British Motorcycles

Centaur Motorcycles

Centaur of Stoke, Coventry
  • They produced motorcycles from 1901 to 1914.
  • 1901 The machines first appeared as primitive but well built.
  • 1904 The silencer was used as the frame downtube between headstock and crankcase. It had a 348 cc 3hp engine with valves at the front of the cylinder and braced forks incorporated a rubber buffer to take some of the road shocks. It also had belt or a two-stage chain-drive. Another model had an inclined engine, which replaced the downtube as in the Humber and P and M design. A forecar was also offered.
  • 1905 The silencer reverted to being a separate item and was no longer part of the frame.
  • 1906 The 3hp model continued for that year. Manufacture then stopped for a few years.
  • 1910 The company returned with standard and TT models, both fitted with a 3½ hp engine, with valves at the front of the cylinder. The standard model had a Bosch magneto ahead of the crankcase and sprung forks, the TT version was rigid with a rear-mounted magneto. Two ran in the TT, but neither was successful.
  • 1911 That year saw the arrival of a free-engine clutch and a 3½ hp vertical twin with overhead inlet-valves.
  • 1912 Various models were available from 2hp to 3½ hp and there was also a ladies' version. Four models continued for the next two years.
  • 1914 The marque disappeared.

Centaur Cycle Co

of West Orchard Works, Coventry
  • 1896/7 Directory: Listed under cycles.
  • 1897 The New Centaur Cycle Co was registered on 27 February, to take over the business of the Centaur Cycle Co.
  • 1906 In January, the original name was reverted to.
  • 1912 Listed in Spennell's directory of Coventry as Cycle Manufacturers.

National Motorcycle Museum exhibits:-

  • 1912 Centaur 500cc
Centaur Cycle Company is related. Sources: Graces Guide

Fri Jan 02 2015
bernie.0205 at yahoo.co.uk
Centaur, Coventry Water Cooled
Please can you help? a friend in South Africa was given a Centaur, Coventry single cylinder water cooled engine c early 1900s. he has got it running but has no knowledge of what it was used for. Can you help please. Bernard Dodd Cleethorpes.

Centaur-Water-Cooled-SA.jpg posted in the classics gallery.

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