The ‘Bicyclette Sans Chaine’ was still a novelty at the turn of the century. With the popularity of shaft-drive models in America in particular, either the chain-driven or chainless design might have dominated. But the chainless – known as acatene in France – was more expensive to produce and, though a much neater style and less greasy for the rider, became too expensive for the market as the competition increased, mass-production was introduced and the prices of chain-driven bicycles came down.
1901 Peugeot Valentigney Bicyclette Sans Chaine (Acatene)
I bought this Peugeot chainless in 2010 and sold it five years later. Yesterday (September, 2021) I bought it back. It still looks exactly the same as in these photos.
This bicycle was manufactured when Peugeot was still located at their original manufacturing plant, in Valentigney.
1901 PEUGEOT CYCLE CATALOGUE
PHOTO LOCATION: BATES FARM BLUEBELL WALK, ARLINGTON, EAST SUSSEX