AC Aceca - Forerunner To The AC Cobra
The AC Ace was the convertible two-seater sports car produced in Britain in the 1950s. In 1954 AC introduced the AC Aceca - a coupe version of the convertible and one of the first hatchbacks on the market.
It was about the AC Ace that in the early sixties Carroll Shelby offered the idea of a V8 engined version to the Hurlock brothers, owners of AC Cars.
Both the Ace and the Aceca had the aged 2-litre four-cylinder engine and a four-speed gearbox. It never topped 90 bhp and performance was adequate rather than stunning. Shortly after production started AC started to install the Bristol 2-litre engine which had around 130bhp (power claims vary) and this has long being the preferred option for buyers.
The Aceca had the usual rock hard ride of sports car of the day, something which went by the name of a heater - as long as you didn't expect it to live up to that name in winter - and non existent soundproofing, so conversation over 70 mph was challenging.
There was another option but only for a lucky few who could afford them.
AC Aceca 2.6
Kevin Rudd of tuners Ruddspeed fitted the Ford six-cylinder 2.6-litre engine in to the Aceca and in a far more advanced state of tune than cars of the blue oval ever saw (apart from the works rally cars).
The car was fitted with the Raymond Mays ( a well know tuner of the day, both on Ford and Jaguar cars) aluminium cylinder head and triple Webber carburettors pushing the power up to 170 bhp, double the standard Ford output. Top speed was around 125 mph and I've not seen a 0-60 time for one but I would guess it should be close to 7.0 seconds, not to slow in the 1960s. In fact performance shouldn't be a million miles away from an E Type Jag, at least on acceleration if not quite on top speed.
The AC Aceca was produced from 1954 -1963 but production figures were a meagre 357 hand-built cars in that time.
The AC name has been in the news again lately with a German company getting the right to use the name on its Cobra replicas, which they seem to be calling the AC MKVI, perhaps they couldn't get the rights to the Cobra name as well.
AC Aceca Race Car
Some Other Classic Car Stuff
- Classic Mini Cooper | Classic Mini Cooper S
It was in a 1071cc Cooper S that Paddy Hopkirk won the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally. But it was the 1275cc Cooper S which always received most attention from the Competition Department as it was the car with the most chance of not only a class win but winn
- The Classic Jaguar Mk1 and Jaguar Mk2
The original Jaguar 2.4 saloon was released on the Jaguar stand at the 1955 British Motor Show at Earls Court in London in October of that year. Prices in the UK started at 1,343 but Jaguar had little trouble in selling their new car. The British mot
- Classic Fiat 500
The cute, dinky little Fiat 500 is often the butt of humour, but when it was released in 1957 it was bought by thousands and provided a large part of Italy with transport.
- Aston Martin DB4, DB4 GT, DB4 GT Zagato
The Aston Martin DB4 was introduced to the world in 1958 and continued through to 1963 when it was replaced by the Aston Martin DB5. It was powered by a twin overhead cam six cylinder engine of 3670cc/223cid delivering 240 bhp. This gave a top speed
- Classic MG Cars: The MG T series
The MG T series are some of my favourite classics. I love the look of that classic pre-war sports car and MG nailed it to perfection with the T series. Pretty slow and a terribly harsh ride by today's...
- Classic MG Cars: The MGC Car
The MGC car was supposed to be an extension to the MGB range, but it only lasted for two years, from 1967-1969. It was fitted with the Austin-Healey straight-6 of 2912cc capacity which needed a distinct...
- MG Midget, Healey Sprite Cars
The MG Midget was launched to the public in 1961 at just under 670. But it wasn't a completely new model, it was just new to the MG badge. A couple of years earlier Austin-Healey had released the 'Frogeye'...
- Austin Healey Bugeye Sprite
The Austin Healey Bugeye Sprite as it was known in America was born in 1958 as a bargain basement sports car that was designed to be cheap to sell, and so had to be cheap to build. In order to achieve this...
- Triumph Spitfire Sports Car
Designed yet again by Giovanni Michelotti it was announced to the public in October 1962 with a price of 730. A heater cost extra. It came with a twin-carb version of the Triumph Herald's 1147cc four-cylinder engine giving a 90mph top speed and 0-60m
- Triumph TR4 and TR4A Sports Car
Price was now up to 1,032 in the UK, but it was still good value and marginally quicker than its predecessor the TR3A. Top speed was around 110mph and 0-60mph in just under 11 seconds was possible, while 29mpg was a decent average. In 1962 US magazin
- Triumph TR5, Triumph TR250 and Triumph TR6 Sports Ca...
Triumph sports cars benefited in the mid-sixties when Lucas develop a cheap and efficient fuel injection system which allowed better fuel metering. This allowed Triumph to take its six-cylinder Triumph 2000...
- Triumph GT6 Sports Car
The Triumph GT6 was yet again designed by Giovanni Michelotti as a coup version of the Triumph Spitfire. The problem was that the extra weight and cost in building it meant that Triumph needed to justify that extra cost and a slower top speed from it
- AC MkVI - Evolution Of The Legend
I can hear the arguments already: that's not an AC; That's not a Cobra. I don't care. I like it and if I had the money I could live with one, for a while, anyway. Jurgen Mohr, AC Cars' commercial director,...
- Triumph TR7, TR7 V8 and TR8 Sports Cars
The slow decline of a once great name continued with the Triumph TR7 which came with a weedy 4-cylinder engine, not the TR7 V8 that enthusiasts wanted.
More by this Author
It was in a 1071cc Cooper S that Paddy Hopkirk won the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally. But it was the 1275cc Cooper S which always received most attention from the Competition Department as it was the car with the most chance...
The original Jaguar 2.4 saloon was released on the Jaguar stand at the 1955 British Motor Show at Earls Court in London in October of that year. Prices in the UK started at £1,343 but Jaguar had little trouble in...