ЛМЗ (LMZ) USSR/Ukraine, 1960-1995 – Lvovsky (city of Lvov, Ukraine) motorcycle factory was initially founded as a machine building installation and issued agriculture-purposed production. Since 1958 the factory built car trailers and then, as it was ordered from “upper” the plant was to handle and set production of motorcycle means of transport. In 1960 production of engined bikes Rus. B-902 (engine V-902) was started, the machines were equipped with auxiliary two stroke engines D-4 (Rus. Д-4), 45 cc, 1.2 hp made at Leningrad factory “Krasny Oktyabr” (“Red October”) and specially developed short lever front fork, there was no gearbox. The following model was an engined bike MV-044 (Rus. “МВ-044″) with generally the same design and engine, while outer look was completely different, as soft and aerodynamic forms of previous model were changed with harsh and straight-cut design of “industrial style”. This was crucial turn for the factory as it developed its first moped based on previous model, new one named MV-043 was same in outer design but with different engine Sh-51K (Rus. Ш-51К) , 49,8 cc, 2 hp, coupled with a two-speed gearbox. The engine was begun to be made at Shaulyai factory “Vairas”, Latvia, and remaining Lvov factory partner all the time, supplying engines to Riga moped factory “Sarkana Zvagzne” (RMZ). (transl. note: Riga mopeds).
MV-042 “Lvovyanka”, 1963 (Rus. “Lvovyanka” – female citizen of Lvov)
Second half of 1960′s saw a preparation for production of new mopeds MP-054 “Verkhovina” (Rus. МП-054), design was swapped for rounded again, namely at this time a general look of Verkhovina mopeds was formed remaining with little changes till the end of production. There’s no need to describe all design traits that differed one model from another, general concept was same: telescopic front fork, pendulum rear suspension, “under 50 cc” Shaulyai engine coupled with 2-speed gear box (Sh “Ш”) series two-stroke engines with different digit indexes are known to general Russian public, who rode mopeds at that time, used for building and carting as well and other moving devices – transl. note).
Verkhovina-3, 1970 (Verkhovyna is a town in Ukraine meaning “highland place”
In 1970 a new mass series of Verkhovina-3 was issued, succeeded by a bit more neat Verkhovina-4. Both models had back tilted fuel tank, while Verkhovina-5 had it horizontally mounted, which gave impression of a light motorcycle. In 1974 variator equipped “Vekhovina Avtomatik” was issued in small series, but for large scale production there were no funds. Lvov motorcycle factory (then called so) was financed on principle of remaining funds, as well as “Sarkana Zvagzne” in Riga and this hindered greatly the factories adopting production of new models.
Only in 1982 production of new moped model “Karpaty” with V50M (Sh-series engine further development) was started. “Karpaty-2, mokick” saw light in second half of 1980′s (note: Rus. “mokick” = moped+kickstarter) with no auxiliary pedal transmission. These mokicks remained in production line till it was closed.
In 1990′s there were attempts to adopt production of new moped “Лвiв” (Ukr. “Lvov”) with Polish analog engines “Dezamet” instead of those made at Shaulyai. But the USSR collapse, borders passing and suppliers-producers relations made in currencies undermined the Lviv LMZ potential and led to its closure.
© translation by Eugene Radchenko specially for b-cozz.com
Translators note: I used to ride Verkhovina-4 a couple of times, Verkhovina-6 (no bike pedals) and “Karpaty” (in motocross factory version) on my cousins who lives in Kopeisk, near it to be more exact. He had both 2nd and 3rd named machines, at that time I was 13 y.o. or so. Compared to Vyatka motoroller it was powerless, but cute and interesting to ride on its own, just for joy. It wouldn’t carry two teens sitting on one up a not steep uphill. I had switch 2nd gear only at plain road otherwise it’d fade. Karpaty was a bit more powerful, as I recall and had a louder sound, which seemed cool for us then. – Eugene.
Verkhovina-6 lapel pin
this photo was one of our mystery bikes here for many years, seems it’s a Lviv machine. Eugene has translated the photo caption, “An experimental bicycle with engine series made at Lvov factory. Equipped with a two-stroke, 1 hp engine “D-4″ it can reach speed of 40 km/h and has a fuel consumption of 1-1,2 l/100km. This year (1960?) the factory starts mass production of the machine and should issue 50,000 pieces. Photo by D. Milyarchuk”