A V-twin engine called a V2 engine, is a two-cylinder internal combustion engine where the cylinders are arranged in a V configuration. Although associated with motorcycles, V-twin engines are produced for the power equipment industry and are found in riding lawnmowers, small tractors and electric generators. Gottlieb Daimler built a V-twin engine in 1889, it was used to power boats. It was used in Daimler's second automobile, the 1889 Stahlradwagen; the engine was manufactured under licence in France by Panhard et Levassor. In November 1902 the Princeps AutoCar Co advertised a V-twin engined motorcycle, in 1903 V-Twins were produced by other companies, including the 90 degree XL-ALL. In 1903, Glenn Curtiss in the United States, NSU in Germany began building V-twin engines for use in their respective motorcycles. Peugeot, which had used Panhard-built Daimler V-twins in its first cars, made its own V-twin engines in the early 20th century. A Norton motorcycle powered by a Peugeot V-twin engine won the first Isle of Man Tourist Trophy twin-cylinder race in 1907.
Most V-twin engines have a single crankpin, shared by both connecting rods. The connecting rods may sit side-by-side with offset cylinders, or they may be "fork & blade" items with cylinders in the same plane without an offset; some notable exceptions include the Moto Guzzi 500cc that Stanley Woods rode to win the 1935 Isle of Man TT. A two-cylinder engine with the cylinders arranged at any angle greater than zero degrees and less than 180 degrees may be classified as a V-twin, although an angle that approaches zero is not practical. Despite Ducati referring to its 90 degree twin cylinder engine as an "L-twin"—with the front cylinder nearly horizontal and the rear cylinder vertical, there is no technical distinction between V-twin and L-twin engines. Assuming correct counterweighting, a 90 degree V-twin will achieve perfect primary balance. However, the 90 degree layout will produce an uneven firing interval, with the second cylinder firing 270 degrees of crankshaft rotation after the first cylinder, followed by 450 degrees of rotation before the first cylinder again fires.
A V-twin with an angle of less than 90 degree cannot achieve perfect primary balance unless offset crankpins, a balance shaft, or both are employed to counteract reciprocating forces. However, the firing interval will not be as uneven as with the 90 degree layout; the terms longitudinal engine and transverse engine are most used to refer to the crankshaft orientation, some sources, most prominently Moto Guzzi, use the terminology in the opposite way. A Moto Guzzi Technical Services representative tried to explain to LA Times columnist Susan Carpenter that Moto Guzzi engines are "called'transverse' because the engine is mounted with the crankshaft oriented front to back instead of left to right." In spite of this, it could be assumed that those who call V-twin motorcycle engines "transverse" when they are mounted with the crankshaft front-to-back and the cylinders sticking out the sides are saying that to them, the engine's axis is the line passing from one cylinder to the other, at a right angle to the crankshaft, rather than going by the crankshaft's axis.
Technical sources, such as V. Cossleter's Motorcycle Dynamics, or Gaetaeno Cocco's Motorcycle Design and Technology are careful not to use the terms "longitudinal engine" or "transverse engine," but rather to specify that they mark the engine's orientation based on the crankshaft, so they will say "transverse crankshaft engine" or "longitudinal crankshaft engine", or, conversely, "transversely mounted cylinders" in referenced to the classic BMW orientation, with a longitudinal crankshaft and cylinders at a right angle to the axis of the frame; the engine can be mounted in transverse crankshaft position as on Harley-Davidsons and many recent Japanese motorcycles. This layout produces a twin cylinder motorcycle engine, little or no wider than a single. A narrower engine can be mounted lower in the frame with handling benefits. A disadvantage of this configuration for air-cooled engines is that the two cylinders receive different air-flows and cooling of the rear cylinder tends to be restricted.
Cooling problems are somewhat mitigated by having all "four" sides of each cylinder exposed to air flow. This differs from a parallel-twin cylinder engine which has a distinct front and sides, but the inside of each cylinder is not exposed to airflow as the cylinders are joined together with a cam chain running up through the block in-between the cylinders; some transverse V-twins use a single carburettor in the middle of the V-angle to feed both cylinders. While this allows an economy of parts, it creates further cooling problems for the rear cylinder by placing its hot exhaust port and pipe at the back of the cylinder, where it may be exposed to less cooling airflow; some cooling strategies of transverse-crankshaft 90° V-twins The longitudinal crankshaft two-cylinder V as seen on Moto-Guzzis and some Hondas is less common. This orientation is suited to shaft drive, eliminating the need for a 90° bevel gear at the transmission end of the shaft. A longitudinal crankshaft engine fits neatly into a typical motorcycle frame, leaving ample room for the transmission, cooling is facilitated by cylinder heads and exhausts protruding into the air stream.
Standard Motor Company
The Standard Motor Company Limited was a motor vehicle manufacturer, founded in Coventry, England, in 1903 by Reginald Walter Maudslay. It purchased Triumph in 1945 and in 1959 changed its name to Standard-Triumph International and began to put the Triumph brandname on all its products. For many years, it manufactured. All Standard's tractor assets were sold to Massey Ferguson in 1959. In September 1959, Standard Motor Company was renamed Standard-Triumph International Limited. A new subsidiary took the name The Standard Motor Company Limited and took over the manufacture of the group's products; the Standard name was last used in Britain in 1963, in India in 1988. Maudslay, great grandson of the eminent engineer Henry Maudslay, had trained under Sir John Wolfe-Barry as a civil engineer. In 1902 he joined his cousin Cyril Charles Maudslay at his Maudslay Motor Company to make marine internal combustion engines; the marine engines did not sell well, still in 1902 they made their first engine intended for a car.
It was fitted to a chain-drive chassis. The three-cylinder engine, designed by Alexander Craig was an advanced unit with a single overhead camshaft and pressure lubrication. Realising the enormous potential of the horseless carriage and using a gift of £3,000 from Sir John Wolfe-Barry, R. W. Maudslay left his cousin and became a motor manufacturer on his own account, his Standard Motor Company was incorporated on 2 March 1903 and he established his business in a small factory in a two-storey building in Much Park Street, Coventry. Having undertaken the examination of several proprietary engines to familiarise himself with internal combustion engine design he employed seven people to assemble the first car, powered by a single-cylinder engine with three-speed gearbox and shaft drive to the rear wheels. By the end of 1903 three cars had been built and the labour force had been increased to twenty five; the increased labour force produced a car every three weeks during 1904. The single-cylinder model was soon replaced by a two-cylinder model followed by three- and four-cylinder versions and in 1905 the first six.
The first cars boasted shaft drive as opposed to chains, the engines were not "square" but had 6" diameter pistons with a 3" stroke. As well as supplying complete chassis, the company found a good market selling engines for fitting to other cars where the owner wanted more power. Although Alex Craig, a Scottish engineer, was engaged to do much of the detail work, Maudslay himself was sufficiently confident to undertake much of the preliminary layout. One of the several derivations of the name "Standard" is said to have emanated from a discussion between Maudslay and Craig during which the latter proposed several changes to a design on the grounds of cost, which Maudslay rejected, saying that he was determined to maintain the best possible "Standard". In 1905 Maudslay himself drove the first Standard car to compete in a race; this was the RAC Tourist Trophy in which he finished 11th out of 42 starters, having had a non-stop run. In 1905 the first export order was received, from a Canadian who arrived at the factory in person.
The order was reported in the local newspaper with some emphasis, "Coventry firm makes bold bid for foreign markets". The company exhibited at the 1905 London Motor Show in Crystal Palace, at which a London dealer, Charles Friswell 1872-1926 agreed to buy the entire factory output, he joined Standard and was managing director for many years. In late 1906 production was transferred to larger premises and output was concentrated on 6-cylinder models; the 16/20 h.p. tourer with side-entrance body was priced at £450. An indication of how much this was can be gained from the fact. In 1907 Friswell became company chairman, he worked hard to raise its profile, the resulting increase in demand necessitated the acquisition of a large single-storey building in Cash's Lane, Coventry. This was inadequate after the publicity gained when a fleet of 20 cars, 16/20 tourers, were supplied for the use of Commonwealth editors attending the 1909 Imperial Press Conference in London. In 1909 the company first made use of the famous Union Flag Badge, a feature of the radiator emblem until after the Second World War.
By 1911 the range of vehicles was comprehensive, with the 8-horsepower model being produced in quantity whilst a special order for two 70 hp cars was at the same time executed for a Scottish millionaire. Friswell's influence culminated in supplying seventy 4-cylinder 16 hp cars for King George V and his entourage, including the Viceroy of India, at the 1911 Delhi Durbar. In 1912 Friswell sold his interest in Standard to C. J. Band and Siegfried Bettmann, the founder of the Triumph Motor Cycle Company. During the same year the first commercial vehicle was produced, the 4-cylinder model "S" was introduced at £195, the first to be put into large-scale production. 1,600 were produced before the outbreak of the First World War, 50 of them in the final week of car production. These cars were sold with a three-year guarantee. In 1914 Standard became a public company. During the First World War the company produced more than 1,000 aircraft, including the Royal Aircraft Factory B. E.12, Royal Aircraft Factory R.
E.8, Sopwith Pup and Bristol F.2-B in a new works at Canley that opened on 1 July 1916. Canley would subsequently become the main centre of operations. Other war materials produced included shells, mobile workshops for the Royal Engineers, trench mortars. Civilian car production was restarted in 1919 with models based on pre-war designs, for example the 9.5 model "S" was re-introduced as the model SLS although this was soon superseded by an
The Morgan Plus 4 is an automobile produced by the Morgan Motor Company. It is a more powerful and, in the case of the earlier cars longer version of the company's previous 4/4 model. Plus 4 production ran from 1950 to 1969, it was revived in 1985 and filled the gap between the 4/4 and the Plus 8 until 2000. It was again revived in 2005. After World War II Morgan re-introduced their 4/4 model fitted with a 1267 cc Standard engine; this continued in production until it was replaced by the larger Plus 4 announced at the 1950 Earl's Court Motor Show. The Plus 4 at its introduction was fitted with a 2088 cc Standard Vanguard engine installed on a strengthened 4/4 chassis with a wheelbase lengthened by 4 in. Hydraulic brakes, at first all drum, were fitted for the first time on a Morgan. In 1953 a higher performance version was announced with the 1991 cc I4 engine as used in the Triumph TR2; the radiator grille was now surrounded by a cowl. Front disc brakes became an option in 1959 and were standardised in 1960.
From 1955 the 1991 cc Triumph TR3 engine was used and from 1962 the engine was the Triumph TR4 unit, which increased displacement to 2138 cc. In 1955 the less powerful 4/4 model re-appeared in phase II form; the 96 in wheelbase of the Plus 4 was adopted by the 4/4 when it reappeared, after which the two models were for most purposes the same length and width. Body styles available were a 2-seat sports, 4 seat sports and more luxurious 2 or 4 seat drophead coupé. In 1963 a fibreglass bodied coupe Morgan +4 + was announced; the bonnet of the Triumph-engined Plus 4 fitted so to the engine that there was no room for an air filter. The Swiss Morgan Importer, Rolf Wehrlin in Aesch/BL, developed a coupé version of the Morgan +4. To make up for the extra weight of the body, the engine was fitted with a Judson supercharger. A racing version, the Plus 4 Super Sports was available from 1962 with a tuned engine and a lightweight body. Chris Lawrence and Richard Shepherd-Barron won the 1601-2000cc GT class at the 1962 24 Hours of Le Mans driving a Plus Four.
The class winning car, chassis number 4840, was registered XRX 1 in 1961 changed to TOK 258 from late 1961 through mid-1964. It was sold by Chris Lawrence to A. Dence in 1964 and the registration was changed to JHX 142B. In 1964 Chris Lawrence and John Sprinzel developed a streamlined aluminum coupe body for racing; the first SLR was fitted to a Triumph TR4 chassis. From February 1966 to November 1966 Morgan produced the two-seater +4 Competition model, of which only 42 were built, it is estimated that only 11 of these still exist today. The Morgan +4 Competition model was 10% more expensive than the standard +4; the Competition model had a low-line steel body, similar to the Morgan "Super Sports" aluminum body, came with a Derrington four branch exhaust manifold, Derrington competition steering wheel, 72-spoke wire wheels, Armstrong select-a-ride electrically adjustable rear shock absorbers, the 2.2-litre twin SU carburetor TR4 engine. Ref: "Morgan First and Last of the Real Sports Cars" by Gregory Houston Bowden, "The Four Wheeled Morgan" Volume 2: The Cowled-Radiator Models by Ken Hill A TR3 engined two seater car was tested by the British magazine The Motor in 1958.
It could accelerate from 0-60 mph in 9.7 seconds. A fuel consumption of 27.1 miles per imperial gallon was recorded. The test car cost £1017 including taxes of £340. In the film The War of the Roses, Barbara Rose buys her husband a 1960 +4. After their marriage sours, she destroys the Morgan by crushing it under her GMC Jimmy. Morgan +4+ Morgan Workshop Manual
Fuel injection is the introduction of fuel in an internal combustion engine, most automotive engines, by the means of an injector. All diesel engines use fuel injection by design. Petrol engines can use gasoline direct injection, where the fuel is directly delivered into the combustion chamber, or indirect injection where the fuel is mixed with air before the intake stroke. On petrol engines, fuel injection replaced carburetors from the 1980s onward; the primary difference between carburetors and fuel injection is that fuel injection atomizes the fuel through a small nozzle under high pressure, while a carburetor relies on suction created by intake air accelerated through a Venturi tube to draw the fuel into the airstream. The functional objectives for fuel injection systems can vary. All share the central task of supplying fuel to the combustion process, but it is a design decision how a particular system is optimized. There are several competing objectives such as: Power output Fuel efficiency Emissions performance Running on alternative fuels Reliability Driveability and smooth operation Initial cost Maintenance cost Diagnostic capability Range of environmental operation Engine tuningModern digital electronic fuel injection systems optimize these competing objectives more and than earlier fuel delivery systems.
Carburetors have the potential to atomize fuel better. Benefits of fuel injection include smoother and more consistent transient throttle response, such as during quick throttle transitions, easier cold starting, more accurate adjustment to account for extremes of ambient temperatures and changes in air pressure, more stable idling, decreased maintenance needs, better fuel efficiency. Fuel injection dispenses with the need for a separate mechanical choke, which on carburetor-equipped vehicles must be adjusted as the engine warms up to normal temperature. Furthermore, on spark ignition engines, fuel injection has the advantage of being able to facilitate stratified combustion which have not been possible with carburetors, it is only with the advent of multi-point fuel injection certain engine configurations such as inline five cylinder gasoline engines have become more feasible for mass production, as traditional carburetor arrangement with single or twin carburetors could not provide fuel distribution between cylinders, unless a more complicated individual carburetor per cylinder is used.
Fuel injection systems are able to operate regardless of orientation, whereas carburetors with floats are not able to operate upside down or in microgravity, such as encountered on airplanes. Fuel injection increases engine fuel efficiency. With the improved cylinder-to-cylinder fuel distribution of multi-point fuel injection, less fuel is needed for the same power output. Exhaust emissions are cleaner because the more precise and accurate fuel metering reduces the concentration of toxic combustion byproducts leaving the engine; the more consistent and predictable composition of the exhaust makes emissions control devices such as catalytic converters more effective and easier to design. Herbert Akroyd Stuart developed the first device with a design similar to modern fuel injection, using a'jerk pump' to meter out fuel oil at high pressure to an injector; this system was used on the hot-bulb engine and was adapted and improved by Bosch and Clessie Cummins for use on diesel engines. Fuel injection was in widespread commercial use in diesel engines by the mid-1920s.
An early use of indirect gasoline injection dates back to 1902, when French aviation engineer Leon Levavasseur installed it on his pioneering Antoinette 8V aircraft powerplant, the first V8 engine of any type produced in any quantity. Another early use of gasoline direct injection was on the Hesselman engine invented by Swedish engineer Jonas Hesselman in 1925. Hesselman engines use the ultra lean-burn principle, they are started on gasoline and switched to diesel or kerosene. Direct fuel injection was used in notable World War II aero-engines such as the Junkers Jumo 210, the Daimler-Benz DB 601, the BMW 801, the Shvetsov ASh-82FN. German direct injection petrol engines used injection systems developed by Bosch from their diesel injection systems. Versions of the Rolls-Royce Merlin and Wright R-3350 used single point fuel injection, at the time called "Pressure Carburettor". Due to the wartime relationship between Germany and Japan, Mitsubishi had two radial aircraft engines using fuel injection, the Mitsubishi Kinsei and the Mitsubishi Kasei.
Alfa Romeo tested one of the first electronic injection systems in Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 with "Ala spessa" body in 1940 Mille Miglia. The engine had six electrically operated injectors and were fed by a semi-high-pressure circulating fuel pump system. All diesel engines have fuel injected into the combustion chamber. See Diesel engine; the invention of mechanical injection for gasoline-fueled aviation engines was by the French inventor of the V8 engine configuration, Leon Levavasseur in 1902. Levavasseur designed the original Antoinette firm's series of V-form aircraft engines, starting with the Antoinette 8V to be used by the aircraft the Antoinette firm built that Levavasseur designed, flown from 1906 to the firm's demise in 1910, with t
Ford Sidevalve engine
The Ford Sidevalve is a side valve from the British arm of the Ford Motor Company. The engine had its origins in the 1930s Ford Model Y, were made in two sizes, 933 cc or "8 HP", 1,172 cc or "10 HP"; the early engines were did not have a water pump as standard, instead relying on thermosiphon cooling as the Model T engine had. A water pump was added in 1953 for the 100E models; the Sidevalve engine was used in many smaller Fords as well as farm vehicles, commercial vehicles and a marine version in boats. Production of the engine was stopped in 1962. Windscreen wipers were driven by the vacuum generated in the inlet manifold; the Sidevalve Engine was used in German Fords, starting with the Ford Köln in 1932 and ending with the last rear wheel drive Ford Taunus 12M in 1962. It was replaced by the Kent engine by the Taunus V4 engine in Germany. Many ways were explored to enhance the power output of the standard engine, most notably special exhaust manifolds, twin carburettors, stiffer valve springs, thinner cylinder head gaskets and modified camshafts.
The nominal horsepower quoted for each engine size comes from the British method of power calculation for road taxation purposes, bears no relationship with the actual power output. Displacement, cylinder diameter and number of cylinders determined the power for road taxation purposes. A three speed gearbox was fitted as standard. Several ways of improving the performance through modifications to the gearbox and transmission train were applied. Ford Model Y Ford C/Ford CX Ford 7W Ford 7Y E93/E493 range Ford Anglia Ford Prefect Ford Popular 100E series Ford Prefect Ford Anglia Ford Squire Ford Escort, a Squire variant Ford Popular Ford Köln Ford Eifel Ford Taunus G93A Ford Taunus 12M first generation Ford Taunus 12M second generation Aquaplane, manufacturer of dedicated exhaust and inlet manifolds for the Ford sidevalve engine aluminium alloy cylinder heads etc. Leslie Ballamy, designer of split front suspension used on many Ford "specials" Buckler Cars manufactured 1172 Formula racing cars using a space frame chassis and the 4 cylinder English Ford Sidevalve engine and other Buckler sporting cars using similar equipment.
Manufacturer of close ratio gears, special axle ratios, all types of engine tuning equipment for the 4 cylinder sidevalve engines. Willment in the UK, designed and manufactured overhead inlet valve cylinder heads for the side valve engines. Elva Engineering in the U. K. designed and manufactured overhead inlet valve conversion cylinder heads for this sidevalve engine complete sports/racing cars and other tuning parts. Ford Sidevalve Owners Club Cars and Car Conversions, "Tuning SU Carburettors", Speed and Sports Publications Ltd. G B Wake, "Ford Special Builders Manual", J H Haynes & Co Ltd. Philip H. Smith, "The Ford Ten Competition Engine", G T Foulis & Co. Ltd. A complete tuning manual. John Haynes, "Building Auto Publications, London. John Mills, "The Constructions of Ford Specials", B T Batsford, London. Bill Cooper, "Tuning Side-Valve Fords", Speed and Sports Publications Ltd. Miriam Nyhan, "Are You Still Below", The Collins Press, - The Ford Marina Plant, Cork, 1917-1984. ISBN 9781905172498 Ford Motor Company, "Anglia-Prefect Repair Manual" Dave Turner, "Ford Popular and the Small Sidevalves", Osprey Publishing Ltd.
ISBN 1-90308-804-6 Bill Ballard, "English & Australian Small Fords", Ellery Publications. ISBN 1 876 720 07 7
Ford Consul Classic
The Ford Consul Classic is a mid-sized car, launched in May 1961 and built by Ford UK from 1961 to 1963. It was available in two or four door saloon form, in Standard or De Luxe versions, with floor or column gearshift; the name Ford Consul 315 was used for export markets. The Ford Consul Capri was a 2-door coupé version of the Classic, was available from 1961 until 1964; the 1,340 cc four-cylinder engine was replaced in August 1962 by an over-square 1,498 cc engine with a new five-bearing crankshaft and a new gearbox with synchromesh on all four forward ratios. Steering and suspension received "greased for life" joints, it is sometimes referred to as the Ford 109E, though, only one of four such codes utilized for the Consul Classic, as explained below. Obvious competitor models at the time included the Hillman Minx and Singer Gazelle from Rootes Group; the Classic had the right-hand-drive and home market Ford code of 109E for 1961–1962 models with 1340cc engines, or 116E for 1962–63 manufacture with 1500cc engines.
Those codes distinguish the gearboxes and steering components which are not greasable on cars, so cutting first-user servicing costs. Despite all these codes the cars all looked the same throughout production 1961–1963, the visual distinctions being the number of doors, the trim & equipment level between Standard and De Luxe and the choice of colours; the Classic was made by Ford to be "suitable for the golf club car park", was intended for introduction earlier and deletion than occurred. The styling exercises were undertaken in 1956 under Colin Neale; the main styling cues came straight from Dearborn, as they so did, defining the car as a scaled-down Galaxie 500, from the waist down, topped with a Lincoln Continental roofline. Other aspects of R&D followed, it is that a recognisably similar car could have been introduced in 1959 subject to different senior management decisions. In practice the run-away early success of the Anglia used up most of the car manufacturing capacity at Dagenham, vindicating the decision to compete against the BMC Mini.
Ford therefore entered the 1960s with the small Anglia and Prefect, the big "three graces" launched back in 1956, not the mid-size market Classic. The Ford Classic was similar in appearance to the more popular Ford Anglia, featuring the same distinctive reverse-rake rear window; this feature was imported from the 1958 Lincoln Continental where it was necessitated by the design requirement for an opening rear window. With quad headlamps and different frontal treatment it was longer, wider and so heavier than the Anglia. In fact, from the windows down the body design was a scaled-down version of Ford's large, US Ford Galaxie. Inside, the separate front seats and rear bench had a standard covering of PVC but leather was available as an option. There was a choice of column-mounted gear change. Single or two-tone paint schemes were offered. Several of the car's features, unusual at the time, have subsequently become mainstream such as the headlight flasher and the variable speed windscreen wipers; the boot or trunk capacity was exceptionally large, with a side-stowed spare-wheel well, more important, the huge high-lift sprung lid allowed a great variety of loads to be both contemplated and packed.
At 21 cubic feet, this was 15% larger than the Zodiac MK2 and had obvious advantages for business use. The Consul Classic was mechanically similar to the Anglia, used larger 1340 cc and, from 1962, 1498 cc, variants of the Ford Kent Engine; the car had front 9.5 in disc brakes and was fitted with a four-speed gearbox: early cars provided synchromesh on the top three ratios, while the arrival of the 1498 cc version coincided with the provision of synchromesh on all forward gears. Suspension was independent at the front using MacPherson struts, at the rear the live axle used semi elliptic leaf springs. A contemporary road tester was impressed, noting that "probably the most impressive thing about the Classic is its road holding". A car tested by The Motor magazine in 1961 had a top speed of 78.4 mph and could accelerate from 0-60 mph in 22.5 seconds. A fuel consumption of 35.8 miles per imperial gallon was recorded. The test car was a 4-door deluxe version costing £801 including taxes, but the sticker price on a two-door standard Classic with the same engine was just £745 including taxes.
The Consul Classic was complex and expensive to produce and was replaced in 1963 by the Ford Corsair, based on Ford Cortina components. Only 111,225 Classics and 18,716 Capris were produced; these are small numbers by Ford standards, indicative of the public not taking to the controversial styling along with the availability of the cheaper, similar-sized Cortina. The Consul Capri was a two-door coupé version of the Classic saloon made by Ford of Britain; the Capri Project was code named "Sunbird" and took design elements from the Ford Thunderbird and the Ford Galaxie Sunliner. It was instigated by Ford's Sales Export Director, he wanted a "co-respondent's" car. It was designed by Charles Thompson who worked under Colin Neale and had sweeping lines, a large boot space and a pillarless coupé roof. On its September 1961 announcement, the Consul Capri was available for export only, but went on sale to the domestic British market in January 1962; the bodies were sub-assembled by Pressed Steel Company, with only final assembly of the drivetrain taking place
A roadster is an open two-seat car with emphasis on sporting appearance or character. An American term for a two-seat car with no weather protection, usage has spread internationally and has evolved to include two-seat convertibles; the roadster was a style of racing car driven in United States Auto Club Championship Racing, including the Indianapolis 500, in the 1950s and 1960s. This type of racing car was superseded by mid-engined cars; the term "roadster" originates in the United States, where it was used in the nineteenth century to describe a horse suitable for travelling. By the end of the century the definition had expanded to include tricycles. In 1916, the United States Society of Automobile Engineers defined a roadster as: "an open car seating two or three, it may have additional seats on running boards or in rear deck." Due to it having a single row of seats, the main seat for the driver and passenger was further back in the chassis than it would have been in a touring car. Roadsters had a hooded dashboard.
In the United Kingdom the preferred terms were "open two-seater" and "two-seat tourer". Since the 1950s, the term "roadster" has been used in the United Kingdom, it is noted that the optional 4-seat variant of the Morgan Roadster would not be technically considered a roadster. The earliest roadster automobiles had only basic bodies without doors, windshields, or other weather protection. By the 1920s they were appointed to touring cars, with doors, simple folding tops, side curtains. Roadster bodies were offered on automobiles of all sizes and classes, from mass-produced cars like the Ford Model T and the Austin 7 to expensive cars like the Cadillac V-16, the Duesenberg Model J and Bugatti Royale. 1920s to 1950s roadsters By the 1970s "roadster" could be applied to any two-seater car of sporting appearance or character. In response to market demand they were manufactured as well-equipped as convertibles with side windows that retracted into the doors. Popular models through the 1960s and 1970s were the Alfa Romeo Spider, MGB and Triumph TR4.
1950s to 1980s roadsters The highest selling roadster is the Mazda MX-5, introduced in 1989. The early style of roadster with minimal weather protection is still in production by several low-volume manufacturers and fabricators, including the windowless Morgan Roadster, the doorless Caterham 7 and the bodyless Ariel Atom. 1990s to present day roadsters The term roadster was used to describe a style of racing cars competing in the AAA/USAC Championship Cars series from 1952 to 1969. The roadster engine and drive shaft are offset from the centerline of the car; this allows the driver to sit lower in the chassis and facilitates a weight offset, beneficial on oval tracks. One story of why this type of racing car is referred to as a "roadster" is that a team was preparing a new car for the Indianapolis 500, they had it covered in a corner of their shop. If they were asked about their car they would try and obscure its importance by saying that it was just their "roadster". After the Indianapolis racer was made public, the "roadster" name was still attached to it.
Frank Kurtis built the first roadster to race and entered it in the 1952 Indianapolis 500. It was driven by Bill Vukovich; the Howard Keck owned team with Vukovich driving went on to win the 1953 and 1954 contests with the same car. Bob Sweikert won the 1955 500 in a Kurtis. A. J. Watson, George Salih and Quinn Epperly were other notable roadster constructors. Watson-built roadsters won in 1956, 1959 - 1964 though the 1961 and 1963 winners were close copies built from Watson designs; the 1957 and 1958 winner was the same car built by Salih with help by Epperly built with a unique placement of the engine in a'lay down' mounting so the cylinders were nearly horizontal instead of vertical as traditional design dictated. This gave a lower center of gravity and a lower profile. Roadsters had disappeared from competition by the end of the 1960s, after the introduction, subsequent domination, of rear-engined machines. In 1965 Gordon Johncock brought the Wienberger Homes Watson to the finish in fifth place, the last top-ten roadster finish and the final time that a roadster finished the full distance of the race.
The last roadster to make the race was built and driven by Jim Hurtubise in the 1968 race and dropped out early. Hurtubise attempted to run the same car in 1969 but, while making his qualifying run at a good speed, the engine failed on the last of the four laps. Other classes of racing cars were built with the offset drive train and were referred to as roadsters; some pavement midgets roadsters raced into the early 1970s but never were dominant. Barchetta, a related two-seater body style designed for racing Convertible, the general term to describe vehicles with retractable roofs and retractable side windows Roadster utility Tonneau cover, a protective cover for the seats in an open car Media related to Roadsters at Wikimedia Commons