Blackburn Sidecar stbd front view
A side view of the Blackburn Sidecar, showing the ABC Gnat engine and the side-by-side cockpit.
The Blackburn Aeroplane and Motor Company Blackburn Sidecar was a two-seat, ultra-light mid-wing monoplane intended for the private owner.
The occupants sat side-by-side, in an open cockpit situated high above the wing leading edge, with access to the cockpit provided by a pair of side doors. These seating and access arrangements gave rise to the name Blackburn Sidecar.
Power was provided by a two-cylinder, ABC Gnat engine of only 40 hp. The wooden construction fuselage was of a triangular cross-section, similar to the design of a number of early Blackburn monoplanes. The main structure was surmounted by a fabric covered fairing which rose to shoulder height at the cockpit.
Although undoubtedly underpowered, the design concept is similar to other ultralights that appeared between the world wars, including the Aeronca C3, the C100, the Tipsy S and Tipsy B.
The Blackburn Sidecar was built at The Olympia Works in Leeds, in early 1919, and was displayed at the Harrods Department Store in London from 7th April 1919. Thereafter, it was transferred by road and subsequently put on display at a store in Reading.
Although it received a civil registration (G-EALN) in August 1919, there is no evidence that the Sidecar ever flew while powered by the ABC Gnat engine.
It was advertised for sale in June 1921, and was purchased by Blackburn’s London Office Manager Mr B. Haydon-White, who re-engined it with a 100hp Anzani radial engine. This 'improvement' was probably equally unsuccessful as the aircraft was no longer registered by October 1921

Variants & Number Built

One prototype only, G-EALN, not believed to have been flown.


Specification (Estimated with ABC Gnat engine)

One 40 hp ABC Gnat twin-cylinder air cooled engine
27 ft 3 in
Maximum Weight
850 lb
Pilot and passenger
83 mph
About 300 miles




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