K11 (1, 1967)

K11 was offered for sale in 1983 by Colin Cooper of Frodsham, Cheshire. An advertisement appeared in Classic and Sports Car magazine in December of that year. It was quoted as Killeen K1 1953 HSCC/FIA regd. As raced Bellini Series 1983. Immaculate and important (first monocoque patent) car. Full history. Also Killeen K11 monocoque motorcycle. All drawings, photos, correspondence etc. everything £14,750.


K11 was originally registered RAC 673F. There is no vehicle currently registered at DVLA, but the number would have been issued by ??? in ???.

A contemporary newspaper article with photo titled ``Killeen's 200cc K11'' reads as follows. Unspillable. Agreed, but-centre steering is far from new (in fact, it was used by Bob Leppan in his American record breaking Triumph cigar), but I had never tried a machine so equipped before, and it was with not a little trieidation that I started the K11 away from rest.


Within a few yards it was evident that the machine was almost unspillable. From then on I began to take liberties, such as deliberately thumping the handlebar to see what would happen. Nothing!

Honestly, I've never before come across a motor cycle which can give its rider such enormous confidence. Equip the K11 with some form of mini-radar and computer, feed in a map of the journey you wish to nake, and (you feel) it would find its own way there.

Perhaps Tom Killeen has something like that in mind for the K11 Mk2? I wouldn't put it past him!

We thought that K11 was given to the National Motorcycle Museum in Birmingham. However we later found that it was sold to one Martin Tredwell in Stoke-on-Trent in September 1984 for the sum of £ 475. It included a lot of paperwork re. Tom's design including features of the bike, its monocoque chassis and the centre hub steering. The forks and wishbones were fixed - the wheel pivoted side to side on a push pull system. His idea was that the whole thing was operated like a car. Colin recalls that the clutch was foot operated and gears were changed by a long rod (gearstick) on top of the fuel tank. Most components were from an ex. 197 Villiers ``Noddy Bike''.


There appears also to have been a scale model of which we have an original black and white photograph.


I was contacted again by Colin in July 2005 when he sent up the last few photographs and letters he had kept. These have enabled me to piece together some of the above story and the time he spent with K1.

Rob Allan