Motorola Flare

Motorola Flare L

Outlandish consumer phone

  • Date launched: 1995
  • Network: GSM 900Mhz/1800Mhz/1900Mhz
  • Network (Flare L): TACS
  • Form: Candy bar
  • Size: 58(w)x163(h)x28(d) mm
  • Weight: 220g
  • Cost new: £129.99 (One2One version)
  • Can you use it today: Yes (Flare L, No)

To get the Flare, Motorola took the flip phone and removed the flip. As this was a consumer phone, they also added some artistic flare to the design.

The Flare was different from other mobiles on the market. The buttons looked like the sales on a yacht and it came in a variety of colours.

The Flare was available on a number of networks. Unusually there were both digital and analogue versions. The Flare L was the analogue version.

One2One was quick to launch the Flare in the UK. They broke with tradition and sold it as a Motorola rather than a branded One2One phone. It went on sale in September 1995 for £129.99.

The Flare was more about style rather than substance. It quickly became a near entry level model in most networks.

Motorola Graphite, 1996

Although it was brave attempt to change the look of mobiles, designers at Motorola badly misfired. Creating a fashion mobile that would be accepted by the young professional, or even the teenage market was a task requiring enormous skill and subtly. The Flare's style and colour schemes, yellow, blue, green or fuchsia on black, were not to everyone's taste. Writing in the Independent in 1995, film producer, Jill Robertson said that using the fuchsia and black version in Soho was a fashion crime.


Motorola Graphite

Based on the Flare, the Graphite of 1996, was a better attempt at urban style. The Graphite had a sharp graphite style finish and more conventional buttons. It was available on Mercury's One2One's 'all-in-a-box' promotion at the end of 1996. You paid £199.99 for the phone and got one year's line rental included.

Add your comments

"Hi Philip, The MR1 was originally supplied to Orange customers on contract. It might work with Orange PAYG, but you will need a full sized SIM." Steven 09/24/2013
"I bought a graphite which is locked can i get it unlocked for free as i don't want to pay just in case it doesn't work ;-)" Graeme 06/28/2014
"I have 11 motorola walkie talkie flip phones w/charger cables and belt clips looking for fare price" Jose Lebron 01/31/2017
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Mobile phone history