Moto Guzzi began building motorcycles after World War I and was justifiably famous for its 500cc single-cylinder machines, the cylinder laying flat, pointing forward. After World War II the factory, which had escaped Allied bombing, continued as before, but these models were getting a bit long in the tooth. In the 1950s, a number of two-stroke and four-stroke models, all under 250cc, were produced, catering to the demand for inexpensive personal transportation.