Bicycle (motorized)

Solex

VéloSoleX (1946)

Founded in 1905 by Maurice Goudard and Marcel Mennesson as a manufacturer of radiators, Solex is mostly known for launching the first powered bicycle, the VéloSoleX. After World War I, Solex acquired the rights to a carburetor patent and started fitting them into many high-end automobile marques, such as Citroën, Porsche, Volkswagen, SAAB and Mercedes Benz.

During World War II, Solex developed the motor with roller resting on the front wheel of bicycle. The iconic VéloSoleX was marketed in 1946, and sold eight million between 1946 and 1988 – when production was ceased. The ‘bicycle that drives itself’ was extremely popular with students and blue collar workers because it was extremely economical.

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© Solex, Paris, France

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