1928 Amilcar CGSS-Style Two Seater
Chassis no. 17405A
1,074cc Side-valve Inline 4-Cylinder Engine
4-Speed Manual Transmission
Leaf Spring Suspension
4-Wheel Mechanical Brakes
*Beautifully presented Amilcar in sporting Roadster trim
*Recently shown at the Amelia Island and Lime Rock Concours events
*Fitted with desirable 4-speed gearbox
*A delightful miniature Bugatti for small, twisty roads
Amilcar was founded by Andre Morel and engineer Edmond Moyet to build cyclecars with sufficient performance for Morel to realize 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 side-valve engine, Amilcar's first model, the CC, commenced production in 1921.
The Chassis Gran Sport Surbaisse, or CGSS, was introduced in 1926 and represented the ultimate development of this series. The engine was highly tuned and new wide sump was fitted. What made the CGSS special was the lowered chassis and its distinctive long frame rail projections in front of the radiator. This new lowered grand sports Amilcar was delivered in attractive coachwork in the form of a grand prix type two seater sports. The earliest of the CGSS had the attractive upswept cowl for driver protection. The CGSS was well equipped with full instrumentation including tachometer and le Nivex fuel gauge all fitted in a polished aluminum dash. The CGS and CGSS formed the basis for much of Amilcar's success through the late 1920s, in both the showroom and on the racetrack; with perhaps the most famous victory coming in the 1927 Monte Carlo Rally, although a CGSS also competed in the Mille Miglia. It proved to be one of the best-selling models in Amilcar's relatively short history, with approximately 4,700 examples built of both the CGS and CGSS and it remains one of the most recognized and collectible of the road going models.
THE MOTORCAR OFFERED
This lovely little 1928 Amilcar has been very well restored and fitted with a newly constructed, beautiful Grand Sport style body. While it's early history has been lost to time, it remains unknown how this car was configured or bodied from new, but most parts are indeed original Amilcar parts. It is finished in ivory over a green leather interior, with distinct green accents applied to the undersides of the cycle-style wings. The Grand Sport-style two-seat body is beautifully proportioned with an offset cockpit and tapered tail, sitting atop a petite 90" wheelbase. It does possess a certain quality of a miniature Bugatti, thanks to the pure and purposeful style and minimal adornment. The body is built to a high standard and the off-white paint presents very well. Amilcar's signature nickel radiator shell is in excellent condition, flanked by headlights mounted on delicate fender braces. The door-less body features a single side-mounted spare wheel, and weather equipment is limited to a delicate cut-down windscreen and the quality of clothing worn by the occupants!
The simple, functional cockpit is trimmed in green leather and the dash is finished in a very cool diamond-pattern engine-turned alloy. It is well equipped with an array of period French instrumentation including a fabulous Le Nivex tachometer and Sifam minor instruments. A wood wheel is delightfully worn in and a tactile joy for the driver. Beyond controls and instruments, the cockpit is relatively unadorned, yet pleasingly detailed. Without doors or windows, it is a case study of pure functional simplicity.
Amilcar's wonderful 1,074cc side-valve engine features an alloy head and was rated at 35hp in the slightly uprated CGSS tune. This beautiful example is pleasingly detailed and very nicely presented, and the engine is mated to the very rare and desirable four-speed transmission. Given the featherweight body and chassis, performance is surprisingly brisk, combined with nimble, deft handling. This lovely little Voiturette is simply a delight to behold and to steer. Subtle modifications have been made for drivability, such as an enlarged foot box to accommodate taller drivers. It can be readily enjoyed as presented, having been recently shown at Amelia Island and Lime Rock Park's diverse and prestigious Sunday in the Park Concours, where it won the 2016 prize for best French car. No mere trailer-queen, it has even made an appearance at the VSCCA's legendary Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix. A fabulous pre-war sporting car, its beautiful style, quality restoration and joyful road manners make it suitable for a wide variety of events.