AC Ace

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1951-1962 AC Ace

AC Ace wis a caur made bi AC Cars o Thames Ditton, Ingland.

Heestory[eedit | eedit soorce]

AC came back tae the market efter the Second Warld War with the staid Two-litre range o caurs in 1947, but it wis with the Ace sports caur o 1953 that the company really made its reputation in the post war years. Casting aroond for a replacement for the ageing Twa litre, AC took up a design bi John Tojeiro that uised a light ladder type tubular frame, all independent transverse leaf spring suspension, an an open twa seater alloy body that wis made uisin Inglis wheelin machines, possibly inspired bi the Ferrari Barchetta o the day.

Early caurs uised AC's elderly twa litre, overhead cam, 100 bhp (70 kW), straight sax engine (first seen soon efter the end o the First Warld War) which gave a top speed o 102 mph (164 km/h) an 0-60 mph (96 km/h) in 13 seconds. It wis hardly a sporting engine, however, an it wis felt that something more modern an pouerful wis required tae put the modern chassis tae guid uise. Thus, frae 1956, there wis the option o Bristol Car's superb twa litre 120 bhp (89 kW) straight sax engine with 3 downdraught carburettors an slick fower speed gearbox. Top speed leapt tae 116 mph (186 km/h) with 0-60 (96 km/h) in the nine second bracket, an response wis much sweeter an modern. This wis replaced in 1962 with the 2.6 liter Ken Rudd 'Ruddspeed' engine, adapted frae that uised in the Ford Zephyr. It uised 3 Weber or SU carburettors an either a 'Mays' or iron cast head. This set up boosted the caur's performance further, but it wis na long before Carroll Shelby pulled AC's attention tae the Cobra, so anerlie about 40 wur ever made.

In the final years o productions some Ace models wur fitted with the MKII Ford Zephyr 2.6 litre straight-6 engine. These Ford engined models haed a smaller grille which wis carried over tae the Cobra.

Overdrive wis available frae 1956 an front disc brakes wur an option frae 1957, although they wur later standardized. With the engine well back in the chassis, the Ace handled well an wis successful in competition.

Joining the Ace in 1954 wis the Aceca hard top coupé, which haed an early form o hatchback rear door but uised the same basic timber framed alloy body.

Road test[eedit | eedit soorce]

The Breetish Motor magazine tested an AC engined Ace in 1954 recording a top speed o 103 mph (166 km/h) an acceleration frae 0-60 mph (97 km/h) in 11.4 seconds an a fuel consumption o 25.2 miles per imperial gallon (11.2 L/100 km; 21.0 mpg-US).

The test caur cost £1439 including taxes.

Motor Sport[eedit | eedit soorce]

The caur raced at Le Mans in 1957 an 1958. Few caurs with this provenance hae survived an ar extremely valuable. They can range frae $100,000 or more for an unrestored caur, even ane in pieces, tae in excess o $400,000 for a restored AC Ace.

AC Cobra[eedit | eedit soorce]

Main article: AC Cobra

When Bristol ceased building their 6-cylinder engine in 1961, AC's awner, Charles Hurlock, wis approached bi Carroll Shelby tae uise a Ford V8 in the Ace chassis, producin the AC Cobra in 1962. Production o the Ace ended the same year. The AC Cobra came in small block an later big block configurations. It wis Ford's big block 427 "side-oiler" that led tae the caur winning Le Mans in Juin 1964. At the time, the AC Cobra 427 wis the fastest "production" caur in the warld.

AC Brooklands Ace (1994 - 2000)[eedit | eedit soorce]

The Ace name wis reintroduced in 1994 with a radically new design. The new Ace offered an option o a 305 hp (227 kW) Ford V8 "Quad Cam" or a Lotus 350 hp (261 kW) engine. The caur haes features such as air conditioning, full hide interior an GPS navigation.

Replicas[eedit | eedit soorce]

As with the Cobra, some AC Ace replicas hae been made but ar much rarer.