|Industry||Formula 3 cars|
Cyril Kieft was born in Swansea and spent his early working life in the steel industry. After the second World war he started up his own company Cyril Kieft and Co Ltd in Bridgend, Glamorgan making forgings and pressings including components for the motor industry. He had an interest in motor racing and when the Marwyn company, who had built Formula Three cars, failed he bought the designs and used them as a base for his own 500cc car. Several of these were sold and some competition success resulted. Publicity was gained by successful attempts on a series of records at Autodrome de Montlhéry in France. One of the drivers was Stirling Moss who explained the shortcomings of the cars. As a result of this a new design was acquired, Moss and his manager Ken Gregory became directors, whilst the company moved to new premises at Reliance Works in Derry Street, Wolverhampton.
A new design by Gordon Bedson, who had joined the company from the aircraft industry, was produced in time for the 1951 Whit Monday Meeting at Goodwood where it won the Formula Three event driven by Moss. Don Parker was employed as works driver and won the British Formula Three championships in 1952 and 1953.
In 1954 Kieft started to make a two-seater sports car which could also be used as a road car. Using a Coventry Climax FWA engine, all independent suspension using transverse leaf springs at the rear and a lightweight glass fibre body the car was really a racing car and at £1560 it is doubtful if any were bought just as road cars.
The company was losing money and at the end of 1954 Kieft sold the company to racing driver Berwyn Baxter.
Kieft Cars left Wolverhampton in 1956 and moved to nearby Birmingham where they concentrated on preparing and tuning other makes of cars. There were plans for a return to making Kieft cars but these failed to materialise. The company was sold again in 1960 and changed its name to Burmans.
Kieft Sports Car Co. Ltd. is now owned by Canadian Peter Schömer and based out of Chichester, West Sussex near Goodwood. There is a new Sports Racer in the works using a Coventry Climax FPF 2.5 liter twin cam engine called the Kieft-Climax. Kieft logo TM# 2516876 property of the Kieft Sports Car Co.Ltd.
- The Complete Encyclopedia of Motorcars, 1885 to the Present. By G.N. Georgano, Dutton Press, New York, 2nd ed. 1973, ISBN 0-525-08351-0
- Autosport, Stirling Moss's manager Ken Gregory dies. 1 December 2013
- G.N. Georgano "Adams-Farwell", The Complete Encyclopedia of Motorcars 1885-1968. New York: E.P. Dutton and Co., 1974, p. 27.
- G.N. Georgano, editor: The Complete Encyclopedia of Motorcars, 1885 to the Present. Dutton Press, New York, 2nd ed. 1973, ISBN 0-525-08351-0
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