Singer Nine Special Speed Body by Lemaitre, Long term ownership, stunning history (1937)




Some stories turn out just that little bit different than expected. The story attached to this car being a prime example. The first owner, a Frenchman, ordered a 9SPP rolling chassis from Singer. He took it to the French coachbuilder Lemaitre asking to pair it with an aerodynamic body. The owner had big plans as he intended to take part in the by then already famous 24 hours of Le Mans. Whilst Lemaitre started work on the order, the owner started to play with the engine. He fitted a different crankshaft and increased the compression. The modifications were well under way with everything pointing to the build of a very competitive Singer. That was until his wife sussed out his plans bringing his Le Mans dream to an abrupt and premature end. The car did get finished and this first French owner did enjoy it for some time, but sadly never on the hallowed grounds of La Sathre. Between 1935 and 1951 not much is known about the Singer. Since 1951 its whole history is known. The car was bought by a famous Professor, Maurice Elzas. He kept the car form 1951 until his death in 2020.He enjoyed this headstrong little British sports car for over 68 years. The accompanying paperwork is nothing short of phenomenal.
The car’s condition equally matches the quality of the paperwork. In the past the Singer has been subjected to a full restoration and mechanical rebuild. The car has always been treated with respect and as such has remained in wonderful condition. The bodywork is exceptionally tidy. The french coachwork on top of the British chassis forms a
stunning and stylish combination. All the panelwork is nice and thin. The chassis in good shape. The paintwork does show some blemishes which define the car’s appearance in a positive sense. The car has retained its original wheels with correctly sized good quality rubber. It is fantastic see the car has kept its original looks so well over the years. The front windscreen can be folded down to give just that little bit more speed or aerodynamics. For your Sunday trip you would of corse keep the windscreen up and don’t worry if it starts to rain, the windscreen wipers still work.
Inside there are two seats together with a delightful Spartan set up. The original gauges are clear and easy to read. That this is a sports car is immediately obvious. The seats give a nice amount of support and provide a good sit. The carpets are in good order as is the neatly maintained wooden dashboard. The seats are upholstered in fine blue leather that are nicely preserved.
Mechanically this Singer has been very well maintained. The car was always driven with much love and is still in very good shape. Compared to todays standards a 972cc engine producing 40 Ps may seem paltry, back then they were quite attractive numbers especially considering its low weight of just 650 Kg. The Singer was not built to go as fast as possible in a straight line, but rather to be able to attack corners with gusto. To get the maximum out of the car the trick is to brake as little as possible and keep the momentum going. This is true sportsmanship, helped by the good seating position and predictable road handling. As said the maintenance of this Singer over the years has been perfect added to the total mechanical rebuild. Thumbing through the documentation we came across many invoices and exchanges of correspondence about new part the car needed. The engine is coupled to a precise 3-speed manual gearbox. Brakes and suspension are simple but importantly in good order.
The question now is; who will continue this plucky Singer’s journey? The car comes with a large file containing a number of books and technical information about Singer. Besides that there are numerous invoices and correspondence and schemes to guide you in keeping this car in peak condition. This not just a very rare Singer 9HP Special courtesy of the Lemaitre bodywork but a great looking car in fine mechanical fettle. This car is truly unique. We would like to end by informing you this car is eligible for entry in events such as the Le Mans Classic.

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  • Mileage: 3,025
  • Year: 1937
  • Doors: 2
  • Body type: Convertible
  • Transmission type: Manual
  • Fuel type: Petrol
  • Colour: Red

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Gallery Aaldering

NL, Netherlands

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