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The Singer Torpedo Body Mystery

This photo was taken during the 1934 edition of the Le Mans 24 Hours. Number 26 is the 1934 Singer 1.5 litre Fox & Nicholl Team car which arrived 7th, driven by Lewis and Hindmarsh (seen here at the start, but hardly visible). During that race and also the 1934 British Empire Trophy in Brooklands (with the race number 38), the Fox & Nicholl Team used on the car a torpedo body, as shown in the picture. Because of the color of the body and of the jackets of the drivers, the Singer was nicknames "Le diable rouge" (red devil) by the spectators and the journalists. However, when this Singer first left the factory it had the original slab tank body which was put back on the car after the Le Mans and Brooklands races. Now this torpedo body puzzles us and we are curious to know from which car the torpedo body was taken and why? Can you tell us more?


#8 2015-12-17 14:51
Hi Angela, I'm the owner of the car. I have many informations and pictures for you. Kind regards

editor: you may want to contact office@prewarca
#7 2015-04-22 15:42
I came across your emails with great interest as I am researching Fred Elson as he was my grandfather. He gave up the business in Church Street in 1953. If you have any information re the Singers, Lagondas and 1927 Bluebird I would be interested.
#6 2012-10-22 12:27
Thank you Ralph and thank you Mike,I will contact Talbot and Lagonda register.
#5 2012-10-22 10:46
Hello,I'm the owner of the Singer, thank you for your posts, they are very useful. I ask to David if the Fred Elson company still exists or not and to Simon if he has pictures of the car in the Isle of Man in the 1934.
Thank you very much for your help.
#4 2012-10-16 11:04
Fox & Nichols ran the highly successful Talbot team, 1930-33. These cars were and are (most of them still survive) very tall and so the bodies are necessarily somewhat 'slab sided', but still of 'torpedo' style with tapered rear- ends. The coachbuilder were probably the same as as those who made this singer body. Current owners of these cars and the STD Register probably know who it was.
#3 2012-10-15 19:38
Brian Lewis drove a similar bodied Singer in the Isle of Man in 1934. Hope this helps?
Simon Thomas
+1 #2 2012-10-15 15:24
I believe the Singer body was made by Fred Elson at 23 Church Street, Epsom. Elson made the bodies for some of the Fox & Nicholls Lagondas and also the first body fitted to Malclom Campbell's Bluebird in 1927
+1 #1 2012-10-15 08:50
Fox & Nicholls was a very professional company - it seems unlikely to me that they would use a second-hand body for their Le Mans entry. Far more likely this was a purpose-built body for this car, and it was converted back to standard specification when it was sold on. The Singer body style is very similar to that fitted to the sucessful Fox & Nicholls Lagonda Le Mans entry in 1935?

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