Simple car defies expectations

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The Saxon Motor Car Co. of Detroit was formed by Hugh Chalmers, HW Dunham and Harry Ford (no relation to Henry Ford). The first Saxon Four reached the American Automobile market in 1914. When the Saxon came on to the market it was advertised as good and good-looking. The first cost of a Saxon was less than a good horse and buggy and the upkeep cost far less.

Strategically placed, the temperature gauge is at the front of the bonnet on the 1914 Saxon.

Owner of many cars Bill Sheddan, of Gore, had never owned a veteran car until he purchased a pre-1920s Saxon last year.

Sheddan said the 1914 Saxon ticked all the boxes for him to buy it..

“It is a simple little car that appealed to me.”

Since he bought the Saxon last August, he had taken it on a few rallies in the South.

So far the car had been to the Dunedin to Brighton rally, Invercargill to Riverton, and the Gore veteran car rally to Waikaia.

“My wife is not a keen navigator but I never have a shortage of people wanting to come for a drive,” Sheddan said.

“Next year the Gore Vintage Car Club are hosting the National Veteran Car Rally and I thought it would be nice to participate.

“For a car of this era, it is self-starting, not what you would expect.”

The accelerator is in the middle, there is no speedometer, there are three forward gears and the temperature gauge is at the front of the bonnet.

“A very different style of motoring over 100 years ago, that is for sure.”

The previous owners in Auckland restored the car in 1995 and it was back on the road in 1996.

The 1914 Saxon had a continental 1200cc four-cylinder 12hp motor.

“It was a very popular motor in the early days.

“As far as I know, there are only two others in the country.

“For me? I am having a lot of fun in it,” Sheddan said.