Wagner -
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Wagner D2-492-43-07
Photo ou archives : H. Ludwig

Capacity : 250
Model :
Production : 1904 -
Category : (R) Street Bike


250cc -1904

An American pioneer

There are few histories of the motorcycle that mention the name of the little American marque Wagner - and even if they do, they're more likely to illustrate the boss's daughter Clara Wagner, a pretty young blonde in her 20s, than her father's


A Medal for Clara

Clara does deserve her place in the company's history, for at the age of 18, she rode a Wagner motorcycle in an endurance run from Chicago to Indianapolis and, moreover, finished without having incurred a single penalty point. Though she was unplaced in the final results, the other competitors were so impressed that they joined together to buy Clara a special gold medal to commemorate her achievement.

Twin-Engined Tandem

The Wagner marque came from the Twin Cities, and was founded at 22 East Fourth Street, St. Paul, in 1901. One of America's pioneer motorcycle manufacturers, Wagner remained in production until 1914. Its four model range used engines of 2 to 4 hp, either made in-house or by Thor (as fitted to the first Indians). A distinctive feature of the Wagners was the unusual loop frame with a diagonal cross-brace above the engine. Perhaps the most curious machine ever made by Wagner was its twin-engined tandem; one was built in 1904 and another in 1911. Two single-cylinder engines were mounted one behind the other, each one driving the back wheel - which had a special double pulley for the purpose - through a separate belt.


Engine: 250cc (approx.) single-cylinder twostroke

Power Rating: 2.5 hp

Valves: automatic overhead intake, side exhaust

Fuel System: constant-level carburetor

Transmission: direct leather belt drive

Suspension: none

Brakes: back-pedal braking (rear)

Wheels: wire clincher (front & rear)

Weight: 80 lb (approx.)

Maximum Speed: 35 mph


In a remarkable state of preservation, this beautiful 1904 Wagner is the kind of bike on which young Clara Wagner bit the headlines not long after the turn of the century.

Motorcycle encyclopedia Moto Passion, realised by François-Marie Dumas, include almost 2000 photos presented with an exhaustive history of the motorcycles exhibited.

This unique collection has been realised with the participation of many specialists. With many thanks in particular to Yves Campion, Michael Dregni, Didier Ganneau, Jean Goyard, Helmut Krackowizer, Michel Montange, Christian Rey, Bernard Salvat, Mick Woollett, etc

One can order here

  • Original cards on paper (in french)
  • High resolution scans or original documents presented and signed with my name.

Please contact me at info@moto-collection.org for conditions and copyright.

© Tous droits réservés
François-Marie Dumas

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