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british anzani archive:
Towards the end of it’s existence it was also sold in kit form with or without body parts for home assembly. As sales slowed production was taken over by Gill Cars of Paddington who produced two new cars based on the Astra chassis and mechanical parts: a two seater coupe called the Getabout and a saloon. After a short and not very successful career production ceased in 1959 although there is evidence of sales into 1960. Among other cars that used the Anzani 322cc engine at that time was the Powerdrive. This sporty looking 3-wheeler made in Wood Green, north London made it’s debut in July 1955 and retailed for £330 plus purchase tax. The engine was mounted in the rear driving the rear wheel through a chain drive. It had a 3-speed gearbox and independent front suspension and could seat three across it’s bench seat. The Powerdrive’s 65mph/65mpg performance claim and it’s good looks and generous space and comfort made an immediate impact. The very pretty Berkeley Sports of 1956 initially used an Anzani 322cc 15hp engine to produce it’s 70 mph/60 mpg performance while Fairthorpe also had an Anzani in their ‘Atom’ and Peel used the 250cc version in their 1955 ‘Manxcar’. The 1956 Laurie Bond designed Unicar also had the ubiquitous 322cc Anzani onboard. Built by S.E. Opperman of Boreham Wood these small saloons provided family motoring for £399 10s 0d. Capable of 60mph/55mpg performance from its rear mounted Anzani the glass fibre bodied saloon was more of 2+2 than a genuine four seater. With it’s 6’ wheelbase the tiny saloon was another interesting development of the ultralight economy car trend of the 1950’s. Outboard motor production became Anzani’s biggest selling (and perhaps best known) item over the years and numerous models were produced: the Minor (1955-79) a small ½hp general purpose dinghy motor, Super Single (1942-79 158cc, 5hp) the engine that was produced for the longest time and arguably the best known - another general workhorse. Jet (Single, 60cc, 3hp) a fibre glass cowled engine with ‘guarded drive’ protection for swimmers etc, Sports Twin (1950-51) 316cc 14hp, speedy but short lived, Unitwin (1951-67 Twin, 242cc 10hp, and 322cc 15hp, plus full race versions of both) the most advanced
engine of it’s day, powerful and reliable, Pilot (Single, 60cc, 2.5hp) another general purpose engine with the distinguishing bar around the cowl, Seamaid (Single, 60cc 3hp) fibre glass cowled general purpose engine, Startwin (1960 Twin, 344cc, 18hp) renamed Magnatwin, powerful twin featuring ‘Contrastart’ electric start with instant forward or reverse, Supertwin 15 (Twin, 322cc, 15hp) streamlined fibre glass cowled Unitwin, Fleetwin 20 (Twin, 344cc, 20hp), Triton (1960 3 cylinder 30hp, 492cc), Magnatwin (1958- 1960 Twin, 344cc, 18hp) a large electric start model which could be remotely controlled, Model 65 (1964-67 6.5hp), Model 180 (1964-67 18hp), Model 400 (1964-67 40hp) which were the Oliver/Perkins engines. There was also an inboard version of the 4hp Super Single called the ‘Dinghy Motor’ (1952). The production of outboard motors was given a fillip in 1964 when the Company bought the remnant of the Chris-Craft/Oliver marque which they acquired from the car makers Rootes Group. In 1959 Perkins had come to an arrangement with the US company Oliver to manufacture their range of outboards in the UK. The American designs were
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