Featured Pages Matchless Flat Twin 1916 An Outstanding Design by Harry Collier
Matchless 732cc HO TwinClement Ader The Stuff of Legend
Pioneer in Telephony, Aviation and Motorcycling
Moteurs AderGuzzi's Grandpa A shaft-drive transverse V-twin from 1904, another deft touch from Clement Ader.
Hillman was a motorcycle produced in 1902, by William Hillman.
It had had a number of interesting features, including all-chain drive.
The 1½ hp engine was mounted high up behind the headstock, and the crankcase
became part of the downtube. The magneto was driven by crank and rod, so
oscillated, and the chain drive was in two stages, via the bottom bracket.
The mixture was provided by a crude spray-carburettor - a very advanced
feature for the era. Only one model was built.
Premier were motorcycles produced from 1908 to 1920, in Coventry,
by William Hillman.
1908 A model was produced that had a 3½ hp White
and Poppe engine, Brown and Barlow carburettor, Bosch
magneto and belt drive.
1909 By now they were building their own version of the engine and their
own design of forks replaced the original Chater-Lea.
They took an injunction against Premier
Motor Co over the use of the name Premo.
1910 The single was joined by a 3¾ hp V-twin that had horizontal cooling
fins and a crankshaft that allowed both pistons to move together despite
its angle. Late in the year, a completely new 3¾ hp V-twin engine was
announced, and this had cylinders set at 45 degrees and kept the horizontal
cooling fins. A two-speed gear was available.
1911 A 2hp lightweight model joined the range. It had its engine mounted
inclined in a loop frame above the pedals. It had a rear-mounted Bosch
magneto, belt drive and Druid forks.
Later, a 2½ hp single was added.
1912 Premier Cycle Co listed at Hertford St. and Lincoln St (Tel.
796), Read St (Tel. 514), Coventry and as manufacturers of motorcycles.
1912 The range now included a 3½ hp ladies' model with open frame.
1913 They produced a 499cc side-valve 3-speed machine, and brought in a
two-speed gearbox and Druid forks
for the 3½ hp single. In came a new V-twin with increased power and out
went the 2hp model.
1914 A new model was announced, but few were built. It had a 2¾ hp in-line,
twin-cylinder, two-stroke, over-square engine of 322cc, mounted in a duplex
1915-1916 The range was still listed.
Post-WWI. The company concentrated on a three-wheel Runabout.