Sidecars riding the retro wave

Watsonian report sustained demand for classic sidecar designs, as customers in the UK and overseas continue to embrace the culture of vintage fashion and artisan craftsmanship.

Two recent examples to roll out of the company’s Cotswold factory show the diversity of machines that owners fit sidecars to; a 1200cc Triumph Bobber Black and 300cc Vespa GTS.

Both feature the popular Prescott body shell, based on a design dating back to 1946, originally made using surplus RAF Mosquito reserve fuel tanks. These days Watsonian use fibreglass for all bodywork, offered in a choice of white or black gel coat finishes as standard, with the option to specify a wide variety of alternative colours.

The choice of chassis depends on the vehicle to which the sidecar is attached – the Bobber has the traditional perimeter frame, introduced in the 1950s – whereas the scooter uses a lighter platform chassis. Both are made from 1.5″ tubular steel, powder-coated for durability and fitted with hydraulic suspension.

Customers can choose from a menu of components, such as wheels, mudguards and lights, a big plus point now that the customising scene is so big. The Triumph Bobber Black, for example, has a 16″ spoked wheel, with black hub and wheel rim, Triumph Bobber front guard for a mudguard, LED lighting and a genuine leather seat.

Meanwhile the version fitted to a Vespa GTS300 features a fold-down screen mounted on a cast aluminium bar, Vespa front wheel on the sidecar, classic mudguard and vinyl sticker kit.

Visit the Prescott model page for more information.