French Motorcycles

Today in Motorcycle History

Motocyclettes fabriquées en France (E)

Notes on some of the rarer French marques

This page lists brands for which we currently have only an historical precis. There is also a page on really obscure French brands.
For a more complete listing visit the French Index.

E Fontaine
Built at 3 rue Lesueur in Le Havre in 1906 by M. E. Fontaine, the motorcycle has a 401cc engine. Following its sale by Yesterdays in 2004 it was restored between 2005 and 2007. It is believed to be unique.

Manufactured around 1933 by the Gardette firm in the Villefranche sur Saone region.
A 1933 model exists with a 100cc Stainless engine, with an AYA clutch in the rear wheel hub. It is fitted with an AMAC T41 carburetor, has 2 speeds, and has a MEA B 1 magneto. The seat is from Lamplugh.
The dealer plate on the front guard is by P. Felide, Le Coteau (Loire).

Joël Guilet designed the ERS for the Paris-Dakar in which it raced from 1987 to 1989. Using a BMW air-cooled twin housed in a a carbon-fibre frame which weighed a mere 6kg, it had a 64 litre tank which damped fuel movement with a foam bladder.
Source: François-Marie Dumas

Edmond Gustave Henry

In 1914 a Frenchman built a pivoting sidecar with a parallelogram chassis, which allowed the passenger compartment to remain almost horizontal whilst the motorcycle leaned into the corner.

That year he registered a patent described thus: "Cycles with handlebars, equipped with three or more main road wheels with means for inwardly inclining the vehicle body on bends." See

Source: Motorrad-Gespanne No. 44


Electric Motion 2012-2024



E.M.A. engines
Ets E M A, 192 Avenue du Maine, Paris 14°
Built 48ccc engines 1950-51
Source: La Moto Francaise

Émeraude (Emeraude)
1902 6 Rue de Rennes, Nantes
Later at 20 rue de Versailles in Nantes
Manufacturer: G. Fournier
In 1907, Monluc de Lariviere and Sauzereau, manufacturers, motorcycle with 2hp engine
Bourdache p434

Built by Ets Teyssot, 1950s
20, Rue Du Placieux Nancy (M. et M.)
Some models used Comet engines by Le Poulain, others Sachs or AMC.


Moteurs et Motocycles Etoile, Paris, built lightweights using 98cc two-stroke engines from Aubier Dunne and others up to 198cc.
Sources: Tragatsch p129,

Excelsior-Bruneau 1907

Manufactured by J. H. Exshaw & Co., 31, Boulevard J.-J. Bosc, Bordeaux. Early 1920s.
50x50 mm two-stroke engine mounted on a bicycle's rear carrier. A 1 hp version drove the rear wheel by belt, and a 1½ hp unit used a chain.
Sources:, The Motor Cycle - Paris Salon, 1922.

Motocyclette with 2 ¼hp engine, 1904
Bourdache p434

French Resources

Rarer French Marques