The history of the company behind Panasonic bikes goes all the way back to 1918 and starts with Matsushita Electric Manufacturing Works in Japan. The company was founded by Konosuke Masushita who was adopted and raised by the owners of a bike shop. His company began by making lightbulb sockets. In 1935 the company would change its name to Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. National became the first brand used in 1927, it wasn’t until 1955 that they began using the brand name Panasonic outside of Japan. In 2008 they changed the company name to Panasonic.
The company’s history with bikes seems to start in 1927 when they start making bicycle lights. It is not until 1951 that they begin making bicycle frames, and later bicycles in 1952. Their bikes start hitting the USA through Panasonic USA and Schwinn in 1971. In 1972 and 1973 they produce the Schwinn World Voyageur and World Traveler, two very nice bikes. These are the first imported bikes from Schwinn. Schwinn must have been happy with them because in 1974 they begin offering the Schwinn Approved Le Tour. They would go on to make several models for Schwinn up through the 80s and maybe into the 90s until Taiwan sourced bikes take over. By 1980 they were also making bikes for Raleigh and other companies like Centurion.
In 1989 Panasonic pulled their brand out of the USA market mostly due to exchange rates between the Yen and Dollar.
Aero Road 6000 Road Bike
Deluxe 2000 Road Bike
Deluxe 3000 Road Bike
Deluxe 4000 Road Bike
DX-1000 Road Bike
DX-2000 Road Bike
DX-3000 Road Bike
DX-4000 Road Bike
DX-5000 Road Bike
DX-6000 Road Bike
Motocross BMX Bike
Mountain Cat 2500 Mountain Bike
Mountain Cat 3500 Mountain Bike
Mountain Cat 4500 Mountain Bike
Mountain Cat 5500 Mountain Bike
Mountain Cat 6500 Mountain Bike
Mountain Cat 7500 Mountain Bike
Professional 7000 Road Bike
Pro-Touring 5000 Touring Bike
Sport Road Bike
Sport Deluxe Road Bike
Sport CS Road Bike
Sport DX Road Bike
Sport LX Road Bike
Sport 500 Road Bike
Sport 1000 Road Bike
Touring Deluxe Touring Bike
Tourist 3 Cruiser
Tourist 5 Cruiser
Tourist 10 Cruiser
Villager Entry Level Road Bike
Is the electronics Panasonic the same company as the bikes?
Yes, the company started as Matsushita Electric, and likely expanded to bikes because the founder grew up around a bike shop.
Are Panasonic bikes associated with Panaracer tires?
Yes, Matsushita also started Panaracer.
Are Panasonic bikes still made?
Yes, they are still making bikes.