Founded in 1888 by Gustav Hiller in Zittau, Germany.
Hiller began importing Rover bicycles from England in the 1890s, and was soon building his own in a factory established for the purpose. His first motorcycles appeared around 1900.
In 1906 they revealed their first 3-wheeler called the Phänomobil at the Leipzig Crystal Palace. Designed by the engineers Franz Louis Hüttel and Svetescu who had been responsible for the well-received Cyklonette (with whom Hiller had a legal battle over patent matters), it was sold in Great Britain in 1908 along with their motorcycles. Powered by engines as large as 880cc, versions of the three-wheelers were produced for some 20 years, many being sold to both the German and Swedish governments for their postal services.
In 1913 Gustav Hiller died. His brother-in-law and close friend Josef Freund assumed the role of CEO.
In the 1914-1918 period they continued to produce delivery vehicles, along with ambulances and a variety of military equipment and passenger cars.
A major fire on April 23, 1919 destroyed the main factory. Rudolf Hiller, the founder's son, took over management of the company in 1921 and began to rebuild the plant, a daunting task given the reparation payments due and the worsening economic climate.
By 1927 the Reichspost had received over 1500 Phänomobils, and they were also going to the Austrian and Swiss postal services. The firm thrived, and continued to do so despite the German and international fiscal disasters of the late 20s and early 30s.
In June 1931 the first "Granit" truck was presented, and these too proved a great success.
During WWII they delivered Granit trucks to the Wehrmacht. At the time there were around 3000 people employed by the factory.
The Phänomen factory survived the war almost unscathed, but the company was expropriated after the war and became part of IFA. The Granit name was retained and the vehicles were exported all over the world.
The Phänomen name was acquired by the Meister concern in 1950 (probably); Phänomen motorcycles advertised in the 1950s included the Tourenrad Moped S 50, along with 150cc and 175cc machines. The Typ 75 had a Sachs 147cc engine.
Phänomobil 1905-1909, 1910-1927
Modell 1 leichter Zwei-Sitzer 887ccm
Modell 2 Touren-Zwei-Sitzer mit Kofferkasten
Modell 3 Sport- und Reise-Zwei-Sitzer
Modell 4 Vier-Sitzer 1109 ccm
Modell 5 leichter Lieferungswagen
Modell 6 Lieferungswagen
Sources: period literature, Axel Oskar Mathieu Archive, correspondence, oldtimer-freunde.info (via Wayback).
mauricehadid at hotmail.com
i have an old motorbike
I believe it is a Phanomen Bob. founded in my grandpap storage.
Victor Brumby (via Disqus)
I have a photo album generated by a Dutchman passé, which contains various photos and sketches of interest to me because I catalogue international numberplates.
Sometimes they are shown on vehicles of their period; having read ‘Phanomen’ on this one, I looked it up and was brought to you by the magic of Google….
There is also a 3-wheeler, which I believe they made too - this may be one?? And a later pic of a 'Granit 25' car outside the Phanomen works, by the look of it.
Registration code 'I 'was the code for Bautzen in Saxony - perhaps where they were made??
I hope they’re of interest to you.
Victor Brumby, Streatley, Berks.
Thu Apr 13 2017
kim_leachman at yahoo.co.uk
Thought you may be interested in my new we page? phanomobil.co.uk
Phanomobil image posted in the gallery
Thu Apr 12 2012
Hi Iv recently inherited a phanomen bob and am looking for any info about them as I can't find much on the net, also any advice on getting a valuation for insurance
Sat Mar 13 2010
Phanomen Ahoi 125 parts wanted
Phanomen Ahoi 125ccm parts (frame, brake pedal, mid-stand, electric horn, tail light) wanted.
Fri Dec 08 2006
andreas at leondesign.de
from 1900 to 1945
Hello, i come from germany. My father and i have show the users of www a good directory of Phänomen Motorcycles! The url is www.oldtimer-freunde.info  ; the kategorie is Fahrzeuge & Firmen and then Phänomen! Come to us and check our history!!
Site has been offline since about 2012.
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