The Singer Roadster was launched by the Singer Motor Company in 1939 as an open version of the Bantam saloon. Production was suspended for the duration of World War II following which production of the car was restarted in virtually unchanged form. It was upgraded to the 4A model in 1949 with a four speed manual gearbox. The short lived 4AB and 4AC models came in 1950 followed finally by the 4AD or SM roadster in 1951. The last cars were made in 1955.
Singer 9 Roadster 1939-1949
The original Roadster was an occasional four seat, two door tourer and had the overhead camshaft, 1074 cc I4 engine used in the Bantam range but tuned slightly to give 36 bhp (27 kW) by fitting a better manifold and downdraught SU carburettor. Performance was handicapped by the use of a three speed gearbox and top speed was in the order of 65 mph (105 km/h).
The body was built in the traditional method of aluminium panels fixed to a wooden framework. The suspension used leaf springs and was non independent with rigid axles front and rear. The brakes were mechanically operated.
Post World War II cars had the chassis stiffened and the engine mounted further forwards.
Nearly all production post war was exported.
Singer 4A Roadster 1949-1950
The Roadster was updated to the 4A model in 1949 by fitting the four speed gearbox from the Singer Hunter. A Solex carburettor replaced the SU used on the previous car.
Home market cars were very rare.
All 4A roadsters were made with right hand drive .
Singer 4AB and 4AC Roadster 1950-1952
The 4AB received a new chassis with independent front suspension by coil springs. The engine remained unchanged but the brakes became a mixed hydraulic/rod system.
The limited production 4AC used a slightly larger 1194 cc engine.
Singer 4AD Roadster 1951-1955
The final version of the Roadster used the 48 bhp (36 kW), 1497 cc engine from the SM1500 saloon fitted to a virtually unchanged chassis and body although the brakes were changed from pure mechanical to a hydraulic/mechanical hybrid system. Power was increased to 58 bhp (43 kW) in 1953 by fitting twin carburettors to the engine.
Although early production was still all for export, from 1953 cars became available on the domestic market.
A car tested by The Motor magazine in 1951 had a top speed of 73 mph (117 km/h) and could accelerate from 0-60 mph (97 km/h) in 23.6 seconds. A fuel consumption of 25.8 miles per imperial gallon (10.9 L/100 km; 21.5 mpg-US) was recorded. No price was quoted for the car as it was for export only.
Singer SMX Roadster 1953
This experimental version had a glass fibre body. Probably around 10 were made.