See what's happening in the world of Sidecars
The first sidecars on motorcycles made their appearance in the very
early 1900’s. Early models were often like wicker armchairs
and are rare collectors' items nowadays. Before long they started
to resemble the sidecars we see today. Many of them were enclosed
and were made by companies that also made wooden or steel car bodies.
Many sidecars were enclosed and acted as the equivalent of today’s
family sedan. In the recession years of the 1930's through the 1950’s
many different companies made sidecars. Some were aviation firms which
brought new designs and materials into the market. Sidecars played
a significant role in WWII in all theatres of war. Up until the end
of their heyday in the 1950’s sidecars were used in a far more
utilitarian role than those you see today which are mostly used for
fun and sport.
A Brief History of the Cozy Sidecar
The Cozy has its roots with the famous German sidecar manufacturer
Steib. The Steib company was founded in 1914 by Josef Steib Sr. The
Steib company started as an automobile paint and upholstery shop.
In 1925, Steib was contracted by Ardie-Werk to build a sidecar for
their new Ardie TM-500 motorcycle touring model. It was at this point
that Steib expanded his shop facilities to accommodate sidecar fabrication.
By the 1930’s Steib together with Stoye of Leipzig, the major sidecar supplier for Ardie-Werk at the time, enjoyed 80% of the market share in Germany. By the 1950’s, Steib was the world leader in sidecar production and sales with over 90% market share. In 1955, Steib fabricated approximately 50 sidecars per day. A year later production fell to only 5 sidecars per day and dwindled almost to a close when Ardie-Werk shut down in 1958. By this time however BMW was still offering motorcycles with Steib sidecars and even had one model commissioned to their specs, a modified TR500 marketed as the BMW Spezial.
In the 1960’s Mr. Bhatwadekar of Mumbai (Bombay) India made
an arrangement in collaboration with Steib to manufacture a Steib
sidecar in India. He worked with Mr. Wahab, an Indian craftsman
to develop the sidecar. At some point differences developed between
the two men and they split into two companies; Cozy sidecars and Globe
sidecars. There was a good market in India for the sidecar and
both companies did a good business. Globe not only sold sidecars within
India but did quite well in the export market. Mr. Bhatwadekar
passed away and Globe was taken over by his son Mr. Shekhar. The market
for sidecars in India started to falter and Globe was surviving on
the export market and Cozy was only a small supplier.
In 1994 an enterprising
businessman named Avinash Gupta from Pune India, a former engineer
with Bajaj Auto, started a marketing company namely Silverline
Marketing. He approached Globe with the intention of helping them
further their export market. At the time Globe was the dominant
sidecar supplier in India. They declined and Mr. Gupta then joined
hands with the smaller Cozy sidecars. By this time Mr. Bhatwadekar
and Mr. Farid (son of Mr. Wahab) had taken over the leadership
of Cozy. Silverline Marketing's first order was from Germany for
20 sidecars. The German customer wanted the sidecars made to mount
on the right hand side of the motorcycle as opposed to the left
had side as had been the norm in India. Mr. Gupta developed the
sidecar for Cozy, devised the packing and insisted on only top
quality products. Through his skill in marketing, honest approach
to business and a great product from Cozy he turned them from a strictly
domestic company into a global company. Globe, which had been surviving
on international business, lost most of it to Cozy and a few years
ago closed its doors and liquidated their assets.
Today we enjoy a strong relationship
with Mr. Gupta and his son Shital who has joined him in business
as well as the Cozy Company. We have done business with them for
many years and love the product. Cozy makes a good strong high quality
sidecar. Mr., Gupta has been a very reliable person to do business
with, He continues to help develop the Cozy sidecar and its
accessories in addition to acting its agent.