The Barcar had a vertical 10hp 3-cylinder engine in which the middle cylinder had a larger bore than the other two, working off the exhaust gases of its smaller neighbours. This engine was enclosed with clutch and transmission in an aluminium base bolted to the chassis.
The name was derived from those of the two sponsors, W.H. Barrett and C.C. Cardell who previously made the Phoenix. The Phoenix company later made motor boat engines at Altrincham, Cheshire.