My father brought a 1932 six-cylinder 37.2-h.p. Hispano-Suiza from an actor in the Midlands, who, it was said, imported one every year. This was a Mulliner-bodied saloon, with an attractive imitation basketwork fabric roof, the reg. no. was GP 2984.
It was bought for £400 with “a noise in the gearbox”, and went straight to the Hispano “Works” in London for this to be seen to. I well remember being taken to collect it and seeing those vast V12s, dwarfing our little one.
They had failed to cure the noise but had thoroughly checked out the gearbox. Later on the chauffeur asked for the afternoon off, because he had found the trouble. The propshaft had been put in back to front!
The wheels were fitted with discs, having a pretty white line, making all the difference. The then Chairman of British Thermostats personally fitted at least two of his products, so that the vast water capacity enabled the car to tick over in London traffic or cruise along the N7 at 87 m.p.h. and maintain 85° C water temperature.
It really was a splendid and most reliable machine, Cleveland Discol went down its throat at the usual rate and, in France, it was rather fun to see the face of the petrol attendant when asked for “cent litres”. Another unsolicited bonus came from the Commissionaire outside the Cannes Casino, who without prompting shouted out “Hispano Anglaise”.
H. M. Gadsby.
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