Photo ou archives : D. Ganneau
3.5 hp Clutch Model-1911
Under the sign of the kangaroo
Though the first Premier motorcycle was not shown until 1908, the Premier Cycle Company Limited had a long and distinguished history of two-wheeler manufacturing.
Father of the Bicycle
In the earliest days of the cycle industry, William Hillman -later a famed automobile manufacturer - was associated with James Starley ("the father of the bicycle") and invented the tension-spoked wire wheel as well as the first two-speed cycle gear.
World's Biggest Cycle Factory
Hillman and two associates, Herbert and Cooper, went into business in 1876 to build a safety high-wheeled bicycle, in which the rider sat low, propelling the front wheel through a system of pedals and levers. The machine was called the "Kangaroo" and their business grew by leaps and bounds. In 1891, their company name was changed to "Premier," since they claimed that it had become the world's biggest cycle factory. Alfred Angus Scott fttted his first twin-cylinder two-stroke to his Premier bicycle in 1901. When Premier turned to motorcycle manufacturing, their logo was a kangaroo holding a crown between its paws. At first, White & Poppe engines were used; then in 1909, came an own-make 548cc V-twin that finished seventh in that year's TT. In 1910, Premier unveiled a 3.5 hp 499cc single. In 1911, Fred Dover rode one for 3400 miles around the coastline of Great Britain in 21 days. A novel feature was an extra exhaust outlet in the cylinder wall with its own down pipe.
Engine: 499cc (85x88mm) air-cooled singlecylinder four-stroke; Bosch magneto
Power Rating: 3.5 hp
Valves: side; auxiliary exhaust outlet in cylinder wall
Fuel System: Brown & Barlow carburetor
Transmission: hub-clutch; 3-speed Armstrong epicyclic gear (optional), V-belt final drive
Suspension: Druid girder forks (front); rigid (rear)
Brakes: rim (front); belt rim (rear)
Wheels: 26x3.00 inch wire clincher (front & rear)
The 1913 Premier 3.5 hp range offered the choice of direct drive, hub-clutch, epicyclic three-speed gear or two-speed counters haft gearing.