In 1897 the first steam truck of the Leyland Motors company was assembled. Debut experiment with development of the passenger car took place only in 1920 when the management of firm decided to be engaged in economically more favorable business. It was necessary to design expensive and comfortable model of the highest class which could compete with Rolls-Royce.
As founders of the first automobile model of the company Godfrey Parry Thomas – the chief engineer of firm and, besides, the racer famous once acted. In 1917 it was entrusted to it to design the best car in the world, without reflecting on costs of its production. Thomas was come to the rescue then young still by Reyd Reylton who in the future became famous for several development. For example, one model created as the most high-speed found a name of the outstanding engineer – Railton.
For creation of the first automobile Leyland model which received designation of Eight, the line eight-cylinder engine about 7 liters was chosen. The motor was also supplied with one top camshaft, sheet valvate springs, and valves settled down opposite each other. The new car at the London automobile Olympia exhibition in 1920 was presented. It drew a lot of attention as it appeared the first car in Great Britain with the line 8-cylinder engine. It was still the prototype, but its price developed already then – the chassis cost two and a half thousand pounds sterling. Journalists at once called a novelty "Lev Olimpii". By the time of the first sales the cost of the chassis managed to be reduced to 1875 pounds sterling, and the first 5-seater car cost 2,7 thousand pound sterling that, certainly, affected demand for the car, having made it rather low.
The running gear of the Leyland Eight car was thought over to the smallest details. The only brakes on back wheels were supplied by the vacuum amplifier. Besides, the back bridge was equipped console a quarter with elliptic springs between which there was a special stabilizer for cross stability. Also small positive disorder which helped to overcome roughnesses of roads of that time was a distinctive feature of the back bridge.
The body of the Leyland Eight model calculated for two had slightly angular forms, and also differed in round headlights in the square case and a rectangular radiator. Over time there was a 5-seater tourist body, and then a compartment of production Windover and the sedan made by the Vanden Plus company. Power of the unit made 145 horsepowers that allowed the car to disperse to 121 km/h. But the project was all the same failed – it was succeeded to sell only 18 copies. As a result the developer Parry Thomas on the basis of the Leyland Eight chassis created two racing cars. The first – for itself, and the second – for the racer Jay Pi Howie.
In 1922 Parry Thomas passed from the Leyland company into other firm – Brooklands where on the basis of an own copy of Leyland Eight developed new model also under the name of Leyland. The car with the engine slightly more than seven liters and power of equal 200 "horses" received the name Leyland Thomas. It was the second and, in fact, the last passenger car released under a trademark of the Leyland company.
In 1927 one more copy of the Leyland Eight car, but already was collected by the Thomson & Taylor company which used original details of model. However the body of this development considerably differed from a prototype body. This car also remained about one today as all other cars of Leyland Eight in the 1930-1940th years of the XX century were sent to scrap metal.
After unsuccessful experiment with the car, the Leyland Motors company switched to production of trucks again, than and was engaged up to the 1960th years. During this time the firm attached to itself the AES and Albion companies. And the 60th years of the XX century the company was going to release passenger cars again, having redeemed some automobile building firms, such as Alvis, Standard-Triumph and Rover. The concern under the name British Leyland was as a result formed. Then the plans of the management included renaming of the known Morris, Rover and Austin models into Leyland, and also development new are there were Leyland Car project No. 8 (LC8) and Leyland Motors project No. 10 (LM10) cars. However, unfortunately, these projects didn't manage to be realized.
Already in the early seventies in Australia the cars with spacious salon which left under the name of Leyland were released. They were equipped 6-and 8-cylinder engines. But also these models didn't win special attention. In 1975 the controlling stake was redeemed by the government of Great Britain, and production of automobile cars under the name of Leyland was stopped.1 - 50 | 51 - 100 | 101 - 150 | 151 - 169
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