Monday, 27 October 2014

1904 BOYER SIX & HALF HORSEPOWER - Gavin McGuire Fine Automobiles

Veteran Car Week
We continue our look at cars from the Veteran Era in celebration of the London to Brighton Weekend, not all are eligible for the run but there are some interesting makes & models out there so we continue with the 1904 Boyer.
Georgano’s indispensable  “Complete Encyclopedia of Motorcars” tells us that Boyer et Cie of Suresnes in France was initially associated with Phebus motorcycles powered by either De Dion or Aster engines. By 1901 they were manufacturing the advanced tubular framed motor car you see here which was usually supplied with either a single cylinder Aster engine or a twin cylinder Buchet engine connected via a cone clutch to a three speed and reverse gearbox with chain drive to the rear wheels. 
This lovely single cylinder example, which I understand is in only in its second ownership since new, is the first Boyer I have seen which is not too surprising as there are only four such cars listed in the VCC handbook. The thing that strikes you is that it is a very compact four seater so it can’t weigh that much which probably explains why it goes rather well though its performance is no doubt enhanced by its recent engine rebuild. The body, which is mainly made of wood including the wings, is very attractively finished and nicely trimmed and, as you can see in one of the pictures, comes complete with a detachable Surrey top which will no doubt be much appreciated on the rare occasions when it rains on the London to Brighton Run! On the subject of the Brighton Run you also get the benefit of an early start due to its 1901 date as verified by its VCC dating certificate number 2452 which was issued on September 2004. The car is obviously correct as the only variances recorded on the certificate are a non-standard but period looking Claudel carburettor and a relocated water tank. I gather the Boyer was totally restored in 1991 and the file includes a few pre-restoration pictures of it so you can see that a large proportion of the car is original.
All in all this is a rare and very pretty single cylinder four place motor car which will make a really good participant in the London to Brighton as well as being able to join in single and twin cylinder events like the Creepy Crawley. Wherever it goes it is sure to attract a lot of interest.

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