Here’s an article about a little car, forgotten even back in 1987 when it was published.
Who knows about it now? This is another extract from R&T’s November issue:
Always loved these. The conundrum is how much prettier the two-strokes were, vs the assumed improved usability of the bigger engined cars with the incongruous prows. They also look as though they might be a bit roomier than a Goggo Dart, which is impossible to enter with the top up. Is it correct to pronounce it, “Barkley”?
I would assume so, as “Barkley” is the standard British pronunciation of “Berkeley” (e.g. London’s Berkeley Square). Just as “clark” is their pronunciation of “clerk.”
Re the car in the top photo: this is the first time I’ve seen a number-plate mounted at such a severe angle that it can do double-duty as an air dam.
I am well acquainted with the Berkeley through my early studies in British Motoring:
That being said I don’t think I’ve ever seen one in real life. Anyone??
Me too. And we took a quick look at one here: https://www.curbsideclassic.com/blog/snapshot-from-1960-berkeley-sport-would-the-gentleman-care-to-drag/
I found one at the Lane Motor Museum in Nashville this past summer.
Ideal candidate for a more modern bike engine implant. Been done once already: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RwbPzgcUXRA
Wow, a roadster that manages to make the Fiat 850 Spider look large.
I good friend, back in my youth, had a three wheeler Berkeley, to replace a Bond he had bought from another of my friends. The Bond was aluminium and seemed more substantial than the Berkeley, though not as quick or as much fun. The Berk was missing one of its’ perspex headlight covers, and you could peek into a big empty space behind the light. I have seen 4-wheeled Berkeleys but I only ever saw photos of the 4-stroke model.
Back in the mid sixties, I took care of one of these for a well off gentleman in Theodore, Alabama. It was a two stroke powered car. When running properly it was great fun to drive. Fouled spark plugs were it’s Achilles heel. You needed several plugs and a plug wrench in your tool kit to go on a trip longer than a few miles. Stronger coils would have likely made it a reliable car (relatively).
Seen one yep and a couple of other Bond oddities but thats all, they all seem to have died of something here and are waiting for revival by restorers, a more modern power train would be the answer to me even something British like a 650 Triumph or even a later Royal Enfield since those are still in production then you’d have a tiny cute car that went well.
There are a couple of modern units which spring to mind, like Triumph’s 1200 cc and BMW’s 800cc twins. Or if you want to go crazy, there’s the Fiat TwinAir from the 595 Abarth…
The magazine Grassroots Motorsports had one of these a while back as a project car….I forget which engine it eventually wound up with.
I’m surprised this was tested by Road&Track, and 30 years ago and not 50.
Sorry, but as much as I like small cars, when you get to cars SMALLER than Fiat 850s, I lose interest.
I had no idea that these existed! Cool cars. The 50’s were such a great time for the development of sports cars.
Saw this one last summer near a Trader Joe’s in University Place, WA.
Another from the front. What a beauty!
Happened to be in St. Paul, MN this last weekend. They have an annual car show at the MN State Fairgrounds called Back to the 50s. Really a lot of nice pre-65 iron at that show. I’d consider this one of the nicer venues for such an event. The fairground is laid out in well shaded streets which makes viewing the cars a pleasure rather than a chore.
I didn’t stay long or take many photos – darn. However, I thought this show sas good enough that I’ll be arranging my schedule to be in St. Paul for the next one. I think this is even better than Reno Hot August nights – at least for sheer ease of seeing so many different cars.
I saw a car that I had never even heard of before, so I snapped a few photos thinking I might post something new. However, when I checked, CC already had 2 different posts devoted to this particular car. Anyway, here are a few photos of a car that is certainly rare here in the US.
And if you’re interested in the St. Paul car show, here is info about this years show from their web site:
From the front
2nd front view
Engine compartment showing 3 cylinder, 2 stroke.
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