Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Hispano 1924

When Hispano-Suiza was formed in 1904, they soon found success producing trucks to meet a need in Spain, a poor country at the time with mountains and inefficient railways. They did produce cars as well, which soon built a strong reputation for their reliability and performance. Most were sold to European heads of state which established the brand in luxury circles. Their reputation continued to grow as they enjoyed success in racing.

In 1919, at the Paris Motor Show, Hispano-Suiza introduced the H6 powered by a 6.6-liter overhead cam aluminum six-cylinder engine offering 135 horsepower and a top speed of 85 mph. One of the more advanced features found on the H6 were the power-assisted brakes, the first in the industry, driven with a special shaft from the transmission. Upon deceleration, the cars momentum drove the brake servo to provide additional power. There were around 2,350 examples of the H6 produced through 1933.

In 1922, Hispano-Suiza introduced the more powerful H6B. This example features a Coupe deVille body built by the legendary coachbuilder Saoutchik, and includes many fine French accessories.

It was delivered on August 26th of 1924 to a Mr. de Magnin. Later owners include a Mr. Behna, who sold it in 1962, reportedly complete and original, to a Mr. Boutet. At the time, the reported mileage was 23,000 km. The next owner committed it to Wilkinson and Sons of Derby, England for a sympathetic but complete restoration.

The car is painted in gloss black with a passenger compartment that is finished in broad stripes of black and claret. The interior woodwork is inlaid polished mahogany with ivory door handles. There are lighted running boards for the convenience of safety of its passengers.

The chauffeur's compartment is done in black leather, with black wool leather-backed carpets. Dashboard instrumentation includes a 120 mph speedometer, tachometer, oil pressure, ammeter, fuel and temperature gauges and a Jaeger clock. The car is equipped with Bleriot headlamps, Grebel swivel spot-lamp, oil opera lamps with stork insignia and mirrors on the dual side-mount spares. Cromos twin-tube bumpers are mounted front and rear.

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