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1936 Singer 9 LeMans Sports ‘Airline’ Coupe Reserved

Registered to Moody’s Garage and then to a E.J.Smith of Burgess Hill on 11th May 1936 with the Reg Nr CUF 397 which it carries to this day with matching Chassis and Engine numbers.

Basically a saloon version of the highly successful Le Mans Roadster, it was designed for the enthusiast who required the comfort of closed bodywork allied to the racey performance of an open 2 seater.

Built on the well known LeMans 9HP chassis, it has a two door, low-slung, two seater coachbuilt body of graceful Art Deco lines, sometimes also referred to as an ‘Airline’ Coupe. There is ample space for luggage in the rear and a sliding sunroof is fitted.

This lovely example was originally unearthed some years ago in Switzerland as a Barnfind by the previous owner, who is a lifelong Singer devotee. It was repatriated to UK where it received a sympathetic restoration which included bare-metal respray and new interior. It has been used for Classic Car Rallies including a recent visit to the Llangollen Classic Event. It was also invited to appear on the 2015 Club Stand at the Classic Car Show at the NEC where it received much praise for its rarity and flowing lines.

Marque History
A four-seat tourer model with abbreviated fenders and no running boards called the “Nine Sports” was also made from October 1932, and one of these managed to finish thirteenth at the 1933 24 Hours of Le Mans race. In 1933, celebrating this moderate success, a new underslung racy two-seat model called the Singer Le Mans appeared. With twin SU carburetors, the Sports offered 31 hp (23 kW) at 4600 rpm, providing a 66 mph (106 km/h) with the wind screen down – impressive for the era and at a price considerably lower than the competition.

The Nine Sports was also used in various other endurance races, finishing second in class in the Alpine 6-days trial (Coupe Internationale des Alpes) in 1933.

For 1934 the front fenders were elongated to protect the paintwork on the sides of the car, as the earlier short units were found wanting. For 1935, as the sportier Le Mans gained a four-seater option, running boards appeared on the Nine Sports along with larger doors and a curvier rear end. In 1936, the shorter and simpler Nine-engined Bantam Nine appeared, and in 1937 the Nine was discontinued in favor of this model. However, in 1939 the “Nine” name reappeared on a new Roadster model which depended heavily on the Bantam, meaning that the Nine was to continue in production until into 1949, and as the 4A/4AB until 1953.

The Le Mans had a higher tuned version of the 972 cc inline-four, with higher camshafts, bigger and better cooled oil sump, and a counterbalanced crankshaft. Power climbed to 34 hp (25 kW) and a close-ratio gearbox was fitted. The frame was dropped behind the front wheels and thus underslung at the rear. No running boards, a 12-imperial-gallon (55 L) external fuel tank and twin spare tyres finished the competition appearance. As opposed to the competing MGs, the Singer had more powerful and dependable hydraulic Lockheed brakes. The Nine Le Mans, while not particularly successful at the track which gave it its name, clocked up an impressive number of wins at hillclimbs, trials, and various endurance races such as the Liège-Rome-Liège and the Alpine Cup Rally. In 1935 a four-seater version of the Le Mans was also available, somewhat of a hybrid of the Sports and the regular Le Mans.