Grace's Guide To British Industrial History

Registered UK Charity (No. 115342)

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 162,526 pages of information and 244,522 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 147,919 pages of information and 233,587 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Lanchester Motor Co

From Graces Guide
1900. Lanchester "Phaeton".
20 hp Landaulet (double). Image published in 1906.
November 1902.
November 1902.
January 1903.
February 1903.
1903. Tonneau, Twin-cylinder, 12 h.p. Reg No: AR 621. Photo at the 2009 LBVCR.
1904. car with water-cooled engine.
1905. Four cylinder vertical engine.
February 1905.
February 1905. 20 h.p.
February 1905. 20 h.p. model.
September 1905.
December 1905. 14-20 h.p. Petrol car.
December 1905.
1906 Q4. 28hp.
1906. 20 h.p. car.
1906. 20 h.p. chassis.
1906. 20 h.p. engine.
1906. Control handle.
1906. Horizontal motor.
December 1906. Six-cylinder.
February 1907.
November 1908. Steering box detail.
November 1908. Rear spring detail.
November 1909.
December 1910. Lanchester 28-hp engine and gear unit.
November 1911. 30 h.p. six-cylinder.
November 1911.
November 1911. Carburettor.
November 1911. Valve gear.
November 1911. Six-cylinder engine.
August 1912.
August 1912.
May 1913.
January 1919. 40-hp 6-cylinder.
January 1920.
January 1920.
January 1920.
March 1922.
June 1923.
1924. Lanchester 40.
1924. Lanchester 40.
November 1927. 21 hp.
November 1927. 21 hp.
August 1926. 21hp 6-cylinder.
1927. Experimental Electric Car exhibited at Birmingham Science Museum.
December 1927. 21 hp.
January 1928. 21 hp.
October 1931.
October 1931.
October 1933.
October 1933.
1935. Lanchester Saloon. Reg No: MJ 8631.
September 1937.
October 1937.
November 1937.
Lanchester Eleven. Reg No: JT 7196.
March 1939.
April 1944.
March 1945.
January 1946.
1952. Lanchester Leda. Reg No: FVL 571.
1952. Lanchester Leda. Reg No: FVL 571.

The Lanchester Motor Company of Armourer Mills, Montgomery Street, Birmingham

Formerly the Lanchester Engine Co

1904 November. Became a private company. The company was registered on 21 November, in reconstruction of the Lanchester Engine Co. [1]

The 1904 models were 20 hp four-cylinder water cooled models with overhead valves

1904 Built a gear-cutting machine for Daimler. (Exhibit at Birmingham Thinktank museum).

1905 Produced the 28 hp six-cylinder model

1906 Currently produced 20 and 28 h.p. models with shaft-drive. Formerly produced 10, 16 and 18 h.p. models. [2]

1907 Abandoned the tiller steering

1908 November. Details of the 28-hp car with wheel-steering shown at Olympia.[3][4]

1909 October. Details of the improvements in the cars.[5]

1910 Frederick Lanchester, disillusioned with his directors, resigned and became a part-time consultant and technical adviser to the company.

1910 October. Details of the 'new' 38-hp car.[6]

1911 October. Details of the two models: 25hp (4) and 38hp (6). The 20hp nd 28hp will be dropped from the range.[7]

1911 Motor Show. 38 hp model model detailed with photographs. [8]

1912 June. Details of the chassis.[9]

1912 September. Details of the body building system.[10]

1913-1917 For a list of the models and prices see the 1917 Red Book

1913 April. Advert in Autocar 'The air of good breeding'. [11]

1913 October. Cars for next year - no changes. 25hp and 38hp.[12]

1914 Frederick Lanchester severed all links with the company. George Herbert Lanchester took over as chief engineer.

WWI Produced armoured vehicles and aero-engines.

After the first World war the Forty was re-introduced with a 6.2 litre overhead cam engine in unit with a 3 speed gearbox still using epicyclic gears and a worm drive rear axle.

1920 November. Exhibited at the Motor Car Show at Olympia and the White City with 40hp six-cylinder engine 'of the highest quality'. [13]

The Twenty One of 1924 had a 3.1 litre engine mated to a four speed conventional gearbox and this grew to the 3.3 litre Twenty Three in 1926.

1927 A experimental petrol-electric car. (Exhibit at Birmingham Thinktank museum)

1928 The Forty was finally replaced by the Thirty with straight eight 4.4 litre engine in 1928.

1931 The company was taken over by BSA who also owned an upmarket brand in the British Daimler company and production moved to their Coventry factory. The great years for Lanchester were now over and the models were generally overlooked by the company in favour of Daimler models. The first new offering, still designed by George Lanchester, was the Eighteen with hydraulic brakes and a Daimler fluid flywheel.

1933 The Ten of 1933 was an upmarket version of the BSA 10. The pre-war Fourteen of 1937, known also as the Roadrider, was similar to the Daimler DB17 with its 1.6 litre six which had a fixed cylinder head until 1938.

Post war, a ten horsepower car was reintroduced with the 1,287 cc LD10 which didn't have a Daimler equivalent and the four cylinder 1950 Fourteen / Leda was upstaged in 1953 by a six cylinder Daimler version called the Conquest.

1951 Exhibitor at the 1951 Motor Show in the Car Section.

The last model, of which only prototypes were produced, was called the Sprite and in 1956 the Lanchester name was phased out. The parent company, Daimler, was in decline and in 1960 was absorbed by Jaguar, who used the Daimler name in the same way Daimler had used the Lanchester name. Both became victims of badge engineering in their last years of production.

List of Models

  • 14/Leda 1950-54

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. The Stock Exchange Year Book 1908
  2. The Automobile Vol. III. Edited by Paul N. Hasluck and published by Cassell in 1906.
  3. Automotor Journal 1908/11/28
  4. The Autocar 1908/10/10
  5. The Autocar 1909/11/06
  6. The Autocar 1910/10/29
  7. The Autocar 1911/10/21
  8. The Engineer of 10th November 1911 p486
  9. The Autocar 1912/06/01
  10. The Autocar 1912/09/28
  11. The Autocar 1913/04/05
  12. The Autocar 1913/10/18
  13. The Engineer of 19th November 1920 p498