East German MZ motorcycles finally sputters to an end
Historic motorcycle manufacturer in east Germany closesBerlin -- The MZ plant that has made motorcycles in the eastern German state of Saxony since 1922 is to close at the end of the year, after its Malaysian backers pull the plug on losses, a weekend news report said.
MZ, which stands for Motorcycle works Zschopau, the town in the Ore Mountains where the company is based, has generated losses for Hong Leong Industries since being taken over in 1996.
The Freie Presse newspaper from the nearby city of Chemnitz said the plant would close on December 31st. The closure had been widely anticipated, as this is the date when subsidies from the state of Saxony end.
Some 40 workers at the concern are set to lose their jobs.
MZ is one of the world's oldest motorcycle makers, continuing to produce through World War II and afterwards under the communist East German government. Germany's only other motorcycle maker is BMW.