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ARKLEY SS

What does the name Arkley mean?

The Arkley SS was a car. It was an English sport car. The Arkley SS was designed by John Britten in 1969 as a fibreglass front-end and rear-end body conversion to be fitted to the MG Midget or Austin-Healey Sprite. The fibreglass sections were manufactured by the Lenham Motor Company at Harrietsham in Kent and conversions done in John Britten's Arkley Engineering workshop at Arkley in Hertfordshire or they were sold as DIY kits. The retro design was inspired by the Morgan. A performance gain was made from the standard Sprite or Midget through weight reduction and the obligatory wide wheels and tyres. Around 900 Arkley kits were sold through the production period.

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Arkley (automobile)

The Arkley was an English automobile, manufactured by John Britten Garages workshops at Arkley in the London Borough of Barnet.

The first model was a two-seater called Arkley SS, designed by John Britten in 1970 (not to be confused with the famous New Zealandian motorcycle designer, John Britten).

The retro "bug-eyed" design was inspired by a mixture of the Morgan and the original Austin Healey Sprite. The main purpose was recycling old rusty or damaged Austin-Healey Sprites or MG Midgets. The Arkley SS utilised a BMC A-Series engine launched by Austin in 1951.

The Arkley Midget used fibre glass front and rear ends fitted to the donor car. Transformation did not affect the main structural members. There were two versions, the S for standard wheels and the SS for wide wheels.

Peter May, who had worked with John Britten Garages, founded Peter May Engineering in Halesowen in 1979 and bought the manufacturing rights to the Arkley in 1987. Production continued via Peter May Engineering until 1995, in the form of DIY kits.Since 1971, around 1000 kits have been sold, but the number surviving isnot known..Some kits were modified such as a one-off called Pink Bathtub, produced in 1990.

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