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Daimler DB18

The Daimler Eighteen or Daimler DB18, a 2½-litre version of the preceding 2.2-litre New Fifteen introduced in 1938 now using the engine developed for the Scout Car, started out in 1939 as a six-cylinder chassis on which Daimler and various British coach builders offered a range of bodies including drop-head coupes. However, the most common version was a four-door saloon which Daimler themselves produced and which by the early 1950s was beginning to look unfashionably upright and “severe yet dignified”.

The model was introduced immediately before the start, for Britain, of the Second World War when the company concentrated on the manufacture of military vehicles. Most DB18s were produced after 1945, therefore. To contemporaries the model was generally known as the Daimler 2½-litre until 1949, when Daimler adopted the North American habit of giving their cars names (although not on any badgework), and a slightly updated version of the car became the Daimler Consort. These updates included the integration of the firewall into the body rather than it being part of the chassis, a move from rod operated mechanical brakes to a Girling-Bendix hydraulic front and rod operated rear system, incorporating the head lights into the front guards, and providing a badge plate behind the front bumper with a more curved radiator grille.

The car used a 2,522 cc in-line six-cylinder, pushrod ohv engine fed by a single SU carburetter. Throughout its life, 70 bhp was claimed, though a change in the gearing which coincided with the introduction of the Consort in 1950 was marked by an increase in maximum speed from 76 mph (122 km/h) to 82 mph (132 km/h) for the saloon, while the acceleration time from 0 – 50 mph (80 km/h) improved from 17.9 to 16.9 seconds. By the standards of the time the car was brisker than it looked.

The car, despite the detail panel showing Manual Transmission, was mainly supplied (if not exclusively) with the Daimler Fluid Flywheel coupled to a 4-speed Wilson Pre-selector gearbox. The independent front suspension used coil springs, while the back axle was suspended using a traditional semi-elliptical set-up. The chassis was "underslung" at the rear with the main chassis members passing below the rear axle.

The interior was fitted out with traditional “good taste” using mat leather and polished wood fillets.

Sales levels were respectable: 3,355 Daimler 2½-litres were produced and 4,250 Consorts.

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