The DOHC Benelli 500 VLC (from the Italian for side valves) was produced from 1940 onwards. The bike used side valves with an overhead camshaft in the crankcase. Like with the 500 model which pre-dated it, its lines were solid and imposing in order to house the 493 cc engine. The 500 was immediately considered one of the most beautiful and technologically advanced bikes of the age. The engine is a four-stroke single-cylinder model, tilted forwards 12 degrees. The cylinder and head were made of cast iron and used a dual exhaust pipe and Marelli magneto ignition, while the cylinders had ten cooling fins.