Britain By Car - A Motoring History

Reliant Motor Company

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For many years, Reliant’s main engine plant.

Lynn Lane, Shenstone, Lichfield WS14 0DH

1963 – 1981(?)

On the 23rd October 1963, fire broke out in the fibreglass shop of the Reliant factory at Two Gates in Tamworth, causing major damage to the building, machinery and a number of the fibreglass moulds.

In response to this, Reliant immediately purchased and converted a disused factory, seven miles away, in Shenstone.  On the 27th November 1963, the new premises were opened by Formula 1 World Champion, Jim Clark.

The Shenstone factory quickly became the base for Reliant’s engineering operations; manufacturing engines, gearboxes, rear axles and suspension units for the company’s three-wheel range.

It appears that Reliant closed the Shenstone factory around 1981, following the takeover by the Nash Group.  

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However, in April 1985, the building was in use once again, leased to the Ford Motor Company for twelve months, to produce the bodyshell and to assemble 200 road-going examples of their RS200 four-wheel-drive, mid-engined rally car.  

Today, the Shenstone factory is now occupied by Autosmart, a manufacturer of vehicle and food processing cleaning products.

Other locations    
, Staffordshire
, Staffordshire

Further details    
• The Reliant Motor Company, Elvis Payne, Crécy Publishing, 2016.
• The Reliant Three-Wheeler, 1935 – 1973, Stuart Cyphus and Elvis Payne, Crécy Publishing, 2011.
• Information on the history of Reliant and company archives are available from, an online catalogue of three-wheeled vehicles from Cugnot fardier à vapeur (1769) to the present day.
• Rebel without applause: Reliant from inception to zenith, Daniel Lockton, Bookmarque Publishing, 2003.
• Reliant Three-Wheelers, John Wilson-Hall, The Crowood Press, 2014.

For many years, Reliant's main engine plant.

Lynn Lane, Shenstone, Lichfield WS14 0DH 

For many years, Reliant's main engine plant.