Tag Archives: Mk VI

Danville Detailing – Danville Concours d’Elegance

Last month Geoffrey Horton took his trusty Jaguar XK140 to the 10th anniversary Danville Concours d’Elegance, an event designed to raise funds for Parkinsons research and patient care.

Jaguar XK140 FHC, Danville Concours d'Elegance,

Above Geoffrey’s nephew’s Luke and Jack help out with a bit of detailing as the show get’s underway.

Bentley Mk VI, Danville Concours d'Elegance,

As we saw earlier this year most of the 4000 odd post war Bentley Mk VI’s fell victim to inferior steel supplied for their bodies by government edict. Above is the interior of the only Bentley Mk VI, a 1948 example, fitted with an opulent Sautchick body in France.

Maserati 250F, Danville Concours d'Elegance,

I believe Juan Manuel Fangio drove the Maserati 250F above to two race victories on home soil in Argentina in the space of two weeks in January 1957, his fifth and final World Championship winning season.

Aston Martin DB 2/4 Mk III, Danville Concours d'Elegance,

Between 1957 and 1959 Aston Martin produced 84 DB 2/4 Mark III Convertibles powered by a six cylinder motor, it is believed only 10 of these vehicles were fitted with optional triple carburetors, as seen above, which boosted the output from the standard twin carb 162hp to 195hp.

Land Rover 88, Danville Concours d'Elegance,

The 1963 88″ short wheel base Land Rover at our school was an oft over abused vehicle that used to carry the sailing kit for upto seven dinghies plus up to fourteen school boys plus a member of staff. It might have been a considerably faster vehicle if, like the one above it had been fitted with a a post 1989 200Tdi motor like the one above. The high turbo installation indicates this motor was originally sourced from a Defender rather than the SUV Discovery, in which the iron block aluminium head 200Tdi first appeared with the turbo mounted much lower down in the engine compartment.

RS Design Corsa Spyder, Danville Concours d'Elegance,

Most difficult to identify was this gorgeous red vehicle, from the front it looks a tad like a Maserati and from the rear not unlike a Ferrari P4/P412, but the pushrod motor, possibly a Ford, going on the depth of the rocker covers, gives the game away that this vehicle was unlikely to have been built in Italy. In fact the car is a one off special, made to exceptionally high standards and is known as an RS Design Corsa Spyder. Unfortunately all links to further info on RS Design and the Corsa Spyder built in 2009 have expired so if you know more, please do not hesitate to chip in below.

Geoffrey tells me he had the good fortune to enjoy spending a considerable amount of time with Alma Hill widow of 1961 World Champion Phil Hill who also drove for Geoffrey’s Uncle George Tilp. My thanks to Geoffrey for sharing his photographs, more of which will appear on Friday.

Thanks for joining me on this “Danville Detailing” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres”, I hope you will join me tomorrow when I’ll be looking at what the Dodge Boys cooked up for the . Don’t forget to come back now !


Blue Velvet – Bentley Mk VI Special

In May 1946 Rolls Royce, owners of Bentley, announced that there subsidiary would be making an all new model known as the Mk VI standard steel sports saloon which would mark a break in several production traditions but which would maintain it’s air of exclusivity by becoming the the most expensive production car and the worlds fastest 4/5 seat saloon.

Bentley Mk VI Special, Blue Velvet, Bristol Classic Car Show, Shepton Mallet

The novel feature for the marque and indeed the marques owners was the steel body, complete with sliding sunroof manufactured by Pressed Steel Ltd of Coventry which meant a Bentley no longer had to be sent to an independent coach works for a bespoke body before it was sold although that was an option pursued by around 20% of Mk VI customers between 1946 and 1952.

Bentley Mk VI Special, Blue Velvet, Bristol Classic Car Show, Shepton Mallet

Initially from 1946 to to 1951 these cars were fitted with uprated straight F-head 6 cylinder 4.257 litre / 259 cui of Rolls Royce origin but with Bentley rocker covers. 4 1/4 litre engines were replaced by 4.566 litre / 278 cui 4 1/2 litre motors featuring twin exhausts in 1951.

Bentley Mk VI Special, Blue Velvet, Bristol Classic Car Show, Shepton Mallet

Rolls Royce never gave away hp figures for it’s motors, but a contemporary report of a vehicle powered by the earlier motor related that top gear provided “flexibility down to 6 mph” and could “climb a hill of 1 in 9 maximum gradient, complicated by bends. A vehicle tested with the later motor was independently tested from rest to 60 mph in 15 seconds with a top speed of 100 mph.

Bentley Mk VI Special, Blue Velvet, Bristol Classic Car Show, Shepton Mallet

To illustrate just how much demand there was for the Bentley Mk VI standard steel sports saloon a pre owned vehicle report in 1951 observed that a three year old 4 1/4 litre Mk VI with under 10,500 miles on the clock sold brand new for £4038 in 1948 and in 1951 was being offered for sale at £5,335, such was the quality of the car and the post ’39 – ’45 shortage of vehicles in the UK.

Bentley Mk VI Special, Blue Velvet, Bristol Classic Car Show, Shepton Mallet

Over time the Mk VI’s Achilles Heel manifested itself when the quality of the steels used in the bodywork, proscribed by government edict in the post war aftermath, showed itself to be inferior. As a consequence many surviving Mk VI Bentley’s, like Blue Velvet seen here at the Bristol Classic Car Show, have been fitted with cheerful one off bodies displaying varying degrees of professionalism in their finish. With the loss of the weight of the original steel body one would imagine the performance while accelerating to be quite exhilarating.

Bentley Mk VI Special, Blue Velvet, Bristol Classic Car Show, Shepton Mallet

In all 4000 4 1/4 litre Mk VI’s like Blue Velvet were built with standard steel sports saloon bodies from 1946 to 1951 with an additional 832 being fitted with bespoke bodies from independent coach builders.

Thanks for joining me on this “Blue Velvet” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres”, I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at a sports pick up from Ford. Don’t forget to come back now !

Brighton Speed Trials Under Threat of Permanent Cancellation !

In their infinite wisdom, Brighton & Hove City Council are seeking to ban the Brighton Speed Trials from 2014.

If you care about speed and or motorsport history, please sign this linked petition to save Brighton Speed Trials in 2014 and beyond.

It’s a faf to Register before signing, but relatively painless compared to loosing the event which has been run with few interruptions since 1905.

You do not need to be resident in Brighton or even the UK to sign.

More on Brighton Speed Trials on this link.

Thanks and please spread the word through whatever social media you have at your disposal.

A tweet on the Save Brighton Speed Trials site this morning says that so far over 10,000 signatures have been received, thanks if you have responded, if not please do so you have until January 23rd, it would be nice to receive 100,000 signatures world wide.