This delightful Singer was for a number of years in the possession of Richard and Pat Heaton. It is a 1946 Model A 9hp Roadster, produced for the post-war export drive, having been developed from the 1939 Roadster. They named her Letticia, or ‘Lettuce’ for short, due in no short measure to her colour.
This one is Mint Green, a colour which they believe was developed for the American market. However, this car was originally delivered in black, with red upholstery, to Mr R Benbow from Gordan Cars of London. It has a 1074cc engine with a 3 speed manual gearbox, giving a lusty performance for its age and size, with 36 bhp at 5000 rpm. Maximum speed was 65 mph, almost 40 mph being achieved in 2nd gear!
The brakes are mechanically operated by rods, and are surprisingly efficient. The ‘Nine’ is neither a placid saloon nor a sports car, and she gave Richard and Pat great pleasure. They had comfortable, if not incident free, tours to North Norfolk and a variety of other venues. She’s even been a much admired wedding car, although the bride opted for the ‘Hood up’ option after a trial run with the hood down.
The car was previously owned and partially rebuilt by Brian Hawksbee of Swindon, who sadly lost his battle with cancer. When Richard and Pat first acquired her she had a seemingly insoluble fuel starvation problem. They tried (almost) everything, even installing an electric auxilary fuel pump. In desperation the fuel tank was removed to inspect its interior, which was sound, then a friend asked if they’d ever blown through the fuel pipe? They hadn’t, so, no expense spared, they did, and out popped a slug of cobweb and gloop – problem solved!
Having replaced the gear box, the rear axle was also found to be noisy. This was when they found there was no oil in the diff. So having also now replaced the diff, Richard’s motto is: “Never assume anything has been done when you acquire a car!
A load of other jobs have also been done around the car, and she now drives like a dream, especially since having the steering box refurbished – with less free play at the steering wheel, she is much easier to point in the right direction.
The current owner is unknown.