header image
Homepage. This page: Photographs of a very unusual coachbuilt Morris Ten-Four, circa 1959.
Original transport photographs
Old Classic Car Image Archive index >

Morris 10/4 Cunard.

For as long as mainstream cars continued to employ separate bodies and chassis, before monocoque construction became the norm, there were coachbuilders dotted across the land, offering to body your vehicle to suit most requirements. This car, a Morris 10/4 Cunard Special, belonged to Barry Lafbery. He emailed over the following three photographs. The car itself was built in 1934, while the photographs were taken 25 years later, in 1959.
The Cunard Motor & Carriage Company can trace its roots back to 1911, and built bodies (often for the parent Napier motor company), until being sold to Weymann Motor Bodies Ltd, after which the Cunard name disappeared from sales literature. R. I. Musselwhite, a former M.D. of the Cunard company, along with V.E. Freestone formerly of Thrupp & Maberley, re-formed the Cunard company and returned to producing their own motor bodies, from 1930 onwards. Shortly afterwards, the company was taken over by large-scale Morris Motors dealership Stewart and Ardern. Thereafter, work concentrated on bodying various Morris, Rover and Wolseley cars.
Barry's car was a 10/4, ie 10hp four-cylinder variant. Can anyone shed more light on this car? Online there are a few references to 10/6 Cunards, of which a small number survive, but what of the 10/4s? Have they all disappeared - and were many made in the first place?
Barry adds:
"The Morris was a coachbuilt 4-seat sports car by Cunard Coachworks. They were built on 10/4 and 10/6 Morris chassis. Mine was a 10/4 and I have never seen another one. If you google it, a couple of 10/6s come up but that's all. I really loved that car, it had a 10hp(RAC) sidevalve engine, with twin SU carbs. It had great performance for the day. The sad end came one night while driving back to camp, when I was in the RAF, I put a rod through the block. It then stood at the camp, until I was demoted and I sold it to a fellow there."
First up is a side-on view of the Morris, as purchased, with the roof raised. Here, it still has the original headlamps that were later stolen. The running boards, shown here, rotted away during the period that Barry owned the car.
(Please click the thumbnail to view the full-size image.)
1934 Morris Ten Four
By the time of photograph number two, the car had been re-painted, the wings altered, and smaller headlights fitted to replace those that had been pilfered. Also note the chequered paintjob applied to the radiator grille, a modification that wasn't uncommon on pre-war cars in the 1950s and 1960s, in a bid to spruce them up a little.
Morris Ten Cunard
The final shot in this trio is a view forwards from the driving/passenger compartment, with the car bowling along an A-road about to overtake a stationary fire engine, which happens to be dealing with a grass fire. Further ahead is a Morris Minor, while puttering its way towards the 10/4 is a line of vehicles headed by a scooter. Thanks for sending over the pictures Barry.
View from the driver's seat
Return to Page 19 in the photographic archive, or visit the main index here.

Custom Search
Old Classic Car (C) R. Jones 2020. Content not to be reproduced elsewhere.
Website by ableweb.
Privacy Policy, Cookies & Disclaimers