Today in Motorcycle History

King Motorcycles (of Cambridge)

W. King and Co of Bridge Street Cambridge produced motorcycles from 1901 to 1905.

1901 The firm initially produced tricycles but soon moved to motorcycles.

1903 They built a model that was a typical primitive. It had a 2¾ hp MMC engine mounted vertically, driving the rear wheel by belt. They also offered the option of 3½ hp or 4hp water-cooled engines.

1904 The engines for that year were 2¾ hp to 3½ hp from either Daw or MMC. Direct-belt drive or two speed and chain were available, and a forecar was listed.

1905 The company was short lived and nothing further was heard of it after that year.

Reports from the 1903 Stanley Show:

W. King and Co., Cambridge,

will exhibit six machines. All King machines are fitted with M.M.C. and Daw motors from 2¾ to 3½ h.p., and two P. and R. accumulators connected with a two-way switch. The accumulators are neatly and securely fitted in an acid-proof wood case, breaking and short circuiting being impossible. To ensure a perfect and sufficient supply of gas the 4 h.p. Longumare carburetters are fitted both with air and throttle levers, also a very large and effective silencer. Powerful back-pedalling and front rim brakes are provided. The transmission is by means of a very strong V belt, but a chain drive with a two-speed gear can be fitted to order. Bassee and Michel large contact breaker, and a trembler coil are fitted. The forecars supplied to suit are of the very latest design.

The Motor Cycle, November 18th 1903
Stanley Show 1903

W. King and Co.

The Cambridge firm has a good display of the King motor cycles, one of which was entered in the 1,000 miles trial, and was, greatly to its credit, awarded first-class certificates by the Auto Cycle Club judges. A fine motor bicycle, specially built for Mr. E. J. Watson, is shown with a water-cooled Daw engine, the radiator being fitted in a curved form in front of the starting socket. All the other machines on the stand are driven by M.M.C. engines both air and water cooled—the latest pattern forecarriage having the radiator on the left side of the basket seat. One machine is shown with pedal footrests bolted to the front portion of the crank chamber of the engine. These should afford a convenient change of position to those who are inconvenienced by the usual fore and aft pedal rest. (Stand 113.)

The Motor Cycle, 25th November 1903
Stanley Show 1903

Sources: Graces Guide, The Motor magazine.

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