Rover Eight 1919 to 1925
Rover used a
former munitions factory at Tyseley, Birmingham, to
produced a new ultra light car for the post war era the Eight. Jack
Sangster had originally designed the car for his fathers company Ariel,
but it was taken up by Rover, who reputedly spent £400,000
tooling up for its production, a considerable sum in 1919. A total of
seventeen thousand seven hundred were produced between 1919 and 1925,.
It had a
998 cc horizontally opposed, air cooled, side valve twin cylinder
engined, later models having a 1135 cc
engine, the engine output rising from 13 to 18 bhp. It had a simple
channel-section chassis frame with leading quarter elliptic front
springs, and cantilever quarter elliptic springs at the rear. The
transmission consisted of a disc clutch, a three speed gearbox and a
worm gear live rear axle. It had a cruising speed of 30 m.p.h. Priced
at £230 in 1919, by 1925 the price was down to £139.
The following is a quote from "The Vintage Motor car". The
chassis was crude in the extreme, even for so cheap a car, and the
standard disc-wheeled two-seat coachwork was distinctly unbeautiful.
For all this the car was low in cost and capable as a rule of nearly 50
m.p.g. due to its light weight, and sold well in spite of a somewhat
dubious name for reliability - the early examples being prone to cast
away cylinder-heads at high r.p.m. The engine though noisy, was very
well balanced and lively enough to give the little car respectable
acceleration and hill-climbing powers, though its maximum was only
about 45 m.p.h.