CZ Motorcycles - CZ is short for Česká Zbrojovka, which is a Czechoslovakian firearms manufacturer that is also known for making CZ motorcycles. In September 1919, CZ was established as a branch of the Škoda Works Armament in Strakonice, Czechoslovakia.

CZ began making street motorcycles in 1932, but abandoned racing them in 1972 so that they could focus on creating CZ motocross bikes. They became very well known for their powerful two-stroke MX bikes and was the first company to use expansion chambers in their exhaust pipes.

Although CZ was very successful in Grand Prix motorcycle racing, they were even more successful with motocross racing, winning seven World Championships and dominating the International Six Day Trials Competition.

During the 1950s, CZ joined forces with Jawa. During the 1960s and 1970s, CZ mainly manufactured bikes based on two Models: The 125/175 single-cylinder, and the 250 twin-cylinder. CZ launched the 350 "Typ-860" GP in 1969.

Despite CZ’s racing success, the company lost a lot of the motorcycle market with the increase of popularity in the less expensive Japanese motorcycles in the 1970s. In 1993, Italian motorcycle manufacturer Cagiva purchased the motorcycle branch of CZ, with intent to create new proprietary bikes, as well as new CZ models. Cagiva failed in 1997 because of financial difficulties, therefore bringing an end to CZ Motorcycles.

CZ 250 Custom 1978
CZ 250MX 1991
CZ 471 1974
CZ VMX Racing 1987


1937 CZ 250 Tourist

Factory developed progressively more finished and elegant bikes, as this beautiful 1937 "250 Touring"

1939 CZ 250 Sport

The CZ 250 Sport model was introduced in 1937. It basically had an identical frame and chassis as the CZ 175 type, into which a larger engine was built.


From 1957 CZ Cezeta 175-Typ 502 scooter

The original design of the Cezeta scooters were unique. It had a substantial luggage compartment, using space that in most scooters is occupied by the fuel tank.  The fuel tank is positioned above the front wheel, with the headlight fitted into a recess and a luggage rack on the flat top surface.

1964 CZ 125 Two-cylinder

Jawa was not the only Czechoslo-vakian company to go into speed racing. There was also CZ, a company closely linked to Jawa.

One of the first CZ racing engines, a four-stroke single-cylinder, was built in 1955 in 125-cc, 250-cc, and 350-cc. versions. It was a compact Italian-style engine with two-shaft bevel gear distribution, oil in the crankcase, and block transmission. The three versions generated 14.5, 24, and 30 h.p., respectively.
The CZ 125 was extremely lightweight (about 165 pounds), which made up for its modest power. It entered its first race in 1955, winning a brilliant second place at the Swedish Grand Prix.
It was built after the fashion of the Italian Mondial and MV, but the CZ was not on a par with the competition. In 1964 CZ brought out a new 125 that was clearly modeled after the Jawa 350. It retained the four-stroke system but had two cylinders instead of one. The new Va -liter made its debut at Modena that same year. The engine generated 24 h.p., but the motorcycle, which was at least five years out of date, put in a disappointing performance. The two-cylinder 125, like the single-cylinder version, was short-lived. After these failures CZ turned to the four-cylinder engine.


Motorcycle: CZ 125 Two-cylinder Manufacturer: CZ, Strakonice Type: Racing Year: 1964
Engine: CZ two-cylinder, four-stroke, with two-shaft overhead bevel gear distribution. Displacement 124.6 cc. (45 mm. x 39.2 mm.)
Cooling: Air
Transmission: Six-speed block Power: 24 h.p.
Maximum speed: Over 115 m.p.h.
Chassis: Double cradle, continuous, tubular. Front and rear, telescopic suspension
Brakes: Front and rear, central drum


1966 CZ 125 Works DOHC


1970 CZ 350 V

Four stroke works Single from 1966, DOHC, only 8 of this model were constructed by the official CZ racing department.

After 1965 Czechoslovakia made a dramatic advance in the development of Grand Prix technology. Jawa built its two-stroke, four-cylinder 350 and sister company CZ built a four-stroke, four-cylinder 350. Both seemed good enough for international competition.

The CZ 350 V was ready for the 1969 Czechoslovakian Grand Prix, and the motorcycle looked altogether new. The cylinders were set at about 90°, with the front cylinders almost horizontal and the rear ones slightly tipped back. There was two-shaft overhead distribution, with four valves per cylinder.

The chassis of the CZ 350 V was carefully styled, following an original design, and the accessories were Italian. The motorcycle's total weight was barely 300 pounds.

The technicians working for CZ managed to get 52 h.p. out of the 1969 prototype. The following year they got 58 h.p., which was enough to enable it to compete with the better private Yamaha 350s, albeit not with the MV or the official Yamahas.

Unfortunately the CZ racer, Bohumil Stasa, was not on a par with the best private racers. He had only one satisfactory placing, coming in second behind Jarno Saarinen at the 1971 Czechoslovakian Grand Prix.

Motorcycle: CZ 350 Four-cylinder Manufacturer: CZ, Strakonice Type: Racing Year: 1970
Engine: CZ four-cylinder V, four-stroke, with two-shaft overhead geared distribution and four valves per cylinder. Displacement 314.1 cc. (50 mm. x 40 mm.)
Cooling: Air
Transmission: Eight-speed block Power: 58 h.p. at 13,500 r.p.m.
Maximum speed: —
Chassis: Double cradle above, tubular, open below. Front and rear, telescopic suspension
Brakes: Front, central drum, four shoes, four-cam; rear, central drum, double cam

1973 CZ 250

CZ enjoyed a great deal of popularity in the US during the late 1960's and early 1970's. If you raced motocross, CZ was the bike to have. It remained that way until mid 1973 when the Honda Elsinore 250 arrived. Sales would never be the same for the Czech factory and by 1976, CZ's were seldom seen on American motocross tracks.
1973 was the first year of the coffin tank.

This bike is fairly original with the exception of the front fender which has been replaced with a reproduction plastic item. The Jikov carburetor was replaced with a Mikuni when the bike was first sold. This was a common practice for dealers as was changing out the points ignition for an electronic one.

1974 CZ Prototype Falta GP of 1975, CZ 250 Moto-cross (typ980.5)

This was the bike that CZ won the constructor championship with. With a Mikuni VM 36 carburetor.