1913 Rex 896cc V-twin
Registration no. BF 5525
Frame no. 23276
Engine no. 10852
An innovative marque from the time of its inception in 1899 as a motor manufacturer, Rex demonstrated its first motorcycle in 1900 and was soon active in all types of competition, including the inaugural 1907 Isle of Man TT where Billy Heaton's sprung-fork Rex finished second in the twin-cylinder class. Rex experimented with 350cc two-stroke and shaft-driven v-twin models prior to WWI, and continued manufacturing its own power units until the early 1920s, after which proprietary engines became the norm. By this time neighbours Coventry Acme had been taken over and in the next few years the ranges were rationalised, the 'Rex-Acme' name being adopted in 1921.
In 1923 the firm signed rising star Walter Handley, a move that would set Rex-Acme on the road to racing success. Handley had won the 250cc Belgian and Ulster Grands Prix by the end of his debut season, and in 1925 became the first rider to win two TTs in one week: the 350 Junior and 175 Ultra-Lightweight. Handley's second place in the Senior was Rex-Acme's best TT result in 1926, but the marque returned to the winner's rostrum the following year when Handley won the Lightweight event. With some justification the firm incorporated the 'Three Legs of Man' into its tank badge. The 1927 win was to prove Rex-Acme's swansong TT victory, for despite all its racetrack successes, both in the Isle of Man and at Brooklands, the firm became a casualty of the Depression, and although there was a brief revival, was gone for good by 1933.
Dating from the firm's heyday, this example is powered by Rex's own v-twin engine. Fully restored three years ago, the machine has seen only limited use since, taking part in two Pioneer Runs and two other club runs. Benefiting from recent improvements to its epicyclic gears, this Edwardian-era Rex is described as in generally excellent condition and offered with Sunbeam MCC Pioneer Certificate, recently expired MoT/tax (February 2013) and Swansea V5 document.
- The machine is taxed until February 2014