Salmson - Salmson AL, AL3

The Salmson AL was built from 1921 with a 4 cylinder 62x90mm engine designed by Emile Petit, having a unique single pushrod per cylinder that actuated both inlet and exhaust valves. This Salmson followed on from buiding GN's cyclecar under licence, yet it was a far more refined product with a water cooled engine and 3 speed gearbox, yet it's weight still just managed to fall within the French governments definition for Cyclecar, allowing for minimal yearly taxation. As more power and performance evolved by 1925, the Salmson AL was uprated to the model AL3 (actually Type V AL3) with the fitting of semi elliptic springs at the front along with chassis improvements, while for 1926 the rear of the chassis was stiffened. By 1927 Salmson listed the V AL3 GS and lowered chassis V AL3 GSG , this latter model now having a 4 speed gearbox.

Throughout the Salmson production of AL and AL3 some 10,000 of these cars are believed to have been made. And the prefix AL stands for Albert Lombard

Tyre size for the Salmson AL3 was originally 700x80 which is the same as the 26x3 tyre. 700x80 was the millimetric number, and 26x3 was the imperial listed number, and both the same tyre. For one year 1925 the Salmson AL3 was offered with the option of 710x90 tyre size. Blockley produces the best example of the 700x80 / 26x3 tyre, our tyres having a robust bead and sidewall unlike any other brand offered elsewhere, and importantly the Blockley tyre is suitable for motorcar use (whereas most of the tyres in this size sold are really only made for motorcycles). We also produce the best example of the 710x90 tyre. Both of these beaded edge tyre sizes can be used with full confidence, giving great handling and longevity, and at a reasonable price, because we sell a better quality tyre direct to the end users rather than sell thorough the Classic Tyre wholesalers.

Note that on a number of occasions we have had customers with Vintage Salmsons ordering 710x90 tyres to replace their worn old tyres of the same size, only to find that the tyre size is wrong! This is because the beaded edge tyres that were last made by Michelin were of such pathetic quality and "loose" dimensions that they could be stretched and fitted onto the narrower but larger rim diameter 26x3 / 700x80 wheel size! So we would suggest if you are replacing a Michelin 710x90 tyre on a Salmson AL3 wheel, double check what rim size you actually have because there is a god chance it may not be 710x90! Bear in mind that there was a 710x90 option for the Salmson AL3 listed for one year, but as a rule they were the 700x80 tyre size..

Over the years many of these Salmson AL / AL3 have had their wheel rims changed to take well base tyres due mainly to the unavailability or vast expense at the time of the beaded edge / Clincher (a talon) tyres - some specialist tyre sellers now recommend the 3.50x19 tyre size which we would say is too small, and we would recommend the 400x19 size is the better size to fit in this instance. And this is reinforced by the fact that in 1927 the Salmson AL3 GS was listed by the factory with the 4.00x19 tyre size option. Anyhow, Blockley produce all of these tyres sizes, which are the best tyres made, with full details of these tyres at the links below.

Blockley Products for Salmson Salmson AL, AL3

350 x 19

Blockley Triple Stud Crossply

£74.00 (£88.80 inc. VAT)

400 x 19

Blockley Triple Stud Crossply

£104.00 (£124.80 inc. VAT)


Blockley Beaded Edge

£183.00 (£219.60 inc. VAT)

18/19 inch Rim Band (22mm wide)

Blockley Rim Band

£2.50 (£3.00 inc. VAT)

710x90 Inner Tube

Blockley Inner Tube

£43.00 (£51.60 inc. VAT)

26x3 (700x80)

Blockley Beaded Edge

£125.00 (£150.00 inc. VAT)

26 x 2.5 / 3 inner tube

£14.00 (£16.80 inc. VAT)