1964 BULTACO 200 MATADOR: BULTO’S BABY
WHAT THEY COST
Suggested retail in America was $785.
Compare that price to the BSA 350 Enduro at
$825, and you can see that the Spanish two-stroke was quite pricey at the time. In today’s
market, there is not much demand for vintage
enduro bikes—either for the collector or the
rider. Our featured Early Years of Motocross
Museum Matador, which is a nicely restored
first-year model, is only valued at $7000.
In 1966, Bultaco upped the displacement
to 250cc, enclosed the chain and identified it
as the Matador MK2. In 1967, they added the
100cc Lobito MK2 and a 175cc Campera.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR
Original condition is key for a collector. The
fenders are quite unique, and the gas tank
(with cutouts for fork clearance) is a work of
art. To be truly authentic, a restored model
must have clip-on handlebars, an artistic
exhaust system and an aluminum chain guard.
Bultaco Motorcycles at (518) 851-7184 or
www.bultaco.com. Also, try Bultaco West at
(760) 815-3970. ❏
Spanish road racing champion both before and after
WWII, Francisco Xavier Bulto cofounded the Montesa
company in 1946. He resigned his directorship in
protest after the Montesa board voted to pull the factory team
from GP road racing in 1958. The following year, with other
former Montesa employees, he tooled up to produce a breakaway
Spanish motorcycle brand. The name Bultaco was chosen at the
suggestion of Bulto’s friend, John Grace. The “Thumbs Up” icon
would become part of the Bultaco logo in 1959.
Bultaco’s trials and motocross models of the early 1960s relied
on testing and development from a variety of English and French
riders, but this was not the case with the marque’s enduro bikes.
Bultaco developed its offroad models in-house with riders Oriol
Puig and Jose Sanchez. The first successful Bultaco enduro bikes
were made in 1962 from adapted 175cc Sherpa trials bikes. Both
Puig and Sanchez raced these prototypes in the 1962 International
Six-Day Trials (ISDT) and came home with gold medals.
In 1964, Bultaco introduced the first Matador 200. The machine
was designed to compete in the International Six-Day Trials or to
be ridden as a daily commuter that could conquer any trail. The
Matador showcased everything that the test riders had learned in
the previous two years of international enduro competition.
The Matador 200 was not a cheap copy of the gold-medal-winning, 175cc prototype; it was a punched-out, beefed-up, and
well-refined model to sell to the general public. With street-legal
equipment (horn, lights, speedometer, etc.), the bike appealed to
Spanish motorcycle riders who liked to ride both on and offroad.
The Matador was equipped with premier Betor rebuildable
suspension components, Akront aluminum rims, and Pirelli trials
universal tires and produced 23 horsepower. The 1964 Matador
opened up an all-new market for dual-sport motorcycles.
BY TOM WHITE