Lot 207

Hershey 2016

1905 Fabrique Nationale Four-Cylinder


$34,500 USD | Sold

United States | Hershey, Pennsylvania



Frame No.

363 cc shaft-drive four-cylinder engine.

Please note that this lot is titled as a 1907.

Belgian company Fabrique Nationale d’Herstal was an arms manufacturer, much like BSA, which turned to bicycle manufacture and then motorcycle construction. Officially called La Fabrique Nationale d’Armes de Guerre (National Factory of Weapons of War), the company stunned the world when it introduced a four-cylinder, side-valve motorcycle at the Paris Cycle Show of 1905. The new bike’s smooth power delivery endeared itself to owners that were used to vibrating singles and twins.

Designed by Paul Kelecom, this model would remain in production until 1923, increasing to 748 cubic centimeters at the request of sidecar owners. All FNs featured leading-link forks and were shaft driven until 1923, when a new overhead valve four-cylinder switched to chain drive. The example offered here is formerly of the Hartung Collection and is a very nice early survivor. It appears mostly complete, down to its original stove black livery.