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This rare Vintage-era Grand Prix voiturette was formerly the property of the late Bob Graves.
Amilcar was founded by Andre Morel and engineer Edmond Moyet to build cyclecars with sufficient performance for Morel to realise his dream of competition success. Emile Akar, a Paris businessman, and Joseph Lamy, an executive at cyclecar maker Le Zebre, backed Morel's and Moyet's prototype, which was enthusiastically received. Powered by a diminutive 904cc four-cylinder sidevalve engine, Amilcar's first model, the CC, commenced production in 1921. The CC was praised for its excellent, responsive handling and adequate power, attracting a large and loyal following and setting the pattern for future models. It also provided Morel with his desired competition success when he became the 1100cc Class champion of France in 1922.
Within a couple of years Amilcar found itself at a disadvantage to Salmson, whose new twin-overhead-camshaft four was considerably more powerful, and responded with a twin-cam six. First seen in 1925 and universally admired for their low build and light weight, the Type CO (works) cars boasted supercharged engines with integral cylinder heads and exquisitely machined crankshafts running in seven main (roller) bearings. In October 1926 at the Paris Salon the company introduced a production version with detachable head, plain-bearing engine, the C6, which Autocar magazine described as 'beautifully finished, excellently streamlined...' Fed by a Roots-type supercharger and equipped with dry sump lubrication, the C6 engine represented state-of-the-art automotive technology, delivering a maximum power output of over 60bhp. Effectively a Grand Prix car in miniature, the exclusive, limited edition C6 was exactly what Amilcar's sporting clientele had been asking for, though the price of 60,000 Francs placed it firmly in Bugatti Type 35A/37 territory.
The C6 enjoyed considerable success against the rival Salmsons and BNCs but away from the racetrack the company was not doing so well. Its straightened circumstances led to a drastic cutback of the competitions department in 1927, though in private hands the advanced Amilcars continued racing well into the 1940s. Today, despite a production run of barely a single season, these exquisitely crafted Grand Prix voiturettes have become the quintessential Amilcar and among the most recognisable French competition cars of the Vintage era.
This particular C6 was purchased by the late Bob Graves as a fresh project after he had completed his other Amilcar chassis 11032 (see here). This C6 was acquired from Belgium as a complete rolling chassis and then rebuilt and improved using all the experience gained from developing chassis 11032. It has not been used extensively though it is known to have attended at least one Brooklands Reunion.
The Amilcar is now owned by Bob Graves' son, Tor Graves, and is having some minor metal work carried out as well as a complete repaint in amore sympathetic and period red colour.