Peel Engineering Company (1965-66)|
Peel Engineering Ltd. (2011 - Present)
Approximately 45 produced
2011 - Present
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||Flip-top (no-door) coupé|
|Layout||Rear-engine, rear-wheel drive|
|Engine||DKW 49 cc, 4.2 hp although some cars: Triumph Tina 99 cc|
|Length||190 cm (73 in)|
|Width||99 cm (39 in)|
|Kerb weight||150 kg (330 lb)|
A completely new design from the earlier side-engined Peel P50 microcar, the Trident was manufactured in 1965 and 1966.
Description and specifications
The Lakeland Motor Museum observes that the Trident's bubble top constituted grounds for its sobriquet "The Terrestrial Flying Saucer." Like its predecessor, it was marketed as a "shopping car" or a "Saloon Scooter".
The car is 73 in (185 cm) long and 39 in (99 cm) wide, with a weight of 330 lb (150 kg). Like the P50, it uses a 49 cc (3.0 cu in) DKW engine which generates 4.2 hp (3.1 kW), and a top speed of 28 mph (45 km/h). It was advertised that the Trident got 100 miles per imperial gallon (2.8 L/100 km; 83 mpg‑US), "almost cheaper than walking". The original retail price was £190.
All engines supplied to Peel from Zweirad Union (for both the P50 and Trident) were of the 49 cc 3-speed 4.2 hp 804–1600 type. Uniquely, however, the Peel engines had the 8th digit as a 4, thus being of the form 80416004***. This car is one of the smallest in the world.
The Trident made a late transatlantic media appearance in the American television series Monster Garage, when a team of engineers and fabricators attempted to fit a high-performance Suzuki Hayabusa superbike engine into the bodywork of a Trident, mounted onto a conventional go-kart frame. The project was a failure, and the unfinished car was destroyed by the show's host Jesse James with a single shot from a .50 caliber sniper rifle.
It also made a brief appearance in the BBC motoring programme Top Gear on BBC Two, when the P50 was featured more extensively and the Trident was introduced as a "sports version". Co-presenter James May described the Peel Trident as "something out of The Jetsons", and co-presenter Jeremy Clarkson described the Trident and the P50 as his perfect two-car garage.
- "1965 Peel Trident". Lane Motor Museum. Retrieved 28 December 2016.
- "Earls Court Parade". The Motor Cycle: 858–859. 10 November 1964.
- Neil, Dan (2007). "50 Worst Cars Ever". Time. Retrieved 28 December 2016.
- "Meet the World's smallest motor cars". lakelandmotormuseum.co.uk. Lakeland Motor Museum. Archived from the original on 1 November 2013. Retrieved 30 October 2013.
The Peel Trident has its own claim to fame as being accredited as the World's smallest two seat motor car.
- "Monster Garage Season 3 Episode 58". Discovery.com. Archived from the original on 6 October 2006.
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