Vauxhall KN 1909.

The KN was built by a British subsidiary of General motors from their small newly opened Brooklands experimental circuit in Surrey. The Vauxhall KN was a relatively ordinary car that reached a magic record of 100mph (161kph). The company managed to transform the 20hp A-type, a medium size car of the day into a speed machine.

The KN was designed to cheat the wind with its tube-like body and disc wheels, with a radiator mounted sideways in the bonnet as coolants. Its earlier disadvantage was the hot that blew back to the cockpit which wasn’t fun for the driver, tests and further modification was made and in 1910 and the best they could do was 99.5mph (160kph) until it was suggested that draining the gearbox and rear axle of oil could help reduce weight. The happy result was a 1 km making it 161.06kph.

Vauxhall managed to carve a niche name brand for themselves ever since and was producing about 200 cars a year at the time, and the KN paved the way for the Prince Henry and the 30/98 sports cars in the subsequent years.

vauxhall KN


Year: 1909

Place of origin: Luton, Bedfordshire, UK

Historical Status: Speed record Car

Engine: Four cylinder, 3.053cc (186ci)

Layout: front mounted engine driving the rear wheels

Bodywork: single seater racer

Top speed: 161kph (100mph)

Number built: one