With its shield-shaped radiator grille, fold-flat windscreen, voluptuous dual cowl scuttle, sloping tail, full flowing wings, cut-away doors, heavily louvered bonnet / chassis side rail covers and sleek blade bumpers, the SS1 Sports Tourer was arguably among the best-looking British cars of the 1930s.
Thoroughly revised for the 1934 season, the open four-seater featured a cruciform-braced 9ft 11in wheelbase chassis complete with underslung rear axle, all-round semi-elliptic leaf-sprung suspension. Powered by a choice of uprated 16hp or 20hp straight-six engines allied to improved four-speed manual transmission (with synchromesh on 2nd, 3rd and 4th gears), the newcomer also sported a well-stocked dashboard, sunburst-pattern door cards and sculpted leather upholstery. Despite the range’s obvious charms, total S.S. 1 production for 1935 across the Tourer, Coupe and Saloon derivatives amounted to just 948 cars.
According to its accompanying Jaguar Daimler Heritage Trust Certificate, this particular example – chassis 248806 – was manufactured on February 6th 1935 and was despatched the following month to Henlys Ltd. of London, the SS1 20hp was supplied new to W. P. Burston Esq. of Chippenham, Wiltshire. Having exported the Sports Tourer to Sweden, its third keeper got as far as refurbishing the chassis and replacement overhead valve SS Jaguar 2.5 Litre straight-six (thought to date from 1936) before a lack of suitable spares saw him `moth ball’ the car for some forty-five years.
Sold into the current (fifth) ownership by his son, chassis 248806 was repatriated during early 2011. A retired engineer, the vendor was pleased to find that the previously restored chassis and engine were in good order (though he dismantled the latter as a precaution). Repaired with new panels as necessary, the bodywork was then stripped to bare metal and treated to a professional respray in Brooklands Green. The trimmer who recreated the Sports Tourer’s upholstery was able to refer to the vendor’s similar 1933 SS1, and did a great job.
This lovely Tourer benefits from a new wiring loom, exhaust system, facet fuel pump and wire wheels. The open four-seater also received attention to its fuel tank, brightwork, steering, suspension, instruments and brakes. Offering many of the thrills of a SS100 but with the added bonus of two extra seats, this is a great family touring classic. The car also comes with an MoT which expires November 2016.