A VEHICLE WHICH BELIES ITS APPEARANCE.
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The Body is Reversed, and Provided with Dummy Radiator, Bonnet, Dash, Steering and Controls, and Appears to be Reversing when Travelling Forward.
WE have dealt in the pages of this journal with many publicityattracting vehicles, some of them of very novel design, but for sheer originality we have never seen a vehicle intended for perambulating publicity which outstrips that shown in the accompanying illustrations. It. is the product of the joint efforts of Messrs. P. Elder-Heards, who is stunning the " Minstrels of 1922," and R, W. Owen, general manager of the National Motor Cab Co., of King Street, Hammersmith, London, W.
The vehicle is a reconstructed twocylindered ITnie tnxicab provided with a four-cylindered engine of foreign make. The two gentlemen abovementioned were chatting together' and Mr.Elder-Hearns stated he wished for a publicity vehicle, and jokingly said, "Something built upside down or back. to front." Mr. Owen was struck by the latter idea, and at ()pee proceeded to lay out a design on the drawing board.
The body is mounted on the vehicle the wrong way round, and the Unic radiator, bonnet and dashboard are mounted on extensions of the main body members, so that the bonnet' comes immediately over the rear axle of the chassis. The illusion is assisted by the fitting of a steering column and wheel, and dummy brake and change speed levers, whilst the pedals consist of suitably shaped pieces of wood. The illusion is also improved by the addition of the usual type of front mudguards, but in this case protecting the -rear wheel's. A man in uniform sits on the regular driver's seat in the van, holding the dummy steering wheel, whilst the driver proper faces the other direction and sits at the right of the vehicle so that be can manipulate the proper controls of the chassis. The sides of the van are slatted to allow free vision.
Access to the engine, radiator, etc.' of the chassis is obtained by lifting up the tailboard, and a starting handle is fitted at each end, that at the rear of the chassis, of course, being a dummy.
The vehicle arouses enormous inter whenever it is seen, and as it has been
subjected to a torrent of sarcastic remarks from bus drivers and others fou lacing his vehicle in such an awkward position. The amazement of .the latter can be imagined, when, directly the traffic moves on, the vehicle immediately proceeds on its way, apparently in reverse, and at what appears to be a very dangerous speed.
To watch this vehicle running down a hill and round a corner is really an eyeopener. One instinctively waits for the crash; but, of course, nothing ensues. It must give quite a number of people qualms when they meet this van proceeding towards them, particularly if it be coming down a hill.
If the idea he developed still further, imagine the horror of meeting a K-type omnibus, or a 5 ton lorry, apparently careering backwards at full speed