This was the first small British van to offer a diesel and Ford and Bedford soon followed, using the 99 in the Thames and CA respectively. The baby diesel also found its way into Trojans mechanical horse. garage door opener guide Motor made an interesting comparison test of petrol and Perkins-powered Bedford CAs and reckoned the diesel gave little away in performance but was 20-25% more economical. The 99 wasnt perfect, and could suffer from coolant leaks past its wet liners, finally solved when it was replaced by the dry-liner 10 But the 99 was small beer compared to Perkins big project for the late 50s, and one that would form the backbone of its range for years to come the One of the companys most pressing problems was to replace the R6, which though much improved was still badly tainted by its early failures.
It was also thought too small and outdated to garage door opener guide the growing demand for a 120bhp truck engine. Like other Commers, the Walk-Thru was later badged as a Dodge, though the engine options were unchanged. Spacious cab, a Perkins diesel, easy loading and an apparently happy driver what else could a fleet manager want? Encouraged by Ford in the US, Perkins engineering director Gordon Dawson settled on a straight-six of 350 cubic inches. To keep length to a minimum, the water passages between bores were thin, and a jackshaft driven from the timing gears drove the injection and oil pumps, plus accessories.
The other big change was direct injection, a move away from the Aeroflow combustion that had been a Perkins trademark. In truck form, the engine produced the target 120bhp without a problem. The 354 did have development niggles the jackshaft worm gear wore prematurely but the crucial thing was that, unlike the R6, it proved fundamentally reliable, despite the design teams worries about those thin water garage door opener guide In fact, with the help of some development, in the coming decades it would be first turbocharged, then intercooled Perkins wouldnt have been the same company without it. It also brought in new business, and one early customer was White Motors, which chose the new engine as the diesel option for its White Compact line, intended for city and suburban working which until then had been dominated by petrol power in the States.