The Richard automobile

I was most interested in your paragraphs on the Richard automobile in the October issue of Motor Sport. Since the Encyclopedia of Motorcars went to press I have learnt that as well as the 7.3-litre 6-cylinder Richard there was a V-8 engine with a capacity of 596 cubic inches, which works out at just under 10 litres, I think. I wonder if the “250-h.p. eight-cylinder car” which Francois Richard was said to have designed was the 1904 Bellamy? This was a real monster with a straight-8 engine of 183 x 183 mm. giving a capacity of 38 litres, and only one forward speed. It was built for a wealthy American woman, Miss Hockenhull, with the sole intention of capturing the Land Speed Record, but I have never heard that it even made an attempt on the record.

The Maybach illustrated on page 1030 is certainly not large enough for a V-12, and I doubt if it is even a 5-litre DSH. It looks more like the “baby” Maybach, the 3.8-litre SW38. Incidentally, the DSH was not a straight-8 but a six. Maybach never made an eight-cylinder car, to my knowledge.

G. N. Georgano.
London, W11.