BROUGH SUPERIOR ENTERS THE SPORTS CAR MARKET
THE sports-car to-day differs from its touring contemporary not so much in all-out speed or fierceness of performance as in its ease of control, safety, and in the pleasure which the driver derives from handling it, and quite half the number of Sports-cars on the road to-day are bought by people who have no intention of racing or taking part in competitions, but who appreciate the effortless way in which long journeys can be accomplished on such a vehicle.
Mr. George Brough, whose name is one to conjure with in the world of luxury motor-cycles, found himself in this position, but was unable to discover a car which fulfilled his somewhat high standards of silence, speed and ease of handling. Being fortunate enough to have the faculties for constructing a car to his own design he did so. In fact several of them, with engines of capacities varying from if litres, supercharged and unsupercharged, to 5 litres. As in the case of the motor-cycles manufactured by him, he found that effortless performance could only be secured by having a large engine working most of the time well within the limits of its power. This type of motor is still badly neglected on the English market, in spite of the reduction of the horse-power tax, but he was able to secure the unit he wanted in the shape of the Canadian-built Hudson, the engine and chassis of which form the basis of the Brough Superior car.
The engine is a straight-eight with bore and stroke of 78 and 114 mm. respectively, which gives a capacity of 4168 C.C. and an R.A.C. rating of 29 h.o. An aluminium cylinder-head is used with 14 mm. sparking plugs. The compression ratio is 7 to 1, but the car runs Wappily on straight petrol, and develops 125 h.p. at 4,000 r.p.m.
A single down-draught carburetter is used with the air-cleaner mounted on the far side of the engine and connected to the carburetter by a flexible pipe. The balanced crank-shaft runs in five bearings, there is high-pressure oiling to all points, and the sump holds seven quarts. A specially large radiator is fitted and has a quick-filler fiveinch quick-opening filler cap, and the cooling is further assisted by a water pump and a fan. Twelve-volt starting and lighting is used, with compensated voltage control and two
120 a.h. accumulators. Long distance Lucas P 170 headlamps are fitted.
The clutch is of the single-plate type with cork insets, running in oil. A threespeed gear-box is used, with central remote control. The ratios are .4, 6 and 9 to I with a 12 to i reverse, and synchromesh mechanism is fitted to the second and top gears. An open propellor shaft and spiral bevel back-axle completes the transmission.
The chassis has box-section sidemembers with an X-member in the centre and K-members fore and aft. Long-semielliptic springs are used front and rear and are enclosed in gaiters. Large Luvax shock absorbers are fitted, .and the front axle is articulated. The brakes are Bendix semi-servo type, operated by cable. Particular attention has been paid to the steering, which is directed through a highgeared worm and wheel steering box. “Freddie ” Dixon, who is a personal friend of Mr. Brough, has collaborated in the layout, so one may be sure that nothing has been left to chance. The wheelbase is 10ft, and the track 4ft. Sin.
All parts of the chassis are lubricated from a central reservoir with .a pendulum. operated pump situated under the bonnet. A master battery switch is fitted, while a particularly welcome item of equipment is the Smith four-wheel jacking installation. which allows all four wheels to be raised from a single operating point. Only one type of body is listed, a handsome and practical drop-head coupe, which oives closed-car orotection in wet weather. In the open position the hood folds right down into a well at the rear of the car, which then becomes a perfect open tourer with a flush body line from windscreen to tail. In a few seconds and with a minimum of effort it may be swung up and extended, whereupon it drops into position on the top rail of the windscreen and is secured automatically. A body of this tyne covers every sort of motoring requirement, and when one considers that the weight of the car comolete is only 25 cwts., it is obvious that performance is not going to suffer by reason of the extra comfort it
provides. Two side-pieces permanently attached to the windscreen serve as ventilating flaps when the body is closed, and winding windows glazed with Triplex toughened glass complete the scheme of weather protection. The rear panel of the hood can be opened right down by means of zip fasteners, a feature which would be appreciated.
The standard body-finish is black with chromium beadings, a scheme which shows off the sweeping lines of the car to full advantage, and the Ace wheel-discs and the metal cover for the spare contribute to the general effect. The interior is upholstered in grey leather and two sliding bucket seats are used in front, while the rear seat with its folding centre arm-rest is brought well forward of the rear axle.
The Brough Superior made its first appearance at a Press Luncheon held at Hatfield Aerodrome and given by Messrs. Kevill-Drivies and March, of 28, Berkeley Street, W.I., who are distributors for London and the Home Counties. Unfortunately the occasion was marked by torrential rain, but this only served to emphasise the advantages of the quickly convertible body. During a short run we were much impressed with the ease with which the car reached high touring speeds of 7o and beyond, even with an engine only partly run in. At this speed the car was dead silent, cornered steadily without a trace of roll, and in fact seemed an ideal fast touring car. The springing was excellent at all speeds, and the seats, which are built on Dunlopillo cellular fitting, were luxuriously soft without being ” floppy.” Deep foot-wells are provided and the rear passengers are seated with the same comfort and leg-room as the occupants of the front seats.
The cars are being produced in limited quantities by Brough Superior Cars Ltd., Haydn Road, Nottingham, under the personal, supervision of Mr. Brough, and are priced complete with all accessories at Z6o5. The car represents an almost unique attempt to meet the needs of the sporting owner-driver, and should be greeted with enthusiasm by all those who wish to travel fast and in comfort under all conditions.