In1935 Masashi Ito and one of his older brothers opened a repair shop but had to sell it at the beginning of the Second World War. After the war, in 1946, Masashi Ito opened the Marusho Car Repair Shop as well as a facility that made truck bodies for Toyota and Nissan, but in 1948 with the establishment of the Marusho Shokai Co., Ltd.
Masashi Ito fist begins production of his motorcycle line. His successful prototype was completed in 1950 and mass production soon began. Also in 1951 Masashi Ito changed the name of his company to Marusho Motorcycle Industrial Co., Ltd.
From 1951 to 1961, bankruptcy had temporarily closed his factory so Masashi Ito built 31 models under the name of Lilac.
The years between 1955 and1960 were probably the best years for Masashi Ito as well as many other small Japanese motorcycle companies. By this time Masashi Ito was not small but they were able to produce 8,091 motorcycles in 1955 and 11,241 motorcycles in their best year, 1959.
Masashi Ito was later able to export his motorcycles under the name Magnera-Clawson, M-C or Magnera-Clawson had imported 800 motorcycles into the United States during 1960 and 1961 but this would not help Magnera-Clawson as he had to declare bankruptcy in 1961 which marked the end of M-C's involvement Masashi Ito.
In 1966, Lilac ceased production of their motorcycles for a second time due to financial difficulties, Ito retired and one employee took over the company which now produced rice cookers to pay off old company debts.
Original Authors: Nicholas
Edit Update Authors: M.A.Harris
Updated On: 05/06/2008