Monday 21 March 2016


John Rosamond, author of Save the Triumph Bonneville! The Inside Story of the Meriden Workers' Co-op was invited to play a small part in the British & Classic Bike Day at the Ace Cafe by undertaking a book signing. Nothing unusual about that, but 10 books later a somewhat more unusual request followed when John was asked to sign the front fender of one of Triumph's finest Edward Turner 500cc vertical twins.

John Rosamond and Ian Lassletta.

Following which Mark Wilsmore MD of the Ace Cafe and special guest Erum Waheed presented John with a copy of Ace Times by Mick Duckworh.

The second to none Ace Cafe hospitality was appreciated by one and all.

Friday 11 March 2016


Lamborghini PoloStorico celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Miura at Amelia Island.

The original Lamborghini Miura SV shown at Geneva motor show in 1971 has been the subject of more than a year’s restoration by Lamborghini PoloStorico, and is presented as a finished project at the Amelia Island concours event (USA) from 10 to 13 March.

The Lamborghini Miura SV (Super Veloce), chassis #4846, was the pre-production model for subsequent Miura SV production. Unveiled at the 1971 Geneva motor show on Bertone’s stand (while Lamborghini showed its new Countach), the car was truly a one-off, carrying over parts from the previous Miura S and introducing new features that would be seen on later SVs.

Lamborghini PoloStorico was appointed a year ago to fully restore chassis #4846 to its perfect original state. The subject of exhaustive research, each detail of the Geneva show car has been respected rather than adopting later production SV parts.

Shown in metallic green Verde Metallizata with tan leather, the restoration of #4846 by PoloStorico has included a complete restrip of the chassis and engine. Using photos and other archived historic documentation, every panel on the Miura has been returned to its original lines and angles and, following the original production sheet and records held by Automobili Lamborghini, every component restored or replaced. Expert Lamborghini craftsmanship and original Lamborghini parts have been used throughout, from bodywork to repainting the car in its original color, refurbishing the interior and overhauling the engine.

“This is a very important car, not only for its place in history as the Geneva show car and the forerunner of future Miura SV models built, but as the first completed project of Lamborghini PoloStorico,” said Enrico Maffeo, Head of PoloStorico. “We are delighted to be able, with the consent of the owner, to show this car for the first time in its perfectly restored state, at the important Amelia Island event.

“This is the year in which the Lamborghini Miura celebrates its fiftieth anniversary. This car not only illustrates the iconic appeal of the Miura, widely acknowledged as the forerunner of modern super sports models, but is also a perfect example of the expertise available in Lamborghini PoloStorico in providing the most authentic Lamborghini restorations.”

Lamborghini PoloStorico officially opened in spring 2015, supporting historic models and Lamborghini’s heritage through four main areas: restoration of historic Lamborghini models; archive management; original Lamborghini spare parts for which around 70% of the historic car parc is covered; and official certification of Lamborghini historic cars.


The Lamborghini Miura Bible (eBook edition) by Joe Sackey.

Friday 4 March 2016


We've just added Ken Hill's Completely Morgan trilogy as eBook editions on Veloce Digital.

Feast your eyes on this small selection of period Morgan brochures and advertisements taken from the new eBooks that we've been enjoying in the Veloce office this week.

Find many more images like this, and much more in our Completely Morgan trilogy, now in eBook format.

Acknowledged as one of the world’s leading experts on Morgan, Ken Hill has now written seven books on Morgan – all of which are invaluable to anybody owning or restoring an example of the Malvern marque.

Completely Morgan – Three Wheelers 1910-1952

For all owners – and would-be owners – of three-wheeled Morgans, this is an invaluable book, packed with genuinely useful information. Starting with a detailed look at the Morgan motor company’s history, Ken Hill goes on to describe the marque’s motorsport record, and thoroughly chronicles the evolution of all three-wheeler models since 1910. More info.

Completely Morgan – 4-Wheelers 1936-68

For all owners – and would-be owners – of four-wheeled, four-cylinder Morgans, this invaluable book is packed with genuinely useful information. A detailed look at the Morgan motor company’s history opens the book, followed by the marque’s motorsport record, and a thorough chronicle of the evolution of all four-cylinder models. More info.

Completely Morgan – 4-Wheelers from 1968

The last part of the book is a series of appendices comprised of original specifications, production changes, wiring diagram, technical data sheets, Lucas electrical component data, details of specialists, distributors and manufacturers, details of Morgan miniature models and a record of factory sales literature. More info.

Altogether, this work is a unique source of essential information for all Morgan owners and enthusiasts.



Piloting a Model T is no easy matter, especially for an accomplished older driver, and I can vouch for this from humiliating personal experience. Astonishingly, I did not properly get to grips with one until a press day at Beaulieu in 2010, and I am moved to say I found it an odd contraption beyond my immediate and instinctive understanding. An habitué can drive a Model T smoothly, as was ably demonstrated that day by Baron Edward, but not a novice. It takes time to become familiar with its unique rhythms, and until then driving one can be something of an adventure. Certainly, entirely new techniques have to be learned.
To accelerate, one moves a lever on steering column where a spark advance/retard control lever is mounted also. There is no hand gear shift. Instead, two forward speeds and reverse are controlled by foot pedals. A further pedal tightens brake bands inside the gearbox, while a dual-purpose hand lever operates tiny brakes inboard of the rear wheels as well as allowing the selection of gears to take place.
Starting was by hand-crank only until 1919, and one must retard the ignition, or the engine might run backwards or backfire and break your wrist, and, unless the car’s various levers and pedals are set correctly one can get run over by one’s own vehicle (thankfully the test car, like Reg’s, was a 1923 model with an electric starter, so I was spared these risks).
Once running, adjust the timing to get her ticking smoothly, then to move off, hold the car with the right foot brake, release the hand brake lever and put the left pedal fully down to engage low gear. Then release the foot brake gently while moving the throttle lever upwards and, all being well, she should be off and running in low gear.
At 10mph or so, ease the throttle slightly and take one’s foot off the left pedal. As it rises there will likely be a violent jerk and a howl of protest from the transmission as the car moves into top. With practice, I am assured complete smoothness can eventually be achieved.
The brake pedal engages bands in the transmission. These bands run in oil, so it pays to restrict use of this brake to short bursts to avoid scorching and allow cooling, and because the wheels are not affected directly, the differential can allow one driving wheel to spin forwards and the other backwards. Lurid skids can result from over-zealous use of the footbrake in slippery conditions. In the wet, I found to my embarrassment, it can be safer to use the emergency hand-brake.
To stop with grace and aplomb, close the hand throttle and hold the gear pedal halfway down to put the gears in neutral (although pushing the left pedal down into low gives engine braking, and one can ease it back into neutral as she comes to a stop), then move the right foot across to brake pedal. Confusingly, the hand lever can also be used to put the car in neutral as well as a brake, and this lever must be in a forward position to facilitate driving. I was also informed reverse can be engaged while moving forwards to provide extra braking effort, and as a way of saving band wear. Confused? There’s more.
To reverse the car, come to a complete stop, put the left pedal halfway down into neutral and then tread gently on the middle pedal, although one can ping backwards and forwards Laurel and Hardy style by pressing the reverse pedal while going forwards, and the gear pedal while travelling backwards.
On level going, on a good day, a Model T will puff its way to 40mph and sail along happily, although the direct steering is mighty twitchy. The trick, as ever, is to hold the wheel loose in the hands and let it get on with it. The car can climb steep hills without strain and come back down them on tick-over without any need for brakes, but a T with badly worn transmission bands can be incapable of climbing even the most modest gradient. Except, that is, in reverse, and that, I realised 80 years later, is probably why I would sometimes see Reg Kay tackling Attorney’s Rump and other local mounds in backwards fashion, although it could also have been because he was low on fuel. The T’s petrol tank is located under the front seats and the carburettor is gravity-fed. Going up hills backwards serves to raise the fuel supply above the atomising instrument.
While I found the Beaulieu Model T Ford something of a pig to drive that rainy day in Hampshire, I came away not at all hostile to the breed. I readily concede that my lumpish reflexes, dulled senses and clumsy hands were at the heart of the problem. Alas it was me, not the T, that was the most antiquated old crock in action that morning.

Coming soon! A Life Awheel - The ‘auto’ biography of W de Forte

A veteran motoring journalist’s extraordinary life, told through delightfully eccentric stories and charming diary extract. This unique book is packed with fascinating stories about classic cars and motorcycles, set in a bygone world, and properly fixed in time. More info.

Tuesday 1 March 2016


The Morgan EV3 today makes its world debut at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show. The EV3 looks at the world of zero emissions motoring from an entirely different perspective, what if an all-electric vehicle was bespoke, hand crafted and exhilarating to drive? The EV3 embraces new technology, delivers responsible driving excitement and continues to celebrate traditional British craftsmanship.

Following a soft launch of the Phase 1 concept EV3 in 2015, Morgan is excited to showcase the final “pre-production phase” car which reveals the restyled body and interior. Weighing less than 500kg, the all-electric 3 Wheeler has a range of 150 miles.

Lightweight agility is complemented by performance figures that challenge those of the petrol 3 Wheeler. 0-62mph takes less than 9 seconds and a top speed in excess of 90mph. Encased within the tubular space frame chassis is a 20KWh Lithium Battery and a liquid cooled 46kW motor driving the rear wheel.

The EV3 is the first Morgan vehicle to utilise composite carbon panels in its body construction. The carbon bonnet, tonneau cover and side pods are made in the UK, and much like the remaining aluminium panels, are hand worked over an ash wood frame. Taking inspiration from 1930’s aeroengine race cars, classic motorcycles and 1950’s fantasy automatons, the face of the EV3 is designed to function. Brass conductive cooling fins encase the batteries and an off-centre tri-bar headlight adds to the overall asymmetry of the design.

The dramatic tail lift once seen on 1930’s Morgan 3 Wheeler race cars, has been re-introduced, subsequently creating a visually forward stance. This is enhanced with low slung running lights that carry through the cylindrical form of the side pods. An entirely new dashboard arrangement features a classic ‘magneto’ switch for drive selection, a digital screen, wood, brass and polished aluminium. The EV3 will go into production in the fourth quarter of 2016 and will be priced comparably to the petrol 3 Wheeler. This launch coincides with an announcement that the Morgan Motor Company will receive government funding towards a £6m consortium based project developing future hybrid and full EV Morgan vehicles.

More info: Morgan Motor Company


The Morgan 3 Wheeler – back to the future! by Peter Dron.
Revealing why Morgan returned to its original 3 Wheeler concept after a century. How the new 3 Wheeler was created, became a best-seller, and was made, this book shows what it’s like to drive, strengths, weaknesses, and factory improvements made since the 2011 launch – from modifications, possible developments, and even why it is – or isn't – your kind of vehicle. More info.

Making a Morgan – 17 days of craftmanship: step-by-step from specification sheet to finished car by Andreas & Dagmar Hensing.

A look at Morgan’s unique way of making cars, recorded step-by-step over 17 days. From customer’s specification sheet, to finished car, see how individual craftsmen build a Morgan. More info.