See also

Charles HURLOCK (1901-1989)

1. Charles F.H. HURLOCK, son of William Frederick HURLOCK (1865-1905) and Carolina COOTE ( - ), was born in 1901. He was a Partner in AC Cars (Cobra Cars). He died in 1989. He married Tesa UNK.


... bought by brothers William and Charles Hurlock and they turned it into a smaller, more specialist operation, oft advertising their bespoke cars as: Tailor-made at the Savile Row of Motordom.

As in World War One, when the factory was turned over to producing shell cases, during World War Two it put its manufacturing expertise behind the war effort making, among other things, parts for the Fairey Swordfish bombers, which helped sink the Bismarck, and Hamilcar gliders.
Hostilities over, the firm went back into cars and, in 1953, produced probably the biggest milestone in its history the super-sleek, for its day, AC Ace.
When, in 1961, the giant Ford Motor Company of the US asked Carroll Shelby, a Texan ex-race driver, to find it a car to beat its main rivals Chevrolet Corvette on the race track, Shelby negotiated with AC to put a massive Ford V8 engine into the Ace.
This gave birth to the AC Cobra, one of the fastest and most brutal sports cars ever produced, and it is this model that is still being built at Weybridge today.
Back when the Cobra was first built, it was a case of from the sublime to the ridiculous. Down the river, in its Taggs Island factory, AC was still turning out its famous light blue three-wheeled invalid cars by the thousands. Meanwhile, on the newly-opened M1 motorway, a prototype AC Cobra was being clocked at 196 mph.
In those days there were no motorway speed limits, but the national newspapers went over the top with sensationalist headlines about the near super-sonic Cobra.
Questions were asked in Parliament and, in a knee-jerk reaction, the then transport minister, Barbara Castle, imposed the 70mph motorway limit we still have today.
After some 56 years of ownership, in 1986 the Hurlock family sold its controlling interest in AC to Autokraft Limited and Ford, who built the new factory and moved the company to Weybridge. The firm has changed hands twice since then and is currently owned by South African-born Alan Lubinsky.
In the corner of his factory on Wednesday las
Quote from AC's own website:-

"A year later the AC Cobra was embroiled in scandal when it raced along the then brand new M1 motorway at a speed not too far short of 200 mph. This exploit directly resulted in the 70 mph limit still in force to this day."

Edited to add another quote from 'Origin of the Cobra' by W D Hurlock.(Son of AC's Chairman in the 60s):-

"One abiding memory will be of our special Le Mans Car which caused a sensation when we innocently descended on the M1 motorway very early one morning in June 1964, to test it at over 180mph.".