Most Amilcars that remain today are 2-seater sports-cars which give the impression that this French company was purely a sports-car manufacturer but this was not the case. Amilcar also offered a line of usually small, light luxury cars and even commercial vehicles. After Amilcar was acquired by Hotchkiss in 1937 a new, quite revolutionary small car was presented at the Paris Motor Show. It was developed by Jean-Albert Gregoire, a well-known engineer, and featured front wheel drive, a fully synchronized 4-speed gearbox, independent front- and rear suspension and, most notably, a lightweight aluminum construction.
This new model was named the Compound B38 and fitted with a frugal 1185 cc 4-cylinder engine. It was produced from 1938 till as late as 1943, mostly as a 2-door sedan (coach) or convertible sedan. A few convertibles were also made. Aditionally a small number of improved Compound B67 models were made in 1939, featuring an overhead valve 1340 cc engine. Manfucture was mostly aborted after the start of World War 2 but remarkably 159 Compound commercial vans were made up to 1943, mainly for the postal service and the French Red Cross. In all 840 Amilcar Compounds were produced; it was to be the last model of this manufacturer since production wasn't resumed after the war.
From 1947 till 1948 the improved Amilcar Compound engine and transmission were used in the Belgian Imperia TA-8, see the Car of the Month - September 2006.