French Motorcycles

Gratieux Motocyclettes

Billancourt (Seine)

Established before 1914, Fernand Gratieux built bicycles and perambulators sold at stores in Lyon, Paris and Strasbourg until as late as 1940. The firm also manufactured motorcycles from c.1919 and these were still in their catalogue in 1940 according to one source, though an owner in the Netherlands says that motorcycle production ceased in 1923.

Models include c.1919 Gratieux B Type 175cc two-stroke. They also built machines with their own engines of 211cc and 250cc.

A 250cc Gratieux was raced at the 1921 Grands Prix de France by Reservat, who placed second. 250cc : 1. "Stuard Sandford" (MS-Train), 2. Reservat (Gratieux)

A New French Two-stroke Lightweight.

THE fact that France is making rapid strides in motor cycle construction is emphasised by the advent of several new machines, amongst which the Gratieux two-stroke compares favourably with English productions. This machine is of entirely French construction, being built in the factories of P. Gratieux at Billancourt, a firm which gained a reputa- tion during the war for its aeronautical productions. The motor is a thxee-port two-stroke, and is said to be economical in running and very well balanced. The lubrication is automatic, and can be regulated by a milled head. Two brakes are provided, both acting on the belt rim, and it will be noted that the aluminium footboards are placed unusually far back. Maximum speed is about 38 m.p.h.; weight just over 120 lb.; and tank capacity four and a half litres (one gallon) petrol and one and a half litres oil.

The price fixed is 2,100 frs., equalling roughly £84 purchasing power, and delivery is promised within fifteen days. A striking feature lies in the unusual type of spring forks, the design of which is clearly illustrated. They should be equal to the road conditions in France, which in places are reported by demobilised despatch riders to be very bad. The Gratieux is only one of many interesting machines which have been produced in France since the Armistice.

The Motor Cycle, October 9th 1919

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