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My HILLMAN 14 - 1938
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Austin Seven Vs Morris Minor

Austin Seven Vs Morris Minor

There are some types of car which inspire total dedication from their owners. Much more than a means of transport, they become part of the owners' personality. Along with this dedication comes too a single-minded belief that their car stands head-and-shoulders above its rivals, and they pull no punches when debating this fact with owners of other, lesser, vehicles.
 Perhaps the longest-standing of these rivalries was initiated in 1928 when William Morris launched his Minor as an answer to Herbert Austin's groundbreaking Seven. Foolish is the man who suggests to an Austin owner that a Morris Minor is the better car, and vice versa.
 Matthew Bell recently braved the flak from both camps in a good-natured shoot-out between the two cars. Growing up with baby Austins, could he put aside his personal preference in the name of impartiality? Pick up a copy of the November issue of The Automobile to find out.

(Photographs by Jason Bye)

Wednesday, 29 October 2014 Attention: open in a new window. Print E-mail

A 1914 GN returns home

Amongst the cars sold at RM’s Hershey auction was a 1914 belt drive GN which is well known to the British GN fraternity and had enjoyed some competition after being discovered in a UK barn in the 1950s. A new generation of enthusiasts has emerged along with more knowledge about GN cars’ history and the good news is that the car is returning to UK into the hands of a deserving owner who is painstakingly uncovering the history of the car.

It is the only original pre-war belt-drive GN known to exist, there being one other 1915 belt-drive car built up by Arthur Gibson who fitted a  Precision V Twin after unsuccessfully hunting high and low for a 90° J.A.P. V twin motor. Those engines are rare and only two are known to exist, I believe both with the same Australian owner. GN built their own 90° V Twin because it was ideal for Cyclecars and the engine in the car returning from America has the only example I know of. Tragically, its original body was discarded and a new one fitted, so more detective work is needed to unravel the car's origins. The body profile as found is similar to photographs of this Brooklands GN  and the discovery of drilled con rods and pistons from the original restoration might mean the car cornered on the concrete at the 7 year old banked track in Weybridge? This picture from a copy of Cyclecar shows a 2 seater GP GN captioned 'The Grand Prix GN to be driven by Mr. Nash.' Notice the cycle mudguards as on the car when discovered.

(Text & pictures Robin Batchelor)

Tuesday, 28 October 2014 Attention: open in a new window. Print E-mail

Vive Traction Avant!

Traction in the air

Report and photos by Mike Tebbet:
"Les Amis de la Traction Club de L’Aigle” held their seventeenth annual ‘Bourse d’Echange’ last weekend (19th October). Welcoming visitors at the entrance into the show was this ‘Traction on a string’ or is it ‘Traction in the Air’? This was a spectacular celebration of eighty years of the Traction since its launch in 1934.

As usual the Bourse was inside a large market hall, with a much bigger range of stalls set outside in the surrounding surfaced area. A large number of Tractions of all years and types were parked nearby, with an even larger selection of 2CV’s and derivatives parked on a grass area nearby. An adjacent car park serving a supermarket was full to overflowing with visitors classic and vintage cars. To one side of the market hall on an open area large display of WWII vehicles included a Sherman tank.

Inside the hall as well as the Bourse, the Club had laid out an impressive display mimicking a Motor Show or Salon and featuring of course the Citroen Traction. A 1934 first year example with the fabric roof slowly revolved on a turntable in the centre and was surrounded by examples of various others including a decapotable. A commerciale was set up to replicate the famous advertising image being loaded with a huge oak barrel. In one corner a car was in the camouflage livery as used by the French army and indeed by the Wehrmacht and French Resistance.This event has from gone from strength to strength in the last seventeen years. Your writer came away with a car boot full of ‘treasure’ to aid the restoration of the far too many projects in his garages!"
Monday, 27 October 2014 Attention: open in a new window. Print E-mail

Pre Wars in Athens

stukje post war

What better place to make contact with “the right” people than a Concours d’Elegance? While planning the Via Hellenica we visited the Athens show at the Flisvos Marina. We immediately spotted our ideal car, a 1930 Rolls Royce with beautiful patina and thus not a candidate for the Concours awards. There must have been some 10 pre wars on this pleasant event. Most special (during-war-car) means of transportation was definitely the 1941 Moto Guzzi three-wheeler. It had been abandoned by the Italians and recently been found and restored to better than new. This being a prerequisite for one of the 54 prizes to be awarded, it did indeed get a class win.

(Text and pictures by Bart Kleyn)

Sunday, 26 October 2014 Attention: open in a new window. Print E-mail

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Post War Choice

1959 Alfa Romeo 2000 Touring  Spider
Repair sills, fettle mechanics and go! 1959 Alfa Romeo 2000 Touring...  Go >>