DMW Motorcycles

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DMW Motorcycles
Industry Manufacturing and engineering
Fate Company sold and became engineering and Villiers parts specialists
Founded 1945
Defunct 1971
Headquarters Wolverhampton UK
Key people
Leslie Dawson and Harold Nock
Products Motorcycles

DMW Motorcycles was a British motorcycle manufacturer. Based in Wolverhampton, DMW was founded in 1940. The company took over Ambassador Motorcycles in 1963 and continued production until they closed the company in 1965.[1][2] Although DMW ceased motorcycle production in 1971, it was noted for trials and racing machines and many DMWs can still be seen at UK sporting events. DMW produced about 15,000 motorcycles and several other manufacturers used DMW forks and engines.[3]


Founded by Leslie Dawson (inventor of swinging arm motorcycle suspension) as Dawson's Motors Wolverhampton in 1940 to make and sell his new invention, Dawson's Telematic tele-forks, which were telescopic spring and pneumatic front forks that could be 'retro-fitted' as a replacement to standard 'girder' forks. In 1943 Dawson added rear suspension options which he would fit in his Wolverhampton workshop. After the Second World War ended in 1945 Dawson began building DMW grass track racing motorcycles machines with 350 cc and 500 cc JAP engines.[3] Dawson went into partnership with former AJS and Vincent man Harold Nock to build light two-stroke motorcycles. Leslie Dawson was unsuccessful in raising venture capital and emigrated to Canada in 1948. Leslie died in Ellesmere Port on 6 January 1989.

Leslie was replaced by former BSA engineer Mike Riley, who won the 1948 Scottish Trial on a 200 cc DMW. Production moved to Harold Nock's premises in Sedgley and a 122 cc DMW with a Villiers engine was launched in 1950. These were entered in and won numerous competitions and DMW exhibited at the Earls Court Motor Cycle Show in 1952 with three road motorcycles and three racing bikes. A range of relatively successful two-stroke models were produced throughout the 1960s, notably the DMW Dolomite. DMW production ended in 1971 and Harold Nock sold the company in 1975 to Graham Beddall and Ivan Dyke, who concentrated on engineering and selling parts, although they did build one-off competition motorcycles, and a DMW 250 cc won the Midland Centre Group Trials in 1976 and 1977. Beddall and Dyke retained ownership of the DMW name until 2001, when it was wound up.[3]


Model Year Notes
DMW De luxe 1953 Villiers 250 cc two-stroke vertical-twin .
DMW Coronation 1953 Villiers 10D 122 cc two-stroke
Cortina 1954 225 cc Villiers 1H engine
Dolomite 1 1954 250 cc ohc 4-stroke Ateliers Mechanique du Centre (AMC)engine
DMW Hornet 1954 125 cc ohc 4-stroke Ateliers Mechanique du Centre (AMC) engine
Moto Cross 1955 200 cc two-stroke
Trials 1955 200 cc two-stroke competition engine
DMW Leda 1955 150 cc two-stroke 'sports'
Bambi scooter 1957 98 cc Villiers 4F two-stroke
DMW Deemster scooter 1961-1967 249 cc Villiers twin-cylinder two-stroke
DMW Sports Twin 1962 249 cc two-stroke Villiers Mark 4T
DMW Dolomite II 1963 DMW-badged Ambassador motorcycles
250 cc Hornet 1964 Villiers 'Starmaker' 247 cc two-stroke road racer
Sports Twin 1964 Villiers 4T 249 cc two-stroke twin
DMW Typhoon 1965 494 cc Villiers two-stroke twin road racer


  1. ^ Chadwick, Ian. "Ambassador Motorcycles". Retrieved 2008-06-06. 
  2. ^ [1] Chadwick, Ian DMW Retrieved 2013-09-03
  3. ^ a b c "The DMW Story". Retrieved 2013-09-03. 

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