Single engine touring/liaison
History of Type
A British-built four-seater touring/liaison aircraft. Designed just after WW11. First flown in September 1949.
The RAN purchased 2 Autocars in 1949 and these arrived in Australia from Britain on board the aircraft carrier HMAS Sydney. They were retired in late 1963.
The engine is inverted (upside down) to get good propeller ground clearance and pilot view.
History of VH-NVY
Our aircraft was actually a civilian one and was originally owned by Kingsford Smith Aviation.
It was acquired by the Fleet Air Arm Museum at HMAS Albatross and fully restored to represent one of the 2 Autocars the RAN owned.
The aircraft is now owned by a consortium of HARS members and is fully airworthy.
Engine: 1 x 4-cylinder air-cooled Blackburn Cirrus Major 3 which has a capacity of ~386 cu.in, (~6.3 litres) and generates ~140 BHP
Maximum takeoff weight: 1,085 kg
Length: 7 m
Wing span: 11 m
Height: 2.3 m
Cruising speed: ~100 mph (~160 km/h)
Ceiling: 11,000 ft
Range: ~800 km (~500 miles)
Crew: 1 pilot (plus up to 3 passengers)
On 30 August 1955 a privately owned Auster took off by itself from Bankstown. After a number of attempts to stop it by various planes, it was shot down by a pair of Hawker Sea Furies from RANAS Nowra. A couple of published articles of the event can be found here and here.