Simson is quite an old name on the motorcycle manufacturing market taking into consideration that the original company which produced so many well-known bikes was founded in 1856. It all started with Lob and Moses Simson, two brothers who founded Simson & Co in order to build guns. The company grew up a lot in the next few years and, in 1986, Simson & Co started producing bicycles, followed by automobiles in 1907. Simson Supra is probably the most popular car manufactured by Simson, being available in approximately 1520 copies, all of them built between 1924 and 1934.
Because of the fact that they were a Jewish family, the Simson brothers have to run away of the country during the Adolf Hitler dictatorship. However, a member of the board took the control of the company and merged it with other firms, forming the Berlin Suhler Waffen- und Fahrzeugwerke (BSW), a business which was more focused on motorcycles than the previous company. This fact was actually demonstrated the same year when BSW launched BSW 98, the first motorcycle of the company.
Being ceased to the Soviet Union after World War II and then handed back to Germany, the company was renamed to "VEB Fahrzeug- und Gerätewerk Simson Suhl", a company which became more interested in motorcycles and which aimed to abandon the production of guns and bicycles.
Due to the fact that the German Democratic Republic decided in 1960 that the local companies must only produce two-stroke motorcycles, Simson had to concentrate on mopeds, the firm managing to build no less than 200,000 units in a single year.
As the time passed by, Simson has built multiple attractive vehicles, including the Schwalbe, equipped with an engine able to develop 3.4 horsepower. Lots of these scooters could be seen today in Germany where most Schwalbe owners consider it a more advanced bike than many other similar vehicles.
Although several investors tried to revamp the company after the Germany suffered major political changes, Simpson started experiencing financial problems in 2002 and one year later, the mopeds production was shut down.