Hildebrand and Wolfmuller
Hildebrand & Wolfmüller of Germany
In 1889, Heinrich and Wilhelm Hildebrand of Munich, made a prototype motorcycle using a small steam engine.
After their prototype steam motorcycle, the brothers joined with Alois Wolfmuller to manufacture a design patented by Wolfmuller and Hans Geisenhoff, in 1894.
1894 Heinrich Hildebrand of Munich produces a benzine driven motor cycle.
It is considered to be the first production motorcycle and it was made in both Germany and France until 1896. The engine was a twin-cylinder, water-cooled, four-stroke with 1,488cc. The pistons travelled together (firing alternately) with their connecting rods pushing cranks on the rear wheel, like a locomotive engine. The rear wheel acted like a flywheel and it used rubber bands to pull the pistons back up the cylinders.
There are examples of the Hildebrand and Wolfmuller Motorad in the Deutsches Zweirad-Museum, Neckarsulm, Germany, the Prague National Technical Museum, the London Science Museum, and the Henry Ford Museum in Detroit, USA.
Sources of Information
- Express and Echo - Thursday 14 June 1894