After the automobile was introduced to Egypt in the early years of the 20th Century, the vehicle was not only used for conveyance and convenience; growing numbers of the elite found motorsport and touring events much to their liking.
In 1924, the Royal Automobile Club d'Egypte was established in a villa owned by Prime Minister Youssef Wahba Pasha, under the direct patronage of King Fouad. The following year, the newly formed Club held its first gymkhana, and by 1927 boasted over 600 members. The Club became an important social center for Egypt's affluent, and an Italian architect was hired to design a neo-Islamic building on Qasr el-Nil Street in Cairo to serve as headquarters.The structure, although radically changed in appearance, still stands today.
Aeromobilia's rare, vintage grille badge is composed of a pressed brass/bronze metal base, onto which has been applied multi-color cloissone. This is a 'fired', or 'baked-on' process which is much finer and costly than later painted examples we have seen. The metal work is very fine, and exhibits the type of patina associated with an item of this age.
The badge consists of a spoked central wheel with a crenulated outer rim. The wheel is embraced by a traditional Egyptian winged scarab, whose front legs reach upward to support a central roundel featuring a crescent moon and three stars, representing the Kingdom of Egypt, from 1922 to 1952. The crown is of a European type, similar to that found on the Royal Automobile Club badge of Great Britain.
The R.A.C.E. badge measures four and one half inches tall by three inches wide, and is in a remarkable state of preservation. There is only a small loss in the blue cloissone material directly beneath the crown. There are threaded mounting posts on the back of the badge, and vintage backing nuts and modern machine screws are provided.
For the knowledgeable automobile badge collector, this is a true 'Duesenberg in the Barn' find. It is ultra-rare, in extraordinary condition, and we have never seen another example of this vintage.