Tag Archives: Tatra 613

Classics on the Green

The “Classics on the Green” at Croxley Green near Rickmansworth invariably turns up some unexpected gems.
1993 Tatra 613. Having used the Tatra 603 since 1957 the Czechoslovakian Communist officials wanted a new flagship – the result was the 613, styled by the Italian Carrosserie Vignale, the first Tatra not to be styled in-house.
In the best tradition of the distinguished former Tatra designer Hans Ledwinka, the engine is a rear-mounted air-cooled V8 of 3.5-litres.
1934 Riley Imp. This car was delivered to Freddie Clifford in August 1934 and was immediately entered for the Tourist Trophy on the Ards circuit. The car was flagged off after 30 laps and was sold shortly afterwards to South Africa.
1931 Buick 8 – it has an 8-cylinder o.h.v. 5.6-litre engine. The parts for this right-hand drive car were made in Canada and the car was finally assembled at the General Motors factory at Hendon in northern London.
1935 Triumph Gloria Vitesse. A lovely example of the typical offerings from this Coventry manufacturer. The Gloria line marked a change of direction as Donald Healey became Technical Director. Power came from a 6-cylinder Coventry-Climax engine.
1954 Frazer-Nash Le Mans Coupé. Only eight of these attractive cars were made after Wharton/Mitchell won the 2-litre class at Le Mans in 1953.
This car differed from the others by being supplied from the factory with wire wheels.
Question – what is the link between this rare American Indian motor-cycle and the Le Mans Cunninghams? Answer – G. Briggs Cleaver who designed the American cars was, before the war, the Chief Engineer of the famous motor-cycle manufacturer.

David Blumlein, September 2013