Tag: Rootes Group

Cars & Churchill: Blood, Sweat & Gears (2) Daimlers…

Cars & Churchill: Blood, Sweat & Gears (2) Daimlers…

Hav­ing writ­ten about cars and Win­ston Churchill for fifty years, I final­ly pro­duced a piece on them both. From exot­i­ca like Daim­ler, Napi­er and Rolls-Royce to more pro­sa­ic makes like Austin, Hum­ber and Wolse­ley, the sto­ry was three decades in com­ing. I am sat­is­fied that it is now com­plete.

Part 2, con­tin­ued from Part 1: Excerpt only. For foot­notes,  all illus­tra­tions and a ros­ter of Churchill’s cars, see The Auto­mo­bile, August 2016. 

Wolseley to Austin

In the ear­ly 1930s Churchill switched from Wolse­ley to Austin cars: small fours and big six­es. One of the for­mer, a 1938 Austin 10 Cam­bridge, was the Chartwell work­horse.…

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Sunbeam Harrington Harangue

Sunbeam Harrington Harangue

Sun­beam Har­ring­ton Le Mans: first encounter. It was in 1963 at Beck­rag Motors in Irv­ing­ton, New Jer­sey, where I’d arrived to buy a bolt-on hard­top for my Sun­beam Alpine. The Le Mans was in their show­room, gleam­ing red, entic­ing­ly shaped, with wire wheels, snug Micro­cell buck­et seats and the wal­nut dash­board I’d tried to fake with con­tac-paper on my Alpine. It looked like 100 mph stock-still. The price was $4295, about $3000 more than I could even bor­row. I had to stick with my hard­top Alpine.

The Le Mans was your basic Eng­lish blacksmith’s revenge, cob­bled up from a pro­duc­tion vehi­cle, like the Tri­umph Her­ald-based Bond Equipe, but rather more impres­sive.…

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