Cycle Peugeot Museum

Peugeot history and Tour de France from the catalog of Honda Motors


Cycles Peugeot Fabrique en France

Peugeot: The pride of France was in the seven letters of frame.

Tradition of 100 years made pronoun of bicycle.

'What bicycle do you want?'
If you ask to 10 pedestrians on the roadG eight people would replyF'Peugeot'. Two people would say: 'as for a bicycle, I only know Peugeot'; and another two people would reply: 'I think vaguely Peugeot is good'; and the rest would say: ePeugeot is the best'. To french people, the image of bicycle is Peugeot. The reason why the name of Cycles Peugeot came to be reliable is its history. 100 years already passed since Peugeot began producing bicycle. Peugeot is the oldest maker among the present makers. Around 1900, there still weren't good machine tool; Peugeot already had a number of good craftsmen, unique process of production, and new facility, and had exported their bicycle to the world. Of course, their bicycle had gotten good estimation. French people used to think as if Peugeot is a diplomatic special envoy, and called Peugeot: "tiny queen". They were proud of Peugeot. French people have had strong patriotism; therefore when they think that bicycle must be Peugeot, it has same meaning with the word: 'Viva France!'. We can imagine those who ride bicycle at neighbor country with the shout 'Look at this bicycle!'. Peugeot has grown up to the international brand with the background of such French nationalism. Nowadays, Cycles Peugeot is the biggest bicycle industry in France. The company has filled 50 percent of demand in France, has been the top maker of exportation (dominate 40 percent of it). The company has made more than 150 models, and tried to make satisfaction of cyclists all over the world. It would be natural if people have said gBicycle must be Peugeoth.

Lion combative runs through world.

If you are a motorcycle fun, you would imagine crimson Ferrari when you hear the word "prancing horse"; If you make smile when you hear the word "Lion combative", you must be a veteran cyclist. The emblem of Peugeot which has produced automobile (called "stylish girl") and bicycle (called "tiny queen") has been called "Lion combative". We can feel French esprit from contrast between "girl/queen" and "lion". The Lion which has gotten respect from cyclists and given pride to cyclists was borne at the village Valentigney which was located near the border of Swiss in 1882. Cycles Peugeot which was established by genius Peugeot brothers in the village had given the Lion to their first bicycle "Le Francais" with self-confidence and pride. Since then, the emblem has shone on the head tubes of racer which had gotten a number of victories, and loved by cyclists of the world as a symbol of high functional bicycle.

Person who has a name Peugeot goes to the company of Peugeot by riding Peugeot.

The greatest French company Peugeot which has Citroen and Talbot is the family company which is composed of small companies making cycle, moped, automobile and several parts. And a number of people who have a name Peugeot have worked at the company. Therefore Cycles Peugeot is really a family company, and the root of high functional bicycle is in this family.

The history

1810: Pierre and Frederic brother modified the milling factory in Valentigney, had established the metallurgical factory.

1857: Peugeot family began to produce spring steel, had gotten a number of success.

1882: the brother designed bicycle, established a factory. Then they began to produce the first model "Le Francais".

1885: The factory hired 300 mechanics, and began to produce bicycle.
1889: The bicycle had gotten good estimation; the company began to export their bicycle.

1890: The technology of Peugeot developed to automobile.

1927: After the World War I, Peugeot started production again. The company was divided into Cycles Peugeot and Auto mobile Peugeot.

1940: The factory was dominated by German army during World War II. However, the company continued research secretly.

1945: Peugeot was returned to French people.

1949: The company designed new engine, and established factory.

1958: Proceeds of the company had diminished; therefore the company began to produce automobile parts, and recover the company.

1966-1980: The company had made family company and new factories, progressed their enterprise. The company had factories at nine country, and sales offices at seven countries.

1981: Peugeot Japan was established.

1982: The company had produced PX10DU-J which was a first duralumin model of mass-production maker. Honda motors had imported several kinds model to Japan.

The bicycle of Peugeot was evolved by road-racing.

There is a word "a frog in a well: person who is ignorant of the real world". Those who don't enter world racing nor win victory at there, can't produce high functional products. The machine can get good estimation by a number of challenges and victories.
To join a race positively and get knowhow is very important like Honda-Motors had challenged to F-1 racing, and got honor and technology for producing high functional car.
Peugeot bicycle had evolved through this laboratory (road-racing) of course. The racing of Europe has long history; and the history of Peugeot is longer than the history of European racing. Peugeot has continued to develop their bicycle since first race started. And tomorrow, you would see "challenging lion" on the start line.


Many people in Cycles Peugeot say that their father also worked at the company. Moreover, you would meet a number of craftsmen that say proudly their grandfather also worked at the company. Those people are obstinate, don't like job of mass-production. However, Cycles Peugeot has thought that such craftsmen are precious because the company needs their enthusiasm and obstinacy to produce bicycle. High grade bicycle of Peugeot has been produced like a hobby by such craftsmen.

Mr. Yves Sauget who is a chief of development department is one of those craftsmen. He's about to reach 50 years old. He has a father and a grandfather who also worked at Cycles Peugeot. Moreover his house was built on the hill where he can look down the factory. His colleague had watched him struggling with machine all the year, and said that he must have been born with a gear. However, he did not occasionally come out to the company. In such a day, his son entered a road-racing. If you had watched him cheering his son earnestly, you would have thought that Peugeot's soul would never end.

The quality of bicycle: Peugeot is produced for a person who choose bicycle.

The policy of Cycles Peugeot is to keep quality. Cycles Peugeot never reduce the time to check their products. After the bicycle is adjusted to the condition which can be ridden soon, it is checked by newest check system, then is brought out from the factory. Therefore if you buy a Peugeot bicycle, it means you also buy quality and safety.
There is a word "disposable". It's one of a thing European can't understand. The long history of Europe has given good custom to people. The word "use a good thing for a long time" is always kept in people's mind. It is also a reason why the cityscape of Paris is so beautiful.
French cyclist really loves their bicycle. In the city, you would often see people who are proud of their bicycle which was made 20 years ago. Or it might not be only French people. Cycles Peugeot believes there must be a lot of cyclist who has good mind. Therefore the company wishes that people who intend to buy a good bicycle come to be the owner of Peugeot. The company thinks no need to sell a large quantity of bicycle. If the owner can ride same bicycle for 10 or 20 years, it would be the pride of Cycles Peugeot and France. As for Cycles Peugeot, there is not sales talk such as "Please buy new model".

Lf Equipe Peugeot

Team Peugeot: the Maillot of check; the most powerful team runs through.

The men who fight along with Peugeot: 81' Tour de France.

When Peugeot bicycle appears at a race, there must be the men who wore jersey of check. The jersey of check and the team of Peugeot which has tradition which continues from the beginning of bicycle race are very famous. We can't talk about high quality bicycle Peugeot which has won a number of victories at the world race such as World Bicycle Championship and Tour de France, without them. The good bicycle would be born by advice of good athlete, and athlete can run fast with good bicycle. Peugeot has continued to make hero. People send big applause to jersey of check anywhere, and they expect good performance of the team Peugeot. Therefore team Peugeot will fight continually. They won two big titles such as the team classification and the team points classification at 81' Tour de France. While a number of athletes gave up the race, all athletes of the team Peugeot reached the goal with high rank. They proved the total power of bicycle and team through this most severe race.

The most powerful team Peugeot has prepared for the race of 1982.

Team Peugeot which is composed of 20 special athletes will fight at the 50 big races. The most of athletes are elites; each of them can be an ace. There are four big aces such as Bernaudeau, Duclos-Lassalle, Rolland, and Stephen Roche. And Anderson who showed good performance at 81' Tour de France, Jones who is English athlete, and Jack who is a veteran athlete, also belong to the team. They are already used to the new bicycle which is made of duralumin. And young athletes were trained well. We can expect Tour de France of this year.

Road race, it is a drama which is made by trained athlete.

Everyone is intoxicated with extreme performance.

It would be difficult to imagine about the activity and the history of the cycle sports of Europe if you are in Japan. Especially professional road-racing is the most popular along with football. The frenzy to the road-racing at Southwest Europe where a lot of Latin people live is quite different to professional baseball game of Japan. People yearn for professional athletes, cheer them. They also ride road-racing bicycle, and occasionally enter amateur race. If you classify road-racing as competition, it would be below (Fig.1). And Fig.2 is professional road-racing.

200 road-racings are held every year; and super racings are in them.

Road-racing causes excitement all over Europe every season (Feb-Oct). The most popular racings are International classic which super athletes join and Grand-tour. Grand-tour is a road-racing that athletes fight long distance for several days. It is the most severe racing which demands enormous power and luck to athlete; and it demands reliability and high function to bicycle, too. Each element of Tour de France, such as history, scale, the number of spectators, severity of the course, and prize money are very different to other racing. We can say Tour de France is really the super racing.

Le Tour de France, gust involves Europe in frenzy.

The greatest sports event in the world begins at the time that people leave from Paris.

Summer sunshine shines the color of festival in the city of Nice. The tricolors on the street along shore flutter in the wind from the Mediterranean. Both side of the street are buried by people who gather from Europe for a long vacation and road-racing. The crowd increases as if they are waiting for the explosion, and they are waiting for the super stars of festival. At the moment that a timekeeper makes a small sign, a man kicks the starting gate with dancing, and run into the center of the festival. Then the city explodes. The prologue of 81' Tour de France which is big, gorgeous, and too severe has started. And it involves Europe in frenzy. Tour which is held in the long vacation season every year makes people excite as the greatest sports event (It is not a simple bicycle competition) in the world. Athletes who climb Mt. Alps continue to kick the cranks while grit a tooth. After they reach the top of the mountain, downhill is waiting them. The athletes never stop their feet, and fall into the bottom of valley in 100 km/h. This is a scene of crossing Mt. Alps in the tour which goes around France. If you think calmly, you would notice about its danger. However, as much as a racing is dangerous, people would be excited.

For 25 days, 3,765.6 km: Is the Triumphal Arch far from here?

The distance of Tour de France is about 3, 500 km annually. It is a stage-racing for 25 days. In other word, a stage which is about 200 km a day is prepared; athletes have run through a stage everyday, and head to the final goal Champs-Elysees. Athletes have to run under the summer sunshine of South France, feel severity of winter at Pyrenees and Alps, and suffer for the bad road of stone pavement. It must be the hardest days. Only the super professional athletes can enter the racing. However, one of five athletes gives up the race without seeing Triumphal Arch.

Aside from the final goal, the course is changed every year. It is not only France but goes through neighbor country such as Holland, Swiss, and Belgium. The course of 81' Tour de France was 3, 765.6 km; Athletes started from Nice, went across Mt. Pyrenees which was near the border of Spain, went to south side of Paris from Nantes , ran in Spain for two days and proceed to south, went across Mt. Alps, and goaled to Paris. After the prologue, athletes had fought through 24 stages including Condor Montle (time trial for both individual and team). Tour was held for 25 days (from June 25 to July 19) including 2 days for rest.

The drama of 8,000,000,000 yen in the backstage of the festival

To make arrangement with cities, town, and village, Tour has been prepared from four years before. Huge money, people, and politics have moved in a town expecting the passage of Tour. Because of broadcasting and report of magazine, the town comes to be known all over Europe, even if it is much unknown. This gives a great merit to the town for tourism. The course is announced in previous year of Tour. It hadn't changed in the past. Is that normal? Well, Latin people are capricious. In the case of other racing, they often change a course without notification. However, only Tour never changes the course. The tradition has made responsible organization.

The first Tour was started in 1903 by sports magazine L'Auto (present L'Équipe). Back in those days, it caused big reaction, and the circulation of L'Auto had increased. Then Tour became annually event. Nowadays, L'Équipe and "Le Parisien Libéré" cosponsored Tour, and it is managed by "Société du Tour de France". Most of income of Tour came from sponsor. Tour has immeasurable effectiveness of advertising. Therefore company never misses this occasion. As for the sponsorship, there is a detailed regulation such as following: if a company drives an advertising van along with Tour, company must pay 25,000 francs. Or fee of following cases: putting a logo on the yellow jersey which is presented to winner: putting advertisement to a car for dropouts. Other than sponsor fee, Tour can collect following money: fee of broadcasting: funds from city, town, and village on the course. The total amount of budget would reach 8,000,000,000 yen. The primary expenses are following case: prize money for athletes: the personnel expenses of staff: reward for police and army, and so on.

Tour de France: Muscles work lively; power as let a frame bend tears the air.

150,000,000 spectators: You can turn over the politics because of Tour.

Tens of thousands of people crowd at the top of Mt. Alps. Though snow still remains, fans stay a night to keep the cheering space. Support caravans of each team also keep their place. The shouts of joy echo in the mountain when athletes reach top. Though BMW of police which lead athletes honked a horn, the road has been narrowed by the crowd. A long time ago, a virgin threw a twig of laurel to a marathon runner. At here, the fans fight to be a top, try to hand newspaper over to athletes. Athletes put it inside of jersey to prevent cold at downhill. At the uphill road, fans try to push buttock of their favorite athletes while judges are not looking, and pour water of bottle on the athletes instead of applause. The spectator crowd in flat place, too, though athletes pass in front of them instantly. However, this moment of once a year fills fan with a joy.

The total number of spectator who came from all over Europe is more than 150,000,000. Audiences of TV are over 50,000,000 everyday only in "Euro Vision". To control this huge crowd and general cars, the army and the police deployed 30,000 people. However, they often lost the control of enthusiastic crowd. General traffic is stopped before the race. Then the large numbers of advertised van which were decorated by each company pass the road. The number must be more than 1,200. Moreover, 1,000 cars of the team, the official, and the press have passed by. People 2 times as many as the total number of the car has supported Tour. And they have several functions, and move along with Tour.

As for the function, it means the post office, the Tour bank, the Tour radio (exclusive radio station for only Tour), the hospital, the gas station, the repair shop, the Tour publisher (print several documents, distribute them to Tour staffs). If you add the caravan of police to this, you would feel as if a nation is moving along with Tour in front of the crowd on the roadside.

Feet become machines when 20 mm tubular-tires make sound.

Athletes look up at the sky, and make a sign of the cross in front of chest; then they jump out of the start gate. We canft know when the smile of Lady Luck disappears during 25 fighting days. A winner of previous day may fall from their bicycle in the following day. If they lose the control at the downhill road, their body would be hit on the bottom of valley. Nobody knows the limit of 20 mm tubular-tire at 100 km/h. Moreover, the puncture of fore-bicycle which is caused frequently by rough road means self crash. Athlete starts soon as long as they have consciousness even if his body is hurt. No time to feel pain. Tour demands to athletes to be machine more than human.

At the confused fight route, even a stop for several seconds comes to be big disadvantage. However, athletes need urination at the downhill road of Pyrenees because of the coldness of snow. Athlete urinates while he is kicking the pedals. Spectator in the roadside often sees a rainbow after athletes pass in front of them. It is a moment that you can find humanity in the fighting of machinelike super athlete.

Calculate the body and the machine. Gamble means defeat.

At the individual time trial of gear ratio 53*12.6 km, there is accurate calculation behind average speed 50 km/h. Miscalculation of one tooth would kill the golden feet. The condition of Human feet has been changing frequently for 25 days. Therefore you need special sense which is quite different to F-1 for setting machine. The game starts when mechanic and athlete use this special sense. Even an athlete who has self confidence about the physical ability can not be a top athlete without this sense. Each parts of bicycle are checked strictly so that athlete can ride it with full confidence. Tour continues until the midnight because of the machine maintenance.

As adjustment of machine is important, getting trim of physical condition is also important. Or we can say it affects everything. Of course a cold is outrageous. Athlete has to keep self control as professional of course. Moreover, team doctor controls their physical condition more strictly. Menu of meal is arranged carefully. Of course alcohol and cigarette are restrained. And enough sleep is also necessary. Masseur belongs to each team. Team prepares an medical facility at the goal, waits athletes who finished the race of the day. They heal the athlete's mind and the muscle. Doctor and masseur know well about the condition of athlete, and report it to the team. The team can make strategy in detail through controlling athletefs condition.

We can feel the tradition of Europe from the team manager who is shouting and the athlete who is crying.

Giving the passing light, Peugeot 504 which carries three spare bicycles on the roof is going into the bunch of athlete. Athletes are used to it, and avoid the car. The team manager who drives the car gives a strategy and a bottle to the assistant athlete. The athlete runs to deliver it to the captain. It is a scene we often see at the Tour.

Service work has been kept during the race. Two cars follow the team. The regulation of Tour says that official car must be Peugeot. Therefore even the team Renault has to use Peugeot to support their team.

Parts and drink are prepared in support vehicle, and team manager and mechanic get on the car. Most of the case, the team manager shouts from the roof window to athletes. The car would stop if athlete complains about malfunction of the wheel, then exchange it in 20 second. It's so quick. Moreover, supply service vehicle leads the athletes, and waits passage of them. Several sacoches are prepared on the roof. Cube sugar, cookie, pie, apple, honey, drink, and so on are put in it. And some special thing is put in it for those who are particular about food. Team manager controls ten athletes. To say more precisely, manager plan how to use assist athletes for captain who goes for overall victory. This can be a point of race. Because of assist, captain can be winner. As for the individual overall victory of Tour, 15 Aces who have 135 assistants in 15 teams (150 athletes) fight for it. It causes us to imagine ancient European guild system. The obligation of assistants is very important. They deliver an order of manager to captain; if a captain of other team goes ahead, they block and bring him back to the group. They lead their captain by creating slipstream. At the point near goal, they fight with other team's assistants, make good condition; then make captain sprint to goal. Some assistant canft stand when they passed the goal line where spectators joy of victory of star athlete. The tear stream down on the face when assistant finished their hard obligation.

Magical Maillot Jaune changes a life of men.

If you ask about Maillot Jaune in France, people would reply: 'oui, Tour de France' Then you would hear the names of super star. Everyone must have imagined putting on Maillot Jaune and riding bicycle. The yellow color originated from the paper color of "L'Auto" which organized Tour de France. At first, a winner who won at the prologue put on this jersey, and run on the following race. Then, the athlete who has minimum record of total time from the prologue puts on the jersey, and runs on the following day. The athlete who keeps this jersey at final day is a winner of General Classification. The winner comes to be a national hero, and gets world prestige. He also gets enormous property because of this title. Other than Yellow jersey, several Classifications are prepared; white and red dots jersey for Mountain Classification; green jersey for Point Classification, and white jersey for Young rider Classification. And the highest prize which is given to team is Team Clacification. This is the title for total ability of the team and the machine. Your joy would increase if you know about those Classifications.

The ground will quake again in the July 2. 1982.

The course of 82fTour de France is already announced. The festival will be held for 24 days; and the distance will be 3,600 km. Tour will start from Basel which is near the boundary of Swiss and the head office of Peugeot. From there, Tour go north counterclockwise, pass Belgium, run along shore to south, pass Mediterranean side of Martigues, across Mt. Alps, go down to Saint-Priest, then arrive at Pariss. Fontaine au Pire which is the goal of team time trial, is small village which has 1,500 population. And this is the first time that Tour passes. I'm looking forward to the vacation of this year. At 82fTour de France which is expected to be the severe race, new hero will certainly be born. Athlete and team are preparing for Tour. And Tour fan of Europe must be considering about the vacation plan while reading a guide magazine of Tour de France. Nowadays, Tour came to be famous in Japan. You will hear the report of the tour of this year including activity of Peugeot. I'll be happy if you feel European cycle sports through Peugeot bicycle.

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