1943 DKW NZ 350 Frame no. 609164 Engine no. ZK 23273

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Lot 485
1943 DKW NZ 350
Frame no. 609164 Engine no. ZK 23273

Sold for £ 4,370 (US$ 5,468) inc. premium
1943 DKW NZ 350
Frame no. 609164
Engine no. ZK 23273
DKW was founded in Zschopau in 1919 by Danish engineer Jorgen Rasmussen and built its first motorcycle power unit, a single-cylinder, clip-on engine for bicycle attachment, in 1921. Designed by Hugo Ruppe, this 122cc motor was a two-stroke, and DKW would remain faithful to this engine type from then on, becoming world leaders in two-stroke design in the 1930s thanks to the prescient adoption of the Schnuerle loop-scavenge system. The latter used flat-topped pistons rather than the then-conventional deflector-crown type, relying on carefully angled transfer ports to direct the incoming charge around the cylinder. DKW was Continental Europe's largest motorcycle maker at this time, manufacturing a huge and diverse range of road bikes throughout the 1930s. One of its last introductions prior to WW2 was the NZ 350, which arrived for 1938. An air-cooled single, the NZ 350 employed engine dimensions of 72x85mm bore/stroke (for a capacity of 343cc) and produced 11.5bhp. During the war the NZ 350 was used widely by the German armed forces, remaining in service until 1945 alongside the DKW RT 125, the larger military models having been superseded by lightweight four-wheel drive vehicles like the Volkswagen Kübelwagen.

This military example dates from 1943 and is said to have seen service on the Eastern Front with General Heinz Guderian's Panzer divisions. Departures from civilian specification include steel crankcases rather than aluminium and a shortened frame, plus all the usual military paraphernalia including a gas mask container (on the fuel tank), twin panniers and a 'heavy duty' air filter. The machine returned to Germany in the 1950s and was restored in 1999 when work carried out included fitting a new Bing carburettor, self-generating electronic ignition and a brake light. Currently running on the road in Austria, the machine passed its roadworthiness test in February 2010 and is described as in generally very good condition. Offered with sundry restoration invoices and Austrian registration papers, this DKW NZ 350 is a 'must have' for any serious collector of military vehicles.
1943 DKW NZ 350 Frame no. 609164 Engine no. ZK 23273
1943 DKW NZ 350 Frame no. 609164 Engine no. ZK 23273
1943 DKW NZ 350 Frame no. 609164 Engine no. ZK 23273
1943 DKW NZ 350 Frame no. 609164 Engine no. ZK 23273
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