Tag Archives: Charles

Paperboy’s Shooting Brake – Rolls Royce Twenty

A ‘brake’ is a large body-less carriage frame used for training horses, use of the term expanded to include any large wagon designed for country use.

With the advent of the motor car the term shooting brake was applied to any custom built body, often with only two front doors, fitted to a luxury car that was designed for use by hunters and sportsmen who required a large carrying area.

Rolls Royce Twenty, Hillsborough Concours d'Elegance,

In 1872 Frederick Henry Royce’s school day’s were over after just one year when his father died and he had to take a paper round and a job delivering telegrams aged just nine.

By 1929 the company founded by Frederick, better known as Henry, with Charles Rolls was winding up production of the Rolls Royce Twenty of the type featured today in anticipation of the 20/25 model launched later the same year.

Rolls Royce Twenty, Hillsborough Concours d'Elegance,

The Rolls Royce Twenty was the companies ‘small’ car designed for owner drivers, though inevitably plenty were sold to owners with chauffeurs.

The Twenties mono block 6 cylinder 3127cc / 190 cui motor on the early models was fitted to a three speed gearbox with central gear change while later models like the one featured today had a four speed gearbox with right hand gear stick.

Rolls Royce Twenty, Hillsborough Concours d'Elegance,

Four wheel brakes with a servo did not become available on the Twenty model until 1925, the radiator grill on early models were also fitted with horizontal slats.

At this time all Rolls Royces were supplied as powered chassis without bodywork which was fitted to the bespoke requirements of customers by independent coach builders, at the time of writing it is not known who built the Woody Shooting Brake body seen here.

Rolls Royce Twenty, Hillsborough Concours d'Elegance,

By 1967 today’s featured Rolls Royce Twenty Shooting Brake was the property of the Hopper family resident at 16 Caledonia Place in Clifton Village Bristol.

Every morning the Hopper’s son Edwin used to drive the Royce down the road to the newspaper agents, Bridge Stores, opposite the Avon Gorge Hotel where he would pick up the newspapers he was to deliver on the other side of Clifton Suspension to the residents of Abbots Leigh.

After finishing his paper round Edwin would drive back across the Clifton Suspension Bridge, designed by Ismbard Kingdom Brunel, and pick up his sister, who had delivered papers on her own round in Clifton Village by foot and drive the car one and a half miles to Ashton Park School which they were both attending.

Amazingly there is a silent black and white film documenting Edwin’s routine, seen above, the newspaper shop is now a branch of the Mayfair Residential Sales and Lettings agents and the bridge tolls are now collected by machines, but other wise the area shown in the film is remarkably unchanged.

Rolls Royce Twenty, Hillsborough Concours d'Elegance,

This Twenty known by it’s current owner as ‘Gen’ was acquired in 1978 with it’s original tool kit and owners manual and was ground up restored between 2000 and 2008.

My thanks to Geoffrey Horton for sharing these photo’s taken at Hillsborough Concours d’Elegance a couple of years ago.

Thanks for joining me on this “Paperboy’s Shooting Brake” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at a 350hp 1920 land speed record car. Don’t forget to come back now !


Engine Failure – CD 3 #64/2

At the risk of appearing parochial today’s featured vehicle, the 1964 CD 3 was not by any stretch of the imagination a great success on the track but it did point the way to aerodynamic developments that took off spectacularly in 1977 with the Lotus 78 and is still in evidence in Formula One and other top motor sports categories today.

CD Panhard 3, Goodwood FoS

The CD 3 would prove to be the last design to use a Panhard motor at Le Mans or indeed any non historic race. Power came from a supercharged horizontally opposed two cylinder 848 cc / 51.7 cui motor that produced up to 70 hp that drove the front wheels.

CD Panhard 3, Goodwood FoS

Beneath the low drag body, which has a drag coefficient, measurement of aerodynamic drag resistance, of just 0.12 was a back bone chassis with inboard disc brakes at the front and drum brakes at the rear.

CD Panhard 3, Goodwood FoS

This photo does not show it but beneath the rear body work is a venturi tunnel which effectively managed airflow beneath the car in such away that it was sucked to the ground, which translated means the faster it went the better it’s road holding and grip.

CD Panhard 3, Goodwood FoS

Despite it’s futuristic shape and aerodynamic innovation even with a top speed of 140 mph the two CD 3’s only qualified for the last two places on the grid for the Le Mans 24 hours and both retired one with mechanical maladies. The chassis #64/2, seen at Goodwood Festival of Speed here, qualified 54th for the 1964 Le Mans 24 hours driven by André Guilhaudin and Alain Bertaut and retired after completing 77 laps due to engine failure. The 55th qualified sister car driven by Pierre Lelong and Guy Verrier made it to lap 124 before the gearbox had cried enough.

As Panhard was about to be wholly consumed by Citroën who planned to switch Panhard’s production capacity to Citroën models 1964 would be the last year the CD or Panhard names would appear at Le Mans.

Charles Deutsch, CD, who had been part of the Deutsch Bonet DB partnership went on to design the body work for the 1971 Porsche 917/20 Le Mans challenger which gained a certain notoriety after being dubbed “le Cochon Rose

Thanks for joining me on this “Engine Failure” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres”, I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !


Project Sunbird – Ford Consul Capri (335)

To my mind the Ford Consul Capri has always epitomized the best of 1950’s era design from Ford of Britain, which is a shame because the world had already moved on from those opulent 50’s features when the car was launched in 1961.

Ford Consul Capri, Goodwood Revival

The pillar less Capri coupé, like the Consul Classic with which it shares it’s running gear and chassis pan, was designed by Charles Thompson with scaled down influences from Fords Thunderbird and Galaxie Sunliner models.

Ford Consul Capri, Goodwood Revival

With a 3 bearing 1340 cc 81.7 cui Ford 109E engine that, when sleeved down to 1092 cc / 66.6 cui was popular in Formula Junior cars at the time, the Capri was considered under powered, and in 1962 Consul Capri’s, like the 1962 model seen here at Goodwood Revival, were fitted with the 1498 cc / 91.4 cui 116 E engine which boosted the top speed to 79 mph with a 0 to 60 mph time of 22.6 seconds.

Ford Consul Capri, Goodwood Revival

Body assembly was out sourced to Pressed Steel Fisher who sent the completed bodies to Ford’s Dagenham plant for final assembly. This method of production proved very expensive especially compared to the contemporary Ford Cortina.

Ford Consul Capri, Goodwood Revival

Sales of just 19,421 Capri 335’s sold in two and a half years, make this one of the rarest vehicles Ford of Britain ever produced.

Ford Consul Capri, Goodwood Revival

The Capri name disappeared from the Ford model palette from 1964 to 1969 when Ford came back with the ‘Car you have always dreamed of’ the more successful Ford Capri Mk 1′ which I’ll be looking at in the New Year.

Thanks for joining me on this ‘Sunbird’ edition of ‘Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres’, I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !

PS Don’t forget …

Automobiliart GALPOT Seasonal Quiz

Automobiliart, Paul Chenard

December 26th – January 2nd

Win a set of Paul Chenard Greetings Cards

Sports-GT cars set, Paul Chenard

Set 1 Sports & GT Cars

Phil Hill, Sharknose Ferrari Set, Paul Chenard

Set 2 Phil Hill World Drivers Championship 50th Anniversary Edition

1934 GP Season Card set, Paul Chenard

Set 3 1934 Season

1950s Grand Prix Engines

Set 4 Grand Prix Engines of the 1950’s


Mike Hawtorns racecars Card set, Paul Chenard

Set 5 Mike Hawthorn’s Race Cars

The Automobiliart GALPOT Seasonal Quiz will comprise 8 categories.

Overall winner chooses one set of Paul Chenard Greetings Cards from the five sets shown above.

The cards measure 15.24cm x 11.43cm, come in packs of 12 with 3 copies of 4 designs in each set, plus A6 envelopes.

Which set will you choose ?

The free to enter Automobiliart GALPOT Seasonal Quiz will run from December 26th – January 2nd Entries close January 8th 2012, Winner announced January 16th 2012.

Full details on December 26th at GALPOT.

Looking for Automotive Seasonal Gift Idea’s? Visit Automobiliart Now !


Automobiles, Planes, Trains and a Giraffe – The Bugatti Trust

On our way back from Mallory Park, Tim and I dropped by the Bugatti Trust which is housed next to the site of the Prescott Speed Hill Climb venue.

Bugatti Trust, Prescott

The Trust’s raison d’etre is to encourage research into Bugatti’s works, by experts and novices alike, an aim facilitated by a large archive of photographs, drawings, letters and articles accumulated by the father of the Trusts current chairman Hugh Conway.

 Bugatti King Aero engine

The trust also houses a fascinating collection of Bugatti artifacts including this vertical 16 Bugatti King Aero engine designed by Ettore in 1916 and further modified for production by Charles King at Duesenberg Motors. This 500 hp 24.3 litre / 1482 cui leviathan featured two pairs of four cylinder blocks mounted side by side with two crankshafts geared to a central propellor shaft.

Bugatti T35,

A small rotating selection of top quality cars is on loan to the Trust from Bugatti Owners Club members, this T35, which was built up from an assortment of pieces from a variety of T35’s, belongs to the well known drummer Nicholas Berkeley Mason who’s vehicles have featured in previous GALPOT blogs. Apparently, like all of his other vehicles, this car can be hired for film, television, and the media from Ten Tenth’s.

Bugatti T37A, Bugatti Trust

T37A, chassis #37282, on loan from Charles Trevelyan, was delivered to Omnia-Kraftfahrzeug-Handels GmbH of Munich in September 1927 for 48,930 FF.

Bugatti T37A, Bugatti Trust

Details in this photo of the T37A’s 1496 cc / 91 cui motor include the camshaft drive, top left at the rear of the motor, which is connected to both the dash board mounted magneto and the revolution counter which is driven by the pulley and rubber belt that can be seen on the left of the photograph.

The supercharger, lubricated by a drip feed, for the 4 cylinder motor can be seen beneath the vertical copper coiled pipe, the carburettor that mixes the air and fuel is mounted beneath the supercharger.

Bugatti T38, Bugatti Trust

Contemporary to both the racing T35 and T37 is this T38 2 litre / 122 cui 8 cylinder touring car, unfortunately I did not get any clear shots of the detachable trunk at the back but it is a real work of art the finish of which I have only seen a copy of on The Pet MINI.

Bugatti Record Car, Bugatti Trust

Rising to the challenge of beating Mercedes Benz and Auto Union Jean Bugatti sketched out the vehicle seen here with no less than three supercharged straight 8 motors with which to attack the speed record for vehicles driven on public roads in 1935. His still born car would have had around 1000 hp and should have been capable of around 250 mph.

Below the speed record vehicle is a model of Ettore Bugatti’s successful motorised railcar.

Bugatti T59 Wheel, Bugatti Trust

I am not entirely sure what the thinking was behind the T59 piano wire wheels first seen in 1933, it seems the wire spokes handled the cornering loads while the teeth of the outer wheel rim meshed with the teeth of the brake drum to transmit the power from the drive shaft to the tyres. How this was advantageous over the regular alloy wheels Bugatti had used up until this date I am not sure.

Rembrandt Bugatti,  Bugatti Trust

While most of the Bugatti Trust collection focuses of Ettore and Jean’s work there are some interesting pieces of work by other Bugatti family members including this sculpted giraffe by Ettore’s brother, Rembrandt Bugatti.

I really can’t recommend a visit to the Bugatti Trust highly enough and can’t wait to go back with a raft of new questions for the friendly and helpful members of the trust who make a visit such a delight.

Hope you have enjoyed this Bugatti Trust edition of ‘Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’ and that you will join me again for Ferrari Friday tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !


Broken Promises – DB Panhard HBR

Somehow almost overlooked this photo by Ed Arnaudin of John B Mull in his DB Panhard competing in Race 1 at Thompson CT on the 20th July 1958, although John did not finish this race, we shall see this is a significant model in the world of national and international class H up to 750 cc 45.7 cui racing.

The manufacture of DB cars commenced after a promised drive failed to materialise at the 1936 French Sports Car Grand Prix for Charles Deutsch and René Bonnet. The following year they entered a special of their own devising using the remnants of of a Citroen Traction Avant 11 CV.

Their specials placed in the very first post war race in Paris in 1945 and with the construction of the open wheel DB7 Automobiles Deutsch & Bonnet became a business entity in 1947.

Unhappy with the supply of Citroen parts they switched primarily to using flat twin Panhard motors of 744 cc / 45.4 cui. DB Panhards took class victories at the Mille Miglia, four times, Le Mans, three times, Sebring, twice and SCCA class H, the latter in 1958 with Howard Hanna at the wheel and in 1959 with Ray Heppenstall at the wheel.

Despite their on track success after building nearly 1000 vehicles, a disagreement over the architecture of their next model led to Deutsch and Bonnet going their separate ways forming CD and Automobiles René Bonnet respectively, the latter using Renault power became part of Matra Automobiles in 1965.

Panhard which as Panhard et Levassor had been in business since 1897 was absorbed in to Citroen in 1965 with the last vehicle produced in 1967 the name is still to be found in use as a brand of French built military vehicle.

The HBR model seen here was built from 1954 to 1961 on the most common DB chassis shared with Mille Miles and Coach models of which a combined total of 660 were made.

John B Mull appears to have had a collection of vehicles to race with Evelyn Mull between them they are known to have raced a Jaguar XK120, AC Ace Bristol, Austin Healey 100 S and this DB Panhard, JB is also known to have raced an OSCA S750.

Hope you have enjoyed the Race 1 Thompson CT 20th July 1958 series, my thanks to Ed and Steve Arnaudin for the photograph and to Terry O’Neil for the race results. Join me tomorrow for Ferrari Friday when we will be looking at a vehicle driven by a reigning 3 time World Grand Prix Champion on it’s victorious debut and a month later was driven to a class victory by the USA’s first future world champion. Don’t forget to come back now!


Perfection In Seven Weeks – Morgan Aero SuperSports

The Morgan Aero Super Sports was launched in 2009, it is a targa version of the limited edition AeroMax I looked at in yesterdays blog.

It takes seven weeks to build a SuperSport starting with the aluminium (clipped British pronunciation) frame.

The 4.8 litre / 293 CUI BMW V8 can be specified with either automatic or six speed manual gearbox. At each stage of assembly only one person is responsible for and works on each vehicle, ensuring job satisfaction for the employee and ‘perfection’ for the customer.

Notice in the assembly process of the Aero SuperSport how the BMW cam cover will magically disappear.

The body panels are super formed and then finished by hand.

The aluminium body panels are bonded around an ash frame, this type of construction is both extremely light and also meets all the global crash standards required of a 21st century vehicle.

Morgan offer customers a choice of 40,000 colours for their hand painted vehicles, if they don’t already have the colour you want they will make it.

The eight vehicles seen here in the Aero SuperSports assembly area will represent an income of over £800,000 pounds / US$ 1.28 million. Seventy percent of Morgans are exported.

As if by magic the BMW cam cover disappears !

Close to complete every detail is double checked to perfection in the Aero SuperSports finishing area.

The next stop for this Aero SuperSports will be either the customer hand over area in the factory or to a dealer.

Chairman Charles Morgan says of this particular model of perfection “ The Morgan Aero SuperSports is a luxurious flamboyant sports car which also remains true to Morgan’s philosophy of lightweight minimalist simplicity. It is a celebration of our love of cars and the romance of travel and is a fitting model to announce during Morgan’s Centenary year.”

Hope you enjoyed today’s trip around the Morgan Motor Company following the production of the Aero SuperSport, tomorrow I hope you’ll join me in looking at the production of classic Roadsters, don’t forget to come back now !


The Boss’s Car – Morgan AeroMax

A couple of weeks ago I was fortunate enough to go on a guided tour of the Morgan Motor Company. To arrange the tour I visited the Morgan website two weeks in advance and made a booking. As I hope you shall see over the next couple of days I had a fabulous time.

The Morgan Motor Company was founded in 1909 by HFS Morgan in Malvern Worcestershire and is the oldest British motor manufacturer in continuous private ownership. Today the company is run by the Grandson of HFS, Charles Morgan and as luck would have it this is his personal one of a limited edition of just one hundred AeroMax models.

The Aeromax is capable of 0 – 60 mph in 4.5 seconds and will take you on to a 170mph.

Every detail of a Morgan is a testament to the genius of craftsmen, as we shall see there are power tools in the factory but there is no mechanised assembly line or machines stamping out parts.

Power for the AeroMax comes courtesy of a BMW V8, so far as I know Morgan has always used proprietary motors.

From the trunk of the Aeromax allegedly is large enough for a couple of Golf bags.

In 1991 the Britain’s first reality TV businessman Sir John Harvey Jones was horrified to find Morgan with a seven year backlog of orders were still crafting their vehicles by hand in the Troubleshooter TV series, he advised Peter Morgan to modernise, increase production and prices. Bravely Morgan ignored this advice and the TV coverage led to the waiting list for new Morgans to extend from 7 years to 10 years. Sir John says he is pleased that Peter Morgan stuck to his guns and ignored his advice.

Hope you enjoyed my introduction to the Morgan Car Company, tomorrow I’ll take you inside the factory to see how these cars are made, wishing everyone a sunny day, don’t forget to come back now !