Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 146,909 pages of information and 232,835 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Reliant: Robin

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Note: This is a sub-section of Reliant.


The Reliant Robin is a small three wheeled car manufactured by the Reliant Motor Company in Tamworth, England.

Being a three-wheeler with an official weight below 450 kg (992 lb), the Robin can be driven by holders of a B1 category licence or car licence in the United Kingdom, and can be registered and taxed at motorcycle rates, which gives considerable savings over a conventional car. The single wheel in the front steers, while the engine (also in the front) drives the rear axle.

The Robin was first manufactured in 1973 and the final original Robin rolled off the production line in 1981.

In 1989, Reliant produced a new and totally revamped Robin featuring a new fibreglass body, and increased engine power. This Robin was facelifted again in 1999 when the final version was launched that had its biggest change since originally launched with completely new panels, and Opel Corsa front lamps. Designed by Andy Plumb this hatchback-only model lasted until February 2001 when Reliant announced the end of production.

The final sixty-five Robins designed in 1999 manufactured by Reliant formed a Special Edition known as the Robin 65, featuring leather trim, walnut interior, and a numbered plaque, and sold for approximately £10,000. Manufacturing of the Robin resumed under licence by a company called B. and N. Plastics in April 2002, but stopped in October of the same year.

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