Marauder Cars

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Marauder A and 100
Marauder Cabriolet at Witham.JPG
Marauder A three-seater registered June 1950
KAC 313 the first car built[1]
Overview
Manufacturer
  • Marauder Car Company Limited
  • #00481727
  • previously Wilks, Mackie and Company Limited
Production1950–1952
15 made[2]
DesignerGeorge Mackie, Spencer King, Peter Wilks
Body and chassis
Body style
  • Open[note 1] two-seater / three-seater
  • (one) 2-door coupé
Powertrain
EngineRover 2103 cc straight 6 (A model)
2392 cc (100 model)
Transmission4-speed manual with optional overdrive
Dimensions
Wheelbase102"(2,591 mm)
Length13'10" (166")(4216mm)
Curb weight1ton 3cwt (2,576lbs)(1,186kg)
Marauder 100 open two-seater
registered November 1951, has a 3-litre engine
Marauder 100 open two-seater rear

Marauder Car Company Limited was a British car venture by ex-Rover engineers George Mackie and Peter Wilks. After successfully racing their single-seater Marauder racing car the pair left Rover in 1950 and formed Wilks, Mackie and Company to exploit their idea of a two-seater sports car based on the new Rover 75 chassis. In 1951 they changed the company's name to Marauder Car Company.

Around 15 cars were made before a sharp luxury tax imposed on cars priced over £1,000 brought sales to an end and George Mackie and Peter Wilks rejoined Rover.

Design[edit]

The design was largely the work of Peter Wilks and "Spen" King who, like Wilks, was a nephew of brothers Spencer and Maurice Wilks who ran Rover. Spencer King was later famous for his involvement in many Rover and Leyland Group designs. Though usually considered a sports car their new car was marketed as a Marauder Tourer.

The car named the "A", later joined by the more powerful "100", was based on the Rover P4 75 with the chassis shortened by 9 inches (230 mm) from 111 inches (2,800 mm) to 102 inches (2,600 mm), the track remaining the same at 52 inches (1,300 mm); the suspension was stiffened retaining the coil sprung independent front suspension and elliptical sprung live rear axle. In view of the much lighter 2/3-seater (a single bench seat but the seats were separated on the "100"[1]) open[note 1] coachwork the engine was moved back to improve handling and front / rear weight distribution; the Rover gearbox was retained with optional Laycock–de Normanville overdrive[1] but not the Rover free wheel mechanism. The gearchange moved from column to floor.[2]

The 6-cylinder, inlet over exhaust valve, 2103 cc Rover engine was slightly modified with higher compression ratio to raise the output by 5 bhp (4 kW; 5 PS) to 80 bhp (60 kW; 81 PS) whilst the 100 version was bored out to 2392 cc and fitted with triple SU carburettors to give 105 bhp (78 kW; 106 PS); the "A" was capable of 90 mph (145 km/h) and the "100" 100 mph (161 km/h)[2]

Manufacture[edit]

Manufacturing started in Dorridge, Solihull, West Midlands and later continued in Kenilworth, Warwickshire between 1950 and 1952. In 1951 Wilks, Mackie and Company's name was changed to Marauder Car Company.[note 2][2]

The first few bodies were made by Richard Mead in his Dorridge works and used some Rover panels but later ones were made by Abbey Panels of Coventry.[2]

About 15 cars were made including 2 of the "100"s before rising costs and tax changes priced the cars out of the market; the UK government doubled the already high level of Purchase Tax on cars with a pre-tax price above £1000.[3] In 1950 the car cost £1236 rising to over £2000 in 1952.[2]

Both George Mackie and Peter Wilks rejoined Rover.

The sole coupé registered April 1952 the fifth car and built to a special order[1]

Note[edit]

  1. ^ a b Open because weather protection was limited to a lightweight folding roof and detachable side-screens. There were no wind-up windows; the alloy-framed clear perspex side-screens contained sliding sections to permit the obligatory hand signals
  2. ^ and dissolved 18 July 1967. page 7899 The London Gazette 18 July 1967

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Malcolm Bobbitt, Rover P4 Series, Veloce, Dorchester 2002 ISBN 1903706572
  2. ^ a b c d e f Robson, Graham. A to Z of British Cars 1945-1980. ISBN 0-9541063-9-3.
  3. ^ David Culshaw and Peter Horrobin. The Complete Catalogue of British Cars 1895–1975. Veloce Publishing. pp. 412–413. ISBN 1-904788-75-0.