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Roots & Venables


1896 - 1904

This car was made by James Dennis Roots and Cuthbert Edward Venables.  Roots was a pioneer among British car builders.  He had a 3-wheeler on the road early in 1896, called the Petrocar, it had a 2 1/4hp vertical single-cylinder oil engine and tiller steering.  By April 1897, in partnership with Venables, he was advertising three designs of 4-wheeler, 2-and 4-seaters and a delivery van, as well as passenger and van versions of the 3-wheeler.  They had 3hp engines, chain drive and tiller steering.  Roots was keen to point out that his were the only cars to use oil motors, all other so-called oil motoros were using benzolene spirit.

The 1902 range consisted of the old 3 1/2hp rear-engined model on solid tyres, a 4 1/2hp front-engined car, also on solids and a 7hp front-engined car on pneumatics.  Their last year of production was 1904, when two models were made with 5hp single cyclinder and 12hp 2-cylinder engines.  J.D. Roots later became a consulting engineer and patent specialist.

Source: Nick Georgano / The Beaulieu Encyclopaedia of the Automobile 

Models produced by Roots & Venables

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