In 1907 Esnault-Pelterie won the Grand Prix de la Societe des Ingenieurs Civils for constructing an aircraft which was revolutionary in three aspects: a monoplane, with a radial engine mounted in the front. In 1908 he founded the first aircraft factory, and co-founded what are now the Paris Air Show and the GIFAS (Groupement des Industries Françaises Aéro Spatiales, the French aerospace industries association).
On October 19, 1907, Esnault-Pelterie flew the R.E.P.1, his first powered plane, with a fuselage of welded-steel tubing (completely enclosed, also a first) covered with red muslin, and featured internally braced wings. It was powered by a 35 hp Esnault-Pelterie seven-cylinder air-cooled radial engine. The aircraft is preserved at the Conservatoire National de Arts et Metiers (CNAM, National Conservatory for Arts and Sciences).
Span: 31 ft 6.0 in (9.60 m)
Length: 22 ft 5.7 in (6.85 m)
Wing area: 193.8 sq.ft (18 sq.m)
Weight empty: 772 lb (350 kg)
Max speed: 37 mph (60 kmh)