F.B. Mondial had its origins with the F.B. company (Fratelli Boselli / Boselli Brothers) founded in 1929 by Giuseppe Boselli – who was earlier involved with GD and CM motorcycle companies, together with his three brothers.
They manufactured three-wheeled delivery vehicles up until the factory was destroyed in WWII. In 1948 Giuseppe purchased an advanced DOHC 125cc single designed by Alfonso Drusiani and soon after hired him to run the new racing department.
Drusiani’s design was to prove quite a milestone in the small capacity class.
Prior to the war (and in its immediate aftermath) two-strokes from manufacturers such as DKW, MV Agusta and Morini dominated the class; so the appearance of DOHC (Bialbero) motor from a “truck” company certainly caused a stir!
The bike had actually debuted at the previous year’s Italian GP, held at Faenza, ridden by former Italian 500cc champion Francesco Lama. He set the fastest lap before retiring with a mechanical fault.
1949 was the inaugural year of the FIM World Championships and Mondial’s rider Nello Pagani won the 125 class with two wins and a 5th place (only three rounds run).
1950 saw the top three places in the championship go to Mondial riders – Bruno Ruffo, Gianni Leoni and Calo Ubbiali, all with a win apiece.
1951 saw a repeat performance, this time with Ubbiali followed by Gianni Leoni and Cromie McCandless. Six of the top ten places went to Mondial riders. Ubbiali followed up with second place in the 1952 championship.
The bike seen here is one of only three 125 Bialbero GP bikes known to exist and is thought to be Ubbiali’s 1951 machine (also his mount in ’52). It is in original, unrestored condition.
The Mondial 125 Bialbero GP racer produced 12hp at 9000rpm and was good for a top speed over 130km/h.
A bizarre court battle is looming between a Taiwan company that owns Italian motorcycle brand FB Mondial and a Brit who changed his name to his Italian roots and is developing a V5 MondialMoto (pictured).
Mondial is one of many former brands now owned by companies in non-original countries. For example, British BSA and Czech Jawa are now owned by Indian Eicher Motors and Bimota and Benelli are owned by a Chinese company.
In 2009, while there was no activity with the Mondial brand, lawyer Matteo Tiezzi in Modena, Italy, registered MondialMoto 2007 SRL and listed the new corporate logo online.
Last year, MondialMoto announced it would manufacture the first road-going V5 Superbike.
In January 2019, the lawyers of FB Mondial accused MondialMoto 2007 SRL of copying their logo and brand.
They demanded MondialMoto relinquish the intellectual property rights to the V5 and pay “3% of all monies that MondialMoto 2007 SRL holds in its bank account”.
FB Mondial also called for MondialMoto director Antonio Matarollo to be arrested for using a fictitious name.
He had changed his name by deed poll last year, taking his grandfather’s Christian name and his Italian mother’s maiden surname. He claims he qualifies to become an Italian citizen.
Antonio also says that in all their media and website they “clearly state that we are not associated with FB Mondial”.
“We do not want to be associated with this company and our company logo has no similarity to the FB Mondial logo,” Antonio says.
We contacted FB Mondial for comment but they said their lawyers instructed them that, “due to pending judicial reviews, we are not able to answer your very specific questions”.
“On the other hand we can confirm you what has been already assessed and recognised in court, which is: The only companies who have title to use the Mondial brand name are Mondial Moto SRL, owner of the brand, and Pelpi International, as exclusive licensee.”
Their website includes this disclaimer at the bottom of their homepage:
This is the only official site of F.B Mondial / Mondial Moto. We are not responsible for what else can be found on the internet. We take legal action to combat and prevent any illegal use of our brand. F.B Mondial / Mondial Moto has never asked for money via the Internet and / or e-mail to visitors and users of its site. Be wary of any such request coming from self-styled representatives of our famous brand.
Antonio says “mondial” means worldwide in French and is “widespread in the motorcycling world”.
“For example, in France, there is a manufacturer called Mondial Scooters and in Turkey there is a company called Mondial Motorcycles who have been in business for over 35 years.
“And like FB Mondial these are all very low volume companies compared to those of Mass production motorcycles like Honda.
“To my knowledge these companies have not been served with similar legal papers.”
Antonio says a search with Companies House reveals that their UK company is legal.
The bizarre legal challenge has “stunted” the production of two MondialMoto V5 motorcycle prototypes for the EICMA Motorcycle Show in Milan this November.
However, Antonio says they are still committed to producing the world’s first road-going 1000cc V5 superbike.
“We will defend this action with a counterclaim against FB Mondial and we have retained legal representation in Italy,” he says.