Story: Motorcycles

Motor tricycle, around 1900

Motor tricycle, 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 Christchurch man William Acton-Adams in 1899. It cost him £100, packing was £3, freight £8 10s., and customs duty £22. In 2022 terms the total cost was around $28,000. Acton-Adams sold the bike a year later for £55.

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Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira
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How to cite this page:

Carl Walrond, 'Motorcycles - History of motorcycles', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 3 July 2022)

Story by Carl Walrond, published 11 Mar 2010