A BSA bike is, generally, a classic motorcycle manufactured by the British company Birmingham Small Arms Company, or BSA for short. The BSA company did make bikes beginning in the late 1800s but eventually started manufacturing motorcycles, according to the University of Warwick.
The BSA Company was one of the largest manufacturers of motorcycles in the world during the 1950s, according to Classic British Motorcycles. Well-known models made by BSA include the Gold Star, A50, A65, A7 and A10. Other well-known motorcycle models created by BSA include the Rocket 3 and the Bantam.
Not all motorcycle models made by BSA were well-received by motorists. For example, the A50 and A65 were twin constructions designed to replace the A7 and A10 in the 1960s. The reception for the models was not good. Consumers considered the motorcycles to be unattractive, and there were also complaints of vibration issues. Nonetheless, some models were absolutely loved by motorists, such as the BSA Gold Star, which was a best seller and one of the fastest motorcycles in the world in the 1960s.
Other than bikes and motorcycles, the BSA Company also manufactured weapons for military use, military vehicles, weapons for civilian use, and tools and machinery. As a major manufacturer, the BSA Company split itself into three companies during World War I to oversee the production activities of its three main outputs. The name of these companies were BSA Cycles Ltd., BSA Guns Ltd. and BSA Tools Ltd.