Car manufacturer Humber Limited was one of the most prolific developers of its day. By 1960, 200,000 vehicles were being produced a year. The company was eventually bought up by the Chrysler Corporation, but Humber created some memorable cars while it was around. The Humber Hawk was a good example. We’re looking into the history of the Hawk to see how it was developed.
The Hawk was the first Humber car to be launched after World War II. A re-badged Hillman 14, the Hawk was bigger and narrower. It was also 112 pounds lighter than the Hillman. The engine also received an update, being able to produce 56 bhp. The car could reach a top speed of 65 mph.
The Hawk’s four-door body was mounted on a seperate chassis and came with a sunshine roof. The independent suspension provided a comfortable ride that worked well for a large car.
The Mark II version arrived in 1947 and it remained much the same as the original. The big difference was a column gear change that stopped the synchromesh gears from crashing. The engine also had a new water jacket.
The Mark III, brought out in 1948, was a brand new vehicle that appeared at the London Motor Show. The new chassis featured coil-sprung independent front suspension and the body was an important part of the overall design. Developed by Loewy Studio, the body came in a range of colours.
The fourth version of the Hawk arrived in 1951, coming with a 2267 cc engine and large 15-inch wheels. When the Mark IV was tested by The Motor it reached a speed of 71.4 mph. It accelerated from 0 – 60 mph in 30 seconds.
The fifth version of the Hawk was made in 1952 and this stood out from previous models because it came in a limousine variation. Production of the Hawk lasted until 1967, but it had earned a reputation as a spacious, practical vehicle. It will always be remembered as one of Humber’s best developed cars.