Your May article on twin-cam blown Amilcar sixes really needed to be written because so many referencesconfine themselves to four-cylinder, regular Amilcars. To complement your article, I thought sonic driving impressions of a six might be of intereat to your readership.
I owned :a black-and-red Amilcar Six (DCE 139) immediately before World War II and competed, with indifferent Success, at the Syston Intervarsity Speed Trials. The course was so rough my car’s chassis cracked by the rear shock absorber anchorage. I used the car on the road as it had mudguards and a removable windscreen like Llewellyn’s car. The car could not be driven with the screen in place because the cockpit would fill with oil vapour. Looking back, I could guess the engine was well worn although it was quite reliable and very free revving, going up to over 5,000 r.p.m. in the gears without problems. I stripped the rear axle with a sharp get away one time, so perhaps axles were weak both ends.
The car cornered in outstanding fashion, probably due to low build, good weight distribution and very stiff springing. One strange feature was the reverse gear arrangement. This involved pushing the gearleaver forward right through first; on starting it was a toss-up whether you’d shoot forwards or back as the reverse entering guard was ineffective.
I stored the car at Great Chesterford whilst in the Army. On claiming it in 1946, the garage owner went pale and said “My God, I thought you were dead; I sold your Amilcar last week”. We cleared the matter up financially and so I lost sight of DCE 139. Perhaps a Motor Sport reader might enlighten me on the car’s further life it had great character.
Willodale, Canada H. AUBREY WILLIAMS
Sir, I have been very interested in the article and comments on the 6-cylinder Amilcar in recent numbers of Motor sport
My first acquaintance with it was just after Ginger Llewellyn bought it and was still running it in; infact I had to tow him to start it, although it was warm. Actually it was a first rate starter on the handle, unless the pilot jet in the Sole carburettor was blocked, as in this case.
It was the sante car, I believe, which Was later raced by Brian Twist and did so well after extensive modifications by Boon & Porter, who while rectifying the damage done by a thrown rod, imxIdied the water circulation with a new manifold feeding into the radiator from individual take-offs from each cylinder head. One distinctive feature of the car was a variable oil pressure relief valve with hand control terminating in a knob on the dash. Unless used, oil pipes tended to straighten out when starting cold. I was told too that the clutch had no fewer than 36 springs.
Towing the “six” Back from Brooklands practice in Bob Porter’s Alvis, some sportsman tried to tuck in between Alvis and Amilcar on the Kingston By-pass, but without making contact.
Incidentally, does anyone know what happened to the “special” built by B&P with a (side-valve) Amilcar chassis, 2-litre AC sixcylinder engine and Alvis gearbox? Understandably, I was told the torque frequently proved too much for the back axle pinion tailshaft! Dumfries V. LUNFORD-BROOKS