1927 Vauxhall ’30-98′ Tourer

The Vauxhall 30-98, often regarded as the pinnacle of British sports cars during the Vintage era, holds a special place in the hearts of knowledgeable enthusiasts. While Bentley’s victories at Le Mans garnered more attention, proponents of the 30-98 argue that Vauxhall, having participated in both Grand Prix and Tourist Trophy races before World War I, had engineered a car that could outperform 3-Litre Bentleys on rugged cross-country journeys.

Production of the 30-98 was abruptly halted by the outbreak of WWI, with only a few cars sold. It wasn’t until 1919, when manufacturing resumed, that the model was designated as the ‘E-Type’. Production of the E-Type ceased in September 1922 after producing 287 cars. A brief pause followed before its successor, the overhead-valve ‘OE,’ entered the market in early 1923. Despite a reduced capacity of 4.2 liters, the OHV engine’s power exceeded 110bhp, although this increase had minimal impact on the car’s performance.

Front-wheel brakes were not introduced to the OE until late 1923, using a cable system operated by the foot pedal, alongside the transmission brake. Hydraulic front-wheel and transmission brakes were adopted in 1926. By early 1927, when the final batch of OE chassis rolled out, interest in the 30-98 had waned. Its aging design couldn’t compete with the more refined offerings from Bentley and Sunbeam. The total production of OEs amounted to 312 cars.

Source: Bonhams