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British Industrial History

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Ariel Motors (1906)

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1906. Ariel Petrol Motor Tricycle.
1906. Ariel-Simplex.
1906. Ariel-Simplex 28-36 h.p.
1906 Q4. Ariel-Simplex.
1906 Q4. Ariel-Simplex.
1906 Q4. Ariel-Simplex.
November 1907. Ariel-Simplex 30-40 h.p.
November 1908. 40 h.p. detail.
November 1908.

motorcycle and car manufacturers of Selly Oak, Birmingham

and 101 New Bond St, London

For a summary of the various users of the Ariel name see Ariel - an overview.

1906 March. Components Ltd floated Ariel Motors (1906) Ltd as a public company to take over the manufacturing of Ariel motorcars (which had been carried on by the Ariel Cycle Co and other subsidiaries of Components Ltd at Selly Oak, Birmingham) and the retail business Ariel Motors Ltd at Long Acre, London. The purpose was to carry on the business of manufacture and sale of Ariel and Ariel-Simplex cars. Planned to open negotiations with Bruce Peebles and Co for reciprocal working. Directors were: J. F. Albright, Arthur C. Peebles, Gerard B. Elkington, J. E. Hutton and Charles T. B. Sangster as MD. [1] [2]

1907 Ariel Motors was located in Birmingham but in 1907 Ariel cars were reported being made in Coventry according to Autocar, 25 May 1907 [3].

1908 The name Ariel Simplex was abandoned because of the difficulty of defending the use of the Simplex term; henceforth the cars would be known as Ariel[4].

1908 New model 20 Ariel demonstrated at Motor Show; 4 cylinders, 24 h.p. Three other Ariel models (30 h.p., 40 h.p. and 50 h.p.) also had four cylinder engines. A 40 h.p. vehicle had a cabriolet-landaulet body built by Mulliners of Northampton. On a 50 h.p. a special Pullman type of body, made by Rippon Brothers of Huddersfield[5].

1908-1914 For a list of the models offered by Ariel Motors Ltd of Camberwell New Road, London, and prices between 1908-1914 see 1908-1914 Motor Car Red Book.

1909 Ariel Motors (1906) Ltd - bankrupt[6].

1909 The Coventry Ordnance Co made a car for Ariel Motors in 1909[7].

1910 One basic model replaced all the others. This used a 3.5hp White and Poppe engine with valves spaced apart on one side of the cylinder and the Bosch magneto in front of the crankcase. Later that year the new and advanced Arielette was announced. Various engines were used, including White and Poppe, Abingdon King Dick and Motosacoche.

1911 By now, Ariel had purchased the rights to White and Poppe and had begun to make engines themselves, with a much higher capacity. They soon produced models, from tourer to TT racer, with a variety of belt-drive transmissions.

1913-1917 For a list of the models and prices of Cars see the 1917 Red Book. No cars listed in 1917 but 3 light delivery vans were offered [8]. Agents were Ariel Motors and General Repairs Ltd.

1913-1917 For a list of the models and prices of Motorcycles see the 1917 Red Book

1913-1917 For a list of the models and prices of Petrol Motor Commercial Vehicles see the 1917 Red Book

1914 Address of "makers or agents" given as 324 Camberwell New Road, London SE[9].

1914 An Abingdon engine was used and it, and some singles, adopted a three-speed gearbox and a chain-cum-belt drive. The saddle was connected to a spring frame on the saddle tube to give a comfortable ride.

1915 Ariel Works Ltd was registered[10].

1916 Throughout the rest of the Great War, the company supplied the War Office with 3.5hp singles and a few V-twins.

1917 Ariel Works Ltd [11] handled the motorcycles and motorcar activities (including the racing teams); this name continued to be used until 1932.

1918 Jack Sangster joined the company, of which his father Charles Sangster was managing director. Sangster designed a small low cost car which he began manufacturing. The design of the car was later sold to Rover, with Sangster joining Rover to manage the production of the car which became the Rover Eight model.

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. The Times, Friday, Mar 30, 1906
  2. The Times, Monday, Apr 02, 1906
  3. 'The City of Coventry: Crafts and industries: Modern industry and trade', A History of the County of Warwick: Volume 8: The City of Coventry and Borough of Warwick (1969), pp. 162-189 [1]
  4. The Times, 28 October 1908
  5. 1908 Motor Show
  6. The Times, 2 December 1909
  7. The City of Coventry: Crafts and industries: Modern industry and trade, A History of the County of Warwick: Volume 8: The City of Coventry and Borough of Warwick (1969), pp. 162-189 [2]
  8. 1913-1917 Motor, Marine and Aircraft Red Book: Petrol Motors
  9. 1908-1914 Motor Car Red Book
  10. The World guide to automobile manufacturers, by Nick Baldwin, Brian Laban. 1987
  11. 1913-1917 Motor, Marine and Aircraft Red Book: Motorcycles