The British Racing Motors (unofficial) information centre.

- ERA specials and others -

Back e-mail Disclaimer Home



Photograph - copyright unknown)

ERA "Challenger"

Inspired by Reg Parnell the Challenger appeared in July 1939 at Prescott with a ERA engine. Reputedly the engine was ‘borrowed’ from ERA R6B.

At first the car was called “The Challenge”, but later this was changed to “Challenger”.

The car appeared twice in 1947, fitted with a 1½ litre Delage engine.





From The Racing Car Pocket book by Denis Jenkinson from B.T.Batsford 1962

Reg Parnell started building this car in 1939 as a Grand Prix contender as it looked as though the new Formula was to be for l.5-litre cars.
The war put a stop to the project, though he got the chassis finished and ran it once at Prescott hill-climb, using an E.R.A. engine and gearbox.
The tubular chassis had i.f.s. and de Dion rear end and was based on the Mercedes-Benz of the day, while the body was of typical Grand Prix design.
The engine was planned to be a twin o.h.c. 6-cylinder based on Parnell’s experience with a special M.G. Magnette engine. At first the car was called “The Challenge”, but later this was changed to “Challenger”.
Immediately after the war Parnell installed a 1927 Delage l.5-litre straight-eight engine and David Hampshire raced it for a short time, but the Challenger as such was never completed.

Cylinders: 6.
Bore and Stroke: 66.75 x 71 mm.
Capacity:1,492 c.c.
Indutcion: Supercharged.
Valves: Inclined overhead with two overhead camshafts.
Wheelbase: 8 ft. 6 in.
Forward Speeds: 4.
Front Suspension:
Independent by double wishbones and coil springs.
Rear Suspension: de Dion with torsion bars.
Chassis Frame: Tubular.
Maximum Speed: Unknown.


(ERA-engined in 1939 and from 2018 to date)

R (Reg) Parnell 1939 to 1948
P R (Paul) Emery 1948 to ?
R L (Reg) Edginton ? to 1951
Unknown 1951 to ?
(USA) ? to ?
G M (George) Chilberg ? to ?
E D (Dean) Butler ? to 2004

Post “period” history (note that the ownership history can be checked via The ERA Club.)

2004 owner - D (Duncan) Ricketts 2004



The Brooke Special - 1936 (Riley-ERA 'Brooke Special') ..................... More Photos

Henry Leslie Brooke built his single-seater racing car in 1936 based on a modified Riley Imp chassis and powered it initially with an 1100cc six-cylinder MG K3 engine.

In the 1938 South African Grand Prix the car used a supercharged ERA engine.

1970s - the car was restored.
1990s - fitted with a supercharged ERA engine.
2000s - was refitted with the pre-WWII independent front suspension assembly





Ownership / History

2019 - at Montlhery with Klaus Dold the new owner of the Brooke ERA on his first outing.

2017 Stewart Wilkie (driver Mark Butterworth)


(Photograph - Donington Park, 12 September 2004) ..................... More Photos

E.R.A.-Delage (or Delage-ERA ?)

"Taking the 1927 Delage chassis to which Prince Chula had fitted i.f.s. just pre-war, Rob Walker installed the E-type ERA. engine from G.P.1, the first of the E-types which was crashed and burnt in the 1.o.M. An Armstrong-Siddeley preselector gearbox was used, and the offset driving position and the external appearance of the car was kept original, including the square Delage radiator shell. Modern brakes, shock-absorbers, wheels and tyres were fitted and the car was raced by A. P.R. Rolt. It proved to be a most successful combination and enlivened the 1951/2 seasons on the British cir­cuits, one of its best performances being a 3rd place at Goodwood, behind a Type 159 Alfa Romeo and a 4.5-1itre Ferrari.

The 1.5-litre 6-cylinder E-type E.R.A. engine was fitted with a two-stage supercharging system, with two Roots blowers, one in front of the engine and the other alongside the engine.

1951 Specification.....
Cylinders: 6.
Bore and Stroke: 62.8 x 80 mm.
Capacity: 1,488 c.c.
Induct ion: Two-stage Roots supercharging.
Valves: In­clined overhead with pushrods.
Wheelbase: 8 ft. 2.5 in.
Forward Speeds:         4.
Front Suspension: Independent by transverse leaf spring and upper wishbones.
Rear Suspension: Rigid axle on semi-elliptic leaf springs.
Chassis Frame: Channel-section.
Maximum Speed: 140 m.p.h." ------- From The Racing Car Pocket book by Denis Jenkinson from B.T.Batsford 1962


(Photograph - Donington Park, 12 September 2004) ..................... More Photos

E.R.A.-Riley (or Riley-ERA ?)

"Another ERA engined car is Keith Knight's ERA-Riley - the chassis of which is based on the works Rileys that used an independent front suspension, patented by André Girling and similar to that used on the Daimler cars of the period."

Percy McClure compaigned the car before the war at Brooklands, Donington Park, Prescott and Shelsley Walsh,

Ater the war it was driven at Silverstone in the first British Grand Prix in 1948 by Geoff Richardson.





(Photograph - Prescott Historique 2023 hill climb 27/5/2023)

ERA - IFS Riley-ERA (ERA Riley)

Built by the late Charlie Roberts probably about 30 years ago with a 1.5 litre ERA engine.










(Photograph - © Historic Winton)

SAS (Supercharged Armstrong Siddeley)

In Australia Frank Cuttell used a 1936 Armstrong Siddeley 14hp saloon to produce this ERA-like racer.

Powered by a 1.6 litre overhead valve supercharged straight six engine.






Back e-mail Disclaimer Home

V1.3 - 22 Feb 2024 ---- recommended resolution (1366 x 768)

© David Hodgkinson 2000-2024. All rights reserved.