Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Austin: 1906 Report

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Note: This is a sub-section of Austin.


The Austin Motor Company, Ltd. [1]

The works of the above company, which we recently had an opportunity of visiting, afford an excellent example of the way in which a modern motor factory is modelled. They are situated at Northfield, about seven miles from Birmingham, and were built in 1896, but were rebuilt after a fire with all the latest improvements.

The shops cover about 3.5 acres, four additional acres of land being available for extensions. The different departments, such as the machine shops, erecting shops, test shops, etc., are all connected with one another by a tram road which also encircles the works, thus facilitating the handling and transporting of heavy goods.

Power for the shops is derived from two gas engines, one a 60 h.p. Crossley, the other a 70 h.p. Fielding and Platt, the gas for these engines being generated by a Dawson Gas Plant.

The building is well lit by electricity generated by the company on the spot, and the whole building is provided with automatic water sprinklers in case of fire, the risk of fire being minimised by the use of hot water heating system.

The company pay special attention to the demand for touring cars, and luxurious landaulettes, while the Austin car has been designed with a view to the utmost accessibility and simplicity of parts.


See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. Motor News of 31st March 1906.