Acer-Mex - Windsor, Carabela & other Brands

Manufacturers of Windsor, Carabela and other brands:

WINDSOR this line of bicycles included many models but is best known for their Cinelli-look Pro and Competition. They were produced in Mexico in the 1970s and early 1980s. The 2 models used a similar frame but primarily differed in the components packages, the Pro with Campagnolo Nuovo Record (pictured) and the Competition with Suntour.
Next below the Pro in the lineup was the Carerra Sport, made of chromoly tubing, sometimes Japanese Tange. Stylistically these bikes differed greatly from the Pro & Competition, having fancier stamped lugs and a more French-look in detail and featured Japanese componentry as well.
In very recent years, this brand has reappeared on mail-order Chinese made bikes, apparently as a result of a licensing arrangement.

Similar models were made under the Carabela marque; the parent company again being Acer-Mex, a large domestic bicycle producer. The tubing was Columbus and the workmanship generally was good. The lugs and seat stay attachment looked very like Cinelli’s top models, but unlike Cinelli, the fork crown was an external box crown. Unfortunately, a few unethical owners have placed Cinelli decals on these bikes!

Windsor Pro

On the right, an advertisement with the unfortunate use of a Colnago bike,
decaled as a Windsor, during Eddy Merckx's epic Hour Record ride in Mexico.

“My first hand knowledge of these bikes were in 1976 when as a member of my university’s cycling team in Guadalajara Mexico. (Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara) I went to Mexico City to the factory (Windsor, aka Acer-Mex) and was custom fitted a Windsor pro bike. The builder of these bikes was a gentleman by the name of Remo Vecchi, who had worked for Cinelli in Italy, until he was brought over to Mexico to build these bikes. It is this reason I believe why the Windsor Pros are virtual copies of actual Cinelli’s.”
“At this time there was an extreme rivalry between another Mexican Bike company by the name of Benotto. It was an opportunity that Acer-Mex wanted to bring recognition for their bikes into the world market since it was they who had paid for a large percentage of costs for the world record of Eddy Merckx in Mexico City.”
“Everyone knew that Mr. Merckx was not really riding a Mexican bike but an Italian one, but since the general public did not know about this (bike swap) Acer-Mex/Windsor just went along selling these bikes (Windsor Pros) assuming the public believed he actually did ride a Windsor. Benotto had been trying to get M. Merckx to go with them instead of Windsor. But like they say In Mexico “with money dance the dog”. It has been thirty years since I graduated from my University and I still have my Windsor Pro. It is in mint condition and I still ride it.”

Daniel Jansen Torres

Details of the Pro model from old Bicycling Magazine test.

Steve Jorgenson's 23" Pro

Paul Grant's Windsor Carrera Sport bicycle

Larry Black's Windsor Pro

(Later production from Mexico, but listed in the Italian section)