William Lyons, founder of Swallow was not content to merely build bodies on other people's chassis. This constrained his creative desires and equally restricted him to products which were stolid rather than sporting. If Lyons and Walmsley were to throw off these shackles, they needed to create their own chassis to suit their ends. However, the industry was littered with failures and Lyons determined that a cautious approach was necessary. Consequently, he arranged for the Standard Motor Company to build a chassis to Swallow's design but fitted with Standard engines. Meanwhile Lyons, the shrewd publicist, had set the scene. 'WAIT! THE 'SS' IS COMING,' stated an advertisement in July 1931. '2 New Coupes of Surpassing Beauty. SS is the new name of a new car that's going to thrill the hearts of the motoring public and the trade alike. It's something utterly new … different … better!' Thus announced, the SS I and SS II Coupes were duly presented at the 1931 London Motor Show, and sensation they certainly caused. The body was ultra low and the bonnet outrageously long. It had, stated the press, the £1,000 look, yet was priced at a very modest £310, highlighting Lyons' unique ability to offer remarkable value for money.
Manufactured in December 1934, and first registered AUO 596 in early 1935, the first owner was Charles H Montague of Barnstaple, Devon, little is known of the cars early history, although notes in the history file, confirm that it was in dry storage in the 1960’s carrying the early original front number plate. A Jaguar heritage certificate confirms the original information, and that the body number 6659 is correct to the car.
The history notes also confirm that the engine was originally rebuilt in the 1960’s but it has again been subsequently stripped and rebuilt, as has the gearbox and clutch. File of photographs showing the coupe in as found condition, and a more recent set of pictures taken in our store.
1983 Registered to Sandwell Garages West Bromwich
2005 Sold to Bob Oakley
2005 Sold to EW Hillyard
2009 Sold to DW Shotton November 2009
2015 Sold to Le Riche Automobile Restorers May 2015