Lot 083: Swift Ten Fabric Saloon
The Coventry firm of Swift began life making sewing machines before moving on to bicycles, motorcycles and then making their first car in 1902. The Swift 10 was launched in 1914 using a four-cylinder 1,100cc engine of Swift's own design which, to quote Georgano, was immensely strong and simple, inefficient in terms of power output but not utility. The 10 was modernized in 1923 and then again in 1928 by which time the engine had grown to 1.2-litres and was mated to a four-speed gearbox rather than the earlier three-speed item along with four-wheel brakes. A sprightly 68mph performance was claimed with 35mpg fuel economy. Three body styles were available, a two-door saloon, a four-door fabric saloon and a tourer. Largely hand-built by a small workforce, the Swift marque disappeared in 1931 when the mass production techniques of rival manufacturers forced them out of business.
Supplied new by HA McNaught of Worcester in December 1930, this fabric-bodied Swift is believed to have spent its first 40 years or so in the hands of one Malvern owner before finding its way to a new owner in Cradley Heath, Birmingham, in 1972. He was to keep the car for the next 37 years and treated it to a total nut-and-bolt rebuild, including the engine, which resulted in the fine example you see today. Said be as good underneath as it is up top, it has recently seen service as a wedding car, a role to which it is well suited thanks to the beautifully trimmed red leather interior and the surprisingly spacious rear passenger compartment. Swift cars of any description are now very rarely seen and this must surely be one of the best kept survivors.
Classic Car, Motorcycle & Automobilia|
Brightwells Auctioneers and Valuers, Leominster
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|Registration number||UY 9344|
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