Story: Motorcycles

First motorcycle, around 1900

First motorcycle, around 1900

Mr Henning (left) and Mr Service of Auckland pose with their De Dion two-and-a-half horsepower motor tricycle. The first manufactured motorcycle introduced to New Zealand was a one-and-three-quarter horsepower De Dion motor tricycle, made in France. It was imported by a Christchurch man named Acton-Adams in 1899. It cost him £100, packing was £3, freight £8 10s., and customs duty £22. In 2008 terms the total cost would have been around $21,000. He sold the bike a year later for £55.

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Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira
Reference: C3021

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How to cite this page:

Carl Walrond, 'Motorcycles - History of motorcycles', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 18 October 2021)

Story by Carl Walrond, published 11 Mar 2010