Sunbeam Aircraft and Aero Engines

Moorfield works in 1918.

The Sunbeam Car Company, at Moorfield Works, Upper Villiers Street, built large numbers of aircraft and aero engines during the first world war. The company was one of the country's leading engine manufacturers and even designed an aircraft of its own.

Louis Coatalen joined Sunbeam as chief engineer in 1909. He was previously chief engineer at the Humber works in Coventry and had gained a lot of experience in the industry. Until now Sunbeam had brought-in many of their parts, but under Coatalen most were now made in Wolverhampton. He decided to raise the company's profile by involving Sunbeam in motor racing and soon started to design racing cars. He also designed some powerful engines for the cars, which were very successful. His slogan was 'Racing improves the breed'.

The following sections describe the aircraft and the many engines that were produced by Sunbeam:

An invaluable reference in preparing this section, was Sunbeam Aero Engines, by Alec Brew. Published by Airlife Publishing Limited, in 1998.

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