This vintage ad caught my eye for more than one reason. Yes, the Armstrong Siddeley Hurricane is hardly rendered accurately. The size of the two occupants make it look vast, bigger than a Bugatti Royale.
Now about that airliner towering over it…at least the Hurricane existed in real life.
The contra-rotating propellers mounted in front of the Armstrong Siddeley Python turboprop are readily identifiable. But not the giant four engine airliner they’re mounted on. There never was such a thing; it was purely wishful thinking.
The Python started out as a pure-turbojet engine, the ASX, in the mid forties. But since there were already several other turbojet engines in the works in the UK, A-S decided to turn it into a turboprop, dubbed ASP.
That became a whole family of engines with snake names, the Python being the most successful and used in the Westland Wyvern attack fighter.
A-S also took over a different pure jet program, one of the very first, which started out life as the Metrovick F2. A-S developed it into the Saphire, one of the most advanced turbojets in the post war era, and used in a number of British planes like the the remarkable H-P Victor HP.80 (B1A version).
The Sapphire was licensed by Curtiss-Wright and built as the J65, which powered a number of US jets including the Grumman F-11 Tiger, the plane used by the Blue Angels from 1957 to 1969.
It’s a bit of a digression from our featured ad. Armstrong-Siddeley may have been projecting about an airliner powered by the Python, but their other engines did get around some.
Here’s what that A-S Hurricane looks like in real life,with a real live person behind the wheel; just a wee bit more modest.