Joint Media Release: $200,000 to preserve revolutionary race car

The Turnbull Government will provide $200,000 to assist the National Motor Museum in Birdwood to purchase the Chamberlain 8 “Australian Special” race car through the National Cultural Heritage Account.

The race car was built in 1929 by Melbourne brothers, Alan Hawker ‘Bob’ Chamberlain and Howard Francis ‘Bill’ Chamberlain. Both engineers, the brothers included a revolutionary engine in the race car which competed in multiple Grands Prix and hill climb events.

The Chamberlain 8 is believed to be the only racing car completely designed and built in Australia without the use of components from other makes. Some unique qualities of the vehicle include the four-wheel independent suspension and 8000 rpm engine.

It is one of Australia’s most technically advanced and visually appealing race cars of the era. The Chamberlain brothers were among a group of prominent engineers who significantly contributed to Australia’s technological and motoring history.

In 2015, the National Gallery of Victoria exhibition Shifting Gears hosted the Chamberlain 8 as one of their elite selection of all-Australian built and designed cars.

The National Motor Museum has sourced additional philanthropic support to help purchase the ground-breaking vehicle.

The Turnbull Government is committed to preserving Australia’s unique and innovative cultural items and while showcasing Australian design and talent.

The National Cultural Heritage Account provides support for collecting institutions like the National Motor Museum to acquire important pieces of Australian history to ensure they are kept in the country and enjoyed by the public.

For more information about the Account visit:

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