Cohort Pic(k) of the Day: 1949 Riley RMD – The End Of The Road For True Rileys

Staxman has posted some shots of a very lovely 1949 Riley RMD drophead (cabriolet). The RM series was built from 1945 to 1955, and the last developed independently by Riley prior to the Nuffield Organization’s merger with Austin in 1952 to form BMC. Nuffield had essentially controlled Riley since its reorganization in 1938, but it still operated independently.

After that merger that created BMC, Rileys became one of the numerous badge-engineered brands in that conglomeration.


The RM series had a lovely 90 or 100 hp 2.5 L hemi-head four, with dual cams located very high in the block. They could reach 95-100 mph, depending on body style.

I found a picture so we can all admire this lovely engine.

It’s got a very distinguished and of course traditional front end. No pontoon styling for this Riley.

The back end is tasty too. Bet it’s exhaust has a nice muted snarl.

Let’s admire it from the side. It does not look unlike a number of other post-war cars that retained pre-war styling, like the Mercedes 170/220/300.