Dutch Motorcycles

Today in Motorcycle History

Germaan Motorcycles

A Brief History of the Marque

Built by NV Rijwielindustrie F. & J.v.Werven of Meppel, 1935-1966

Production began in 1935 of motorcycles and motorised bicycles using Villiers, JLO (including twins) and Sachs two-stroke engines of 49cc to 248cc.

In 1949 a model with a Csepel engine appeared, sold as the Germaan Olympia. It was, apparently, something of a disaster and sullied the company's reputation for some time to come. A number of these were sold to H. Borkhuis of Groningen and rebadged as Arley and Vidson. The insignia for these were created by cutting and cropping Harley-Davidson logos.

Motorcycle production ceased around 1955, with moped production continuing to 1966 or thereabouts. They built mopeds under licence from Achilles, and they also built Sachs-powered mopeds for both Fongers and Phoenix who badged them as their own. The frames for the mopeds were Italian, reportedly from the same company which supplied Gedo-Victoria.

The brand was acquired by Batavus in 1970.

Sources: oudefiets.nl, benvanhelden.nl, et al.

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