Werner produced motorcycles from 1897 to 1908. They built, and had patented, the cradled frame engine location that most motorcycles now use, in 1901.
The Werner Frères, Michel and Eugène, were of French nationality but of Russian extraction; they started experimenting with motor bicycles in 1896 using a horizontal type De Dion-Bouton engine. This machine was a failure but, by 1897, they had developed a machine with the engine mount at the steering head of a bicycle driving the front wheel via a belt rim, with hot tube ignition, which sometimes caused the machine to burst into flames, especially on windy days. This was overcome by using the new high tension coil, battery and platinum point ignition. Thus they had a saleable product and set up a workshop in Paris to manufacture these machines throughout Europe. Here at last was something the working man could afford at a price of 45 Guineas and, even in those days, hire purchase was possible.