THE SINGER “ELEVEN”
A NEW LIGHT CAR OF ADVANCED DESIGN. INDEPENDENT front-wheel springing has such manifold advantages, especially on cars of short wheelbase, that the system must be widely taken up sooner or later by English manufacturers. To the Singer Company belongs the credit
of first bringing out a moderately priced chassis of this type, which is fitted with the novel Gordon-Marshall system of front-wheel suspension. The steering pivots are carried by two parallel links, which swing in line with the chassis members. A bell-crank lever is attached to each of the links and a helical spring secured to one is compressed
by a plunger passing through to the other. Each pair of links and its associated spring is damped by an Armstrong double-acting hydraulic shock absorber. Two substantial cross-tubes are mounted one above the other in the front of the chassis, and each swinging link has a shaft which is supported in two bearings in the tube. The tubes also act as oil
reservoirs, and bearing wear should be negligible. Half-elliptic springs of normal design are used for the rear suspension. The power-unit is an overhead camshaft four-cylinder engine of 1384 c.c. capacity with a counter-balanced three-bearing crank-shaft. The Vulcan-Sinclair fluid coupling between engine and gearbox embodies several points not found on other fluid flywheels so far fitted to private ears. The driving and driven members have the usual vanes, which impart a spiral motion to the oil contained in the drive, but at low engine speeds the fluid drains off into a reservoir, so that there is a negligible amount of drag. As the engine is speeded up, centrifugal force
drives the oil back through pipes into the vaned chambers and the familiar coupling effect is exerted. The gearbox has constant-mesh second and third gears and a free-wheel, and with this in operation any gear can be selected by taking the foot off the accelerator and putting the gear lever into the
appropriate notch. Alternately the freewheel can be locked and the car driven in the ordinary way, as the clutch pedal operates a two-plate clutch of normal design fitted between the fluid-drive and the gearbox. All possible precautions have been taken to make the chassis rigid, a state of affairs particularly necessary with independent front-wheel springing. The side.members sweep up in front to carry the two crosstubes, and from the lower of these channel, section members run back to join the side members. The centre portion of the frame is braced by a cruciform member joined to the chassis through substantial flanges, and the rear part is swept over the back-axle. Lockheed hydraulic brakes are used and operated in ribbed drums of
The standard coachwork for the “Eleven “is a well-built four door saloon, and the complete car costs £240. Other closed bodies of modified aerodynamic design are being manufactured by Airstream Ltd. of London. With the standard body the car is capable of 65 m.p.h.
The cars were inaugurated at a special “Christening Party” at Birmingham last month and Mr. Bullock, the managing director of the Singer Company, invited his distributors, in a speech of characteristic vigour, to “take their new demonstration cars home and ‘ bust ‘ them— if they could.” The design • and construction of the new ” Eleven ” appears to make his challenge a very safe one.