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Motoring Books

Luigi Barzini (1874-1947), Peking to Paris,
The true story of the Peking to Paris `Great Race' of 1907, won by Prince Scipione Borghese's Itala motor car in a time of two months.
Len Beadell
Len Beadell wrote a number of [books] about building the (atomic) "bomb roads" through the Australian outback.
Jack L. Bowers, Around Australia the Hard Way in 1929, Kangaroo Press 4wd.sofcom.com --> 1995, isbn:0-86417-682-1 -->
This really was the hard way - on a Harley Davidson motorbike with a side-car. Navigation was not trivial; food, water and fuel could be hard to find. Things broke, they fixed them, they did it.
Russell Braddon, The Hundred Days of Darien,
The story of the 1971-1972 British Trans-Americas Expedition from Alaska to Tierra del Fuego, including the crossing of the Darien Gap, in the (then) newly released Range Rover.
Ben Carlin
Half Safe, 1955, describes "driving" the Amphibious Jeep, Half-Safe, across the Atlantic Ocean. It later went on to circle the world, all on its own wheels and hull.
Pedr Davis, The Australian Dictionary Of Motoring, Bookworks Pty Ltd., 2001
(Motoring bookshops, Bookworks Pty Ltd, 56 Bonds Road, Punchbowl, NSW 2196, or Marque Publishing Company, 911 King Georges Road, Blakehurst, 4wd.sofcom.com --> NSW 2221.)
This work answers such pressing questions as what is chuggle or cinicity, who goes twocking, and how did the terms `pole position' and `lemon' originate? 9,400 head words, 440,000 text words, and 596 illustrations, 464 pages, au$69.95, including GST
Apparently: Chuggle is a word coined by engineers to describe an engine with bad surge caused by combustion instability. Cinicity is a characteristic of a tyre that tends to pull to one side because of an improperly constructed carcass, and twocking is UK slang for car stealing. ... [-publisher].
Tony Davis, Aussie Cars (1987).
One car or marque per page. From the 1896 Shearer steam vehicle to the 1986 Taipan AC/Shelby Cobra look-alike.
Rex Ellis, Bush Safari, Knocking Around the Outback, Rigby 1982, Sun Books 1986, isbn:0-7251-0518-6 --> (ppbk)
Includes the French Track across the Simpson Desert by a French oil exploration company in 1962; the 1st tourist 4WD-trip across the Simpson in 1971; a boat trip down the Diamantina River from the Birdsville Track to Lake Eyre in 1974. And for trivial pursuits: A `Donga' is a low area of limestone, e.g. in the Nullarbor, where soil accumulates so that richer plants thrive.
Nick Georgano (ed), The Beaulieu Encyclopaedia of the Automobile, The Stationary Office (London) 2000.
At two volumes of about 900 pages each what more can you say than - encyclopaedic. The first entry is for `A.A.A.' (D) 1919-1922, and the last for `Zwickau' (DDR) 1956-1959. In between is just about every car maker present and past that you can think of, or not.
Richard Noble, Thrust, Transworld Publ. 1998.
This is of `the right stuff' - the story of the all British team led by Richard Noble, himself a world land speed record breaker, with fighter pilot and driver Andy Green, who raised the world land speed above the sound barrier in 1997.
Jack Pollard, One for the Road, 1974
A collection of stories, magazine and newspaper articles, about classic motoring adventures and adventurers connected with Australia and New Zealand, from Herbert Thomson's 1900 drive from Sydney to Melbourne in his own steam car, to the racing cars of Jack Brabham and Bruce McLaren.
David Scott-Moncrieff. The Three-Pointed Star. Gentry Books, London, 1955, revised 1979.
The story of Daimler and Mercedes Benz cars.
Tom Sheppard, Vehicle Dependent Expedition Guide, Desert Winds 1998.
How to mount your own expedition to just about anywhere.
Tim Slessor, First Overland, 1957
Two series ones, `Oxford' and `Cambridge', were driven from London (flight to Paris) to Singapore, including difficult sections in eastern India and the war-time Stillwell Road through Burma.
Barbara Toy
Barbara Toy travelled extensively through North Africa and the Middle East in a series of Land Rovers during the 1950s and 1960s. If you see any of her [books] in a second-hand bookshop, snap them up, they are good reads.
Geoffrey Williamson, Wheels Within Wheels, 1966
Not exactly a motoring book, rather the story of James Starley and his sons and nephew who dominated the bicycle industry in Coventry and invented such things as tangent spokes, the differential and (arguably) the safety cycle, later forming the Rover car company.

Most of the above are not only about classic motoring adventures, but are also classic books, now to be found by hunting through the shelves of second-hand book-shops.
- 4wd.sofcom.com/Books/Books.html

Australian Books

book cover
Australian Geographic Society
Book of Cape York
Ernest Giles
Geographic Travels in Central Australia 1872-1874, the journals of Giles first two expeditions in search of a route from around (then) Ayres Rock to the west coast of Australia. Remarkable for the hardships cheerfully described.
Ernest Giles
Journal of a Forgotten Expedition: As a result of numerous requests, Giles' "Journal of a Forgotten Expedition" is to be published in April. This trip was taken by Giles in 1876 with a view to opening up pastoral country between Fowler's Bay and Beltana in South Australia. The expedition was important because Giles, funded by Sir Thomas Elder, used camels for the first time. This is a limited edition of 400 numbered copies hand-bound in Oxford buckram with an accurate facsimile of the map in the very rare first edition. Price:$35, Corkwood Press.
Noel Gough
Mud, Sweat and Snow, 2nd edition 1994. Tales of hardship, achievement, and larger than life characters on the Snowy Mountains Hydro Electric Scheme.
The Jardines
The Complete Jardine Expedition Journals. 1st successful expedition (1864/65) to Cape York, taking cattle to a new settlement at the tip.
Edmund Kennedy
William Carron's Narrative of Kennedy's Cape York Expedition. Carron was the botanist, and one of the few survivors, of this disastrous 1848 expedition.
The Leyland Brothers
Mike and Mal Leyland's TV programs Ask the Leyland Brothers in the 1960s and 1970s may seem twee now but helped create an interest in the Australian outback. They wrote at least 4 books:
  • Great Ugly River (The Darling) ~ 1963
  • Where Dead Men Lie (W to E) ~ 1966
  • Untamed Coast (Darwin to Sydney by 18' boat) ~1968/69
  • Off the Beaten Track, Golden Press, ~1971
Cecil Madigan
Crossing the Dead Heart, the account of the 1939 camel expedition across the Simpson Desert.
Liz Martin
Australia's Road Transport Heritage 1995. Road transport in Australia from white settlement to the modern era.
Mark Shephard
A Lifetime in the Bush: The Biography of Len Beadell, Corkwood Press, 1998.
Mark Shephard
The Simpson Desert: Natural History and Human Endeavour, 1992, 1999: Mark Shephard's definitive account of the Simpson Desert is back in print. The book details the flora, fauna, aboriginal and exploration history of this remarkable part of Australia. It also gives valuable information and many maps for those planning to visit the area. The book was first published in 1992 and proved to be a best-seller. This is the first softback edition and it has been updated to 1999 with new information about permits and track conditions. The Simpson Desert is a large format edition of 184 pages and is illustrated with many colour photographs. Price:$29.95 - Corkwood Press
Charles Sturt
Narrative of an Expedition into Central Australia, 1844-1846, Corkwood Press 2001: This is Sturt's account of his expedition from Adelaide into 4wd.sofcom.com --> central Australia. The expedition followed the Darling River to the Barrier Ranges. Turning north, Sturt entered Sturt's Stony Desert, discovered Cooper's Creek, and entered what is now known as the Simpson Desert.
Corkwood Press has issued a new edition of the work, with an introduction by Nicholas Rothwell. The book has 532 pages.
W. H. Tietkens, explorer
Diary of W. H. Tietkens 1879-80, record of a private expedition on the Maralinga Tjarutja lands, 400 copies published 4wd.sofcom.com --> by Corkwood Press 1998.


Military Books

David Lloyd Owen, The Desert my Dwelling Place, Cassell, 4wd.sofcom.com --> London, 1956, & Special Forces Library, Arms and Armour Press, 1986.
The Long Range Desert Group and the SAS in North Africa.
H. R. Rifkind, The Jeep - its development and procurement under the Quartermaster Corps 1940-1942.
The story of the world war II Jeep, Bantam, Willys-Overland, Ford, politics and intrigue. This is one for the historian.


D. Wright and C. Jungwirth, Oshkosh Trucks, 75 Years of Speciality Truck production, Motorbooks 1992.
The history of 4wd.sofcom.com --> Oshkosh trucks from 1917 to 1992 - including some of the biggest of big rigs and many of them all wheel drive.

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