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Caption it: Not reliant, not very regal either?

Caption it: Not reliant, not very regal either?
They may have gone out of production in 2001 – Reliant’s three-wheelers have a loyal following and with a bit of luck (?) you can still see one on the UK roads today. We did last week, when a 1970s Reliant Robin with miniature trailer (!) all of a sudden turned up in front of us when we just got over a rolling hill. This was on a quiet motorway and we were driving well over 70mph. The Robin was probably doing half of that. Well, it seemed like it! Anyway: all went fine and nothing happened. That’s very much contrary to the Reliant three-wheeler we see here. It’s a Regal of (we think) the early 1960s but not in very regal circumstances. The impact to the vehicle is pretty amazing; let's say that the pole won. We say: caption it!

(Words editor, picture PWC archive)

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

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Let’s call her Black Lola

Let’s call her Black Lola
“It is rare to auction a car direct from rock royalty” says auctioneer Silverstone about the sale of a 1960 Bentley S2 they hammered down this weekend. And it’s no overstatement. The car they sold was bought in 1970 by Kinks lead singer Ray Davies , who did not even have a driver’s licence at the time. In his own words: “After the success of Lola I was persuaded by my family to invest in a big car, which was unusual for me because I did not drive.” And so Davies then-wife was the one to do so. And she must have liked it. Davies recalls about the purchase: “We lived in a little semi in Muswell Hill and the neighbours were in shock and awe when they saw this huge black Bentley drive up along the narrow shingle path to the house."

There’s also a lovely little anecdote attached to it, says Davies: “While on our holiday in Mullion I sat in the back seat of the Bentley and wrote a follow up to Lola called ‘Apeman’ on the Spanish guitar which I carried in the back.” It was only when fans started writing on the car with lipstick that manager Ken Jones decided to retire the car to the garage. In fact it hasn’t been out there since 1991, and now the Kinks front man has decided to part with it. See the auctioneer’s write-up here. The estimate seemed low, so we are very curious to learn what price the car eventually made. (UPDATE: sold for 29,250 GBP) Oh – and while we are not a fan of giving cars names, this one does call for one. After Keith Richards’ Blue Lena, let’s name this one Black Lola…

(Words editor, pictures courtesy Silverstone Auctions)

Monday, 15 May 2017

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Tough to crack car puzzle #158

Tough to crack car puzzle #158
Our last few car puzzles prompted plenty of readers to send in their answers. Perhaps because they weren’t too tough to crack? We have a feeling that’s all going to change with this week’s mystery motor. We spotted the little thing ourselves in downtown Zurich some years ago and had no clue what it was. Then we forgot all about it, until it crossed us a little while ago once more. There it was, with something of a remarkable history. A few hints then. It was built in Australia using a 1960s British base vehicle. It is also said to have run a race in the 2-Litre Sports category against a grand parade of drivers including Graham Hill, Jochen Rindt, Derek Bell, Frank Gardner, Jack Brabham and Chris Amon no less! That should narrow down the search considerably. It may still be a hard nut to crack, though, we are not sure. But please do surprise us by dropping a line with all the information you gather and manage to squeeze into your 100-words answer. Do read the rules before doing so, by clicking on ‘Read More’ here. For now: have a good weekend, with or without your beloved vehicle(s).

Saturday, 13 May 2017

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Mille Miglia 2017: the women and their wagons

Mille Miglia 2017: the women and their wagons
There will be plenty of women, starting next week from Brescia for an adrenalin-filled drive in the Mille Miglia. But full female crews? Just six. Two of them drive pre-wars, leaving just four duos of feminin navigator and drivers joining a post war vehicle.

They are: Ivana Cattazzo and Sabrina Bignotti of Italy on Fiat 500C Topolino, Janet Bas van Oijen and Stefanie Bas van den Broek on Triumph TR2, Maria Gaburri and Luigia Gaburri on a 1956 Abarth 750 GT Zagato and last but not least Sabine Goethals and Sylvie de Meuleneere on a 1953 Fiat 8V. We wish you all the best for the rally ladies, that the best one of you may win!

(Words editor, picture courtesy Ridingirls)

Friday, 12 May 2017

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