BOOK REVIEWS, July 1961, July 1961

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BOOK REVIEWS

“Automobiles Australia.” ziz pp. III in. 9 in. (Wylie Publishing Company Ltd., 25-23, Anthonv Street, Melbourne, Australia.)

This is a magnificent publication, somewhat on the lines of ” Automobile Year,” which reviews in lavish style with highquality illustrations, the cars with specifications, together with oil, tyres, parts and components obtainable in Australia, and reviews in great detail, again with comprehensive and excellent pictures, the 1959-60 season of motoring sport ” down under,” complete with race results, records, etc. It comes in a handsome dust-jacket depicting a Ford Falcon.

Naturally, this splendid annual will appeal mainly to our Australian readers but those who like to keep abreast of all that goes on in the world of motoring will find much to interest them, and ” Automobiles Australia “_ should certainly be in British reference libraries. Then old-car fanatics will not only find a long account of topical happenings in Australia’s veteran car movement from the reliable pen of George Brooks but some informative chapters devoted to Early Australian Motor Manufacture and an illustrated history of the Tarrant, while historians will appreciate the considerable amount of pictorial and textual data on Australia’s oldest car, the 1896 Thomson steamer.

Members of our Motor Industry will derive useful information from those chapters describing how Holden, Ford, Volkswagen, Goggomobil, Chrysler, Rootes, B.M.C. and A.M.I. operate in Australia and will need this book in order to discover what an Elvin is, etc.

” Automobiles Australia ” does credit to the Australian Motor Industry, the Sport, and to its publishers, who also publish the monthly Australian Motor Sports.—W. B. “Complete Catalog of Japanese Motor Vehicles,” by Floyd Clymer. 264 pp. TO M in. x 8 4 in. (Floyd Clymer Lid., 1268, S. Alvarado Street, LOS Angeles, 6, California, U.S.A. 5 dollars;)

Here is a comprehensive—that’s the word I—directory of all the motor vehicles, from scooters and motorcycles upwards, made in Japan, from which the competition they offer to European vehicles can be measured. There is amusement in deciding from whiCh well-known cars some of the earlier Japanese vehicles have been copied but the later cars such as the Prince, Nissan and Toyopet models appear to be good cars in their own right. And, amongst the motorcycles, what of the Honda Dream CS7 t developing 20 b.h.p. at 8,400 r.p.m. from a 2-cylinder 247-c.c. engine or the 125-c.c. Yamaguihi Super Twin that gives toi h.p. at the same speed ?

There is a great variety of 3-wheeled commercial vehicles made in Japan, stemming from around 1926, and this big v.)lume enables you to distinguish between Daihatsu Midget, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Hope, Humbee, Cony, Giant, Kurogane and Musashi should you wish to do so—all tricycles with a.single front wheel. Production of motor vehicles in Japan increased from 2,108 in 1930 to 1,029,436 for the first ten months of 1959, so the inipOrtanee of studying what is made there need hardly he emphasised and members of the British Motor Industry should make a point of ordering this publication, which includes a list with addresses Of all the motor vehicle manufacturers in Japan.

An interesting section of this ” Catalog of Japanese Motor Vehicles” is that devoted to a pictorial analysis of Japanese cars front 1907 to 1947, including such makes as Takuri, Olua,Wolseley, Ales, etc., the first imported car having been an 1-899 Progress electric tricycle—new material for the V.C.C. and historians to -study.

There is also the benefit of chapters on vat ious aspects of the Japanese scenes and of Floyd Clymers’ personal observations. W. B. “Formula Junior Competition Cars.” 48 pp. ii in. ;SI in. Soft Covers. (Temple Press Limited, Boo/jog Green Ane, London, E.C.1. 75. 6d.)

fere is a book about the active sport of Formula Junior Rating, with technical details of more than 82 such single-seater racing cars. together with full descriptions Of Cooper, Elva, Gemini, Lola, Lotus, Stanguellini and Dolphin cars. Some tine cut-away drawings of the leading cars and engines are included, the F.J. regulations are published in full and a history of this rapidly growing branch of motor racing is included. There are also results of 1959/60 races and championships.—W. B. “Monza 1961,” British Edition. 146 pp. TO in. ;

What a splendid luxury production the 1961 edition of the Monza Official Year Book is 1 It contains a complete review of all that happened at Italy’s Monza track last year, covering cars, vintage ears, karts and model cars, it contains a fixture list for this year, a full description of’ the road and track circuits with lavish diagrams and statistics, valuable to those intending to race or attack records there and interesting to those who visit Monza, and many other useful items. In addition, the 1961 Edition carries a very complete history of motor and motorcycle racing at Monza from 1922 to 1927, copiously illostrated with magnificent pictures, including colour plates. There are, indeed, photographs in great profusion, hitherto not seen in this country, of cars like the 1923 Voisin, rear-engined Rumpler-Benz, a whole lot of the great Pa Alfa Romeos, Bugattis, V 12 Delage, Fiats, Mercedes, Duesenbergs, anti Millers; that competed at Monza in the” golden age ” of motor racing. Rare cars such as the 1925 Heim and 1924 Schmid are included and there is full coverage of motorcycle racing of this period as well.

In this British Edition the Italian text is augmented by a full English translation. There are many superb colour plates, from the poster advertising the 1922 Italian Grand Prix and the start of the 1923 G.P. d’Europe to charming bathing girls and their bronzed companions enjoying the sun at Monza’s swimming pool, for Monza, like Montlbery, is a permanent fully-established motor course. There is a list and pictures of those non-racing drivers who have, nevertheless, qualified for driving on the High Speed Track, to do which could constitute a pleasing holiday for English enthusiasts.

With the ” History of Brooklands ” and ” Montlhery ” the Monza Year Book completes a triology of the banked circuits and it is a very worthwhile purchase.—W. B. “Fifty Years with the -Speed Kings,” by the late David McDonald (” Dunlop Mac “). Foreword by Lord Essendon. 176 pp. -8i in. x 5i in. (Stanley Paul & Co. Ltd., 178-202, Great Portland Street, London, Wi. iSs.)

This, the promised book about” Dunlop Mac’s “reminiscences, was published, sadly, a few days after this most famous of all tyre fitters died in hospital. But at least this morbid fact enables me to review the book honestly without hurting the feelings of David McDonald, who was one of the most likeable and certainly one of the most essential characters in the motor-racing firmament.

I never have liked ” ghosted “hooks and it seems that ” Dunlop Mac” was taken over by Adrian Ball, who has produced a very readable, very interesting book mainly about Land Speed Record attacks, but a book that tells the serious student of motor-racing history very little he didn’t know before, not very much about ” Dunlop Mac “and the drivers he served st.) faithfully and painstakingly, and surprisingly little about racing tyres.

The book sets out to be ” popular,” referring to racing cars as ” chariots “and roaring giants that change a page later into “green juggernauts.” There are also some unhappy inaccuracies, the Brooklands lap record speed being quoted as the fastest speed ever achieved over a mile on that “Ftack, nor can I sec why failing brakes should have affected a Kieft on Mondhery’s banked circuit. There are odd spellings such as the rather delightful reference to the ” Bol Dor ” (for 1301 d’Or) and I always thought Hornsted’s usual nickname was ” Cupid ‘ not ” Tubby.” From Chapter Four onwards ” Fifty Years with the Speed Kings ” is mainly concerned with the Land Speed Record attempts with which ” Dunlop Mac ” was so closely associated, and this material is an excellent refresher to facts, figures and anecdotes which have been published elsewhere. Even here Parry Thomas is credited with a record at Arpajon which does not exist in official accounts of the fastest-ever record. And it is firmly stated that he was killed because a driving chain broke on ” Babs.” But teas the broken chain the main cause ? Thomas is also credited with designing the Trojan, which he himself was prompt to deny when this odd car came out in (922.

an1 interested to see in this book a fine picture of the.

4,.9-litre Sunbeam and 11-litre Alvis racing cars t” Firetly.I and II ‘) used at Brooklands by Dutoit for testing Dunlop tyres—earlier this year I was taken to task in The Motor over the identity -of this old Sunbeam but by travelling to Geneva I was able to prove Myself correct. Visual confirmation is now provided by this excellent picture, one of several in a book that is easy reading but which disappoints by leaving out a whole lot that I am sure the author could have told us about drivers, ears and tyres.—W. B-.