Lot 319: Talbot BA105 Sports Tourer
The most successful division of the Anglo-French Sunbeam-Talbot-Darracq (STD) combine, Talbot might well have escaped takeover by Rootes in 1935 had it not been shackled to its weaker partners. The company's healthy position had been achieved by a succession of well-engineered products penned by its designer, Swiss-born Georges Roesch, whose obsession with the pursuit of high performance through increased engine revolutions led to some of the most memorable cars of the 1930s. Talbot's Chief Engineer from 1916, Roesch rescued the company from the brink of failure with the launch of the 14/45. Introduced in 1926 as the basis of a one-model policy, the 14/45, like all Roesch's Talbot creations, was powered by a smooth and flexible six-cylinder overhead-valve engine endowed with a remarkably high output for its size. Abandoning the one-model programme, Roesch developed the 14/45 to produce the 75 and 90 models, the latter setting Talbot on the path towards renewed sporting success. 1931 saw the arrival of the 3.0-litre 105 powered by a new 'six' featuring staggered valves, a Roesch stratagem allowing for improved breathing. There was more technical innovation for 1933 in the form of Luvax adjustable dampers and the Roesch-designed, Wilson pre-selector gearbox, the latter augmented for 1935 by Talbot's famous automatic 'traffic clutch' which permitted sequential upward gearchanges. Also new for '35 were a dropped chassis frame and a 3.4-litre model - the 110 - that would turn out to be the ultimate Roesch Talbot. One of the great makes of the 1930s, Talbot was axed by new masters Rootes in 1937. The BA series of the Talbot 105 was made in much fewer numbers than the other series. Only 23 chassis were erected and of these only four had the catalogued Sports Tourer coachwork by Darracq. One of three known survivors, this particular example was delivered on 12th April 1935 to the Thornton Engineering Company Limited, the Talbot agents in Bradford. On 13th April 1935 the car was sold to Mr C Ambler, a local mill owner. No history is known between that date and 1964 when it was acquired, and restored over a period, by Roy Ireland. The current vendor first saw this Talbot BA105 tourer in 1998 at an STD rally being driven by the STD Register's then secretary, John Kearley. Bought from John Kearley in 2001, the car came with a file of bills relating to his 19 years of ownership totalling approximately �12,000. Also on file is a published letter written by Roy Ireland, who had owned the Talbot before selling it to Tony Hull. In an addendum, Tony Hull said that he owned the car between 1972 and 1982, during which period some 12,000 miles were covered, mainly on STD events, national rallies and driving tests. 'KY 9680' was featured on the Esso Calendar for 1980. Responding to Roy Ireland's letter, John Kearley recalled that he had blown up the engine, writing off the block and sump. An identical Type 95 engine was fitted in its place. When purchased in 2001 the car displayed a total of 13,720 miles on the odometer to which the vendor has added a further 10,000-or-so. Recent mechanical refurbishment includes an overhaul of the rear axle by Ian Polson in 2004 (�4,695); reconditioning the Wilson pre-selector gearbox, undertaken by Cecil Schumacher in 2009 (�2,903); various works by Arthur Archer in 2009 (�5,103); and a cylinder head overhaul, including new valves, by Arthur Archer in 2011/2012 (�4,865). Only some 1,000 miles have been covered since the gearbox rebuild in July 2009. Described as in generally good condition, this beautiful 'post-Vintage thoroughbred' is offered with current MoT/tax, Swansea V5 registration document and an extensive history file containing correspondence and invoices dating back to the early 1970s. A modern oil filter is the only notified deviation from factory specification.
The Beaulieu Sale|
Bonhams, Hampshire, UK
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