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Riley Cars  1907-14   12-18hp



  Riley 12/18hp 1907
Engine:-  12 hp V two cylinder side valve, Bore 102, Stroke 127, Capacity 2035cc, Gearbox:- 3-speed gearbox. Weight:- 13.25cwt (chassis only), Sizes:- Wheelbase 7'6" / 8'9" (approximately 2250 / 2650mm), Track 4'2" (approximately 1250mm), Length 11'3" / 12'6" (approximately 3410 / 3790mm). Width 5'6" (approximately 1650mm). Tyres 810 x 90






Early motoring postcard   (open source from ebay)  showing man vs hill as a popular pursuit. This was postally used/printed 1905 so the dates in Styles (as started in 1908) do not match there must have been overlap between these later cars and the earlier models or the car is actually a SWB 12/18 as the rounded bonnet was mainly a 12/18 feature

 Riley 12/18 1908-14


The 12-18hp, was available in two formats the long and short wheelbase plus as in anything Riley in a vast array of body designs.
Known body formats sold are :-
2 seater short wheelbase tourer (1907-10);
1907-1910  Short Wheel Based Two Seater 12/18 h.p. This was available with rear entrance or side doors cost £236.5.00 (225 guineas)

1909   Short Wheel Based Two Seater 12/18 h.p cost £241.10.00 (230 guineas) 1910  two seater cost £246.15.00 (235 guineas)

5 seater short wheelbase rear-entranced tourer (1907-09);
1907-1909  Short Wheel Based Five Seater 12/18 h.p  cost £246.15.00 (235 guineas)

5-seater Long Wheelbase side-entranced tourer (1907-13; the most popular);
1907 five seater cost £283.10.00 (270 guineas). 1909  five seater cost £262.10.00 (250 guineas). 1910 five seater cost £309.15.00 (295 guineas)
This is described in the sales leaflet (in the archives) as :- " Side entrance car(9ft W.B.Chassis) 810x90mm grooved tyres on back wheels including cape cart hood,single adjustable screen,spare Riley wheel and grooved tyre, also five good quality lamps and horn " for 325 guineas in 1913

Landaulette Long Wheelbase (1909-12);
1909 Laundalette cost £367.10.00 (350 guineas) 1910 Laundaulette cost £367.10.00 (350 guineas)
This is described in the sales leaflet  (in the archives) as :- "Laundaulette ( 9ft W.B.Chassis) 810x90mm grooved tyres on all wheels ,spare Riley wheel and grooved tyre, also five good quality lamps and horn " for 380 guineas in 1913

2 seater short wheelbase Torpedo
( survivor is AF 676); This is described in the sales leaflet (in the archives) as :- "Two seater Torpedo body (8 ft or 9ft W.B.Chassis) 810x90mm grooved tyres on back wheels including cape cart hood, single adjustable  screen, spare Riley wheel and grooved tyre, also five good quality lamps and horn " for 285 guineas

2 seater Long Wheelbase Tourer (1911-13);

Medico Special Long Wheelbase Coupe (1913).
12/18 h.p. A two door enclosed plus dickey/boot see below  This is described in the sales leaflet (in the archives) as :- "Special Coupe ( 9ft W.B.Chassis) 810x90mm grooved back  tyres with complete equipment including spare Riley wheel and grooved tyre, also five good quality lamps and horn " for 370 guineas

The same 1913 leaflet adds a model npot in Styles the 4 seater long wheelbase Torpedo
This is described in the sales leaflet (in the archives) as :- "Torpedo Four Seater ( 9ft W.B.Chassis)  810x90mm grooved tyres on back wheels including cape cart hood,single adjustable screen,spare Riley wheel and grooved tyre, also five good quality lamps and horn " for 325 guineas

Translation :-
Guineas were a unit used for smart/posh transactions right up to the late twentieth century in the uk . £1  + 1 shilling. Derived from a Georgian coin loved by thieves as you could clip the metal  which  contained approximately one-quarter of an ounce of gold
Laundaulette . A landaulet, also known as a landaulette, is a car body style where the rear passengers are covered by a convertible top. Often the driver is separated from the rear passengers by a division, as with a limousine. During the first half of the 20th century, taxicabs were often landaulettes, with models such as the Austin  being a common sight in larger cities and the probable reason for so few five seater LWB Rileys surviving

The previous V twin  was the first front-mounted engine in a four wheeled Riley and this followed this 'modern' pattern. The radiator was styled in the  fashionable ellipse causing a more expensive to produce rounded bonnet behind which speedily evolved to a straight sided one. V-type engines were used although the 9 hp model  had  cylinders directional fore/aft and its crankshaft set transversely, the  12-18 and 10 hp  reversed this configuration. They ceased using  chain transmission and used a cardan shaft instead (A drive shaft, driveshaft, driving shaft, tailshaft, propeller shaft (prop shaft), or Cardan shaft (after Girolamo Cardano)) . All  models were water-cooled V-twins with side valves, almost two litres  for the 12-18. Victor Riley (sr)  himself was among the marque's outstanding competition drivers. As early as 1911, the 12/18hp Riley used a carburetter which was not standard in may makes until decades later.

**All pre-war vehicles have an RAC horsepower rating, which was linked to the Vehicle Excise Duty, and a figure for brake horse power. When the horsepower tax was introduced on 1 January 1910 a formula, known as the RAC Rating, was used to calculate the horsepower Some manufacturers, such as Riley, Rover and Wolseley, used a double rating system and designated a car as eg. 10/25, where the 10 was RAC horsepower and 25 was indicated horsepower**

Known Survivors:-

AB1390. . . on 1907 Riley 9hp 1034cc ( in some places 12hp) in Gaydon listed as 10hp but included here as searches throw it up see Vtwin page


 NS105 1908 Riley 12/18 Tourer @ Coventry Transport Museum. This museum is £4 for adults  and if you ask very very nicely they allow Riley people to go over the string wall and look closer ( try not to leave any handprints as they hate re-polishing) . These are the people backing the archives so do support them click here






B1524 1911 Riley 12/18 V-Twin pictures from here base of the page now in the Netherlands unless moved also click here for 2014 pics