1896 Reeves Motocycle

Another of the lessor-known autos in the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum Indiana Automobiles: Precision over Production exhibit is the 1896 Reeves Motocycle.

1896 Reeves Motocycle

A number of automobiles sprang from the fertile mind of Milton O. Reeves of the Reeves Pulley Company in Columbus between 1896 and 1912. Reeves called his first car the Motocycle, which he tested on September 26, 1896. The Motocycle, like many other early autos, used a two-cycle, two-cylinder Sintz gasoline engine. One notable feature of his Motocycle was its use of a variable speed transmission. Reeves’ variable speed transmission may have been one of the earliest automotive applications.

The third Motocycle, a light-weight four-seater, was built for Claude Sintz in 1897. In all, five motocycles were built in a two-year period. Reeves was extremely satisfied with the operation of his variable speed transmissions, but said that gasoline engines were unreliable and not satisfactory for this application.

In mid-1904, M. O. Reeves and Girney L. Reeves obtained the company’s permission to investigate the possibilities of building complete automobiles. The company produced autos until 1912.

Thanks to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum for showing this Reeves Motocycle. For more information on Indiana cars & companies, follow this link.

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