To celebrate the 90th anniversary of the Sunbeam 1000hp breaking the 200mph Land Speed Record, the National Motor Museum will be breathing new life into one of its engines to make it run for the first time in over half a century. Additionally, we are going to make the video of this car and its record breaking history our video of the week. The restoration project will begin in time for the anniversary on March 29th, with an engine start-up planned for later in the year at Beaulieu.
The Rootes Group, although only achieving a 10-12 per cent market share, were the sixth largest British car manufacturer: more importantly, during the 1950s, more than half the cars they produced were exported. Rootes Cars of the 1950s, 1960s & 1970s – Hillman, Humber, Singer, Sunbeam & Talbot by David Rowe is a new reference to these cars. With every model produced from 1950 onwards featured in full colour and with detailed information – including colour schemes, optional equipment, technical specifications, plus other manufacturers’ cars built using Rootes components – this is the ultimate book for all Hillman, Humber, Singer and Sunbeam enthusiasts. Cars produced by Chrysler/Talbot and Peugeot after their acquisition of the Rootes Group are also included. This book includes hundreds of original photographs, taken by the author at many car shows over a number of years, and […]
This report has come in from Eric Gibeaut on the Sunbeam Tigers East / Alpines East United meet that was held in Atlanta a couple of weekends ago. We had a great time at our United Sept 8-11. 70 Sunbeams from all over the USA were there, and we had our concours in conjunction with the Atlanta British Car Fayre on Sept. 10. The location was the small town of Norcross which shut down all of their streets to host several hundred British cars which were parked in front of the local shops and restaurants. Really a unique car show with perfect weather! Our club also had several local driving tours to various points of interest as well as an autocross with awards presented at the banquet on Sunday night. The following photo is the Hagerty Insurance Company’s MKII Sunbeam […]
Veloce Publishing has released a new buyer’s guide to the much loved Sunbeam Alpine. Rootes’ Sunbeam Alpine sports car was the flagship of its car range. In the Sunbeam Alpine: All models 1959 to 1968 by Chris Barker, all the various models and production changes are described and illustrated in detail, along with what it’s like to own, drive and live with an Alpine – one of the best engineered, stylish and practical cars of its time, and still satisfying to drive today. If you’re thinking of buying an Alpine, this book will help you decide which model you really want, and learn exactly what to look for when you go to view a car. By using a thorough points-based assessment, you can decide with your head – not your heart – so you can make the right decision, and pay the […]
This just in from Eric Gibeaut on the Columbia British Classics X show this past weekend and all the Sunbeams in attendance. Unfortunately, I fell ill and was unable to attend, but I have been told the weather turned out beautiful and it was a great show. As at previous events, Sunbeam owners from 5 different states – including Ohio and Florida- got together a few days before the show to drive their cars and socialize in the host hotel’s hospitality suite – which also had a swap meet area that had many rare and interesting parts for sale. The plan was for everyone to participate in the group drive around Lake Murray on Friday afternoon but then the rain started coming down pretty hard. A few brave souls did complete the trip around the lake but some came back […]
We are going a little more rare and esoteric this week, though when they were new they weren’t that odd. Our Video of the Week returns again to the BBC series The Car’s the Star with an episode on the Hillman Imp. The Hillman Imp was also badged as the Sunbeam Imp, and there were other variations as well. The Hillman Imp is a small economy car made by the Rootes Group and its successor Chrysler Europe from 1963 until 1976. It was the first mass-produced car with the engine block and cylinder head cast in aluminium. Being a direct competitor to the BMC’s Mini, it used a space-saving rear-engine, rear-wheel-drive layout to allow as much luggage and passenger capacity as possible in both the rear and the front of the car. It used a unique opening rear hatch to […]
The National Motor Museum, Beaulieu, has launched an appeal to raise funds to build a new gear box for Sir Malcolm Campbell’s historic 1920 Sunbeam 350hp Land Speed Record car. The museum’s manager and Chief Engineer, Doug Hill says: “During the Sunbeam’s long and chequered history, its Achilles heel has been a weak gearbox. At some time after WWll, the original gearbox was removed and subsequently lost. It was replaced with a gearbox that was originally used in an Albion 35hp van, designed to take only one tenth of the power this engine produces and the way in which the braking system has been modified means that this installation severely compromises the braking of the vehicle. “For the next stage of the Sunbeam’s restoration story, we need to build a new gearbox from scratch. As the original gearbox no longer exists […]
Tigers East / Alpines East had a huge crowd at their Rootes United XXXIV in Dayton Ohio last the first weekend of August. Nearly 90 Sunbeams and over 170 people attended. Below is a time lapse video of owners leaving for the show last Saturday morning. Note the two Harrington’s in the first two parking spots. This show was held in conjunction with the Dayton British car show. With the 90 Sunbeam cars, they had a total of 370 British cars at the show which made a new record for them. Another record for them was the long distance award which was given to a couple from the Sunbeam club who drove their Tiger from British Columbia 2800 miles to attend! Note: This report courtesy of Eric Gibeaut – owner of the first of the two Harringtons.
Pendine Sands came alive as hundreds of spectators watched a commemorative run of the iconic 350hp Sunbeam, on the 90th anniversary of Sir Malcolm Campbell’s World Land Speed Record of 150mph. The National Motor Museum, Beaulieu, marked the anniversary with a low speed demonstration run in the restored Sunbeam with Sir Malcolm’s grandson Don Wales at the wheel. Don Wales and the Beaulieu team also recreated two iconic pictures from the original run. Don, who is also a Land Speed Record holder, said: “I was thrilled to be given this amazing opportunity to sit at the wheel of my grandfather’s car back at Pendine where he set his record. It was an honour both to follow in his footsteps and to drive this iconic car on such a special occasion. “My grandfather was a remarkable man and for us to […]
The Amelia Island Concours D’Elegance, held March 12-15, once again presented an amazing collection of rare, exotic and highly-collectible cars. There were a smattering of British marques represented at the Concours, with best in class winners of two pre-war Rolls-Royce, an Aston Martin DB4 and gorgeous 1947 Bentley coupe. The real British-action, however, was experienced in the high-end auctions of Gooding’s and Bonham’s. So while affordability is in the eye of the beholder, there were several tempting offerings, like a driver-quality 1968 jaguar XKE coupe for $44,000, and a pristine 1952 MG TD for $29,000. After those, however, the appreciation curve shot upward, with an unbelievably original 1965 XKE Series 1 4.2 coupe going for $200,000 and a similarly original 1961 E-Type Roadster hitting $380,000. And in the I’ve-never-seen-one-of-those-before, a 1951 Lotus, claimed to be the very first road-worthy […]
Sunbeam Alpines and Tigers unite! Preparations are underway for Rootes United XXXIV to be held in Dayton, Ohio July 30-August 2, 2015. This event is being hosted by Tigers East / Alpines East. “The purpose of Tigers East/Alpines East is to promote interest in the Sunbeam Marque, in general, and the Tiger/Alpine segment in particular; to aid in the restoration, preservation, and enjoyment of these vehicles; to promote cooperation among other similar Sunbeam organizations; and to increase communication and fellowship among those persons so inclined.” Thursday will be arrival day with registration, parts room, and hospitality room set up. Friday morning will feature a tour of the US Air Force Museum where they will have a special reserved parking area for Sunbeam cars. From there the Sunbeams will take a country drive and tour to the world famous Young’s Dairy […]