Backed by his neighbours, Oliver and Philip Lyle (of Tate & Lyle sugar fame) Macklin intended to build a robustly engineered car with enormous torque (pulling power) that demanded little or no gear-changing – as requested by Mrs Eileen Lyle. He was also determined that it should offer European standards of roadholding and handling, while matching the best of American cars for strength of construction and engine power.
In 1925, working in the three-car garage of his country house, Macklin converted the original 2-litre Coventry-Climax engined Invicta prototype to house a 2.5-litre six-cylinder, long-stroke, high-torque Meadows engine. In this form, the Invicta began to fulfil many of its founder’s dreams and the 2.5-litre model went on sale priced at £595 – body extra, as was the custom at that time.
Although supplied with a four-speed gearbox, most Invicta owners were expected to use just first and top – such was the flexibility of the engine.
"There are probably not more than one or two other makes of car in the world that can compare, for acceleration, with the 4.5-litre Invicta Sports… and no car with a comparable performance in top gear."
continues | Part Two