Star by name, star by nature

Road-tested by Motor Cycle in the October 6, 1966 issue, BSA’s 249cc C15 Star proved the perfect all-round mount. So finely tuned was the balance that it could be ridden to a standstill feet-up in heavy city traffic, yet out on the open road it was well capable of cruising at a sustained 60-65mph, with a top speed of 75mph.

Hands up anyone who’s ever owned a 250cc BSA C15!

The 1967 249cc C15 BSA Star benefited from hard-won improvements gained by the exploits of the 441cc BSA Victor scramblers, and could trace its roots right back to earlier models like this 1961 C15 in which a lion cub appears to be taking a healthy interest.

Warrington BSA/Triumph dealer Jack Frodsham Ltd must have sold quite a few of these neat and compact little singles, because the streets of our editor’s home town simply rang with them in the 1960s.

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Some of the models became real little sparklers when they acquired lashings of chrome to
give them a strong family likeness to their bigger stablemates like the 650cc Super Rocket, and in June 1966 a 249cc BSA Sportsman, admittedly with a following wind but with a 14½-stone rider
aboard, achieved a remarkable one-way speed of 85mph while being put through its paces by
Motor Cycle at the much-visited Motor Industry Research Association Proving Ground at Lindley, Leicestershire.

Later that year, the ‘Blue ‘Un’s’ Peter Fraser tested the slightly less poky 249cc BSA C15 Star, and his report is reproduced here.

“Watch a moto-crossman screaming an engine to the limit and stamping on the gear pedal when the pace is really hectic,” wrote the Motor Cycle tester. “Is there any punishment more severe?

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“So when BSA announced in July that they were incorporating the 441cc Victor scrambler crankcase-gearbox assembly into the specification of the 249cc Star roadster, everyone knew what a bonus in robustness and reliability this meant.”

Read more in February’s issue of OBM – on sale February now!

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