1937 Böhmerland 603cc Langtouren
Engine no. 307
Czechoslovakia played an important role in the development of the European motorcycle industry from the earliest days of the 20th Century, being responsible for many innovatory designs. Indeed, the Czech firm of Laurin & Klement was one of the first to introduce a four-cylinder motorcycle, in 1905. One of Czechoslovakia's more celebrated motorcycles is the improbable Böhmerland, which was manufactured from 1925 until 1939. Designed by Albin Liebisch, the Böhmerland was powered by a single-cylinder, air-cooled, four-stroke engine of 80x120mm bore/stroke for a capacity of 603cc. But whereas its overhead-valve motor was entirely conventional, the Böhmerland's advanced cycle parts were anything but, consisting of a lengthy, duplex-loop, tubular frame; coil-sprung, leading-link front fork; and - for the first time on a motorcycle - cast-alloy wheels. Models of varying wheelbase lengths were built, the most celebrated of which is the three-seater langtouren (long touring). All Böhmerlands were powered by Liebisch's 603cc four-stroke single, the exception being a 348cc two-stroke model introduced in 1938 just before production ceased following the outbreak of war. It is believe that only some 30-or-so Böhmerlands exist worldwide today. Acquired for the Collection in 2007, this example carries a supplier's plaque bearing the legend 'Albin Liebisch, Schluckenau, Cunnersdorf.' We are advised that the machine has been repainted.