With neat blue tanks, gold-lined, and glistening in the frosty sunshine, three Ariel models lined up ready for our test formed a tempting array from which to choose. A cursory examination showed, however, that the big twin (994 c.c.) sidecar outfit was the only machine fitted with a speedometer, and, since the speed test comes fairly early in The Motor Cycle Midland test route, it was chosen for the preliminary stages of the trial.
This particular outfit had already seen hard service in the hands of L. Newey, the well-known trials rider (who with W. T. Woodcock accompanied us on the 249 c.c. and 498 c.c. models); also it 0had a top gear ratio of a little below 4 1/4 to 1, instead of the standard 4 5/8 to 1 ratio.