By Rod Ward
Hundreds of British companies have made cars in the past 150 years. Most of these companies are unknown today, many of them deservedly so, but some car marques should be better known. In this publication we look at a couple of dozen forgotten marques, some of which had an important place in the market in their day. Some others might have succeeded, but they abandoned car production, sometimes due to financial problems, or perhaps because the makers had more profitable activities to pursue. Included here are some fascinating tales from our industrial past. If things had turned out differently, the leading British car marques could have been Clyno, Storey, Swift and Bean. Their cars were as good as anyone else’s, and most were made by well-organised and well-funded industrial operations. Would it surprise you to know that Clyno was the third-biggest UK car manufacturer in the mid-1920s? This publication looks at a number of British car marques which are largely forgotten in the 21st century. Some were significant players in the 1920s, whereas others made a smaller splash. Some commercial vehicle makers produced cars, often of high quality, before deciding that there was more profit in lorries and buses. There were even a couple of tentative postwar attempts to compete with the big car manufacturers, neither of which came to anything. In this Auto Review publication we describe these car marques: Clyno, Bean, Swift, Cluley, Beverley-Barnes, Palladium, Calthorpe, Waverley, AJS, Brown Bros, Blackburn, Cubitt, Angus-Sanderson, Storey, Rhode, Enfield-Allday, Dawson, Canterbury, Paris Singer, Maudslay, Guy, Dennis, British Ensign, Thornycroft, AEC, Kendall, Murad, Ferguson, Bayliss-Thomas and Matchless.