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French Motorcycles

Labre-Lamaudiere-1904-advert.jpg
Lamaudiere UK Advertisement 1904

The SÉE Motor Car Supply Co., London
Paris-Madrid Type, 1904
Diploma of Honour, Paris Exhibition, 1900
Winners of both Criteriums for Motor Cycles in 1901 and 1902.

Lamaudière-Labre

41 rue du Bois, Levallois-Perret

Founded on June 15, 1899. Became Lamaudiere & Mauger in 1903, moving to rue Danton, Levallois-Perret.

Born in 1869 in Montluçon, Paul-Jules Labre entered the family carpentry business and became interested in the development of machinery for the factory, and in 1897 built his first motorcycle. This was constructed in the manner of the Werner machine, with the engine above the front wheel. His second attempt placed the engine in a more central location, giving better stability and easier control.

The machine was presented at the Salon du Cycle in December 1898.

Labre and his brother Francois sold the family business and established a new one to deal in bicycles, motorcycles and automobiles. They were joined by Eugene Lamaudière, who injected a substantial amount of capital into the venture.

They had orders aplenty, but lacked the resources and tooling to manufacture in quantity and could not adequately cater to the burgeoning market. The firm entered liquidation on December 18, 1900.

Lamaudière took control and formed a new company, Lamaudière et Mauger.

Labre rode his machine in the world's first motorcycle race in July of 1899. He was doing very well before a collision with a dog dashed his chances. Similar races were held in the following years and the Labre machine "won both Criteriums for Motor Cycles in 1901 and 1902". A 1904 model was named the Paris-Madrid Type, indicating success in that event.

Their 1901 120cc model had battery ignition, with the engine as a stressed member of the frame directly above the pedal crank. It is covered on page 111 by Bourdache, as mentioned in the catalogue for the Guélon Collection auctioned in February 2018.

The following model had a 277cc engine with spray carburettor.

The company closed in 1907, as did many other during the economic slump of 1907.

Sources:
1. Bourdache pp 98-102, p111 and many other pages.
2. Yesterdays NL, who credit Patrick Delmont, Les Frères Labre


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