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Solex Micron- 1968
Solex released the Micron, its most diminutive model, at the end of 1967. Powered by the engine from the larger 3800 model, the Micron represents a bit of a misstep for the Solex company. One of the main draws of the VéloSoleX was the ability to have motorized transport without all of the “hassle” of owning a motorcycle or car. Notice that the Micron seen here does not have any pedals. French regulations say that a moped without pedals is a motorbike, which means to operate the Micron you needed a motorcycle license, insurance, a helmet, rear license plate, electric horn, a three position headlight (brights, regular, and dim), and a speedometer. The added cost associated with this required equipment increased prices so much, in addition to the hoops the rider had to jump through, that sales were dismal- only 4,000 were sold.
Since the Micron and the larger 3800 share the same single-cylinder engine, the roller for the Micron’s front wheel was made smaller in diameter than the 3800. This, coupled with the smaller tire size, kept the Micron’s top speed of 18 mph the same as the larger model.
The model seen here is a non-street legal version; it had the handlebars from the 3800, no headlight, no electrical system (therefore no lighting or horn), and the engine had a restrictor plate which limited the top speed to only 9 mph!
Country of Origin: France
Engine: Single cylinder, 49cc, 2 stroke, air-cooled, 0.78HP
Transmission: Roller to the front wheel
Top Speed: 18 mph (non-street legal version: 9 mph)
Years of Production: 1968-1974
Number Produced: about 4,000
Original Cost: 518 French Francs, or $104 US (about $556 US today)