capitalize on the consumer market, and ended up producing a range of scooters and commuters that were marketed predominantly in the European market. Furthermore, the implementation of strict Euro 5 emissions regulations in 2021 saw the brand fall off the radar – that is, until now.

Rumors about a revival on the part of Gilera have been circulating for quite some time now. In fact, more than a year ago in March, 2022, we talked about Zongshen’s new 900cc engine, and a possible revival of the Gilera brand. That said, Dennis Chung from Motorcycle.Com managed to unearth some juicy info that pretty much solidifies the rebirth of the historic Italian brand. As it would turn out, Piaggio, the current owner of Gilera, and aforementioned Chinese company Zongshen, have a joint-venture in the from of Zongshen Piaggio Foshan Motorcycle Co. Ltd, which was established in 2004.

New GLR900 Could Hint At Gilera’s Return In China

This joint-venture, headquartered in China, of course, recently posted design filings of a brand new model dubbed the “GLR900.” This bike bears quite a lot of similarities with Aprilia’s now-discontinued Shiver naked streetfighter. In fact, based on the images of the design, the GLR900 is pretty much an identical copy of the Shiver, save for some bodywork changes in the form of the front cowl and headlight. The GLR900 also gets a small windscreen for extra wind protection.

In all honesty, the new GLR900 raises more questions than it does answers. For starters, does the purported GLR900 mean that Aprilia will also be relaunching the Shiver 900? Will the GLR900 be sold outside China? Now, the answer to these questions depends on quite a lot of factors. For starters, the previous 900cc Aprilia models were quietly discontinued, with Aprilia deciding not to update them for Euro 5 standards. Should the GLR900 still sport the same old 896cc engine, chances are it’ll never make its way to Europe.

Whatever the case may be, it’s more than likely that the GLR900, as well as the Gilera brand as a whole, will make its comeback in China before anywhere else in the world. The brand’s absence at EICMA 2023 is a clear sign that a European launch isn’t in the cards just yet.

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