French Motorcycles

Louis Clément Motorcycles

Louis Clément built aircraft in Bordeaux, Lyon and Boulogne-Billancourt, and like many other aircraft manufacturers after the armistice, began constructing motorcycles. The first machine was a 540cc 55° V-twin presented in 1919. The engine was quite unusual, having a shared cylinder head, unconventional spark plug locations, and fully enclosed valves. Dry sump lubrication was employed with a backup hand pump, the fuel tank acting as an oil reservoir.

Both primary and secondary drive were by fully enclosed chains.

It was a very handsome motorcycle with many innovative solutions, but was too expensive for the majority. Production of the twin ended around 1921, and the single did not last much longer.


Louis Clement 500cc 1921

Pressed steel construction of the Louis Clement front fork.

Motor Cycles at the Paris Salon.

Excellent as are the pressed steel frames of the Louis Clement and Janoir, the buyer may be inclined to ask if they possess any great advantage over their contemporaries having tubular frames. The Louis Clément is another pressed steel machine which made its debut at the last Paris Show, and which now appears in an improved form. In 1919, however (there was not a show in 1920), a twin-cylinder model was exhibited, and this has been abandoned in favour of a Train single-cylinder two-stroke of 500 c.c. capacity.

The MotorCycle October 13th, 1921.

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