1934 Aston Martin 1.5 Litre MK II Sports by Bertelli
Engine: 4 cylinder
Displacement: 92 cu. in./1.5 L
Horsepower: approx. 100 hp
Transmission: 4-speed manual
A Little History
Aston Martin was founded in 1913 by Lionel Martin and Robert Bamford. The company’s name became Aston Martin in 1914, following one of Lionel Martin’s successful runs at the Aston Hill Climb in Buckinghamshire. By the 1930s, Aston Martin was helmed by Italian technician Cesare Bertelli, who designed a new model with a 1½-liter four-cylinder engine, available on two lengths of chassis and with several varieties of sporting bodywork.
In its September 7, 1934 preview, ‘The Autocar’ magazine reported “the whole essence of the spirit behind the car is that it developed along lines of steady evolution. Modifications are made as found desirable by experience, and, in particular, as found worthwhile through experience gained in long-distance racing.”
The ‘evolution’ was very significant with body, chassis, and engine changes. The 1.5-liter engine was tuned to produce 73 bhp, and the chassis was made stiffer to improve road holding. Two chassis lengths were available on the Mark II – a long form for saloons, tourers and drop head coupes, and a short form for 2 and 2/4 seater sports cars.
A total of 148 of the Mark II automobiles were produced. The number of cars produced did not prevent it from being very successful in competition, such as at the French Grand Prix at Le Mans.
On display is a rare example of a 2/4 seat tourer built on a long chassis. Two distinctive features of the Mark II are the thermostatically controlled radiator shutters and the cycle type front wings which turn with the steering.