JAWA 350/360

Jáwa is a motorcycle and moped manufacturer founded in 1929 in Prague. The founder was Frantisek Janecek. Its name Jawa comes from the merger of Janecek and Wanderer. Wanderer was incidentally a German bicycle ,motorcycle manufacturer.

In the 1950s, the Jawa was the most popular motorcycle in the KGST camp. The 350 model was exported to over 120 countries. Their most successful model was the Jawa 350 Perak. Or the Californian from the seventies, which was a runaway success even overseas. In the nineties, production declined. The successor company was founded in 1997 as Jawa Moto.

It was revived in the Asian market by an Indian investor. As of 2018, the Indian division is owned by Mahindra and Mahindra.


The Jawa 350/360 that enriches our collection was the first in the world to be fitted with an automatic clutch. Honda copied the device for its 50 Cub engines, but they had to pay a fine for infringing Jawa’s patent, and then a licence fee for each unit sold.

Of the 350s designed by J. Josíf and J. Krivka, the Perak (meaning spring man, from a Prague urban legend) and 360 automatic models are the most popular.

  The 350/360, introduced in 1964, was similar in structure and appearance to its predecessor, the 350/354 Kyvacka, but many details were changed: the steering horns were covered, the round was replaced by a curved speedometer in the headlight, while the 16-inch wheels remained. The technical aspects were also changed, with reshaped cylinders, a carburettor with starter nozzle and a semi-automatic gearbox with a weighted clutch and a piston clutch, unique in the motor industry.  With this, the clutch lever only needs to be engaged at start-up. 

It’s a stylish motorcycle, especially the sidecar version, and we were in the mood for a motorcycle tour in the Tatras.

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