e are pleased to announce our 2022 programme. As you will see many titles are completed and await printing, whilst others are still works in progress. Further down this page you will find details of the first two publications due out early next year.
Auto Review 2022 publishing programme:
We have decided to revise the 2022 programme to include two more titles as progress on these has been faster as a result of lockdown. These will be a release of two titles every other month – February, April, June, August, October, December.
AR177 Mobile sales vehicles Published
AR178 Buick Album Published
AR179 British racing cars 1945 to 1969 Published
AR180 Subaru and Fuji Published
AR181 American Classic #1 (11 makes: Mercer, Stutz, Marmon, Jordan, Ruxton, Kissel, Hupmobile, Moon, Locomobile, Gardner, Simplex) Published
AR182 Shelvoke & other municipals Published
AR183 Dodge Album Completed
AR184 MINI Album (the 20th anniversary of the new Mini in 2022) Completed
AR185 Hanomag Album (plus Henschel and Tempo) Completed
AR186 The other US Postwar cars (Checker, Tucker, Muntz and much more) Completed
AR187 Berliet Album (including Alco and Rochet-Schneider, but not Saviem) Completed
AR188 Mercury Album (including Edsel and Cougar) Completed
You can see the full range of Auto Review books available here at www.zeteo.com
You can also order any books via the website (payments by PayPal), or you can order from one of our stockists, which include Oxford Die-cast, motor book specialists Chaters, or transport book specialists MDS Books. Readers in the USA can order via our long-standing supporter Pete’s Model Garage in Lakeville, Massachusetts, and we hope to soon have another stockist, The Olde Milford Press in Milford, Connecticut. If you have a favourite bookshop or specialist book dealer, ask them to contact us for trade terms.
Auto Review 177 Mobiles – Mobile sales and service vehicles
For many centuries goods or services have been taken to the customer on handcarts, horse-drawn, or motor vehicles. In this publication we give an historical context to mobile sales, from hawkers and pedlars to modern ‘mobiles’. The advent of the motor vehicle meant that more entrepreneurs could take their offerings to more customers, rather than waiting for buyers to come to them. Ice cream vans were probably the most frequently seen and most popular mobile sales vehicles. The mobile canteen has also always been a welcome sight, from wartime bomb sites to modern movie locations. Traders could have a ready-equipped mobile sales vehicle or shop, rather than needing to set up a stall at every new venue. Scattered rural communities or newly-built housing estates without nearby shops were well-served by mobile grocers, butchers and the like. At large outdoor events you might see fast food vans, mobile bars, and in the days before credit cards, there were mobile banks as well. In these pages you will also see mobile libraries, churches and cinemas. The services offered from a mobile base have ranged from knife sharpeners to hairdressers. The broad principle for this publication is to include mobile sales or service opportunities where the customer or service user is not usually known in advance. Not included therefore, mostly, are ‘delivery’ vehicles such as milk floats, which mostly take pre-ordered items to customers. Many milk floats are described in Auto Review 042, along with other battery-electric vehicles.
Auto Review 178 Buick Album
A Buick was regarded as staid but solid, not a cheap car, but not too expensive either. Traditionally its image was favoured by doctors; it was well-appointed and stylish, not flashy, but dependable; and more affordable than the top prestige brands. There were occasional forays into more unusual cars; exciting coupes or’personal’ cars, but they all maintained the high engineering standards and quality finish which buyers expected from a Buick. From the early days Buicks had overhead valve engines, more advanced than many supposedly superior marques. David Buick was a Scottish-born bath tub manufacturer who switched to making cars at the turn of the 20th century. Within a few years he had been squeezed out by Billy Durant, who made Buick the cornerstone of his new General Motors grouping before he in turn was ousted. Durant returned to take control of GM, where Buick would be the longest-serving of the various brands made by the group, eventually outliving some other well-known names. Many famous people in the American car industry served their time at Buick, and left their mark, including Charles Nash and Walter Chrysler. As General Motors thinned out their portfolio of brands in the 21st century, the ‘dull’ Buick often seemed to be under threat. But it always produced a profit, which in later years was supported by its Chinese operation. So although the Pontiac, Oldsmobile, Saturn and Hummer brands were discarded, Buick survived. This is a 120-year story of success, except for the founder. David Buick was an inveterate tinkerer but a poor businessman, and he died in virtual poverty in 1929.
In this publication we look at British-built racing cars from 1945 to 1969. By ‘racing cars’ we mean single-seat open-wheel racers mainly designed to compete in Formula 1 or F2, F3, Formula Junior etc. There are a few exceptions; some early postwar racing cars had two seats, so they could be fitted with mudguards and lights to compete in sports car events. And not every Grand Prix car had exposed wheels; Connaught and Vanwall had streamlined racing cars with the wheels enclosed.
The late 1930 scene had been dominated by Mercedes-Benz and Auto Union, supported by German government funds. There was no competition from British firms; no major manufacturer designed a GP car, or fielded a team. ERA flew the flag for Britain, but only in the Voiturette class for smaller-engined cars. The British public had little interest in motor racing in the prewar years, but when Raymond Mays tried to drum up postwar support for the BRM project, there was an upsurge of patriotic enthusiasm. For most of the period covered by this publication only BRM and Ferrari built their own engines. In the immediate postwar era British contenders used engines by Alta, Bristol and others, until the Coventry-Climax ex-fire pump engine powered successful cars in the 1960s. It is remarkable now to recall how many private entrants in F1 in the freewheeling 1950s and 1960s drove their own cars in Grands Prix. Guy Ligier, Bob Anderson or Joachim Bonnier could buy a car from Brabham or Cooper, employ a mechanic or two for support, and turn up for the race. But those days were ending, as cars became more complex, regulations tightened, and everything was just too expensive. A new era began in 1968 with the Ford Cosworth DFV engine, which enabled teams to be competitive at a lower cost, but most of those cars would be constructed to comply with the 1970 F1 regulations, and our coverage here stops at 1969.
This was the end of an era for so many; Cooper stopped making cars in 1969, and BRM went through a total reorganisation in that year.
Bruce Mclaren was killed in 1970 while testing, Jack Brabham retired from racing and Rob Walker also shut down his racing team that year.
Chikuhei Nakajima was an engineer officer with the Japanese Navy who became interested in aviation and set up as an aircraft manufacturer in the 1920s. His company became the second biggest supplier of warplanes in Japan during the Second World War. After the war aircraft production was forbidden, and the company was dissolved. The remaining entity was renamed Fuji Sangyo, which produced Rabbit scooters, followed by the Subaru 360 Kei-car in 1958 and the Sambar light commercial vehicle in 1961. Encouraged by their US distributor, Subaru made ‘proper’ cars from 1966 with the Subaru 1000 four-door saloon, the first mass-produced Japanese front-wheel drive car. Subaru became known for its horizontally-opposed engines and four-wheel drive, which brought rally success and subsequent good publicity for the company. Successive models using this world-beating formula included the Leone, Legacy, Impreza, Justy, Outback and Forester. Subaru continued to produce ranges of small Kei-cars for Japanese buyers alongside the larger cars which sold so well in export markets. The parent Fuji company also produced aircraft, buses and scooters in the postwar years.
Here we tell the story of Subaru as it entered its second century in existence.
As the Auto Review series works it way through the many American car brands produced by the various groups, some important makes are left as ‘orphans’. The main US car-making groups were General Motors, Ford, Chrysler and American Motors, along with smaller groupings already covered by Auto Review including Studebaker-Packard, Cord Corporation and Kaiser-Frazer. Other attempts to create car-building conglomerates along GM lines included Hare’s Motors, Durant Motors and New Era Motors. Described in these pages are 11 classic US car marques; Mercer, Stutz, Marmon, Jordan, Ruxton, Kissel, Moon, Hupmobile, Locomobile, Crane-Simplex and Gardner. Many of these classic US marques fell under the control of one or other of those rickety organisations, and failed in the process.
Other companies were vulnerable to speculators like Allan Ryan, seeking to asset-strip firms whose saleable assets were worth more than their stock market valuation. Some car manufacturers, however, managed to stay independent to the end. There are so many other ‘American Classic’ marques still to cover that we will revisit this topic in a future Auto Review publication.
Auto Review Shelvoke & other municipals
Here we have the story of Shelvoke & Drewry (S&D), a company which found a profitable niche in the commercial vehicle market. This was due initially to the inventive genius of its co-founder James Drewry, who designed the Freighter commercial vehicle, which found favour for municipal bodywork, where S&D became a market leader. We also look at the two firms with which James was associated before he went into partnership with Harry Shelvoke. These two predecessor companies were Drewry and Lacre. In addition, we also take the opportunity to look at some other companies involved with municipal vehicles; our coverage is by no means exhaustive, and could never be, in our modest number of pages. These vehicle types, by various manufacturers, include Refuse Collection Vehicles (RCVs), trade waste disposal vehicles (aka dustcarts), road sweeper-sprinklers (aka water carts) and gully cleaners, as well as the similar cesspit emptiers.
Cars, trucks, military vehicles
Dodge Brothers cars and light trucks were made from 1914 onwards, based on experience making cars and components for other companies. The tough, hard-drinking Dodge brothers, John and Horace, died within months of each other in 1920, both of them victims of the demon drink. Their reputation for engineering quality had been established, however, and their company was acquired by Walter Chrysler when he began to build his automotive empire. Dodge became the cornerstone of the Chrysler Corporation, in the profitable middle of the car market, avoiding the disastrous Airflow styling which afflicted other Chrysler brands in the 1930s. Dodge became a lynchpin of the Allied effort in the Second World War, making thousands of small ‘soft-skin’ military vehicles. Postwar Dodges veered between solid practicality and eccentric styling, but the brand mostly managed to maintain its mid-market position, supported by popular ranges of pickup trucks. Dodge cars, trucks and military vehicles are all covered in these pages. We have here the full story of Dodge from 1899 and the brothers’ early efforts, to life as part of the multi-national Stellantis Group in the 2020s.
AR184 MINI Album (the 20th anniversary of the new Mini in 2022)
BMW’s baby and its Mini heritage
Auto Review 031 A Mini Album, the first volume in the relaunched Auto Review series, published in 2007, tells the story of the original Austin Se7en and Morris Mini Minor. It describes all of the many versions and variations in the Mini family. In this publication we succinctly reprise that tale, then take up the story of the development of a replacement model. This process would culminate in the new MINI, to be made by BMW, who became owners of the brand after they took over Rover Group in 1994. After outlining the heritage and character of the original Mini, which BMW wanted to maintain, more than half of this publication is devoted to the new MINI.
It is not so ‘new’ now, of course; the original Mini lasted for over four decades, and at the date of this publication the MINI is in its third decade. In these pages we maintain the conceit established by BMW of using capital letters for the name of their car, so that you will know if the text refers to an original Mini, made from 1959 to 2000, or a MINI, made by BMW after 2001. There have been three generations of MINI, the first one made by BMW from 2001 to 2006, the second made from 2007 to 2013 and the third generation made from 2014 to 2022. As we went to print, a fourth generation of the MINI family was due to arrive for the 2023 model year, delayed by a year because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Hanomag was a long-established steam locomotive manufacturer which in 1905 took out a licence to make steam road vehicles and railcars. In 1912 the firm further diversified into building motor tractors, which became a profitable product line for five decades. In the 1920s Hanomag made their first motor cars, the famous Kommisbrot, a spartan light car, followed by well-engineered cars aimed at the German middle market. Hanomag’s last production cars in the late 1930s were streamlined saloons, but in the meantime the company introduced a range of heavy motor lorries, then turned its resources over to the German war effort. Over 16,000 Sd.Kfz 251 half-track military vehicles were produced in wartime. 1949 saw the new L28 lorry range, and Hanomag joined the Rheinstahl consortium in 1952. The Kurier, Garant and Markant truck range was made from 1957. In 1964-65, Rheinstahl acquired Henschel and Tempo, and merged both firms with Hanomag. Henschel was another steam locomotive maker which diversified; in their case into steam rollers and heavy lorries, with a brief return to Doble-engined steam road vehicles in the 1930s, alongside the motor lorries. In wartime Henschel produced tanks and aircraft, before returning to commercial vehicles in the postwar period and then merging with Hanomag in the 1960s. In 1968 Rheinstahl disposed of the Hanomag tractor business, and the Hanomag-Henschel truck-making operation was sold to Daimler-Benz. The construction equipment side eventually went to Komatsu, but Hanomag and Henschel continued to make military vehicles under the control of Rheinmetall.
The Auto Review series has covered all the principal smaller US car-making groups of the postwar era; Kaiser-Frazer, Willys, American Motors, Studebaker-Packard, and it is gradually working its way marque by marque through the ‘Big Three’ (General, Motors, Ford and Chrysler). In these shark-infested waters there were minnows which attempted to compete for postwar US car sales. Some, like Checker, found a profitable niche market, and theirs is the longest story told here, including its prewar days. Some tried to undercut the market with inexpensive cars, even home-built kit-cars, but others had grandiose plans to become major manufacturers. Mostly these cars were created by people who had a vision, but it was rarely a vision shared by the buying public. The main stumbling blocks were lack of finance, engineering expertise or artistic flair, or all three. Here we have tales of hope and disappointment, impossible fantasy, even of criminality and murder. We try to describe the most important or significant postwar cars from smaller makers, but we can’t cover everything in our restricted format.
Some American car marques from the postwar period have been described in other Auto Review (AR) books, so we have not wasted space by duplicating their stories here. For example, the Arnolt Bristol is described in AR070, the Allstate (Sears) is in AR127, the Avanti II is in AR144, Shelby and Cobra are in AR064, Bantam, Carter, Corbin, Crosley, Martin, Sebring, King Midget and other small cars are in AR123, Autoette, Sebring Vanguard and other battery-electric cars are noted in AR042, Beechcraft and Stout are in AR168, Excalibur, Clénet and other postwar pastiche or retro cars are in AR160, and the Stutz Blackhawk from 1971 is in AR181. Tesla and other new generation electric car makers will be covered in a future Auto Review title. Dune buggies (Meyers Manx etc) and other ‘beach cars’ will also be covered in another future Auto Review title.
In the early years of the 20th century the company established by Marius Berliet made cars which were so advanced that they formed the basis of early Sunbeam cars in England, and Alco cars in the USA. Primarily a car manufacturer, Berliet also made lorries and buses; by the time of the Great War it was the biggest producer of commercial vehicles in France. By the late 1930s the emphasis had changed and it had become a truck company which also made cars. After the Second World War no cars were produced at all. In the postwar years Berliet, now run by Marius’s son Paul, was once again the biggest manufacturer of commercial vehicles in France. Berliet built the biggest truck in the world in 1957, the T100. In 1967 Berliet lost its independence when it found itself under the same ownership as Citroën, when the company was acquired by Michelin. In 1974, encouraged by the French government, which was promoting auto industry consolidation, Renault acquired Berliet from Michelin. Renault then combined the firm with Saviem, and the Berliet name disappeared after both were absorbed by the RVI group in 1978.
AR188 Mercury Album
Plus Edsel and Mercury Canada
Mercury was created as a car marque in 1938 by Edsel Ford, to fill the gap between Ford and Lincoln-Zephyr, competing against middle-priced models from General Motors, Chrysler and other manufacturers. After the Second World War Mercury was conjoined with Lincoln in Ford’s new Lincoln-Mercury Division (see Auto Review 162 Lincoln and Continental). Mercury settled in the mid-market, which it shared for a short time in the 1950s with the doomed Edsel, which is also described in these pages. Sub-ranges in later years included Comet, Cougar and Merkur, but in a 21st century process of rationalisation, Ford axed the Mercury brand in 2010.
It had been in existence for just over 70 years.
Our thanks to Dave Turner for some text incorporated here, which was previously published by us in Model Auto Review many decades ago.
Auto Review 2021 publishing programme
Here is a look at our titles for 2021 – all are now available.
AR167 Cadillac and LaSalle Available
AR168 Voisin Album (and other cars made by aviators) Available
AR169 Bristol buses and trucks Available
AR170 Italian Specialists (Cisitalia, Abarth, Autobianchi, Moretti, Nardi, Giannini, Siata, Stanguellini, Viotti, & more) Available
AR171 Thunderbird Album Available
AR172 Mitsubishi Album Available
AR173 Bus & Coach Album: 2 Available
AR174 French Postwar Specialists (Facel-Vega, Alpine, Gordini etc) Available
AR175 Corvette Album Available
AR176 Made in Belgium Available
If you are interested in buying anything, please contact us using the ‘contact’ button. We will reply to your contact to advise on availability and means of payment.