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 SS Cars 100 SS photo

1937 SS Cars 100 SS

The SS100 was SS Cars Limited's first real high-performance model, following a similar design to its predecessor, the SS 90, but with a revised radiator, a Le Mans-type fuel tank, and new Lucas QK596 headlamps (the 1937 models used large-diameter Lucas P100 units). Launched in 1936, it used a new Weslake-developed overhead-valve engine in a shortened SS1 chassis. 'SS' was short for the Swallow Sidecar & Coachbuilding Company, which had been founded in Blackpool, England by William Walmsley. In 1926 they branched out into motor manufacturing with its earliest success being a sports saloon on the Austin Seven chassis. In October of 1931, they achieved marque status with the introduction of the SS1. Standard exclusively supplied the chassis, six-cylinder side-valve engine, and four-speed gearbox.

William Heynes had joined as Chief Engineer by the time the SS90 sports car arrived in 1935. Using a shortened SS1 chassis, re-engineered by Heynes, the SS90 wore styling by William Lyons with a long bonnet, cut-away doors, and truncated tail. The side-valve engine provided enough power to give the SS90 a top speed of 90 mph. In 1936 the SS100 Jaguar sports car was introduced and marked the company's first use of the 'Jaguar' name. It was built alongside the 2½-Litre saloon and rested on a shortened, 102-inch wheelbase chassis and powered by a revised version of the 2,663cc Standard six which, equipped with Harry Weslake's overhead-valve cylinder head and fitted with twin SU carburetors, developed just over 100 horsepower.

In 1936, an SS 100 driven by Tommy Wisdom (and crewed by his wife) won the International Alpine Trial, the first of many successful rallying forays, including class victories int he RAC events of 1937 and 1938. In 1948, it won the overall victory at the Alpine.

During its production lifespan, which was prematurely ended by the outbreak of war, around 198 examples of the 2.5-Litre and 116 of the later 3.5-Litre cars were built.


by Daniel Vaughan | Jun 2020

Related Reading : SS Cars SS 100 History

The origination of the SS letters designated by Jaguar founder Sir William Lyons has always been debatable. As his original firm was known as the Swallow Sidecar Company, that seems a logical explanation. The SS-100, was the first in a long line of high-performance production cars that looked as fast as they went. They were one of the first cars to bear the Jaguar name, although at the time it was....
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Related Reading : SS Cars SS 100 History

In 1935 the Jaguar name sprang upon the scene for the first time with a completely new saloon and sports car range. William Heynes had been working to produce a completely new box section cruciform braced chassis for a vastly improved new model range. Meanwhile Weslake had been turning his talents to the Standard engine and by adopting overhead valves he succeeded in increasing output from 75 hp....
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1937 Vehicle Profiles

1937 SS Cars 100 SS vehicle information

Roadster

Chassis Num: 18075

The SS100 was introduced in 1936 and it featured a newly developed Weslake overhead-valve engine that displaced 2663cc and created the SS marque their first real high performance machine. In 1943 the SS Company under the direction of William Lyons wo....[continue reading]

1937 SS Cars 100 SS vehicle information

Roadster

Formally called the 'SS Jaguar 100', the SS100 had the sensational looks and near-100 mph performance of sports cars costing considerably more. It had a new cast-iron head that used overhead valves for higher performance. The transmission was a four-....[continue reading]

1937 SS Cars 100 SS vehicle information

Roadster

Chassis Num: 49026
Engine Num: L1012E

This SS100, chassis number 49026, was manufactured on December 24th of 1937 and was dispatched just after the New Year. It left the factory in black with grey trim. It was sold through Henleys Limited in London to its first owner. After World War II,....[continue reading]

1937 SS Cars 100 SS vehicle information

Roadster

In 1936 SS Cars Ltd. began producing an open two-seat sports model called the SS Jaguar 100. Along with the saloon (sedan) version, this was the first car to bear the Jaguar name, later adopted for the entire marque.....[continue reading]

1937 SS Cars 100 SS vehicle information

Roadster

Chassis Num: 18081

The Swallow Sidecar Company began its life building motorcycle sidecars. When partners William Walmsley and William Lyons began building bodies on the Austin 7, it became the Swallow Sidecar and Coachbuilding Company. Eventually, the sidecar business....[continue reading]

1937 SS Cars 100 SS vehicle information

Roadster

Chassis Num: 18105

After 1936, all models built by William Lyons' SS Cars Company were more commonly referred to as Jaguars. This 2.5-liter SS100 was ordered in 1937 with the standard body designed by Lyons himself. The first owner was Bob Truett, a successful amateur ....[continue reading]

1937 SS Cars 100 SS vehicle information

Roadster

Chassis Num: 18114
Engine Num: 252590

This 2½-Litre Roadster was originally sold by Layham's Engineering Company, of Surrey, England, to Lawrence Evelyn Wood Pomeroy. In 1953, the car was acquired from Mercury Motors, of Wembley, by Harry Wolfe. In 1958, ownership passed to Leslie Worley....[continue reading]

1937 SS Cars 100 SS vehicle information

Roadster

Chassis Num: 18124
Engine Num: 250798

William Lyons and William Walmsley began manufacturing motorcycle sidecars in Blackpool, Lancashire, in 1922. A few years later, in 1927, their Swallow Coachbuilding Company was building bodies on Fiat, Morris, Austin, and Standard chassis. After mov....[continue reading]

1937 SS Cars 100 SS vehicle information

Tourer

Chassis Num: 19098
Engine Num: 251080
Gearbox Num: 1627

William Lyons motorcar company was originally named Swallow Sidecar and then shortened to 'SS'. The first models to be given the name Jaguar debuted at the Mayfair Hotel dinner preceding the 1953 British Motor Show. The Jaguar name soon applied to th....[continue reading]

1937 SS Cars 100 SS vehicle information

Roadster

Chassis Num: 18116
Engine Num: P36

This SS 100 Jaguar 2½-liter roadster left the factory on July 1st of 1937 and was delivered through Henly's, of London, to a Mr. Head. In 1955 it was imported into the United States by Don Schoenert of North Hollywood and would remain in California f....[continue reading]

Roadster
Chassis #: 18075 
Roadster
 
Roadster
Chassis #: 49026 
Roadster
 
Roadster
Chassis #: 18081 
Roadster
Chassis #: 18105 
Roadster
Chassis #: 18114 
Roadster
Chassis #: 18124 
Tourer
Chassis #: 19098 
Roadster
Chassis #: 18116 

Recent Vehicle Additions

Performance and Specification Comparison

Price Comparison

$152-$2,000
1937 100 SS
$2,000-$12,075
1937 SS Cars 100 SS Base Price : $2,000

SS 100

Year
Production
Wheelbase
Engine
Prices
102.00 in.
6 cyl., 162.51 CID., 102.00hp
6 cyl., 213.58 CID., 125.00hp
53
104.00 in.
6 cyl., 152.56 CID., 104.00hp
$2,000 - $2,000
104.00 in.
6 cyl., 213.58 CID., 125.00hp
$1,925 - $1,925
103.94 in.
6 cyl., 213.58 CID., 125.00hp

Industry Production

#1#2#3SS Cars
1942Chevrolet (254,885)Ford (160,432)Plymouth (152,427)
1941Chevrolet (1,008,976)Ford (691,455)Plymouth (522,080)
1940Chevrolet (764,616)Ford (541,896)Plymouth (430,208)
1939Chevrolet (577,278)Ford (487,031)Plymouth (423,850)
1938Chevrolet (465,158)Ford (410,263)Plymouth (285,704)
1937Chevrolet (815,375)Ford (765,933)Plymouth (566,128)
1936Ford (930,778)Chevrolet (918,278)Plymouth (520,025)
1935Ford (820,253)Chevrolet (548,215)Plymouth (350,884)
1934Ford (563,921)Chevrolet (551,191)Plymouth (321,171)
1933Chevrolet (486,261)Ford (334,969)Plymouth (298,557)
1932Chevrolet (313,404)Ford (210,824)Plymouth (186,106)

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