Original location: Levallois, Paris

Rene Herse (1908–1976) and his uniquely individualistic approach, with the highest level of craftsmanship, has set this maker apart. His atelier created thoroughly thought out and designed bikes, all styales & applications but especially touring models, which have made Herse possibly the most desirable bicycle of all.

Updated 12.22.2022

Rene Herse catalog, circa early 1980s

The new Rene Herse, bicycles are made in the USA and components sourced world-wide: Here
New company's history of brand Here

René Herse,

Large book based upon Herse family archives, photo albums and interviews with riders and employees. HERE

(Below is nice overview of why Rene Herse bicycles have acquired such a following among knowledgeable cyclists:)

"Here are just a few personal reasons I love these bikes:

  1. Quality of paintwork, lining, chrome… The paint has a deep lustre, colour combinations of frame colour/lining are generally beautiful, never garish, the RH hand lettering is so much nicer than decals on other bikes.
  2. Quality of workmanship on the frame… The filing down of the lug points, the clean flowing lines of the lugs and all the braze-ons on the best bikes are simply remarkable.
  3. Proprietary parts. What other maker had his own cranks and chain rings? Herse cantilever brakes are better in terms of beauty and efficiency than any other constructeur cantilevers, Charrel excepted (in actual fact few other makers made their own brakes : Barra, Narcisse, Singer, Marcadier are others).But Herse also made proprietary stems, front changer, modified bottom brackets, modified Cyclo RD, modified large flange hubs, RH dynamo and derailleur levers, modified front light mount, internal light wiring system, mudguard reinforcements, carriers, front bag decaleur etc etc. Non-proprietary parts were the best and most expensive, if of course the buyer could afford them.
  4. Ride quality. The palmares of RH in PBP Chanteloup etc and concours in unbelievable. Their reputation for speed, sturdiness, and comfort was never contested. The bikes are both beautiful and highly practical.
  5. Variety of models : the bikes are all so different. In a French touring collection it would be nice to have a Charrel or two, 4/5 Singers, 2/3 Daudons etc, but 20/30/40. Herses would be quite possible if rather unreasonable (unless you were a museum), without having any repeats or similar models. Tandems, triplets, racers, touring bikes, folding bikes, concours bikes, track bikes, early models, 50s, chrome, paint, etc, it just goes on and on.
  6. Something the Japanese call “wa”, something to do with general harmony, of the lines when looking at the bike from a distance, then of the details. Difficult to explain, but Herse lovers will understand what I mean.”

Alexander March, Bordeaux, France

Rene HERSE "Gentleman " bike as featured in a 1980 New Cycling magazine.

This immaculate touring road bike example is owned by Wataru Hasegawa

1956 touring on display at 2000 VeloSwap

Tandem on display at 2000 VeloSwap

Demontable bike formerly on display in University Bike Shop, Boulder, CO

Jet black bicycle at auction on eBay.

Full chrome Demontable (take apart) Herse

(photos courtesy of CyclArt)

Touring bike with Herse crank set, brakes & stem...

Rene Herse Pista, 1969 pictures courtesy Philippe, France

Racing model

as shown at 2010 Le Cirque du Cyclisme

The NEW Rene Herse crank set

the classic 3-arm cranks have been brought back . Info HERE