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1912 Maxwell AC Messenger

Engine Type

Two cylinders, horizontally opposed with side valves, constant loss lubrication, thermosyphon cooling

Details of fuel & ignition system

Fuel is gravity fed to a carburetor of Maxwell design


Two speed planetary

How did you acquire the vehicle?

I bought it from USA in 2008 from a deceased estate after friends in USA told me about .

Brief known history of the vehicle

Prior to my purchase all owners were in the USA, starting with Roscoe Smith who bought the car new for his work stringing power lines to outlying areas. His business grew to become listed on the NY stock exchange and he started a museum. The Maxwell was in that museum for many years. After his death the Maxwell was owned by Roscoe Smith's nephew Dave Bush. The next owner was Leonard Votroubik, followed by Lester Robinson. Up to this time the Maxwell had not been restored. Lester restored the car cosmetically and carried out some mechanical work. I bought the car in 2008 and completed the restoration.

What do you like & dislike about your car?

It performs well for a 2 cylinder car but its very slow on hills when low gear is needed.

Fun facts or any other details you’d like to include?

The Maxwell motto was "Perfectly Simple, Simply Perfect". It is certainly an extremely simple car, as for perfect. not quite, it's been a challenge. Notwithstanding it completed the Perth to Sydney tour in 2012.

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