1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554

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Lot 439
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II
Registration no. KSG 483 Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554

Sold for £ 9,430 (US$ 12,382) inc. premium
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II
Registration no. KSG 483
Frame no. ES704
Engine no. XJ554
• Effortless pre-war tourer
• Previously owned by the late Jock Taylor
• An older restoration to a good standard

Designed by the legendary Edward Turner, the Ariel Square Four was first shown at Olympia in 1930. Unique at the time of its introduction, the 'Squariel', as it was swiftly dubbed, featured a single block of four cylinders and twin geared-together crankshafts with pistons phased at 180 degrees. The crankcase was split horizontally, unusually for a motorcycle engine of the period, while the vertical valves were operated by a single overhead camshaft. A supercharged example was raced at the Isle of Man TT in 1931 without success, which was hardly surprising as its makers had envisaged the model as more of a luxury tourer than an out-and-out sports machine.

Although launched as a '500', the Squariel was soon enlarged to 601cc with an eye on the important sidecar market, this bigger version being made available for the 1932 model year. In 1937 a total redesign saw it re-emerge as the Model 4G, with 995cc overhead-valve engine, making the Squariel an even more enticing prospect for sidecarists. Anstey-link plunger rear suspension became an option in 1939 but would not be offered again until 1946 when a telescopic front fork replaced the previous girder type. An exercise in weight shedding saw the cast-iron cylinder head and barrel replaced by alloy components for 1949, the revised model, now capable of 90mph-plus, being known as the Mark I. Introduced in 1953, the 'four pipe' MkII with redesigned cylinder head elevated the Square Four into the league of genuine 100mph motorcycles. Square Four production, along with that of all other Ariel four-strokes, ceased in 1959. To date, the innovative Ariel Square Four remains unique in motorcycling history; a true 'Gentleman's Motorcycle', this refined yet charismatic machine retains an enthusiastically loyal following and is highly prized by discerning enthusiasts.

The vendor's father was given this Square Four by the late Jock Taylor, the former World Sidecar Champion, in gratitude for his long-term sponsorship. Restored by the vendor's father to a good standard, it was last taxed/MoT'd in 2009 and will require re-commissioning before returning to the road. The machine is offered with an expired MoT (2009) and old/current V5/V5C documents.

Footnotes

  • As with all Lots in the Sale, this Lot is sold 'as is/where is' and Bidders must satisfy themselves as to the provenance, condition, age, completeness and originality prior to bidding.

Saleroom notices

  • The original documents will follow after the sale.
Contacts
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554
1953 Ariel 998cc Square Four Mark II Frame no. ES704 Engine no. XJ554
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