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Bly

The Bly 3-16 was first created in Burton-on-Trent, Staffs, (UK) in 1956 by Ernest Bly. Most car owners had owned 3-wheelers after the war but the new range of Austins meant that for the first time people were now able to afford 4-wheeled vehicles for family use. The Bly 3-16 was an attempt to capture the success of the Austin range of cars and give them 3-wheeler motoring cost. The first prototype was originally to be based on an Austin 7 but it was thought the vehicle would be  too small for a complete family and so the decision was made to base the vehicle on an Austin 16 leaving in tact the 1,600 cc engine.

The vehicle featured a modified Austin 16 chassis with a single wheel to the rear and then a complete Austin 16 body was then bolted back on to the chassis with a custom made rear section.  Despite attempts to dramatically reduce weight with aluminium sections and even copper front wings the vehicle was drastically too heavy to qualify as a tricycle under the restricted weight limit. This did not stop two vehicles being manufactured for a local brewery as promotional vehicles which then led on to another three Bly 3-16’s being created before production problems led to the end of the project in early 1958.

The 1956 Bly 3-16 (My thanks to John Payne for sending in this photo)

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