From a 1930 Chevrolet brochure showing the car on Oriental Parade, Wellington.


Looking through a 1935 Automobile Association Guide and Handbook provides some interesting details:

The main road north out of Wellington followed around the Paremata Inlet and over the Paekakariki hill road. There was a tearoom at the summit with access to an Emergency Telephone.

The road was probably gravel, in fact in 1935, less than 1% of roads were sealed, and that included urban streets.

In 1935 there were 50,000 miles of road in New Zealand – in 2015 there were 58,000 miles (94,000 km), which doesn’t seem a huge increase in 80 years. However in 2015 64% of roads were sealed.

By contrast, there were 128,000 cars in 1935 (1 car for every 9 people), compared to 3.9 million in 2015 (1 car for every 1.2 people!)

A car journey out of town back then probably would encounter few other vehicles, a good thing considering it was mostly on dusty gravel roads.

The open road speed limit in 1935 was 40 miles per hour ( 64 km/h) which was probably more than adequate given the state of roads. The town speed limit was 25 mph (40 km/h).



The 40 mph speed limit did not stop Chevrolet promoting their 80hp / 80 mph car. This ad was in the 1935 AA Handbook and Guide.

What were “knee action wheels” ?

A form of independent suspension used by General Motors at the time.