Pre-1914 Terrot Single Side Valve
Lot 7
c.1908 Terrot Frame no. 913 Engine no. 10231
Sold for £8,050 (US$ 13,530) inc. premium
Lot Details
c.1908 Terrot
Frame no. 913
Engine no. 10231
The foreman of a French-owned textile machine factory based at Cannstatt, Germany, Charles Terrot left to go into partnership with merchant Wilhelm Stücklen in 1862, founding 'Stücklen & Terrot'. The firm made machinery for the textile industry and in 1887 opened a plant at Dijon in France. When this venture proved unsuccessful, Charles turned the factory over to making bicycles, which at that time were an increasingly popular novelty.

Like many of his cycle industry contemporaries, Terrot turned to powered transport towards the end of the 19th Century and by the early 1900s the Dijon factory was making not only bicycles but also motorcycles, quadricycles and voiturettes. The name 'motocyclette' had already been registered by another company, so Terrot called his first motorcycles 'motorettes'. Proprietary engines supplied by Givaudin, Dufaux and Zédel were used for Terrot's early motorettes before the firm went on to develop its own. By the time war was declared in August 1914, there was a choice of two different models: a 2¾hp single (Motorette No. 3) and a 4½hp v-twin (Motorette No. 4), both of which used Zédel engines. Available as an extra-cost option, a combined clutch/expandable pulley – mounted on the engine shaft – provided a means of variable gearing.

Terrot began producing its own power units in the mid-1920s and by the decade's end had become France's largest manufacturer of motorcycles. The firm continued to offer a diverse range of machines in all sizes throughout the 1930s, garnering many competitions successes along the way, but after WW2 concentrated mainly on lightweights. Terrot was taken over by erstwhile rivals Peugeot in 1961 and the once-famous name disappeared soon after.

This early Terrot had already been restored when it was purchased in Mannheim, Germany three years ago. A most imposing Edwardian motorcycle, it features original Terrot control levers, nickel-plated fittings, Brooks leather saddle, Reiman headlamp and handlebar-mounted Halo chronometer.

Saleroom notices

  • Please note the handlebars (right side) have split over time and require replacement or repair.