1947

Cinelli is founded by ex-professional cyclist and Milano – San Remo winner Cino Cinelli

1960

At the Rome Olympics Cino Cinelli introduces the product which will become most strongly associated with the brand’s name: the aluminum 1A stem and its accompanying series of handlebars. The stem was first appreciated for its superior safety: unlike any other stem on the market it did not use a simple nut and bolt to tighten the handlebars nut a proprietary tube and bolt system which, when used with Cinelli bars allowed for perfectly parallel closure, avoiding the problem of “pinched” bars.

Both bars and handlebars were subject to an elegant finishing process which gave the aluminium products their distinctive “milky” appearance. The complexity and high cost of the process meant it was both easy to distinguish from the competition and almost impossible to imitate. The “milky” anodization became a guarantee of quality. These products are the first true Cinelli icons.

Viktor Kapitonov wins gold medal at Olympic Road Race aboard a Cinelli Supercorsa frame. No more than 200 Supercorsa frames were built each year. Such was the reputation of the Supercorsa that in an Olympic year it was impossible to fill a single customer order, all production being destined instead for Olympic use. The frames, designed by Cino Cinelli at his most philosophical, were built by Luigi Valsassina.

Cinelli develops the world’s first plastic cycling saddle, the Unicanitor. It will soon render leather saddles obsolete and become the basis of all modern racing saddles. It is used by all the great champions of the day including Eddy Mercks and Felice Gimondi.

1968

Ole Ritter sets hour record on a Cinelli Supercorsa (painted with the colours of his sponsor, Benotto). This is the first time an hour record is set on a Cinelli bike. The second time will come 17 years later.

1978

Antonio Colombo, founder of Columbus tubing, acquires Cinelli from Cino.

1979

Colombo commissions new logo from Italo Lupi, then a young architect but who will go on to design logos for Prada, Fiorucci and the Turin Olympics amongst others. The logo is one of the first to distance itself entirely from the heraldic symbol and becomes the most imitated logo of the modern cycling era.

Cinelli releases CMX, the lightest BMX on the market. Tig welded with sheet metal reinforcements by Andrea Pesenti these experimental construction techniques will lead directly to the development of the legendary Laser.

1980

Cinelli begins its collaboration with the design supergroup Alchimia, composed of Alessandro Mendini, Alessandro Guerriero and Carla Ceccariglia. Over the following years Alchimia will design a Supercorsa, mountain bike, bar tape, catalogue and entire clothing system for the brand.

1981

Cinelli opens Gran Ciclismo, Italy’s first lifestyle cycling store which sells not only Cinelli but is the first to introduce to the Italian market exotic, more lifestyle orientated imports, such as Oakley sunglasses and Patagonia outdoor clothing. Its impeccable interiors are designed by Franco Raggi with lighting by Castiglioni. Clients include Sir Norman Foster and Eric Clapton.

Cinelli presents to the world its first Laser, the aerodynamic bicycle concept it has developed to challenge the speed records which obsessed the cycling world at the time, from the hour record to the 1 km to the 100 km team time trial.  Only 300 of these frames would be produced over the following ten years (over 100 of which for professional athletes on the request of national federations)…

1983

Cinelli releases a limited-edition Supercorsa model in collaboration with Fornasetti.

1984

Cinelli patents the “Spoiler”, an investment cast bottom bracket shell which thanks to its unusual form, collaborates with the air to suck humidity from the shell. The invention is used not only on Cinelli’s bicycles but across the world by prestigious framebuilders.

1985

Cinelli introduces the Rampichino, Europe’s first ever mountain bike. Over the following years Cinelli will become Italy’s market leader of mountain bikes.

1986

Antonio Colombo meets a young Keith Haring who is in Milan to paint the new Fiorucci store. They become friends and Colombo sends him an orange mountain bike which Haring rides constantly in downtown New York, as well as a Laser pursuit frame. Four years later Haring tells Colombo to come to New York, to his studio, to pick up the Laser. Colombo arrives in the studio and sees that Haring has painted a beautiful series of interconnected figures on either side of the disc wheels on the bike as well as a small crawling baby on the non-drive side downtube. The bike becomes a symbol of everything the company represents.

1991

The Laser Evoluzione wins the Compasso d’Oro, the highest accolade possible in the world of design.

1993

Release of the Grammo stem. Made from three different leagues of titanium and weighing only 110 g, it remains the lightest production quill stem in cycling history.

That same year Lance Armstrong wins the world championships using the product.

1994

Antonio Colombo baptizes the up until then nameless range of custom hybrid urban-endurance all black Cinelli bikes he has been selling through his Gran Ciclismo stores with the name Bootleg. These bikes, ridden through the desert, across America, at night, through traffic and Maui’s ironman competition, with their strong urban subculture flavor, are direct predecessors of Cinelli’s participation in the urban fixed gear movement.

The project’s graphic identity has developed together with the artist Alessandro Pessoli, whose work today is collected by the MOMA of New York, amongst others.

1995

First introduction of Spinaci bar extensions. Described by Bicycling Magazine as the “only change in the rider’s position worth noting in the last ten years” the extensions are an astonishing success, reaching sales of 20 000 pairs a month as well as being bought and ridden by unsponsored professional teams. Their success is cut short by a controversial, highly contested, UCI ban in 1997.

1998

Launch of the Alter stem, the most extreme example of CNC machining available on the market. The hollowed-out oversized shape allows for aggressively large logos and customization in the form of stem covers. Mario Cipolini wins a stage of the Giro d’Italia with a custom Pamela Anderson cover on his Alter stem.

1999

Lance Armstrong wins the Tour de France riding the Cinelli 101 stem. This is the last time in cycling history that a major race will be won using a quill stem.

Cinelli enters the Italian Design Dictionary (Dizionario del Design Italiano) alongside Ferrari, Alessi and Vespa.

2001

Launch of RAM, the world’s first single piece carbon fibre integrated handle bar and stem. The product is an immediate success, particularly with professional riders and will be much imitated in years to come.

Gilberto Simoni wins the 2003 Giro d’Italia with the bars. He claims that the stiffness and increased tactility offered to him by RAM has allowed to understand his bike better and accordingly ride more aggressively.

2006

Cinelli launches the Vigorelli, a new, simple, all purpose, performance aluminium track frame. The frame, which today, more than a decade later remains in production almost unchanged, becomes an icon of the nascent urban track bike movement.

It is ridden and loved by everybody from Italian National track riders, to messengers, to graphic designers, to Kanye West, to Red Hook Criterium champions…

2007

In collaboration with its sister company Columbus, Cinelli builds the world’s first stainless steel racing bicycle frame, XCR. Weighing little over a kilo and with exceptional ride quality, the frame inaugurates the return of steel to high-level competitive racing.

Later Cinelli will collaborate with Rapha to design a limited edition version of the frame.

2008

Cinelli collaborates with internationally renown artist Barry McGee to create a limited edition Supercorsa pista frame. The frame is first exhibited together with one-off artist interpretations of the supercorsa by artists such as KAWS and C.R. Stecyk II at the Pressure exhibition joint-hosted by brand RVCA in San Francisco. Cinelli continues to collaborate with McGee on further products.

2009

Cinelli’s sponsorship of San Francisco-based group MASH, the world’s most extreme urban track bike collective, grows into a design partnership with the launch of their first co-branded product, an urban track pursuit frame, with tone-on-tone grey graphics by skate legend Benny Gold. The MASH is the world’s first urban specific performance track frame and an immediate bestseller.

The collaboration soon grows into further products including further track bikes, a cyclocross bike and a fixed gear commuter as well as handlebars, stems and bar tapes. In 2013 the Cinelli-MASH team wins the inaugural Red Hook team classification competition riding criterium specific Cinelli-MASH Parallax frames.

Cinelli begins its collaboration with legendary tattoo artist Mike Giant, releasing first a limited edition RAM bar then several bar tapes. Giant also designs the brand’s catalogue cover.

The cover has been designed by a different artist every year since the mid-1980s Cinelli continues its collaboration with Rapha releasing several bar tapes. The bar tapes become a global best seller selling more than 10 000 pieces a year.

2010

Cinelli sponsors the second ever Red Hook criterium and in doing so becomes the first cycling company to sponsor the event. This partnership lasts 5 years during which Cinelli dominates the race, winning both individual and team championships numerous times.

In 2016 Cinelli ends its sponsorship but continues to dominate the competition with its Cinelli-Chrome team.

2013

The Cinelli Laser “Nostra” is auctioned at the Sotheby’s Red sale organized by Sir Jonathan Ive, Marc Newson and Bono for USD$50 000.

2014

Long-time Cinelli-sponsored athlete Alfred Bobe Jr wins Monster Track (the world’s most prestigious and dangerous alley cat race) for a record fourth time, sealing his legendary status.

He does so on his custom Made in Italy carbon fiber track frame which has been hand painted by urban legend Futura2000. Futura2000 also paints a second version of the frame as a gift for Antonio Colombo.

2015

The Cinelli-Chrome team wins the Red Hook team classification, the most prestigious team prize in the world of track bike criteriums

2017

Davide Viganò, ex ciclista World Tour, vince il titolo di Campione del Mondo Red Hook Crit con la maglia Team Cinelli Chrome al suo primo tentativo.