Coventry Transport Museum
Warwickshire CV1 1JD
Coventry, once the centre of the British Motor Industry, is the ideal site for this nationally important motor museum.
The last 150 years of Coventry’s history have been shaped, in part, by the rise and fall of its motor and cycle industries. In this time, around 475 bicycle and tricycle makers, 161 car manufacturers and 116 motorcycle manufacturers have operated in the city, touching the lives of millions of people.
The Museum is said to have one of the largest collection of road transport vehicles in the world. There are some 250 cars and commercial vehicles, over 300 pedal cycles and 120 motor cycles. Not all these items can be displayed at the same time so exhibits are regularly changed.
Thrust 2 and Thrust SSC
Of particular interest to speed fans are the 1983 and 1997 land speed record holders – the British Jet cars Thrust 2 and Thrust SSC. The latter vehicle was the first car to break the sound barrier and there is actual film footage of the event.
In the Biffa Award Land Speed Record Exhibition you can experience what it's like to drive through the sound barrier, on the all new 4D Land Speed Record simulator. There is a charge for this treat!
The Coventry Transport Museum is housed in newly refurbished galleries with excellent visitor facilities. The Museum tracks public transport from the first pedal cycles manufactured in Coventry in 1869, through motorized pedal cycles to motor cycles and on to four-wheeled motor vehicles. The cars on display date from around 1897 to the present day.
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Who hasn’t dreamt of owning a classic Riley sedan, a beautiful E-type Jaguar or even the ubiquitous Mini? What about the ‘Back to the Future’ DeLorean - they are all here.
Children are well catered for with lots of simulators, ‘design your own car’ exhibits plus summer activities for both children and parents. Either visit the museum website or telephone the museum for details.
The Museum is large with galleries spread over three floors. Each gallery traces the ongoing part Coventry has played in the development of public transport from rudimentary bicycles to privately owned motor vehicles. At the same time we discover how the city coped with interruptions to manufacturing through war and economic downturns. The final galleries look at the part Coventry will be playing in the future.
The first galleries explore the city’s transport manufacturing history, from its inception in 1869 to 1948, and pay tribute to the industry’s famous names. On display are the pedal cycles and motorcycles made by the iconic companies Ariel, Norton and Triumph; also cars and public transport vehicles from Victorian times and both World Wars.
The popular ‘Blitz Experience Gallery' recreates the major bombing raid on Coventry
on 14th November 1940 in which the Cathedral was destroyed. The Coventry
factories and their workers were an important part of the war effort. The factories and surrounding houses were repeatedly bombed throughout the Second World War.
The Coventry motor industry is traced through the heady days of the 1950s and 1960s to the decline in the 1970s with the increased competition from foreign manufactured cars. Happy memories are stirred by the beautifully restored vehicles on display.
For those young at heart, the 'Model World Gallery' is a treat. Here there is even a running model steam train!
Car Club Displays
The Museum is a favourite destination for Car Clubs. Visitors can often see their vehicles displayed on the forecourt. Disabled Access Lift access is provided to both floors of the Museum. There are Accessible Toilets and Assistance Dogs are welcome.
A small number of wheelchairs are available free of charge for visitor use. These chairs are allocated on a first come first served basis, although any advance requests will be considered. Please contact the Museum on 024 7623 4270 for more information. There is wheelchair access suitable for unaccompanied wheelchair users to most parts of the Museum. Please ask for help in accessing the Model World Gallery.
Plan Your Visit
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Open all year except 24 - 26 December and 1 January.
10:00 – 17:00. Last admission 16:30 hours.
Weekends and school holidays are usually very busy, especially when there are activities or events on at the Museum. During term time, school groups visit in the mornings. You might prefer to visit during quieter times, such as after 14:30 during the week.
Admission is FREE!
There is a charge for the new 4D Land Speed Record Simulator Ride.
Lockers, wheelchair hire & buggy parking, toilets, Baby and Parent Room, Cafe & Gift Shop.
Esquires Coffee House is situated in the entrance to the Museum, serving coffee, tea, milkshakes, hot chocolate & soft drinks, as well as hot and cold sandwiches, soups and cakes.
Contact & Further Information
+44 (0) 2476 234270
- By Car
is close to the M1/M6/M40/M42 motorways. Follow signs to city centre and take Junction 1 or 2.
There is no parking available at the Museum itself however, city centre ‘Pay & Display’ car parks are all within walking distance. The nearest car parks to the Museum are Bishop Street (CV1 1JN), and Belgrade Plaza (CV1 4AJ).
- By Motorbike
Secure motorbike parking is available at Belgrade Plaza car park, which is a short walk from the Museum and is accessed via Junction 9 of the Coventry
Ring Road (CV1 4AJ).
- By Bus
Most buses stop at Pool Meadow bus station or on Trinity Street, both of which are a 2 minute walk from the Museum.
- By Rail
There are excellent links to London
Euston via Virgin Trains; Cross Country routes north and south, and local services to Nuneaton and Northampton.
The Museum is a 15-minute walk from Coventry Rail Station. Buses to the City Centre from the railway station stop near the Museum. Downloadable maps are available from the Visit Coventry & Warwickshire website.
- By Canal
Coventry Canal Basin
is a 5 minute walk from the Museum - please use the footbridge over the inner ring-road.
Google Maps - Coventry Transport Museum