Page 137. 1959 DKW RT 175 VS SOLD (Another Available)

1959 DKW RT175 VS

NOW SOLD: See Page 148 for another one for sale


This is my 1959 DKW. It’s in fabulous unrestored original condition, MOT’d, running and very useable.


I became interested in DKW’s through my obsession with cyclemotors as DKW engineers, of course, invented the Cyclemaster during World War 2.



DKW History

J. S. Rasmussen founded Motorenwerke Rasmussen in Zschopau, Germany in 1906, and entered the motorcycle manufacture with a bicycle motor in 1921. The name DKW was trademarked in 1922 and the firm went on to become one of the largest manufacturers of motorcycles in the world. By 1928 they were building some 65,000 engine units annually, and DKW engines could be found powering some 60 German marques of the interwar period.

They joined Audi, Wanderer and Horch to form Auto Union in the 1930s, merging again in the 1950s with Victoria and Express to form Zweirad-Union, which in turn was absorbed by Sachs in 1965.


DKW motorcycles used 2-stroke engines which were technically advanced; the best-known one in the UK is the RT 125. As reparations after World War II, the design drawings of the RT125 were given to Harley-Davidson in the US and BSA in the UK. The HD version was known as the Hummer, while BSA used them for the Bantam. Designs from the DKW 2-stroke engine was also used in the Ariel Arrow and Leader.

During the War, DKW engineers also created the Cyclemaster (which was essentially a redesigned 1938 Sachs Saxonette auxiliary unit). The plans for that were also confiscated, and the contract for production awarded to EMI in Great Britain. As has been remarked before, from German engineers, America got the H-bomb while Britain got the Cyclemaster…

IFA and later MZ models continued in production until the 1990s, when economics finally brought production of the two stroke to an end. Other manufacturers also copied the DKW design, officially or otherwise, including Yamaha, Voskhod and Polish WSK.

Vintage DKW motorcycles enjoy an excellent reputation for design and engineering and are sought-after machines today. Spares are obtainable from Germany (some components were used in later MZ motorcycles, which makes spares availability much easier). There’s an active club in Germany, and Bernie of the British Two-Stroke Club runs an enthusiastic section for German machines in the UK.


Meet this wonderful old RT 175 VS…


I met the original owner of this RT 175. He bought it in 1959 even though it was an expensive bike in its day.


He used it consistently until the last few years, when he took it off the road. After buying it, I had a lot of work done on it. We went through it thoroughly, replacing any components necessary, rewiring it, etc.


It’s now in excellent mechanical order and ready to use. It’s lovely to ride.


Criticisms? Well, it’s not concours; rather it’s very good original, unrestored condition, as you can see in the pictures. The wheels have polished up well. The tank is good. The leather saddle has some wear. The exhaust down-pipe is scruffy.

Mechanically, it’s great and rides well. If I’m picky, I’d say that I find the shock absorbers heavy. But apart from these minor points I can’t fault it in design or performance. It’s a very well-made bike.


Sad to sell, but too many treasures and no way I can use them all.


The other pictures here are digital images that you can print out yourself if you want, but are not things I have in original form. However, I was delighted to find an original brochure for this model, as well as two owner’s manuals, all pictured below. I suppose the new owner might as well have these.

I think the new owner will be very happy with this bike.







These are some of the inside pages of the brochure that is included in the auction sale



OWNER: BuyVintage Online Auctions

LOCATION: Brighton, E.Sussex, United Kingdom

DELIVERY: is not included in this auction. Our website contains details of recommended delivery services.
United Kingdom – delivery is £70 for a 2-wheeler to most parts of the UK.
Europe – delivery is under €400 Germany, Austria, France, Italy, Spain, etc.
North America, Australia, New Zealand, Japan – we’ll organize shipping for you.

PAYMENT: Paypal is okay for cheap items; otherwise deposit only on paypal please.
International purchasers – I do not use paypal.

AFTER PURCHASE: Please email me your phone numbers; I prefer to speak to all purchasers personally.

FEEDBACK: I do everything I can to make your purchase a pleasurable experience. But I only leave feedback when someone has taken the trouble to leave it for me.

VEHICLE CONDITION: Vintage vehicles are wonderful beasts – but each has an individual personality and they sometimes have bad days just like you and me.
You will need basic mechanical skills (or a local mechanic) to use one on a regular basis.
2-Stroke engines – and cyclemotors in particular – are notoriously unreliable. Basic servicing is generally required if unused for even a few weeks.

These are rare vehicles whose values are not necessarily based on running order.
Unless an auction description specifically states that the vehicle is running, THE VEHICLE IS SOLD FOR RESTORATION.



If you have any questions about this (or any other vehicle in these BuyVintage Online Auctions),
you can contact Colin in our Customer Service Department between 9am and 7pm daily:

By Phone – (UK 0044) 07866-126469

By email –

The Auction Catalogue is our website –



to see what’s currently being sold



Published on August 28, 2008 at 11:55 am  Leave a Comment  

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