In the post-War era, there was a brief period of surplus aircraft and tank engines. Several found their way into race cars. Most were under 20-liters but a few were above the magical 20-liter mark.
The cars fitted with these engines were very powerful, but they were also very heavy and very long which crippled their ability to handle and brake.
One 20+ liter example was the 1953 Swandean Spitfire Specialbuilt by Michael Wilcock, proprietor of the Swandean Garage in Worthing, Sussex. Two Daimler Dingo scout car chassis were welded end-to-end. A Merlin-powered V-12 27-Liter engine, fitted with a supercharger, was installed and offered a staggering 1600 horsepower at 3000 RPM.
The car was used on several Brighton Speed Trials during the mid-1950s. It is reported that the car achieved 150 mph in third gear, though its overall top speed is still unknown, and it had one more gear left to explore.
During the 1960s the engine was transplanted into a boat while the car was put into a boat museum. Years later, the roof on the museum collapsed. Following this unfortunate incident, the car was sold to collector who brought the car back to its former glory with its original engine.
Text & images: © Conceptcarz