“The Batsford Guide to Vintage Cars” by Cecil Clutton, Paul Bird and Anthony Harding. 224 pp. 7 1/2 in. 4 3/4 in. (B. T. Batsford Ltd., 4, Fitzhardinge Street, London, W1H OAH £3.50.)
This is the revised version of the onceunique “Vintage Car Pocketbook”, by the same writing trio. That little book, very modest by the standards of subsequent historical motoring publications, which ‘vent into three impressions, came off the presses in 1959. The present volume is bigger, perhaps because fashion has shown that men’s pockets arc now larger, and consequently it is impossible to slip it quickly into the backpocket of an Eton jacket, should the necessity arise during prep. The contents are not noticeably changed, however, but the same cannot be said of the price. Some new pictures have been introduced.
What gives us great joy is finding that almost all the mistakes which we pointed out in the Motor Sport review of the original Pocketbook have been eradicated and some of the omissions we drew attention to made good. So all you really need to do is to re-read our 1959 review and you will have the scope and content of the new book before you. Mark you, that odd comment about a Clyno Nine being the same as a Chile!: 9, which didn’t exist, remains, the authors are still apparently unaware of the surely slightly-interesting fact that the Model-T’s two speeds were altered by foot, and Parry Thomas continues to be denied credit for driving the Leyland Eight’s overhead-camshaft by concentrics and connids, although he who planned the 2-litre Maudslay has his ingenious o.h.c.drive confirmed. One reader of our acquaintance was cross because, he said, this sort of work of reference should be; above all, accurate and if we looked at the picture of the 5 c.v. Citroen we would see it is not a Cloverleaf—and it isn’t. There is also the P2 Hooper-bodied Rolls-Royce captioned as a 1928 20! Not sufficient time spent on .revision, perhaps. But a quick reference to 165 different makes of vintage cars is not to be despised and the authors have taken our advice over spelling Ruston-Hornshy correctly and omitting the hyphen from Frazer Nash, the latter presumably to keep the peace with David Thirlby.—W.B.