SPORTING CARSON ROAD AND TRACK.

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36

SPORTING CARS ON ROAD AND TRACK. THE SIX-CYLINDER MATHIS.

ABRIDGED SPECIFICATION.

Engine : Six cylinder O.H.V. and camshaft. 6o mm. 70 mm. (1187.5 c.c.)

Clutch: Plate type.

Gear Box : Unit construction, 4 speeds, centre control.

Cardan Shaft : Exposed with fabric discs.

Brakes : Pour-wheel internal expanding.

Guaranteed speed : 70 m.p.h.

Price : Completely equipped, 4375.

Country of Origin : France (Alsace).

IT is not generally known in this country that the “1Mathis car has been in production since the year 1900, when. the manufacturers concentrated on a high powered chassis with an engine of 150 mm. bore and 16o mm. stroke, rated at Ioo h.p. For ten years the Mathis was being developed as a large car, but in 1.911 the firm began to see the future of the smaller type of chassis, and since that date have devoted their energies to perfecting the class of car concerned in our present review ; though, of course, touring models, coupes and saloons are included in the Mathis range. The car we tested recently is known as the Mathis “

L” type and, as one can see from the accompanying illustrations, is an essentially sporting machine. We are indebted to the Atom Motor Company, Ltd., of West Hampstead, for the opportunity of submitting the car to a long test, which comprised a speed test on Brooklands track and a series of trials on the road.

Although the car is not intended for ordinary touring, the seats are quite comfortable, and the very low position enhances the stability of the chassis without interfering with the driver’s vision of the road. The general handiness of the Mathis will be realised when it is mentioned that immediately on entering the thickly congested Finchley Road, we felt perfectly at home with all the controls, which is more than can be said of many sporting cars, some of which need quite a long acquaintance before one feels quite happy in traffic. by As may be expected, the little six-cylinder engine

is so flexible that one can travel quite easily in traffic by using the top gear all the time, though naturally when very rapid acceleration is desired, the second and third gears are called into service.

Observations on Traffic Driving.

Perhaps one ought not to be unduly critical of a few shortcomings of a small sports car when being driven through London traffic, especially when it is remembered that French drivers have entirely different notions from our own on the subject of driving comfort and traffic speeds. At low speeds I must admit that the suspension is rather on the harsh side and that potholes are distinctly noticeable, even though shock absorbers are fitted. But then it is a known fact that few suspension systems behave equally well under all conditions, and the Mathis calls for nothing but praise when moderately fast and fast speeds are attained.

The plate clutch, after the manner of its kind, tends to slip for a second or so after the pedal is released and before the drive becomes absolutely positive, but we have no doubt this is only a matter of adjustment, or perhaps of running-in until the frictional surfaces bed together accurately.

The brakes and steering are perfect, whilst the acceleration leaves nothing to be desired. The action of the four-wheel brakes shows that the designers have struck the happy medium between the over vicious retardation and that which comes into operation too slowly.

A Speed Test at Brooklands. As we intended to make a short speed test on the Brooklands Track, we were somewhat chagrined at being refused admission by the man on duty in the paddock, but on appealing to a higher authority, who made a

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