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Emile Roger and Roger Benz Cars made in France late 1800's

Lizzy Jones

Karl Benz. the German engineer who's company Benz & Cie formed the world's first automobile factory once said "although Germany was the father of the automobile, France was the mother". By this he meant that, while the automobile was invented in his own country, he had to look to France to receive encouragement in the way of sales, and this is literally true.

A Frenchman named Emile Roger, an engineer who had a small workshop in the Rue des Dames, Paris, started purchasing Benz two-stroke stationary gas-engines in 1883. He was very impressed with them, so when he came to hear that Benz was constructing horseless carriages he wrote for particulars, and Benz suggested that he should come to Mannheim to try one for himself

He went there in 1887, and was so impressed that he purchased one on the spot, and this car was actually the first car Benz ever sold. Benz granted Roger the sole agency rights for France, and this resulted in quite big business.

Roger found, however, that there was a prejudice against buying German cars, in addition to which, there was a heavy import duty to meet, so he bought from Benz a large number of engines and other components, and made up complete cars in his own workshop, which he called the Roger Benz.

Emile Rodger driving a Roger Benz in the late 1890's | carmanualsdirect
Emile Rodger driving a Roger Benz in 1894
At the Paris International Exhibition of 1889, Roger had a stand on which were shown a number of Roger-Benz cars. Emile Roger was a pioneer in the motor industry and became very wealthy selling Roger-Benz Motor Carriages in France. In 1897 his factory in Paris was destroyed by fire and it was thought at the time that this catastrophe may have contributed to his death at age 47 in late 1897.

Emile Roger devoted the later part of his life building and selling motor carriages in France and was considered one of the founding pioneers in automobile sales.

Classic and Vintage Car Workshop Manuals | carmanualsdirect 

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