Werner 1902 1¾ HP 225cc AIV frame # 186 engine # 5707
The Brothers Eugene and Michel Werner start their experiments with a De Dion type petrol engine in 1896. In 1897 they consider their machine to be so practical as to put it on the market.
It’s presented under the name of ‘motocyclette” and this word will soon become the generic French word for “Motor cycle”.
The little 216 cc engine is placed in front of the steering head and has a surface carburetor and hot tube ignition.
The Motocyclette catches on and the design is perfected a lttle bit more each year.
The company claims that between 1898 and 1901 some 3,600 Werners are sold.
By the end of 1901 a new type of Werner is introduced with the engine in the bracket position. Werner is not the first manufacturer to place the engine in this position, but previous designs never got much publicity.
The new Werner is a sensation at the Paris Show and for a long time to come the typical position of the engine that we consider so common now will be known as “the New Werner position”.
The 1902 model has a 225cc (64 x 70) engine with a power output of 1¾ HP, a spray carburetor of Werner design and manufacture and weighs 40 KG.
In August 1905 Michel Werner dies at the early age of 46 years and after that the firm starts sliding down hill.
Towards the end of 1906 a bankruptcy petition is presented and in April 1907 two partners, Mess. Gallien and Sarda start a new Werner company on the original firm address.
The production programme includes cars and motorcycles, but they have little success with their products.
This first-year “New Werner” has been part of the collection of the late Jan Koopmans of Amsterdam.
Mr. Koopmans was very much interested in early motorcycles and already in the 1970s he regularly travelled to France to try and find veteran bikes to preserve for posterity and to ride them in club events.
The machine is fitted with a practical handlebar-controlled “free engine” pulley so that the engine can be kept running with the machine at a standstill.
The coil ignition system has been changed for a more practical and reliable magneto, an adaptation that was made to many early veterans when the magneto became the norm around 1905.
This early veteran has been restored and is technically in tip top condition; the petrol tank still has its original patina.