• Year of manufacture 
  • Engine number 
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    United Kingdom
  • Exterior colour 
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1904 Phoenix 4½hp Tricar
Registration no. AR 6098
Engine no. 165

Taking its name from the Phoenix Cycling Club, of which company founder J Van Hooydonk was a member, the Phoenix Motor Company was established in London in 1903 before moving to Letchworth, Hertfordshire in 1911. The firm first produced motorcycles and then tricycles before introducing a conventional but short-lived light car as early as 1904. designed by its works manager, Albert E Bowyer-Lowe, Phoenix's first true car - a twin-cylinder 10hp voiturette - appeared in 1908 and continued in production until 1915 alongside a more modern 11.9hp four. Although somewhat old fashioned in appearance with its coal scuttle bonnet and dashboard-mounted radiator, the latter resumed production after WWI and was produced until 1922 when it was superseded by the Meadows engined 12/25. Cars continued to be produced in small numbers until 1924 when the company went into liquidation, while a tiny handful left the factory in 1925. The Letchworth works was later used for the manufacture of Ascot and Arab cars.

This Phoenix tricar with basket forecar body is powered by a twin-cylinder Peacock engine with a bore/stroke of 53x108mm for a capacity of 477cc and a maker's rating of 4½hp. It was previously owned by Joseph Baily of Royston (1997), Anthony Brown of High Wycombe (2003) and Christopher Thomas of Wales (2006). A many-times London-Brighton Veteran Car Run participant, 'AR 6098' last completed the Run in 2004 and comes with a Finisher's Certificate. Being a three-wheeler, the Phoenix is also eligible for the Sunbeam MCC's Pioneer Run. Additional accompanying paperwork consists of a quantity of old MoT certificates (most recent expired 2010), a V5C registration document and VCC Dating Certificate No. 376 listing a Brown & Barlow carburettor as non-standard equipment. There are numerous copy articles concerning Phoenix vehicles on file also. 'AR 6098' is entered in this year's London to Brighton Veteran Car Run and has a start number of '282

Bonhams 1793
101 New Bond Street
United Kingdom
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Bonhams Collectors’ Car department