The Bianchi bike brand dates back to 1885, when Edoardo Bianchi began manufacturing bicycles on Via Nirone in Milan, Italy. From his small shop beginning, Bianchi grew his name brand and has since become one of the world's leading and most respected bike companies. Amongst all the bicycle makers in existence now, Bianchi is believed to be the oldest bicycle manufacturer ever in the world. In 1885, Bianchi pioneered the use of same-sized bike wheels coupled with pneumatic rubber tires. The familiar front wheel brake caliper? Another Bianchi innovation.
Bianchi creates almost all types of bicycles, including road, mountain, singlespeeds and cruisers. Their famous Reparto Corse factory in Treviglio, Bergamo, Italy is where its signature line of road racing bikes is manufactured. Being a true Italian bicycle company, most Bianchi bicycles are outfitted with Campagnolo parts.
Bianchi products in the United States are handled by Bianchi USA, which is located in Hayward, California. The bikes they make are specifically intended for U.S. consumers, and the bikes are made in the U.S. and in Taiwan. The Reparto Corse series of bikes are the only ones sold in the U.S. that are made in Italy. You won't find the Reparto Corse bicycles anywhere but in the U.S., which makes them unique.
Bianchi sponsored cyclists have won several Tour de France and Giro d'Italia races. Notable biking legends, such as Fausto Coppi and Felice Gimondi, were associated with the Bianchi brand name. Modern day riders include Mario Cipollini, Marco Pantani, Danillo De Luca, and Jan Ullrich. Up until 2007, Bianchi co-sponsored the Liquigas team on the UCI ProTour.
You are likely familiar with that unique Bianchi green color, so recognizable in its signature line of bicycles. That is the highly recognizable color called "Celeste" (pronounced che-les-te), which appears turquoise and goes by the name "Bianchi green". What's the origin of this special color? It may be based on the color of the Milan sky, though it has also been said to match the eye color of the former Queen of Italy. Edoardo Bianchi once created a bicycle just for her, so that storyline makes some sense. Though less inspiring, it could be that the "Celeste" color resulted from acquiring a batch of surplus military paint. No matter which story is true, the Bianchi green is always eye-catching and marks the Bianchi brand on many of its bikes.