Lot 67 (Imperial War Museum Duxford, 18th March 2020)
Sold for £60,750
(including buyers premium)
Registration No: SV 8425
Chassis No: 5281
Laid down on 31st January 1912, chassis number 5281 took less than seven weeks to complete. Fitted with engine number 275 but lacking coachwork, it was exported to the Canada Cycle & Motor Agency Limited of Creek Street, Brisbane. Bodied locally, the Talbot was reputedly bought new by the proprietor of the Clover Hills Pastoral Company in an attempt to impress his somewhat younger wife. Driven a scant 4,000 miles or so before an altercation with a gatepost saw it towed into a shed on the property, the Tourer languished there for decades due to the lack of any suitable local repair facilities. Unceremoniously abandoned at a local station dump in the early 1960s so as to make space for new farm machinery, the Four-Seater was surprisingly complete albeit white ants had ravaged its wooden body support frame. Acquired by Ron Griffiths in 1967, the Talbot was subsequently treated to an extensive restoration during which it was found to show precious few signs of mechanical wear. Indeed, a magazine article about the car published during 1979 noted that: `The shackles, differential and gearbox were like brand new, however Ron put new (higher performance) pistons in the motor'. Registered with the Veteran Car Club of Australia, the Tourer was repatriated by Nick Ridley in 2000 and issued with a Certificate of Date by the Veteran Car Club of Great Britain the following year. UK road registered as `SV 8425' the Four-Seater then passed to Roy Brown who had a conrod in the original engine remetalled, the Zenith carburettor overhauled and the steering reconditioned. Previous keeper Peter Young undertook further improvements encompassing: the addition of an electric fuel pump and starter motor, distributor refurbishment, new front / rear tonneau covers and hood repairs, new brake shoes and sundry fettling by Veteran car specialist Richard Peskett. Maintained by Trevor Farrington Ltd since entering the current ownership in 2013, the Talbot has benefited from a new cone clutch (at a cost of c.£4,200), rejuvenated Bosch magneto, repaired Trembler Coil, fresh 7mm HT leads and attention to its fuel system etc. Enjoyed on various tours and rallies over the past seven years including a memorable Irish trip when it surprised the Land Rover Discovery acting as a tender vehicle by reaching 60mph, the vendor is only offering this powerful and rapid Edwardian Tourer for sale in order to downsize his collection. The accompanying history file includes correspondence with the Sunbeam Talbot Darracq Register and VCC plus a photocopy of the aforementioned Australian magazine article and numerous bills / invoices.
Introduced for 1911 the revised Talbot 15hp boasted a larger four-cylinder sidevalve engine than its predecessor (3563cc vs. 2978cc) plus a 9ft 8in wheelbase and 4ft 7in track. Interestingly David Culshaw and Peter Horrobin's 'The Complete Catalogue of British Cars 1895-1975' also lists the Talbot 20/30 of 1914-1915 as having a 3563cc four-cylinder engine of 90mm bore x 140mm stroke which suggests that the earlier model was unusually large for a 15hp. Indeed the Talbot 15hp of 1911-1913 had a half-litre displacement advantage over the contemporaneous Vauxhall A-Type 16/20. Little wonder then that this generation of Talbot 15hp achieved considerable success in hillclimbs and speed trials.