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Bexhill 100 Motoring Club

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Sunbeam Rapier Series V, 1967

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Pending completion of the new Fastback Rapier, Rootes decided to have one more go at updating the Sunbeam Rapier. In September 1965 they introduced the Series V version which looked exactly like the Series IV inside and out except for badges on wings and boot which now said "1725", revealing a re-developed engine, although the actual capacity was 1,724 cc (105.2 cu in). Rootes redesigned the Rapier's four cylinder engine to increase the capacity, with a new five main bearing crankshaft, making the unit stronger and smoother. This engine would be developed for many subsequent models. In the Series V Rapier the engine developed 91 hp (68 kW; 92 PS) at 5,500 rpm. To further update the car, they changed its polarity from positive to negative earth and fitted an alternator in place of the dynamo. They also devised a new twin pipe exhaust system so that the new engine could breathe more easily. The effect of these changes was to increase the Rapier's maximum speed to 95 mph (153 km/h) and reduce its time from rest to 60 mph (97 km/h) to 14.1 seconds. However, for all its improvements, the Series V just did not sell. By the time it was discontinued in June 1967, only 3,759 units had been built, making it the rarest of all the "Series" Sunbeam Rapiers.

Engine

4 Cylinders in line ohv

5 bearing crankshaft

Bore: 81.5mm

Stroke: 82.55mm

Displacement: 1,725cc

Compression ratio: 9.2:1

Carburettors: two Zenith downdraught

 

Performance

Maximum speed: 95mph

Acceleration: 0-60 mph 19.3sec

Max power: 91bhp at 5,500 rpm

Overall fuel consumption: 27.2mpg,

touring: 30.1mpg

 

Brakes

Hydraulic, servo assisted.

Front:10.5in disc

Rear: 9in drum

Construction

All steel unitary, vynide upholstery

 

Transmission

Clutch: 7.5in Borg and Beck, single dry-plate diaphragm self-adjusting

Gearbox: manual 4-speed or optional, 3 speed automatic

Synchromesh on upper 3 gears

Ratios(manual): Top 3.89 : 1, third 5.413:1, second 8.324 : 1, First 13.04 : 1, Reverse 13.88 : 1.Prop shaft: Hardy Spicer open Final drive: Spiral Bevel

Axle ratio: 4.55:1

 

Steering

Burman recirculating ball

 

Suspension

Front: Independent, coil springand wishbone,

telescopic Armstong shock absorbers

Rear: Semi-elliptic, leaf spring, telescopic shock absorbers,

Wheels

Bolt on disc wheels with

5.50-5.90 x 15in tubeless

 

Dimensions

Wheelbase: 8ft 0in

Track - front: 4ft 3.75in

Track - rear: 4ft 0.5in

Overall length: 13ft 7.5in

Overall width: 5ft 0.75in

Overall height: 4ft 9.25in

Ground clearance: 5.75in

Turning circle: 36 ft

Kerb weight: 21.25cwt

Fuel tank capacity: 10gals

 

Sunbeam Rapier Series IV Production

1965-1967 3,759 produced