Lotus | MG | Delahaye
Lotus Cars, formed in 1952, is a British manufacturer of sports and racing cars, famous for its Excel, Eclat, Esprit, Elan, Europa and Elise sports cars and for the highly successful Team Lotus in Formula One.
The four letters in the middle of the logo stand for the initials of company founder, Anthony Colin Bruce Chapman.
Lotus was notable for its use of fibreglass bodies, backbone chassis, and twin cam engines, initially supplied by Coventry Climax but later replaced by Lotus-Ford units (Ford block, Lotus head and valve gear). Lotus worked with Ford on the Lotus Cortina, a successful sports saloon.
The Lotus Seven, originating in the 1950s as a simple, lightweight open two seater continued in production into the early 70s. Lotus then sold the rights to produce the Seven to Caterham.
MG (Morris Garages) is a British sports car manufacturer formed in 1924. Best known for its two-seat open sports cars, MG also produced saloons and coupés.
Most famous models are the T-Series Midgets of the 1940/50s (MG TC, MG TD and MG TF). The MGA (1955-1962), MG Midget (1961-1979) and MGB (1962-1980).
The marque is now owned by MG Motor UK a wholly owned subsidiary of Shangai- based SAIC Motor.
Delahaye was a French automotive manufacturing company founded in 1894. Their first cars were belt-driven, with single- or twin-cylinder engines mounted at the rear. The Type 1 was an instant success when introduced.
The Delahaye 135 was produced from 1935 until 1954 in many different body styles. A sporting tourer, it was also popular for racing. Competition 135s set the all-time record at the Ulster Tourist Trophy, placed second and third in the Mille Miglia in 1936, and won the Monte Carlo rally in 1937 and the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1938.
In 1935 Delahaye bought Delage, a struggling French luxury automobile and racecar company.
After World War II, the depressed French economy and an increasingly punitive luxury tax regime made life difficult for luxury auto-makers and Delahaye was taken over and then shut down in 1954 by a Hotchkiss another French automobile producer.
Some of the great coachbuilders who provided bodies for Delahayes include Figoni et Falaschi, Chapron, Letourneur et Marchand, Joseph Saoutchik, Guillore, Faget-Varlet, and Pourtout.
These coachbuilders produced many beautiful, streamlined, art deco designed cars. One of the most famous being the Saoutchik designed Delahaye 175S roadster owned by Diana Dors.