Riley Kestrel 6-light


  • 12/4 1935-8
  • 12/4 Sprite 1936-8
  • 15/6 1936-8
  • 8/90 1936-7
  • 16/4 1937-9
  • 16hp 1939-40
  • Building on the success of the 4-light Kestrel, the 6-light proved a strong seller as the sportiest saloon in Riley's range and, 3 years after it's launch, still largely unrivalled in the British market

    Riley Archives Project: Riley Kestrel

    Building on the success of the original 4-light Kestrel, the body was redesigned in 1935 as a 6-light sports saloon. The biggest change was the insertion of the rear quarter-light window, and the associated reprofiling of the roof to match. The body was available across the model range, with the exception of the nine which retained the 4-light body.
    In many ways the whole ethos of the car was years ahead of it's time, and it could be compared to a Saab 900 or Rover SD1 of the 1980's, or perhaps even a Mercedes CLS or Audi A7 of today, as a fast and practical 4/5 seater sports saloon. Again, the bodies used on the larger models were all basically the same, but the 12/4 body was unique to that chassis.
    The body remained almost unchanged through to the very last Kestrel produced in 1940/1. The only difference on those last Nuffield Kestrels was the changes to the front wings, quarter front bumpers and a revised radiator shell.

    Sales remained buoyant, and the models popularity can be proved by the fact that it was the only Riley body to be officially offered by Nuffield in 1939.