British motorcycle manufacturers - Z

Last update June 14, 2003

Zenith   Manufacturer in the early part of the century. Started in 1905, making a two-wheel 'bicar'. Motorcycle production began in 1907 with the sprung-frame Zenette. Known for its Gradua with adjustable gearing operated by a long hand lever. Offered a 350cc model in either Blackburne or JAP engine. Built Villiers and JAP-engined singles in the 1930s, but stopped production in 1931 because of poor sales. Started again when they were bought by Writer's, and continued until the start of WW2 using Blackburne and JAP engines. Offered 20 models for 1933 and 14 in 1934, dwindling to six by 1939 when war closed production.  Returned briefly from 1947 to 1950 with a 747cc sv JAP model and a smaller 250cc. Zenith had many successes in hill climbs and at Brooklands in the 1920s.
Zephyr 1922-23 (1918-20?). Clip-ons, plus some complete machines.
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