Norton Offroad 500T, 500 cc (1949)
The Norton Motorcycle Company (formerly Norton Motors, Ltd.) is a brand of motorcycles headquartered in Solihull, West Midlands, (originally based in Birmingham), England. For some years around 1990, the rights to use the name on motorcycles was owned by North American financiers.
The business was founded in 1898 as a manufacturer of “fittings and parts for the two-wheel trade”. By 1902 the company had begun manufacturing motorcycles with bought-in engines. In 1908 a Norton-built engine was added to the range. This began a long series of production of single and eventually twin-cylinder motorcycles, and a long history of racing involvement. During the Second World War Norton produced almost 100,000 of the military Model 16 H and Big 4 sidevalve motorcycles.
Associated Motor Cycles bought the company in 1953. It was reformed as Norton-Villiers, part of Manganese Bronze Holdings, in 1966, and merged with BSA to form Norton Villiers Triumph in 1972.
In late 2008, Stuart Garner, a UK businessman, bought the rights to Norton from some US concerns and relaunched Norton in its then-new Midlands home at Donington Park where it was to develop the 961cc Norton Commando and a new range of Norton motorcycles.
The company went into administration in January 2020. In April 2020, administrators BDO agreed to sell certain aspects of Garner’s business to a new business with links to Indian motorcycle producer TVS Motor Company.