In 1923, Dunkley entered the history books with a fairly unlikely motor vehicle - a motorised perambulator. The Pramotor was a scooter attached to the rear of a large baby pram, and the nanny rode standing astride the engine on the scooter platform. Initially powered by a 1hp horizontal single-speed twostroke which required a push the bathtub and leap aboard with your ankle-length dress start, the following year a 2-speed version was offered with a kickstarter and clutch lever making life oh so much easier for intrepid nursie.
These brilliantly thought-out contraptions were promptly banned from footpaths and parks meaning they had to share the road with lumbering milk carts, motor bicycles and the local laird's Hispanic Wheezer. This proved problematical of course, with a one-horse engine having difficulty pacing the milko's cart let alone Sir Richcant's 17 litre behemoth, so Dunkley's solution was to produce a 750cc version of the Pramotor. Or so says The Daily Mail, writing " For sporting nannies there was the option of this space-age looking 21 horsepower engine - a 750 cc two-stroke single - which at 75 guineas promised performance far beyond the roadholding capabilities of the average perambulator" as the caption to an image which shows the Duke of York admiring machine. But who am I to doubt the veracity of that august publication.
Models included the Model 20 Pramotor (40 guineas) and the Saloon Pramotor (135 guineas).
The Motor Cycle DECEMBER 14th, 1922.
I NEVER take ladies to motor exhibitions. They ask such silly questions. Not of me. They know better than that. But of the stand attendants. Who look sympathetically at me while they explain. I resent sympathy from dudes unknown to me. I had to break my rule at last month's Car Show. As a peace offering. I had been detected in something, and this was my ransom. So we went. I led her straight to the Dunkley Pramotor. (Knew I'd got to buy her something after what had happened, and thought a Pramotor would be cheaper than a Rolls. No luck. Not a bit of it. One disdainful glance, and I was dragged off to study the 50 h.p. Sizaire-Berwick. Her expert opinion is that Mr. Dunkley is either a bachelor or a grandfather. At least, he knows nothing about babies. I hadn't noticed it before, but it is true. The bisected scooter on which Nursie stands is at the back of the Pramotor. Screened from the infant's view by the rear leather panel of the saloon. So that Baby can't see Nursie. Now, when our 7hp Ixionette loses sight of Berenice (Berenice is our nurse) even momentarily, it makes a noise compared to which the last trump intensified through a Magnavox is the first bleat of a young lamb. (I compromised with a Trojan saloon eventually.)