Today in Motorcycle History

Perry Motor Co

Perry Motor Company of Tyseley, Birmingham who made tricycles, forecars and automobiles between 1899 and 1916.

The company can trace its roots back to 1824 with the brothers James and Stephen Perry making pens in a workshop in London, later moving to Birmingham and building bicycles. By the late 1890s they were having financial problems and were bought by James William Bayliss, part owner of automobile manufacturer Bayliss-Thomas.

Their first machine, a three wheeler, was made in 1899 followed by a forecar in 1903.

Cecil Bayliss, the son of the new owner, built a cyclecar in 1911 with an 800cc engine and this was developed into the first Perry car to reach production.

The engine was built in-house and was a two cylinder unit, unusual in that both pistons rose and fell at the same time. Drive was to the rear wheels through a 3 speed gearbox and worm drive axle. The basic body was an open two-seater but a long wheelbase version allowing a dickey seat was also available. About 800 were constructed.

A full sized car was introduced in 1914 with four cylinder 1795 cc engine. The larger car allowed four seat bodies to be offered as well as two seaters and these were mainly made by Mulliners of Birmingham. About 300 were made before World War I curtailed car building activities.

Very few were made in 1919, and that year the design was sold to Bean cars who reintroduced it as the Bean 11.9.

1903 Olympia Show

Perry and Co., Ltd., Birmingham.

It is with pleasure we note a special free-wheel clutch for use on motor cycles is now being supplied. The Perry set includes very substantial hubs and spindles and duplex front forks. The firm's forecar is worthy of attention, and is substantially built. The hubs of this forecar are fitted with large ball races and flush ends, giving a maximum of wheel gauge with a minimum of projection, enabling the machine to be passed through an ordinary doorway if desired. They are also showing a new type of frame of their own design, of which they supply fittings to the trade complete with brackets for supporting the engine of any well-known type, including their own.

They are also supplying for this season a new engine of 3½ h.p., the bore and stroke of which are 86 mm. by 86 mm. This engine is supplied with an improved type of silencer. (Stand 212.)

The Motor Cycle, Nov 25th 1903

Perry and Co.

are showing a Tricar of good design fitted with a 3 h.p. Perry engine, placed in an inclined position and fed by a surface carburetter. The tank is a large one, and should carry an ample supply of petrol. (Stand 332, Gallery.)

The Motor Cycle, November 25th 1903
Stanley Show 1903


WE recently had an opportunity of seeing one of the latest Perry cycle cars, which is sold in London by Cars and Motor Sundries, Ltd., 175, Shaftesbury Avenue, W.C. Since the chassis was first exhibited at the Show and described in these pages, the Perry has undergone some slight alterations, though the main features are kept the same. The engine is now fitted with a Zenith carburetter, which gives plenty of power and yet permits of slow running. The final drive is by bevel instead of by worm as originally fitted.

The body is of pleasing appearance, and is most comfortable, while the sloping dashboard, under which the petrol and oil tank are carried, is quite graceful. The car is supplied complete for 130 guineas, with five detachable wheels and shock absorbers to the back springs. These springs are carried underneath the axle. The five wheels are provided with brake drums which are detachable with the wheels, and in the case of the front, wheels these drums act as an adequate protection for the steering joints. The steering on this little vehicle is direct. The whole design shows careful forethought, and such refinements as sheet steel valances between the steps and the body, and inner shields to the handsome dome mudguards are provided.

Messrs. Cars and Motor Sundries, Ltd., are now able to deliver a limited number of these attractive little vehicles, which should find a ready market.

The Motor Cycle, July 17th, 1913.

Perry's Private Testing Track.

The makers of the Perry light car are constructing a private testing track at their works at Tyseley, near Birmingham. The track when completed will be about half a mile in circumference, but it is not circular. Last week we inspected the test hill, which is a short ascent and descent of 1 in 5, and saw a Perry car driven over it from a standing start on the second gear ; descending the hill and returning over the rough uncompleted track, the little car went over the hill on top gear. All cars, which are now being delivered in regular numbers, have to stop on the 1 in 5 hill and restart on second speed before being passed.

The Motor Cycle, July 24th, 1913.


Keen interest and to some extent curiosity is being evinced in the importation of cycle cars to this State. As we have previously pointed out a number of cycle cars that have been giving satisfactory results in the old country are likely to see Australian roads shortly. Among them is the Perry cycle car, several of which are being sent out to the order of the Wyatt Motoria. The proprietor (Mr. A. H. Garood) tells one that a shipment is on its way out and will be landed in the course of the next few weeks. Of course some of the manufacturers in England commenced cycle car construction, and after testing their models abandoned them for the time being, but those that have survived the tests are generally regarded as thoroughly efficient, and likely to command consider able attention. However, should the Perry production prove anything near what it is claimed to be - and it is not likely the English manufacturers are going to send any article this distance if it is not reliable - a ready outlet will be found for it in this state, at any rate.

The Mail (Adelaide, SA) Sat 14 Jun 1913

Sources: Graces Guide, Trove NLA

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