Moto Collection
Facebook FMD Instagram FMD
Accueil - FMD - Fiches - Blog - FFVE - Livres - Clubs - Musées - Contact FFVE
 Terrot - NSSL
 Back to brands list

Terrot D2-492-61-15
Photo ou archives : F-M. Dumas

Capacity : 500
Model : NSSL
Production : 1933 - 1933
Category : (R) Street Bike


500 NSSL-JAP - 1933

Made to measure

This Terrot is a real pitfall for the collector. Though it's perfectly genuine, officially it never existed! The mighty firm from Dijon certainly used JAP engines in its top-of-the-range models until the beginning of 1932, but after that, it used its own-make 500cc engine.

British Is Best

To satisfy a special customer who swore by the British engines (and with good reason), this one-off 500 NSSL was built in 1933. The 483cc JAP engine was particularly remarkable in using a genuine dry-sump lubrication system with a double pump housed in the sump, which sent the oil to the crucial points and returned it to the separate oil tank.

Exploding Gearboxes

This machine was originally equipped with the classic Terrot three-speed gearbox. But though that was sufficient for the French engines, it was under-dimensioned for the 21 hp delivered by the British power unit. After several gearboxes had exploded beneath his feet, the disgruntled client was finally pacified by the fitting of a specially-built racing four-speed transmission. The only production Terrot that had a four-speed transmission was the semi-unit-constructed RSS model (which had a specially-designed crankcase), but here an entirely separate gearbox was employed. Terrot had launched its first in-house engine on the side-valve 500 RL in 1930, followed by the overhead-valve, semi-unit-constructed RSS in 1932, which replaced the JAP-engined NSS (which Terrot made not the slightest effort to promote, making this surviving last-of-the-line NSSL all the more rare).


Engine: 483cc (85x85mm) air-cooled single-cylinder four-stroke; magneto ignition; dry-sump lubrication

Power Rating: 21 hp @ 5,000 rpm

Valves: overhead; twin-port head

Fuel System: carburetor

Transmission: separate Terrot 4-speed tankshift, chain final drive

Suspension: girder forks (front); rigid (rear)

Brakes: drum (front & rear)

Wheels: 4.00x19 inch (front & rear)

Weight: 353 lb

Maximum Speed: 78 mph

This one-off machine was the very last Terrot to have a bought-in engine, built to the order of a very choosy customer.

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 for conditions and copyright.

© Tous droits réservés
François-Marie Dumas

Accueil - FMD - Fiches Moto Passion - Blog - FFVE - Livres - Clubs - Musées - Contact

Mentions légales