R. J. Munday sets up flying kilometre with a 2.7-litre Perkins engine in a Thomas Special chassis Starting a new series of records

Not so long ago one thought of the diesel or heavy oil-engine only as the propelling plant of ships and submarines or in a later development as the motive power of massive lorrys and buses. It will be news to many people that diesel -engines can be produced with a cylinder bore of only three inches, with a weight n d power comparable with that of efficient petrol engines of the same characteristics. This new development was demonstrated in a striking manner at Brooklands last month by R. J. Munday the well-known driver of Vauxhalls and other track cars. On this occasion he drove one of the famous underslung Thomas Specials fitted with a 4-cylinder 2.7-litre Perkins engine, and in spite of high winds set up a flying kilometre record at 94.7 m.p.h. Continuing his efforts later in the day, he established five Other figures, which are as follows :—

The earlier records set up by dieselengined cars were all unofficial but a new ruling of the A.I.A.C.R. provides for the recognition of class and other records, so that Munday’s speeds will rank as the first in the 3-litre category. The engine used in the attempt,’ which is known as the ” Wolf,” is of moderate overall dimension, 2 ft. 9 ins. in Overall height and 2 ft. 4 ins, in length, with a weight complete with flywheel and electrical equipment of 624 lb. The bore is 85 mm. and the stroke 120.6 mm. giving a capacity of 2.7-litres. The horse-power of the specially tuned engine is given as 65 h.p. with 45 h.p. as standard. For the flying kilometre a Zoller blower was coupled up, resulting in a gain of 33 per cent. The weight and power compare with those of the old 3-litre Bentleyen

gine, and with an oil-consumption of 30 m.p.g., using fuel costing is. ld. per gallon, it is plain that the private car tItted with a heavy-oil engine is not far away.

The power-units used on modern commercial vehicles are of advanced design, and the Perkins engine is no exception.

Aluminium alloy pistons are used, and forced lubrication to all parts, a five bearing crankshaft and a camshaft carried high up on the cylinder block are some other noteworthy points. The cylinder heads are flat, and the fuel is sprayed in at what may be termed the neck of a club-shaped ante-chamber. The

Wolf engine has a wide range of engine speeds, starting from 300 r.p.m. It peaks at 3,000 r.p.m., and can be run up to 4,000 r.p.m. The engine fitted to the racing car ran quietly and without detonation knock at low speeds. When driven all-out there was a certain amount of smoke from the

exhaust, but this could have been avoided by slightly reducing the fuel supply. The Perkins engine will probably be shown in some of the car chassis at Olympia, and should also be suitable for

marine use. The manufacturers are F. Perkins, Ltd., of 17, Queen Street, Peterborough.