Lanchester Motor Co
From Graces Guide
The Lanchester Motor Company of Armourer Mills, Montgomery Street, Birmingham
Formerly the Lanchester Engine Co
The 1904 models were 20 hp four-cylinder water cooled models with overhead valves
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. 
1907 Abandoned the tiller steering
1910 Frederick Lanchester, disillusioned with his directors, resigned and became a part-time consultant and technical adviser to the company.
1911 Introduced the 25 hp four-cylinder and the 38 hp six-cylinder models
1911 Motor Show. 38 hp model model detailed with photographs. 
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'. 
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'. 
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
- Lanchester: Ten
- Lanchester: Fourteen
- Lanchester: Eighteen
- Lanchester: 21 hp
- Lanchester: LD10 1946-51
- Lanchester: Light 6
- 14/Leda 1950-54
- Lanchester: Sprite 1955-56
Sources of Information
- The Stock Exchange Year Book 1908
- The Automobile Vol. III. Edited by Paul N. Hasluck and published by Cassell in 1906.
- The Engineer of 10th November 1911 p486
- The Autocar of 5th April 1913 p
- The Engineer of 19th November 1920 p498
- 1961 Guide to Key British Enterprises: Motor, Motor-Cycle and Commercial Vehicle Manufacturers
- British Motor Cars 1950/51
- Biography of Frederick Lanchester, ODNB
- F. W. Lanchester. The Life of an Engineer by P. W. Kingsford. Published 1960.