Jawa is a Czech Republic manufacturer of
Motorcycles. Founded by Frantisek Janecek, who in 1929, bought out the
motorcycle production of Wanderer. The name "Jawa", comes from the first two
letters of Janecek and Wanderer.
The first model was introduced on October 23, 1929. This was a 500 cc 4-cycle
engine with 12 kW of power (18 hp) and fuel consumption of 6 liters per 100 km.
Although priced highly, through the first years (and several constructional
fixes) this motorcycle was successful and was considered reliable.
Historically Jawa motorbikes has been very active
and succesful in racing. In track racing Jawa sustained a presence in the World
Championship until the mid-sixties with respectable performances.
In Motocross the firm built an impressive
palmares before its 4-stroke engines became superseded by 2-stroke engines. In
Speedway racing, Dirt-track racing and Ice racing where 4-stroke engines were
still at an advantage, Jawa remained a dominant force, scoring a number of
victories that's still unbeaten today. Jawa Speedway racing motorcycles are now
a separate company.
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