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Brochure : Darracq 20/28 1907


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Rupert the Riley in memory of Bowie

Rupert the Riley
Oh – there are plenty of singers who would call themselves mássive motoring fanatics. Some of them even manage to share selfies with their modern-day supercars on a daily basis. But not the man on todays picture. He preferred the more basic things of motoring and not in the last place the joys of prewar four-wheelers. Some ten years ago he wrote about trashing his MG PA through London traffic on his weblog, linking to in between the lines, which caused havoc at our webserver.

Recognised him? It’s David Bowie, who passed away on Sunday. He’s seen here with his Riley Gamecock in the early 1970s. A tired saloon-turned-Special, which he’d built together with a friend. In an interview in 2003: “Not very well as it happens. It stalled outside Lewisham police station one day. I had really long hair in those days so I was standing round the front of the car, trying to pump it back into life again and all the cops were at the windows laughing at me and the bloody thing started up and I’d left it in first gear and it came at me. The crankshaft went through my leg and I was pumping blood like a fountain and I broke both my, well I cracked both my knees as the bumper had kind of got me pinned to another car that was just behind it. Sold it as soon as I got out of Lewisham Hospital.”

Bowie loved that Riley never the less, called it Rupert and even wrote a song about it as an ode to the car. Dig that Justin Bieber.

(Words Jeroen Booij, picture courtesy Bowiesattva)

Tuesday, 12 January 2016 Attention: open in a new window. Print E-mail

150 cars (!) show up at VSCC's New Year Day Gathering

morgan vscc_royaloak_new-year_2016_470
Other countries still can learn from good old Britain where the hobby was invented. Not! (the first old car club is the Schnauferl Club from Germany established in 1900!). But it must be said that - as far as we know - the largest number of old car die-hards is to be found on the 'British isles'. Or is there any other country in the northern hemisphere where old cars show up (most on own wheels!) in this huge number in January?

Report & photos by Mike Tebbett:
The New Years Day Gathering of the Vintage Sports Car Club was the 36th such event. As usual there was a wide variety of delectable pre-war motorcars on view in the car park. Your correspondent noted many gems from the over 150 cars present including twenty Morgan three wheelers (appropriate perhaps with the Morgans Works ‘just up the road’).  However, one Morgan three-wheeler intrigued as it was actually a four-wheeler, presumably some form of ‘one off’?  On the same theme of three into four there was a single example of a front wheel drive BSA, but not a three-wheeler, it was one of the very rare FW32 four-wheel cars.  Elsewhere a plethora of desirable vintage and pre-war Rolls Royce were gathered together, and examples of vintage Bentley, Sunbeam and the like were to be seen.  A gorgeous Lagonda Rapide deservedly won the light hearted concours, but for spectator appeal the winner for your scribe was the gent clad in white overalls riding a superb vintage Douglas motor cycle. He treated the audience to two fast ‘run-bys’ on the adjacent main road, and what a glorious sight and sound he made!   The Chairman of the Amilcar Register arrived in his CS, and other light cars included  bullnose and flatnose Morris, and all were treated to a fly-past by a near vintage aeroplane.  A dry if cloudy morning turned rather wet and cold later resulting in a noticeable increase of visitors to the cab of the steam lorry as it remained warm and dry throughout.  On the way back your correspondents 1921 GN ‘failed to make progress’ though at least within pushing distance of home…. He hopes this is not an omen for his year’s motoring!

Monday, 11 January 2016 Attention: open in a new window. Print E-mail

Rolls Royce Horror II

rolls royce_horror_2-3-470

editor: this 'beauty'got lost somewhere in the middle of editorial chaos prior to Xmas. So here a new chance - we showed you a lovely post-war example earlier -  to unleash your irritation or even anger and get rid of tension and stress. Open your mind and give your unabridged opinion about this fine limousine...

When you are a vintage car enthusiast, friends are usually well informed about this fact. Then, when one of them spots a classic, most probably will send you -via mobile phone- the photographs of the "jewel" found. And this was the case of this "Rolls" seen in South America. The text accompanying the pictures was exclamatory, claiming that the sender just found a hig-end luxury car from the 1930s. But what do we have here? A true work of creative craftsmanship. A chassis of unknown origin, but probably a Chrysler or Chevrolet from the early 1930s. The body and bumpers are 1931 Ford Model A Murray Fordor. Bonnet and headlights appear to be early 1930s Cadillac. The engine and other details are unknown, but the "cocktail" is finished with a huge Rolls Royce style radiator which in a close view could be described as artisanal. This machine seems to be used as wedding car, and surely for the average, bride and groom this machine represents a highlight of the thirties which is most apt to celebrate this very important day... . And after you have stopped shouting, laughing and throwing rotten tomatoes you can give some thought to the fact that no matter the "details" - like in this paste up RR - the authority and emotions connected to Rolls-Royce are still strong as always.

(Text by Francisco Carríon )

Sunday, 10 January 2016 Attention: open in a new window. Print E-mail

What is it? Quiz #411


What do you think of this neat little racer. A cycle car rocket with nice details. Check that long quick detachable bonnet. Take it off and half the body is gone. You've seen the alloy belly pan of course. The nifty rear wings. And then that nice little fishtail. In view of the BMW centennial we thought it is nice to show you another three letter marque from Germany. The marque itself may not be very well known - it lived only the early twenties - still it was quite successful with national races. And once you hear the name you will never forget it, because it sounds more like a cartoon hero, than from a serious German manufacturer.

Well, you will have to work on this dear competitor. Tell us all about the car. The essentials you can look up in Georgano. But as usual, we want to hear those details that you can't find easily on the web. Be sure to send in before Monday, January 11th in order to have a chance to win the infamous PreWarCar T-shirt. Even better to check the Rules first. Enjoy weekend!

Saturday, 09 January 2016 Attention: open in a new window. Print E-mail

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