History Su Chapter 3

History Su banner
The History > Chapter 3

Morris reduced the price of the basic Minor in 1931, a car that was capable of 50mph and 50mpg. Sir Miles Thomas (Managing Director of Morris Motors) had a vision to better that, by 100%. The concept was simple, to take a side-valve Minor and create a special car that would crack 100mph and 100mpg, the aim being solely to generate PR via films to be shown in cinemas, backed up by magazine articles.

While the car was (loosely) based upon the £100 Morris available to buy in the showroom, it required streamlined bodywork to get close to the 100mph target. The side-valve engine was also hotted-up with a Powerplus supercharger and a large SU carburetter. The supercharger would be removed after the speed runs, and a smaller SU carburetter fitted, to achieve over 100mpg.

Driven by Bill Becke at Brooklands on Wednesday 12th August 1931 the record was set achieving 100.39mph over two flying mile runs. On a carefully selected road between Birmingham and Coventry the car recorded 107.4 miles on a single gallon of benzine at an average of 15.3mph.

Morris never claimed the 100mph and 100mpg were achieved by a standard car, but they did advertise the showroom models with the headline £100/100mph/100mpg.

Sadly, 1931 marks the death of George (Bert) Skinner, the inventor and patentee of the SU constant depression carburetter, aged just 59 years. Brother Thomas (Carl) Skinner continues to work in the business.

In December 1932, an MG EX127 became the first car (under 750cc) to exceed 120mph, once again fitted with a Powerplus supercharger and SU carburetter, cementing the SU brands’ reputation as a reliable carburetter that had a very positive effect on performance.

Go to Chapter 4

Add skinners union logo and design