ELVA Automobiles

1966 Elva Courier - A British Sports Car Blog

1962 Elva Logo

Elva (car manufacturer) Bexhill, Hastings and Rye, East Sussex, England, UK

elva header

Elva Engineering Co Ltd
British Sports and racing car manufacturer
Industry Automobiles
Founded 1955
Founder Frank G. Nichols
Headquarters Bexhill, Sussex, England, UK
Products Elva racing cars
Elva Courier

Elva was a sports and racing car manufacturing company based in Bexhill, then Hastings and Rye, East Sussex, United Kingdom. The company was founded in 1955 by Frank G. Nichols. The name comes from the French phrase elle va (“she goes”).

Racing cars

1957 Elva MkII sn 100-49 Bahamas

 Late Elva Mk IIa (#100/49, 1957), a transition model which shares much of the Mk III’s design

Frank Nichols’s intention was to build a low-cost sports/racing car, and a series of models were produced between 1954 and 1959. The original model, based on the CSM car built nearby in Hastings by Mike Chapman, used Standard Ten front suspension rather than Ford swing axles, and a Ford Anglia rear axle with an overhead-valve-conversion of a Ford 10 engine. About 25 were made. While awaiting delivery of the CSM, Nichols finished second in a handicap race at Goodwood on March 27, 1954, driving a Lotus. “From racing a Ford-engined CSM sports car in 1954, just for fun but nevertheless with great success, Frank Nichols has become a component manufacturer. The intermediate stage was concerned with the design of a special head, tried in the CSM and the introduction of the Elva car which was raced with success in 1955.” The cylinder head for the 1,172 c.c. Ford engine, devised by Malcolm Witts and Harry Weslake, featured overhead inlet valves.

On May 22, 1955 Robbie Mackenzie-Low climbed Prescott in the sports Elva to set the class record at 51.14 sec. Mackenzie-Low also won the Bodiam Hill Climb outright at the end of the season.

The 1956 Elva MK II works prototype, registered KDY 68, was fitted with a Falcon all-enveloping fibreglass bodyshell. Nichols developed the Elva Mk II from lessons learnt in racing the prototype: “That car was driven in 1956 races by Archie Scott Brown, Stuart Lewis-Evans and others.” The Elva Mk II appeared in 1957: “Main differences from the Mark I are in the use of a De Dion rear axle as on the prototype, but with new location, inboard rear brakes, lengthened wheelbase, and lighter chassis frame.” The car was offered as standard with 1,100 c.c. Coventry-Climax engine. This went through various changes up to the Mark IV of 1958.

Elva BMW Mallory Park

 Elva BMW Mk VIII.

Carl Haas, from Chicago, was Elva agent in the midwest of the United States from the mid-fifties through the nineteen sixties. In 1958 he was invited to England to drive an Elva in the Tourist Trophy at Goodwood, where he finished twelfth overall. With the Mark IV: “The major change is an all-new independent rear suspension utilizing low-pivot swing axles. The body is entirely new with close attention to aerodynamics and a reduced frontal area.” At the Sebring 12 Hours sports car race in 1959 the #48 Elva Mark IV driven by Frank Baptista, Art Tweedale and Charley Wallace finished first in Class G, and 19th overall.

On June 21, 1959, Arthur Tweedale and Bob Davis won the Marlboro Six Hour Endurance Race in Maryland driving the #37 Elva Mk IV. Arthur Tweedale repeated the win in the Marlboro Six Hours in 1960. Teamed with Ed Costley he covered 337.75 miles in an Elva Mk V sports car. This was the final iteration of the Elva front-engined sports racing car. The last Mk V chassis won a number of important races in the midwest driven by Dick Buedingen, including the 1961 Elkhart Lake 500 teamed with Carl Haas. At this time Elva Cars Limited was operating from premises at Sedlescombe Road North, Hastings, Sussex, England.

1960 Elva 100 Formula Junior

 Elva FJ 100
1960 Elva 200 Formule Junior

 Elva FJ 200

Elva produced a single-seater car for Formula Junior events, the FJ 100, initially supplied with a front-mounted B.M.C. ‘A’ series engine in a tubular steel chassis. “ELVA CARS, Ltd., new Formula Junior powered by an untuned BMC ‘A’ Series 948cc engine. Price of this 970 lb. car is $2,725 in England. Wheelbase: 84″, tread: 48″, brake lining area: 163″ sq. The 15″ wheels are cast magnesium. Independent suspension front and rear with transverse wishbones, coil springs, and telescopic shock absorbers. The car is 12 feet, four inches long.” Bill de Selincourt won a race at Cadours, France, in an Elva-B.M.C. FJ on September 6, 1959. Nichols switched to a two-stroke DKW engine supplied by Gerhard Mitter. In 1959 Peter Arundell won the John Davy Trophy at the Boxing Day Brands Hatch meeting driving an Elva-D.K.W. “Orders poured in for the Elva but when the 1960 season commenced Lotus and Cooper had things under control and disillusioned Elva owners watched the rear-engined car disappearing round corners, knowing they had backed the wrong horse.”  Sporadic success continued for Elva in the early part of that year, with Jim Hall winning at Sebring and Loyer at Montlhéry.

Elva produced a rear-engined FJ car, with B.M.C. engine, at the end of the 1960 season. Chuck Dietrich finished third at Silverstone in the BRDC British Empire Trophy race on October 1. In 1961 “an entirely new and rather experimental Elva-Ford” FJ-car debuted at Goodwood, making fastest lap, driven by Chris Meek.

After financial problems caused by the failure of the US distributor, Frank Nichols started a new company in Rye, Sussex in 1961 to continue building racing cars. The Elva Mk VI rear-engined sports car, with 1,100 c.c. Coventry Climax power, made its competition debut at Brands Hatch on Boxing Day, 1961, driven by Chris Ashmore, finishing second to the 3-litre Ferrari of Graham Hill. The car was designed by Keith Marsden.

On September 8, 1963, Bill Wuesthoff and Augie Pabst won the Road America 500, round 7 of the United States Road Racing Championship, at Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin driving an Elva Mk.7-Porsche. “The Elva-Porsche is based on the Mark VII Elva, but redesigned aft of the front section to take the 1,700 c.c. Porsche air-cooled flat-four unit and its horizontal cooling fan.”

Edgar Barth won the opening round of the European Hill Climb Championship on June 7, 1964, at Rossfeld in southern Germany in an Elva-Porsche flat-8 sports car. The cars were placed throughout the seven-round series with Herbert Muller winning at the final round at Sierre Montana Crans in Switzerland on August 30, 1964.

Around 1964-1966 Elva made a very successful series of Mk 8 sports racers mostly with 1.8 litre BMW engines (modified from the 1.6 litre by Nerus) and some with 1.15 litre Holbay-Ford engines. The Mk8 had a longer wheelbase and wider track compared to the Mk7, which was known for difficult handling due to a 70-30 weight bias to the rear. Following the success of the McLaren in sportscar racing, Elva became involved in producing cars for sale to customers:

“Later a tie-up with Elva and the Trojan Group was arranged and they took over the manufacture of the McLaren sports/racer, under the name McLaren-Elva-Oldsmobile.”

At the 1966 Racing Car Show, held in London in January, Elva exhibited two sports racing cars – the McLaren-Elva Mk.II V8 and the Elva-BMW Mk. VIIIS. The McLaren-Elva was offered with the option of Oldsmobile, Chevrolet or Ford V8 engines. The Elva-BMW Mk. VIIIS was fitted with a rear-mounted BMW 2-litre four-cylinder O.H.C. engine.

Luki Botha campaigned an Elva-Porsche in southern Africa from 1966.

Elva Courier

Elva Courier
1967 Elva Courier
Manufacturer Elva
Production 1958-1969
500 approx made
Body and chassis
Class sports car
Body style 2-door convertible
2-door coupe
Wheelbase 90 in (2,286 mm)
Length 154 in (3,912 mm)
Width 60 in (1,524 mm)

The main road car, introduced in 1958, was called the Courier and went through a series of developments throughout the existence of the company. Initially all the cars were exported, home market sales not starting until 1960. Mark Donohue had his first racing successes in an Elva Courier winning the SCCA F Prod Championship in 1960 and the SCCA E Prod Championship in 1961.

The Mk 1 used a 1500 cc MGA or Riley 1.5 litre engine in a ladder chassis with Elva designed independent front suspension. The engine was set well back in the chassis to help weight distribution, which produced good handling but encroached on the cockpit making the car a little cramped. The chassis carried lightweight 2-seater open glassfibre bodywork. It was produced as a complete car for the US and European market and available in kit form for the UK market. After about 50 cars were made it was upgraded to the Mk II which was the same car but fitted with a proprietary curved glass windscreen, replacing the original flat-glass split type, and the larger 1600 cc MGA engine. Approximately 400 of the Mk I and II were made.

The rights to the Elva Courier were acquired by Trojan in 1962, and production moved to the main Trojan factory in Purley Way, Croydon, Surrey. Competition Press announced: “Elva Courier manufacturing rights have been sold to Lambretta-Trojan in England. F-Jr Elva and Mark IV sports cars will continue to be built by Frank Nichols as in the past.”

With the Trojan takeover the Mk III was introduced in 1962 and was sold as a complete car. On the home market a complete car cost £965 or the kit version £716. The chassis was now a box frame moulded into the body. Triumph rack and pinion steering and front suspension was standardised. A closed coupé body was also available with either a reverse slope Ford Anglia-type rear window or a fastback. In autumn 1962: “Elva Courier Mk IV was shown at London Show. New coupe has all-independent suspension, fiberglass body, MG engine. Mk III Couriers were also shown. Though previously equipped with MG-A engines, new versions will be equipped with 1800cc MG-B engine.” Later the Ford Cortina GT unit was available. The final version, the fixed head coupé Mk IV T type used Lotus twin-cam engines with the body modified to give more interior room. It could be had with all independent suspension and four wheel disc brakes. 210 were made.

Ken Sheppard Customised Sports Cars of Shenley, Hertfordshire acquired the Elva Courier from Trojan in 1965 but production ended in 1968.


2009 Elva 160 beim Oldtimer-Grand-Prix am Nürburgring
Manufacturer Elva
Production 1964
Body and chassis
Class sports car
Wheelbase 93 in (2,362 mm)
Length 150 in (3,810 mm)
Width 60 in (1,524 mm)

There was also a GT160 which never got beyond production of three prototypes. It used a BMW dry sump engine of 2 litre capacity with bodywork styled by Englishman Trevor Frost (also known as Trevor Fiore, and who also designed the Trident) and made by Fissore of Turin. It weighed 11 long hundredweight (559 kg) and had 185 bhp (138 kW; 188 PS) so would have had very impressive performance but was deemed too costly to put into series production. The car was shown at the London Motor Show in 1964. One of the cars was purchased by Richard Wrottesley and entered in the 1965 24 Hours of Le Mans. Co-driven by Tony Lanfranchi, the car retired early in the race.


An Elva GT160 at the 2014 Le Mans Classic

 Other ELVA’s from my collection after searching the WWW.

1955 elva-logo1955-05 elva jubilee race1956 Elva Climax MK II Prototype b1956 Elva Climax MK II Prototype, Sonoma Historic Motorsports Festival 20131956 Elva Climax MK II Prototype1956 Elva MkII Race Car1956 elvalogo1957 Elva Mark-II Bobtail Sports Racing Car race reto wallpaper background1957 Elva MkII sn 100-49 Bahamas1957 elva-logo-11958 Charles Kurtz in his Elva MK II (#77) at Sebring, 1958, on cover of SCCA magazine1958 Elva Front Engineers1958 Elva Mark III Sports1958 Elva MK III HMSMW1958 Elva mk3 sports car1958 Elva Mk31958 Rip Ripley's Elva MK IIb at Sebring Bob Engberg Ripley Elva 2B21959 134 Elva Mk.IV1959 Elva 100 Formula Junior 410 bl1959 Elva 100 Formula Junior c1959 Elva 100 Formula Junior1959 Elva 100 g1959 Elva 100a1959 Elva 200 FJ1959 Elva Courier – Driver Stevan Dana1959 Elva courier1959 Elva Formula Junior black1959 Elva Mk V Climax sports-racer1959 Elva MK V Sports Racing Car1960 Elva 100 Formula Junior1960 Elva 200 Formule Junior1960 Elva Courier of Ian McDonald1960 Elva Courier1960 Logo ELVA British Sports and racing car manufacturer1961 Elva Courier Roadster1961 elva1962 Elva coupe1962 Elva Courier Mk III Fixed Head Coupe ( Elva Cars)1962 Elva HR ad1962 Elva Logo1962 Elva Mk.6 Maserati1962 Elva Mk1 CSE0146 infineon-hist-5-081962 Elva oct ad1962 elvacourier-01-02 ad1962 logo silver1963 Elva Courier Racer1963 Elva Mk7-Ford Sports-Racer, Bonhams, Monaco1963 Elva MkVII Race Car, Number 391963 Elva t-type1964 Elva Bmw 160 GT1964 elva bmw 1601964 Elva bmw a1964 Elva Cars Courier Mk 4-T1964 Elva Courier Coupe Cabrio a1964 Elva Courier Coupe Cabrio b1964 Elva GT 160 and a 1962 Morgan +4IMGP60801964 Elva gt1964 Elva GT160 LM1964 Elva gt160 london1964 Elva mk41964 Elva mk-IV ad1964 Elva Porsche (Chassis P70-032) Elva-76-Augusta11964 Elva Porsche MkVIIA1964 Elva-GT160-21964 Elva-GT160-31964 elva-mk-vii-car-hd1964 Porsche Elva Mark VIIS SL-06 RH-011965 Elva BMW 751965 Elva Courier c1965 Elva courier mark IV ad1965 Elva Mk8 - Serial # 80-05 -BMW M10  220BHP  8,000rpm  1,100lbs1965 Elva MK8 Sports Racer1965 Elva Mk8 storyboard1965 Elva Porsche in 1979 - Mk VII model1965 Elva Porsche race car1965 Jonathan Loader chases Sean Kukula, both in Elva Courier Mk4Ts. Anyone got a decent1965 logo1965 McLaren - Elva M1A Loud Chevy V8 Sound1965 McLaren Elva M1A Sports Racing Car1966 Elva Courier - A British Sports Car Blog1966 Elva Courier front-side view1966 Elva courier mk IV s typ t1966 elva courier-02-171966 Elva Courier-BB1966 Elva MK8 901966 Elva Mk8 SR CSRG David Love Memorial Vintage Car Road Races 20151966 McLaren - ELVA M1A - Group 7 car. Elvis Presley drove this car in 19661967 Elva Courier1967 Elva t-type1968 McLaren Elva Mark III Can-Am Las Vegas 19681969 McLaren Elva Mark III Can-Am Michigan2009 Elva 160 beim Oldtimer-Grand-Prix am Nürburgring2014 58 TomDavis ElvaCourier CP Indy2014AMT McLaren-Elva #4022-1elva 1 (1)elva 1Elva AustinElva BMW Mallory ParkElva BMW Mk-7elva bookElva Courier-Coupe-WiesenElva GT160 - chassis #70 GT3elva headerElva Mk IV Wilmot Hills race trackElva Mk VII S op Zandvoort aElva Mk VII S op ZandvoortElva Mk.6 1300cc AlfaElva MK5 Sports 27Elva MkIII YURElva Porsche Mk 7 P Nurburg12Elva Team Morris Commercial 1Elva tek1elva


Elva1 Early Fordson dropside pickup used by Elva carselva2elva3 s1-13Elva-Climax Mk III Sports Racer of doc Wyllie classic car portrait printGraham Hill driving an Oldsmobile powered McLaren Elva Mk.1Ike Eichelberger’s Elva-Porschelogo tyresMcLaren-Elva kit

That’s it

ELVA Race Cars on Facebook

Other companies

There was another Elva car company that lasted for one year, 1907, and was based in Paris, France.

See also

AUBURN Automobile

Auburn Automobile, touring and sports cars, Indiana, United States 1900-1936

Auburn Automobile Company
Automobile Manufacturing
Industry Automotive
Genre Touring Cars & Sports Cars
Fate Bankruptcy
Founded Auburn, Indiana
Founder Frank and Morris Eckhart
Headquarters Auburn, Indiana, United States
Area served
United States
Key people
Frank and Morris Eckhart, & E.L. Cord
Products Vehicles
Automotive parts
Services Automobiles

Auburn was a brand name of American automobiles produced from 1900 through 1936.

Corporate history

The Auburn Automobile Company grew out of the Eckhart Carriage Company, founded in Auburn, Indiana in 1874 by Charles Eckhart (1841–1915). Eckhart’s sons, Frank and Morris, experimented making automobiles before entering the business in earnest, absorbing two other local carmakers and moving into a larger plant in 1909. The enterprise was modestly successful until materials shortages during World War I forced the plant to close.

In 1919, the Eckhart brothers sold the company to a group of Chicago investors headed by Ralph Austin Bard, who later served as Assistant Secretary of the Navy for President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and as Undersecretary of the Navy for President Roosevelt and for President Harry S. Truman. The new owners revived the business but failed to realize their anticipated profits and in 1924, approached Errett Lobban Cord(1894–1974), a highly successful automobile salesman, with an offer to run the company. Cord countered with an offer to take over completely in what amounted to a leveraged buyout and the Chicago group accepted. Cord aggressively marketed the company’s unsold inventory and completed his buyout before the end of 1925.

But styling and engineering failed to overcome the fact that Cord’s vehicles were too expensive for the Depression-era market and Cord’s stock manipulations that would force him to give up control of his car companies. Under injunction from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to refrain from further violations, Cord sold his shares in his automobile holding company. In 1937, production of Auburns, along with that of Cords and Duesenbergs, ended.

1936 Auburn 654 Cabriolet.

 1936 Auburn 654 Cabriolet.

1935 Auburn 851 Speedster a

 1935 Auburn 851 Speedster


The 1904 Auburn was a touring car model. Equipped with a tonneau, it could seat two or four passengers and sold for US$1000. The flat-mounted single-cylinder engine, situated at the center of the car, produced 10 hp (7.5 kW). A two-speed planetary transmission was fitted. The angle-steel-framed car weighed 1,500 lb (680 kg) and used half-elliptic springs.

In 1926, Cord, now the owner of Auburn, partnered with Duesenberg Corporation, famous for its racing cars, and used it as the launching platform for a line of high-priced luxury vehicles. He also put his own name on a front-wheel-drive car, the Cord, later referred to as “L-29”.

Employing imaginative designers such as Alan Leamy — chief designer of the 1933 Auburn Speedster, and Gordon Buehrig, who modified leftover bodies to produce the 1935 851 Speedster and modified the four-door, Cord built cars such as the Duesenberg Model J (1928–37), the Auburn Speedster (1935-7), and the Cord 810/812 (1936-7) that became famous for their advanced engineering as well as their striking appearance. TheAuburn Boattail Speedster was powered by a 4.6L straight eight that, with the popular supercharger option(150 hp), could top 100 mph (160 km/h) making it a popular model in the Hollywood market.

The Depression, coupled with Cord’s stock manipulations, spelled the end of the company and production ceased in 1937. The company’s art deco headquarters in Auburn now houses the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum and became a National Historic Landmark in 2005. The Auburn Automobile Company also had a manufacturing plant in Connersville, Indiana, formerly owned by the Lexington Motor Company.

Auburn production specifications

1928 Auburn Model 8-88 Sport SedanAuburn 8-Eighty-Eight Sedan

See also

1935 Auburn Speedster ad

 1935 Auburn Speedster ad

my picture collection found on the world wide web:

AUTOVIA Cars Ltd. England UK 1935-1938

1939 Autovia 3 Litre V8 125 HP front


1938 Autovia limousin (DVLA) first registered 23 September 1938, 3445 cc

limousine by Arthur Mulliner
registered September 1938
Manufacturer Autovia Cars Limited,
Ordnance Works, Midland Road, Foleshill, Coventry CV6 5DX
Production 1937-1938 public sales starting 1936

44 made

Designer Charles Van Eugen (1890-1980)
Body and chassis
Class Large luxury
Body style chassis
4-light sports saloon
6-light saloon
Layout Front engine rear wheel drive
Related (engine) Riley 1½-litre straight 4 and
Riley 8/90 2¼-litre 90°V8
Engine 2,849 cubic centimetres (174 cu in)
Transmission single dry-plate clutch to a 4-speed manual gearbox with synchromesh on all speeds or
automatic clutch and 4-speed preselective gearbox
divided propellor shaft, back section in a torque tube
final drive by underhung worm is housed in a banjo-type casing
Wheelbase 129 in (3,300 mm)
Length 175.5 in (4,460 mm)
or 183 in (4,600 mm)
Track 56.5 in (1,440 mm)
Width 71 in (1,800 mm)
Predecessor none
Successor none
Production 44
Combustion chamber
Configuration 90°V-8
Displacement 2,849 cubic centimetres (174 cu in)
Cylinder bore 69.5 mm (2.74 in)
Piston stroke 95.25 mm (3.750 in)
Valvetrain inclined at 90° overhead valves worked by pushrods from three camshafts
Fuel system twin Zenith downdraught carburettors with a balance pipe and hot-spot fed from a 16 gallon tank at the back, ignition by magneto with automatic advance mounted vertically towards the rear of the V
Cooling system a water pump is mounted either side of the timing case. The radiator has a fan and thermostatically controlled shutters. The sump is ribbed at the sides
Power output 99 bhp @ 4,700 rpm
Tax rating 23.8hp
Predecessor Riley 8/90 2¼-litre 90°V8
Successor none

Autovia was a short lived brand of British car from Coventry existing from 1935 to 1938 with production starting in January 1937. The venture was ambitious and even included setting up a school for chauffeurs. The cars were expensive and it was a market sector well served by other companies. 44 cars were made.

1936 autovia logo

Large luxury cars

The company was created by Riley as a subsidiary to produce large luxury cars and a new factory was built. A 2849 cc 90°V-8, triple camshaft engine was developed from a pair of 1½-litre Riley engine blocks and coupled to either a conventional four speed manual gearbox or in a few cases a pre selector unit bought from Armstrong Siddeley. Drive was to the rear wheels through a live axle with worm gear final drive.

Three body types were advertised, a Sports saloon, a Special Saloon with extra leg room at the expense of boot space and a limousine mostly built by Arthur Mulliner of Northampton who were London distributors. The car was also available as a bare chassis.

The venture failed when Riley went bankrupt. When they were taken over by the Nuffield Organisation Autovia was not resurrected.

There were thought to be eight of these cars remaining in 2008.

The limousine was considered remarkable for its width being more than its overall height yet the floors were flat and a tunnel and wells avoided at the back. “The general low set helps stability” said The Times, “the models are well equipped, as they should be for the price”.


The specially designed chassis frame permits a low overall height and low floor line.
In addition to the details in the box on the right:

  • wheels: Dunlop centre-lock wire 3.50″ x 19″ with nave plates
  • tyres: 5.5″ section on 19 inch wheels
  • suspension by semi-elliptic springs from the two rigid axles is controlled by hydraulic shock absorbers, their resistance is controlled by the driver
  • braking on all four wheels is mechanically actuated by rods with wedge operated shoes in 16 inch drums
  • steering by worm and nut
  • lubrication (of chassis items) is centralised and automatic


In a prior announcement 10 October 1936 Victor Riley revealed there would be two models available in addition to the bare chassis all with an automatic clutch, a preselective gearbox and a worm driven back axle. Prices would be:

  • chassis £685
  • five-seat saloon £975
  • limousine £995

The London distributors would be Arthur Mulliner Limited of 54 Baker Street, W[8]

The Autovia was also available as a bare chassis
1938 Autovia Front

Open two-seater
registered September 1939


  1. Jump up^ Autovia Cars —Manufacturers of and dealers in and hirers of automobiles, motor vans, and lorries, &c.
    Nominal capital, £60,000, in £1 shares.
    Company Registrations, The Times Tuesday, Dec 17, 1935; pg. 21; Issue 47249


  1. Jump up^ Sedgwick, M. (1989). A-Z of Cars of the 1930s. Devon, UK: Bay View Books. ISBN 1-870979-38-9.
  2. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r The Times, Wednesday, Sep 22, 1937; pg. 6; Issue 47796
  3. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e f Rileyrob. “Autovia (1937-38)”. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  4. ^ Jump up to:a b c Culshaw; Horrobin (1974). Complete Catalogue of British Cars. London: Macmillan. ISBN 0-333-16689-2.
  5. ^ Jump up to:a b c The Motor Show. The Times, Tuesday, Oct 19, 1937; pg. 10; Issue 47819
  6. Jump up^ Autovia Car Club
  7. Jump up^ Hardiman, Paul (February 2008). Duchene, Paul; Lombard, Stefan; Pickering, Jim, eds. “H&H Auctions, Duxford, UK: The Imperial War Museum”. Sports Car Market (Portland, OR USA: Automotive Investor Media Group). ISSN 1527-859X. Retrieved 2014-02-02.
  8. Jump up^ The Times, Saturday, Oct 10, 1936; pg. 6; Issue 47502

Intended as a rival to the likes of Rolls-Royce, Bentley and Alvis, Autovia Cars Ltd was founded in December 1935 with a start-up capital of £60,000. Helmed by Victor Riley of the famous car manufacturing dynasty, Charles Van Eugen and S. Gordon Marshall (the latter two acting as Chief Engineer and General Manager respectively), the new concern fielded a car which won its class at the 1936 Ramsgate Concours d’Elegance before going public during the following year’s Earls Court Motor Show. Available in bare chassis (£685), sports saloon (£975) or limousine (£995) guises, the Autovia range was powered by an advanced 2849cc OHV V8 engine boasting three camshafts, two Zenith carburettors and a Vertex Scintilla magneto. Credited with developing some 100bhp, it was allied to a choice of four-speed Armstrong Siddeley pre-selector or ZF manual transmissions and reputedly endowed the cars with a 92mph top speed. Supplied by Rubery Owen, the box-section Autovia chassis featured an underslung back axle (complete with David Brown worm final drive), Girling rod-operated drum brakes and Luvax adjustable shock absorbers. Showing signs of Bugatti influence, the front suspension utilised semi-elliptic springs whose leaves passed directly through a beam axle. Despite glowing reports in ‘The Motor’ and ‘Riley Record’ magazines praising the solidity, sure-footed handling and comfort of its products, the marque failed to make headway amid an already overcrowded marketplace. With total production thought to have accounted for just thirty-six cars, Autovia followed a beleaguered Riley into receivership on March 16th 1938.

1937 Autovia Special Saloon a1937 Autovia Special Saloon interiour a1937 Autovia Special Saloon interiour b1937 Autovia Special Saloon interiour c1937 Autovia Special Saloon interiour d1937 Autovia Special Saloon interiour1937 Autovia Special Saloon

Bodied as a four-door Sports Saloon by Arthur Mulliner of Northampton and London, ‘GHX 1’ was first road registered on May 12th 1938 (or so an accompanying buff logbook would imply). Although, the first few years of its life are a mystery, the Autovia is known to have migrated from Middlesex to Staffordshire over the last seven decades. A source of confusion to various road tax licensing offices en route – London County Council labelling it as an ‘Autoria’ (1950) while Berkshire County Council settled on ‘Austin’ (1954) – the car was reportedly supplied to both its penultimate and current keepers by garagiste Arthur Saxty of Sunningdale Motors Ltd. A previous custodian himself, Saxty is rumoured to have only let ‘GHX 1’ go a second time in order to fund the purchase of a Duesenberg. Last issued with a MOT test certificate by Chiltern Autos Ltd on May 3rd 1962, the Autovia has been in the current ownership for the last forty-four years. Carefully dry stored for much of that time, it appears to have been very well preserved. The engine which is said to have been “running perfectly well” when the Autovia was taken off the road was later stripped down and inspected.

1938 Autovia V8 Mulliner Limousine

1938 Autovia V8 Mulliner Limousine

Today, it contains clean oil and “turns easily on the starting handle” (though, the unit has not run for a long time due to concerns over the age of various seals and bearings etc). Although scruffy the black paintwork has done a good job of protecting the bodywork which seems substantially sound. While inside the beige leather upholstery, biscuit headlining and wood veneers all exude a wonderful patina. From the geometric patterns on its door cards to the delightful intricacy of its boot-hinge design, the Autovia is awash with charming details. Riding on nineteen-inch wire wheels, it sports Lucas supplied tri-bar headlights / spotlights / horns, twin Cornercroft ‘Ace’ spare wheel covers and a boot-mounted tool kit (incomplete). Displayed at the 1986 Coventry Riley Rally to celebrate Autovia’s fiftieth anniversary, the Sports Saloon has been written-up by the Riley Club and is known to the marque register. A potentially rewarding restoration project and a true Post Vintage Thoroughbred, ‘GHX 1’ is offered for sale with the aforementioned buff logbook and expired MOT certificate as well as an owner’s handbook, V5 registration document, starting handle and sundry paperwork.

PLEASE NOTE: Since the catalogue went to press we have been contacted by Gordon Thomas of the Autovia Car Club who has kindly provided the following extra information “I would like you to know that as far as I am aware this is the only Special Saloon manufactured and it was displayed on the 1937 Motor Show stand. I think all the other saloons were tagged Sports. The distinction is that the Special saloon had more legroom, a smaller boot and a different contour round the back quarter. Also it was offered for the same price as the Limousine (995) rather than the lesser saloon price of 975.

There were actually 44 cars made (I cannot tell you the split between Saloons and Limousines but I think it was heavily biased towards saloons). For a long time there was a theory that only 36 were manufactured but since I have been involved we have satisfied ourselves that there was a complete run from 63101 to 63144. The suspect empty run from 63113 to 63120 has now been populated with 4 cars (3,4,6 & 8) suggesting that there were no gaps in production. Of the production cars I can identify there were 29 saloons, 1 special saloon and 5 limousines. I have no definite record of the other 9 cars”.

– See more at: http://www.classic-auctions.com/Auctions/10-10-2007-TheImperialWarMuseum-1173/1937AutoviaSpecialSaloon-25006.aspx#sthash.MgTVXfOv.dpuf

1938 Autovia FrontSporting open two-seater

Autovia V8 4-Light Sports Saloon - EYU 482

Autovia V8 4-Light Sports Saloon – EYU 482

Autovia V8

Autovia V8



1937 Autovia V8 02

1937 Autovia V8

1936 autovia.jpg

1936 autovia

1937 Autovia Sport Saloon by Mulliner - 1 of 1 Ever Built

1937 Autovia Sport Saloon by Mulliner – 1 of 1 Ever Built

1939 Autovia 3-Litre

1939 Autovia 3-Litre

1939 Autovia Limo

1939 Autovia Limo

1936 autovia logo

That’s it !

BMW Bayerische Motoren Werke AG Munich Bavaria Germany 1916 — Chapter 2

BMW chapter 2



1987 BMW 520i LUX - BMW 5-Series (E28)1988 BMW 528ea1 E28 USABMW 520 El MedanoBMW 525i E28 01BMW 525i E28 02BMW 535is USABMW E28m5engine01BMW M5sig (E28) USAE28 5 series compact mid-sized sedan 1981–1988

1988-1990 BMW 320i (E30) convertible1988-1991 BMW 318i (E30) 2-door sedan 011990 BMW 318i (E30) 4-door sedan 011990 BMW 320is 3-4 ant destra saloon1991 BMW 325iX 2-dr, rear rightBMW E30 TouringBMW M20B25 E30 325iE30 3 series sedan, convertible and estate 1982–1994

BMW Z1 frontBMW Z1Z1 roadster 1989–1991

1987 BMW 735i grey vr TCE


BMW E32 FrontE32 7 series large sedan 1986–1994

BMW 525i E34 USA with narrow grilleBMW 525i Edition Heck


Bmw 535i m30b35-rightBMW E34 525i skylineBMW E34 rear europaBMW M5 engine S38 B36 PLE34 5 series mid-sized sedan 1988–1996

BMW 840 Ci Sport center consoleBMW 840 Ci Sport E31 M62 V8 engineBMW 840 Ci Sport front BMW 8 Series (E31)BMW 840 Ci Sport rearBMW 850 CSi S70 V12 E31 engineBMW 850i cabrio 8 E31 2015 BME MuseumBMW 850i-ci M70 V12engine E31E31 8 series 2+2 coupe 1989–1999


1991-1996 BMW 318i (E36) sedan 031993 Bmw e36 325i rear1993 Bmw e36 325i1995-1996 BMW 328i (E36) convertible 021996 BMW M3 E36 coupe1996-1998 BMW 323i (E36) sedan 021998 BMW 328i1999 BMW e36 329iS coupeBMW 3-Series convertible E36BMW 3-Series E36 sedan USABmw 316 e36 engine bay-2BMW E36 Touring HeckBMW M3 E36 berlineBMW-318ti E36BMW-BAUR-TC4(2)Convertible E36E36 3 series sedan, coupe, convertible and touring 1990–2000

1997 BMW 318ti E361998 BMW 316i (E36) hatchback 011998 BMW 316i (E36) hatchback 022014-07-05 NADT Peter Hayden 4BMW 316g logoBMW E46 compact frontBMW E46 compact rearE36 Compact hatchback 1993–2000 (first-generation Compact)

1995 BMW Z3 Roadster James Bond Edition2002 Bmw Z3M coupe frontBMW Z3 black hBMW Z3 black hlBMW Z3 Power hardtopBMW Z3 rearBMW Z3BMWZ3 4ZylBMW-Z3-CoupéZ3 coupe and roadster 1996–2002

M coupe 1998–2002 (first-generation M Coupe)

1996 BMW E38 740iA-interior1997 BMW E38 L7 exterior1997 BMW E38 L7 rear interior1998–2000 BMW E38 735i Sedan1999 BMW E38 728i2001 BMW E38 740iL (Facelifted) (US)BMW 7 series tomorrow never diesBMW 7er (E38) 20090314 frontE38 7 series large sedan 1994–2001

1996-00 BMW 5-Series E39 sedan before facelift1997-00 BMW E39 rear1998 BMW E39 Touring rear before facelift2000-03 BMW 525i (E39) Executive sedan012000-03 BMW 525i (E39) Executive sedan022000-03 BMW 530i (E39) Sport sedan 01BMW 525i station wagon Touring (Japan)BMW E39 gotttobi Angel Eyes MsportE39 5 series mid-sized sedan 1995–2003

2000-03 BMW X5 (E53) 4.4i 022003-06 BMW X5 (E53) 3.0d 012003-06 BMW X5 (E53) 3.0d 022004-06 BMW-X5E53 X5 mid-sized SUV 1999–2006 (BMW’s first SUV)

1998-01 BMW 3-Series (E46)1998-01 BMW E46 convertible1998-2001 BMW 318i (E46) sedan1998-2001 BMW 328i sedan E462000-03 BMW 330Ci (E46) coupe032000-2003 BMW 330Ci (E46) coupe022002-05 BMW 320i (E46) Touring2005 BMW 330Ci ZHP Silver E46BMW E46 Cabrio rearBMW E46 frontBMW E46 rear 2BMW M3 CSL E46 rrBMW M3-csl E46BMW M56 SULEV 2 (E46)BMW M56 SULEV1 (E46)E46 3 series sedan, coupe, convertible and touring 1998–2006

BMW Alpina Z8 hardtopBMW Z8 01BMW Z8 InterieurBMW Z8E52 Z8 roadster 1999–2003


BMW E46 compact frontBMW E46 compact rearE46 Compact hatchback 2000–2004 (second-generation Compact)

2006 BMW 730d (E65) sedan 01BMW 730d (E65) Facelift frontBMW 730d (E65) Facelift rearBMW 745i 2BMW 760Li E66 before face liftBMW E65 iDrive CBSBMW E65 iDrive Controller UpdateBMW E65 iDrive LCI 7 Series ClimateBMW E65 iDrive LCI SettingsBMW E65 Key FobBMW E65 LCI Centre StackBMW E65 rearBMW E65 rear aBMW E65 rearBMW Hydrogen 7 E65E65/66/67/68 large sedan 2002–2008

2006 BMW Z4 (E85) 2.5si convertible 012006-07 BMW Z42007 BMW Z4 3.0si CoupeBMW Mille Miglia conceptBMW Z4 hatch USAE85/E86 Z4 roadster/coupe 2002–2008 (first-generation Z4)

2003-06 BMW X3 rear2006-08 BMW X3 (E83) 2.5si wagon 012006-08 BMW X3 (E83) 2.5si wagon Australia2007 BMW X3 CC Jutta Kleinschmidt Dakar2011 BMW X3 (F25) xDrive28i wagon 012011 BMW X3 (F25) xDrive28i wagon Australia2015 BMW X3 (F25 LCI) xDrive20d wagonBMW X3 frontE83 X3 crossover SUV 2003–2010

2004-2007 BMW 525d (E60, 5-Series) saloon in Cyberjaya, Malaysia (02)2006-07 BMW 530xi Rear2007-2010 BMW M5 (E60) sedan 012007-2010 BMW M5 (E60) sedan 02BMW 530i (E60) Facelift frontE60 5 series mid-sized sedan 2003–2010

1999 BMW Z9GT E63-E64 022004 BMW 645Ci Sport2004 BMW 645Ci Sport2007 BMW 635d SportBMW 6er Coupé Facelift frontBMW 6-Series Cabriolet E63-E64BMW 645ci E64 rearBMW 645Ci rearBMW 650i 6er Coupé (E63) Facelift rearBMW M6 CoupéE63/E64 mid-sized coupe/convertible 2003–2011

E61 estate 2004–2011

2007-08 BMW X5 4.8i2010 BMW X5M2010-2011 BMW X5 (E70) xDrive35i wagon 022011 BMW X5 (E70, Facelift)BMW V8 engine X5BMW X5 II M-Sportpaket rearBMW X5M EngineE70 X5 mid-sized SUV 2006–present (second-generation X5)

2007 BMW X6 concept2008-10 BMW X6 (E71) xDrive35d wagon 022008-10 BMW X6 (E71) xDrive35d wagon2011 BMW X6 M (E71) 022011 BMW X6 M (E71)2012 BMW X6 hybrid2014 BMW X6 (F16) M50d wagon 012014 BMW X6 (F16) M50d wagon 02BMW X6-ActiveHybrid Rear-viewE71 X6 mid-sized crossover 2008–present (2-door version of X5)

2010 BMW 120i (E87) 5-door hatchback 012012 BMW 125i (F20) 5-door hatchback 01BMW 118i Urban Line (F20)BMW 118i Urban Line (F20)HeckansichtBMW E87 frontE81/E87 1 series hatchback 2004–2011 (first-generation 1 Series)

E82/E88 1 series small coupe/convertible 2007–2011

2010-2011 BMW X1 (E84) sDrive20d wagon 01 Pre facelift Australia2010-2011 BMW X1 (E84) sDrive20d wagon 02 Pre facelift Australia2013 BMW X1 (E84 LCI MY13) sDrive20i wagon 012013 BMW X1 (E84 LCI MY13) sDrive20i wagon 022015 BMW X1 Activeflex Maringa2016 BMW X1 xDrive25d (F48)BMW X1 xDrive20d (E84, 2. Facelift)X1 compact crossover SUV 2009–present

2003-06 BMW X3 rear2006-08 BMW X3 (E83) 2.5si wagon 012006-08 BMW X3 (E83) 2.5si wagon 022011 BMW X3 (F25) xDrive28i wagon 012011 BMW X3 (F25) xDrive28i wagon 022015 BMW X3 (F25 LCI) xDrive20d wagonBMW X3 frontBMW X3 M-Sportpaket (F25)X3 crossover 2004–present

2005-08 BMW 320i (E90) sedan 012005-08 BMW 320i (E90) sedan 022006 BMW 325i pre facelift NHTSA USA2006-10 BMW 325i (E92) coupe 012006-10 BMW 325i (E92) coupe 022007-09 BMW 325i (E93) convertible 022008 BMW 3er (E90) Facelift front2008 BMW 3er (E90) Facelift rear2008-10 BMW M3 (E90) sedan 04BMW 320si Andy Priaulx WTCC 01BMW 328i wagon E91 USABMW E92 M3 AlpinweißBMW E93 325i Saphirschwarz offen HeckE90/E91/E92/E93 3 series sedan/touring/coupe/convertible 2005–2011

2009 BMW 750i rear2013 BMW B7 Alpine Limousine2014 BMW 750Ld Serie 7 LimousineBMW 730d xDrive (F01)FrontansichtBMW 740d (F01) rearBMW ActiveHybrid 7 (F04) rearBMW Alpina B7 BiTurbo Limousine LongF01/F02/F03/F04 7 series large sedan 2008-

2012 BMW Z4 E89 Zagato 12012 BMW Z4 E89 Zagato 22012 BMW Z4 E89 Zagato Coupe2014 BMW Z4 E89 35isBMW Z4 (E89) front