Side Valve Engines

The Mohawk

Coatalen's next engine was an enlarged Crusader and was called the Mohawk. The Navy had shown great interest in the Crusader and would certainly be interested in a more powerful engine. The Mohawk was a V12, side valve engine, and like the Crusader, it was initially built with an 80mm bore, which was soon increased to 90mm. With its initial bore it developed 200h.p., when enlarged to 90mm, it developed 225h.p. and became known as the Sunbeam 225. The engine had two poppet side valves per cylinder, was water cooled, weighed 905lbs dry, had four Claudel-Hobson carburettors, and two magnetos. It was tested in a racing car which was called 'Toodles' after Coatalen's wife. This was considered to be a safe way of testing the engine which was run for long durations in the car. The car performed extremely well and broke eight world speed records. During the war it was shipped to America and continued its racing career. The car was initially very successful but it all ended in disaster. The car was entered for a dirt track race at Kalamazoo. The driver lost control and the car swerved across the track and collided with 8 other cars, killing ten people in the process. The remains of the car were obtained by the Packard Motor Company and the engine was used as the basis of the world's first twelve cylinder motor car engine, which is something that Sunbeam had been working on until war interviened.

Aircraft Fitted with the Mohawk

Aircraft Make and Type

Number of Engines Ordered

Martin Handasyde transatlantic plane 1
Sopwith Bat flying boat 1
Pemberton-Billing PB.7 flying boat 178
Short bomber tractor biplane 1
Short bomber landplane 1
Wight 840 seaplane 59
Sopwith 860 seaplane 19
Avro 519 biplane 1
Avro 522 biplane 1
Bréguet de Chasse biplane 12
Bréguet de Bombe biplane 1
Royal Aircraft Factory RE.7 1

Apart from 'Toodles', the engine was also used in two other racing cars. In 1919 it was used in Harry Hawker's Sunbeam-Mercedes, and in 1926 was used in Cyril Bone's Sunbeam-Napier

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