The Mercedes-Benz has an eight cylinder 5660cc blown twin-cam engine with four valves per cylinder and wet steel cylinder liners in an alloy block. The latest long-wheelbase frames are tubular, with all-round independent suspension, torsion bar at the rear and coil spring at the front. In spite of Richard Seaman’s early statements, the front suspension is identical with that of the sportscar models, which no doubt will be still further improved as a result of the Donington Park lessons.
The Roots-type supercharger now sucks through the carburettors and the right hand-controlled gearbox is in unit with the rear axle. It gives four speeds and reverse and the clutch is a single dry plate. Hydraulic brakes by Lockheed are used. The car was designed for the International GP formula imposing a weight limit of 750 kilos, which expires at the end of this season. The Mercedes-Benz team is managed by Herr Alfred Neubauer and attended by one of the designers, Herr Rudolf Uhlenhaut.
An unforgettable sight
When one turns to the practice lappery itself, it is difficult adequately to express one’s enthusiasm. Those of us who saw the German cars in action for the first time were soon raving with astonishment.
Over the brow of the hill up from Melbourne Corner both the Mercedes and Auto Unions would leap several feet into the air, land snakily and pass the pits much faster than cars ever passed before. To see them down Hollywood Hill and leap the bump at Hairpin Bend, taking the whole road to corner and somehow fighting straight before shooting the narrow stone bridge was — well, a sight worth many, many times the 1/3d that Mr Craner charged the public to see it It was magnificent
The German mechanics tried very hard not to smile when the first British driver came past and someone facetiously suggested that Mr Craner should have constructed cycle paths for the British competitors.
That great grand prix is still the foremost topic of discussion in racing circles, and the arrival of November fog cannot dim memories of that day at Donington.
This spectacle of real motor racing certainly indicated just how popular the sport can be in this country. A correspondent in one of the motoring weeklies has suggested racing on Sundays. It would be a most interesting experiment, allied to real grand prix racing, which makes ample starting money imperative.
Those who missed the 1937 GP have been rendered eager to see the next by the accounts of their friends, and most only stayed away from this year’s race, one assumes, because of business ties.
We are proud to have been present at a race which will live forever in the annals of the sport. We only echo everyone’s wish when we hope that the German teams will race here again in 1938.
Still race-goers are talking of the immense acceleration of the Geman cars, of their astonishing leaps, of the singing sound of their exhausts that kept up a continuous howl around the circuit, changing to a crash of noise as each shot past… and of the waving blades of grass after they had thundered through right on the grass verge.
The first published figures for sales of the three rival American "small cars," the Chevrolet Corvair, Ford Falcon and Chrysler-Plymouth Valiant, show that in the first month (October 1959) 23,759 Corvairs…
Veteran-Edwardian-vintage, March 1972
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