Mabeco Motorcycles

A Brief History of the Marque

Manufactured by Max Bernhardt & Co. in Berlin, 1922-1928

Introduced at the 1922 Berlin Motor Show these motorcycles were fitted with V-twin engines of 598cc supplied by Siemens & Halske, and had a very similar appearance to the Indian Scout - so much so that when they changed the colour scheme from green to red, Indian sued.

This led to all sorts of problems resulting in reorganisation - the company name became Mabeco-Werke G.m.b.H with Siemens & Halske as the main shareholder, and Max Bernhardt as commercial director.

1925 saw the introduction of a 746cc machine which corresponded to the Indian 45ci Scout.

In 1926 and 1927 they built road-racing motorcycles with OHV engines using four-valve heads. These were very advanced machines which had alloy barrels with cast iron liners - this in the days where a good many competitors were still using cast iron pistons - and were also highly distinctive, having four exhaust pipes. These ones were not at all like the Indian.

The racing bikes achieved considerable success in the hands of such riders as Alfred Pätzold, Gustav Dierks, and Erich Tennigkeit. Ilse Thouret placed first in a 1927 race riding a 750cc Mabeco. She later became a factory rider for Puch.

Mabeco also built utility tricycles, and a 346cc two-stroke "twingle" under licence from Garelli.

Notes. A Mabeco has been exhibited at the American Motorcycle Museum, Holland.

Sources: GTU Oldtimerservice, South-Bohemian MC Museum

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