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"Dedicated to the preservation of Standard Cars 1903-1963"

Dedicated to the preservation of Standard Cars 1903-1963

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Dear Phil,

I got your e-mail from the web site of the Standard Motor Club and wondered if you could help with this photograph?

I think this is a Standard Big 9 - looks like the pictures on your web site. I wondered if you could provide anymore details to go with it? Some idea of model and year of manufacture would be very interesting.

Unfortunately my father died a while ago and is not around to ask. I think the photo was taken around 1933, my father is sitting in the driving seat - he would have been about 17 ( so probably just posing for the picture ! ) His Dad, my grandfather would have taken the photo. Grandmother is in the back seat.

The caravan was 'home made' and the picture was undoubtedly taken on route to North Wales from their Staffordshire home. I am amazed to see that this car was 1287cc and about 10hp. This journey would have taken some time !!

Any thoughts on the car would be gratefully appreciated.

Many thanks,

Trevor Lund

A great picture and I would guess that it was a rare site on the roads in the early thirties.


Phil sent this information:

What a splendid period photo! Thanks for sending it

We are in luck. The GW series of registration numbers was only issued between December 1931 and March 1932 so that dates the car quite tightly!

The Big 9 was produced between 1930 and 1933 and there were 3 changes to Spec (improvements) during that time, called the Mk1, Mk2, Mk3 and Mk4 though externally they were pretty similar. I am afraid I'm not an expert on these variations but I would hazard a guess that its a MkIII since the MkIV lost the small "peak" that you can see above the windscreen.

The caravan looks great too, but it was undoubtedly very heavy. I agree, I wonder if the car, which itself was very heavy could actually pull it with just a 1287cc engine. I wouldn't like to attempt it today.

The car was replaced by a smaller, lighter 10 at the 1933 Motor Show.

I hope you don't mind if we reproduce your photo on the Website, it will be of great interest to our members especially the small number of owners of surviving Big 9's

Thanks and regards,


Hi Phil,

Many thanks for the fascinating information and help with dating the car. Have you any idea about how much this would have cost when new?

Were 'Standards' considered a 'good quality' car at the time?

Please do feel free to use the image on your website.

Thank you again and all the best for your club and cars.


The car cost between £195 for the base model and £255 depending on the amount of chrome and/or leather specified. Thats more than an annual salary.

Standards were considered a little above the mass market marques, which were Austin, Morris and Ford. Standard competed mainly  with Riley, Vauxhall, Hillman and Rover for the "middle-class" buyer. All these cars were made in this country. Note that there were no foreign makers of any importance, and only what we would call "rich" people owned any car at all.

Standard were extremely succesful in the 1930's amd  expanded sales by at least 5 times by 1939, by which time they employed some 9000 people making them the biggest employer in Coventry.

Hope that helps,

Kind regards,