French Motorcycles

Today in Motorcycle History

Racer Motorcycles, Mopeds and BMA's

A Brief History of the Marque

Manufactured: 1949-1955(1)

Founded in 1894 by Chevalier et Confort in St Etienne, they built a variety of components including frames and hubs. Mazoyer-Besset bought the company around 1932, it is believed, and then in 1934 Paul Bisset took control. Their first motorised bicycles appeared in 1949 and success was assured as they had numerous dealers established for their bicycles. They continued with a variety of mopeds through to 1955.

Engines employed were AMC, Le Poulain, Himo, Lavalette, Junior, Martinet, Vap, Mistral, Sachs and Ydral in capacities of 49cc to 175cc, all two-strokes until the introduction of the AMC four-stroke models at the 1954 Salon.

There was a relationship with Coq de France in Saint Etienne. In 1955 the firm merged with Metropole and others to form Cocymo.
1952 Model A Standard, Mistral 48cc engines (and possibly Zurcher).
1954 model Ra 1 Deluxe, 125cc AMC 4T, rigid rear, telescopic forks.
1954/55 Ra 2 125cc AMC 4T, plunger suspension
Ra 3 Grand Luxe 175cc AMC four-stroke engine, plunger suspension.
1954/55 JV4 125cc Ydral and JV5 175cc Ydral

1. Sources vary, one giving 1951 as the start of moped production.

Sources: Motos dans la Loire, et al.

Sat Apr 02 2016
jtibbins at
Algarve Portugal

We have a Lavalette French Racer, Spirit of St Ettie. We believe it is 1945. Frame type RL 894. Engine no. 705E PK13 880.
We would like more information please about the motorcycle and its value. Many thanks Jayne Tibbins.

  • The bike is a Racer, possibly an RL. Date is most likely 1953. Engine number 705E PK13 880

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