Wilier, or Wilier Triestina to give it its full name, is an Italian bicycle manufacturer. The company was founded in 1906, based on an idea by Pietro Dal Molin, a businessman from Bassano in Italy. His idea was to build bicycles his way and the company began life as a small workshop near the River Brenta, in Bassano del Grappa. In the inter-war period, Dal Molin’s son took over the business and focused on developing bicycles made from chromium and nickel-plating. Production increased and as demand for Wilier bicycles grew, so did the company’s profile and reputation. They are now one of Italy's oldest bicycle manufacturers.
After the Second World War, bicycles became an important mode of transport and Wilier used this to its advantage. The company specialised in road racing bicycles and still does today. Dal Molin set up a racing team. It was also around this time - August 1945 - that the name Triestina was added. The new brand was known for its trademark red / copper coloured bicycles and its reputation further developed when the team won the Giro d'Italia (Tour of Italy). Production grew enormously and soon the company was producing 200 bicycles a day and had 300 employees. In 1949, Wilier Triestina expanded into South America and local cyclists there continued the company’s winning streak.
In 1952, Wilier Triestina closed down due to a drop in sales. Motorised transport was becoming more and more popular. But the brand name was bought by a pair of Italian brothers from Rossano Veneto and today the company name lives on through their new range of bicycles.
Wilier Triestina started out as a company building road racing bicycles and still upholds this tradition today. Over the years, the company has provided equipment for many cyclists, most notably Fiorenzo Magni, who won the Giro d'Italia in 1947 and Marco Pantani in the late 1990s. Pantani rode for the Mercatone Uno team, sponsored by Wilier Triestina and broke the record for the fastest ascent of Alpe D'Huez. The company has also won every major European title in the cycling world.
Until recently Wilier Triestina sponsored Team Gerolsteiner and the company currently provides bikes for the Lampre racing team, also funded by the Italian company Lampre, who specialise in pre-coated steel production. The team’s most successful cyclist in recent years has been Daniele Bennati. However, as of 2008, Bennati is now riding for Liquigas, another Italian racing team, which is sponsored by Cannondale.
Wilier Triestina continue to develop a range of bikes of the very highest quality thanks to feedback from the riders in these teams.
Wilier Triestina use a number of specialist technologies to ensure the quality of their bicycles.
All Wilier Triestina bikes have carbon frames and feature the latest carbon monocoque technology. Monocoque technology means that the bikes are lighter and perform better. They are more compact and therefore can react better to changes in terrain. One direction carbon fibre technology is also used to give the frame a modern, technological appearance and an optimum weight.
Wilier frame testing
During production, Wilier Triestina bikes undergo certain tests. One of these is a stress test carried out on the carbon frames to guarantee their quality. A system of pressure and levers is used and this system also checks the frames in head set, bottom bracket and other areas, including the structure as a whole. Electronic measurements ensure consistency as well as determining that the bike meets all safety specifications.
Easy driver box system
This system ensures suitable resistance that adapts according to the varying road surfaces. This makes for improved safety and better performance.
High pression carbon fibre
High pression carbon fibres are used to produce the chain stays. The carbon is subjected to very high pressure, which gives a very compact material.
The Cyclo Cross range consists of just one bike – the Mortirolo Cross, which has a carbon monocoque frame and has been designed and developed by Wilier Triestina’s racing department.
The Izoard series is Wilier's most exciting new addition to its portfolio this season. Made from monocoque carbon, the bikes in this series have new curves and are the perfect racing bikes due to their stability and speed.
The Le Roi line is a range of Wilier’s original monocoque bikes. A carbon frame coated with metal chrome means that this bike is great for racing and uses modern technology while remaining unmistakably Wilier with its traditional copper colour and classic shape.
Wilier Triestina’s other road bikes include the Mirage and Cento series.
Various tests were involved in developing this range. These included dynamic tests on athletes at high-tech laboratories, which are also used by Harley Davidson. The tests determined the optimum solutions for equipment, position and biomechanics, which were then used to develop the Time Trial series of bicycles.
Tri and Time Trial
The Tri and Time Trial range of bikes consists of the Lavaredo Crono Centaur and the Lavaredo Crono Mirage. These are entry level bikes although their lightweight aero aluminium frame makes them suitable for triathletes of all levels as well as amateur time trial cyclists.
Women's Road Bike
Wilier Triestina produce just two bikes that are specifically designed for women and both are road bikes. The Mimosa Veloce is the female version of the Izoard and features a full carbon monocoque frame, while the Mortirolo Mirage has been adapted from the men’s bike with the same name.
Wilier Triestina launched the Cento line in 2006 to celebrate the company’s 100th anniversary. The Cento is a typical Wilier Triestina bicycle – it is high quality, features state of the art technology and is the ideal road racing bike.
The Cento line consists of the Cento Dura Ace and the Cento Record.
Wilier Triestina have also designed an extensive range of clothing for cyclists. The range includes everything a cyclist would need – from racing shirts and shorts for competitions to tops and trousers for training and a jacket for afterwards. It even features racing gloves, with a special design to celebrate the company’s 100th anniversary in 2006. All items come emblazoned with the name Wilier.
A limited selection of Wilier Triestina’s ex-demo bicycles and frames are also available on their website at much reduced prices.