In August 1920 STD Motors Limited was formed, reflecting the merger of Sunbeam, Talbot and Darracq manufacturers under single ownership. During the mid-20s, Talbot’s Swiss-born chief engineer, Georges Roesch, was commissioned with the design of an all-new Talbot which resulted in the successful 14/45 model of 1926. Whilst only of 1,666 cc, the engine for this car had sophisticated engineering - six cylinders; a short, stiff 7-bearing crankshaft; very light valve gear and large ports/valves, which made for a very compact engine with the ability to safely rev to over 5,000 rpm and run a high compression ratio. This – effectively lower weight and greater efficiency – allowed performance figures similar to much larger engines to be achieved.
This formula worked well and the engine was repeatedly bored out, allowing further performance improvements. The first was the 18-70 model (later simply the Talbot 70 or 75), with an engine capacity increased to 2,276 cc. This was followed by the Talbot 90, with a higher compression ratio and bigger carburettor giving a further increase in power.
Given the relatively light weight and compact design, the six-cylinder Talbot was well suited to racing and the 90 model was highly successful. In June 1930, two cars finished third and fourth overall in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, being beaten only by 6½ litre Bentleys. Later that year, the Talbot 90s also achieved class victories in the Irish Grand Prix, Ulster Tourist Trophy and the B.R.D.C. 500 at Brooklands.
To better compete in the 3 litre class, the engine capacity was again increased - to 2,969 cc, to create the Talbot 105 model in 1931. With tuning, these engines were reportedly capable of 125 bhp. Works cars claimed a 1-2-3 finish in the Brooklands Double 12 in 1931 and a podium place at Le Mans. In the Alpine Trial that year, a 105 won the Coupe des Glaciers. In 1932 three cars entered the Alpine trial and all three finished without penalty, to earn the manufacturer the Coupes des Alpes – a success repeated in 1934.
The Talbot 105 was replaced by the 110 model in 1934 (with a larger capacity engine) after around 330 had been built.
This car started life as a Talbot 110 saloon model, first registered in May 1937. In the hands of only its 4th owner in late 2004, it began a lengthy transformation into a sporting Talbot Special, built to fast road/rally specification, running a 3.4 litre block. It has subsequently received further modification and upgrades and seen regular use touring and hill climbing in Jersey, at the VSCC Prescott Hill Climb and track runs at Le Mans Classic.