c.1929 La Licorne Type H02 Femina
Extremely rare French-built car; restored in the mid-1990s including full engine rebuild; few owners; very smart, very interesting!
Jean-Marie Corre began making tricycles and light cars in 1901 using the tried and trusted De Dion Bouton engine. Sales took off following motorsport successes in 1903 but Corre lost control of the company in 1907 and the new owner changed the name to Corre La Licorne and eventually La Licorne (Unicorn).
La Licorne gradually grew in size and by 1910 had three different models in production, using single-cylinder, twin cylinder and four-cylinder engines. By the mid-Twenties, the range included four medium-sized models, light commercials and small buses, using a variety of proprietary engines from Ballot, Chapuis Dornier and S.C.A.P.
La Licornes were well made and enjoyed some sporting success, participating in premier events such as the Le Mans and Spa 24-Hour races. Unable to compete with the vastly superior resources of their main rivals, Citroen and Renault, La Licorne eventually folded in 1949.
This particular car is a Type HO2 which was in production from 1928 – 1932 and featured a four-cylinder 908cc engine which gave it a top speed of 50mph. A range of bodies were available including the Trianon and Deauville saloons, the La Baule coupe, the Riviera cabriolet, the Torpedo tourer and, as here, the Femina open two-seater with dickie. Around 6,000 of all types were made in total and survivors are now extremely rare.
This very car is featured in the 1982 edition of Georgano’s encyclopedia when it was owned by a Mrs Angela Cherrett. A plaque on the dashboard suggests that it was first owned by a Mademoiselle de Riemsdyk of Paris while an old V5 shows that from 1983 – 1989 it was owned by a Roger Prout of Old Forge Garage in Dymock, Glos, and from 1989 – 2018 by a Nigel Mills of Tirley, Glos, from whom our vendor (a relative of Roger Prout), acquired it in May 2018.
During the mid-1990s the car was treated to a body-off rebuild by Tom Bowhill Restorations of Cheltenham, as documented by correspondence and an album of photos on file. This included repairs to the ash frame, retrimmed interior, a new hood and a repaint from powder blue to red. The engine was also fully rebuilt with new pistons and bearings, reground crank etc.
An old MOT shows that it was back on the road in October 1997 when the mileage was 31, the odometer currently showing 92 miles which is perhaps all it has done since the restoration was completed. The V5C records the date of manufacture as 1921 and the engine capacity as 1100cc but we can only assume this is a mistake. A useful quantity of spares is also included.
As you can see in the photos, it is in lovely condition throughout and has been starting promptly and running nicely as we have moved it around on site. An extremely rare survivor (possibly unique), it would be an ideal car to enjoy VSCC Light Car events, offering an intersting alternative to the ubiquitious Austin 7 and looks a snip at the modest guide price suggested. It will prove a real talking point wherever it goes.
For more information contact James on 07970 309907 or email [email protected]
Reg No: XYL79
Chassis Number: 52004
Engine Size: 908
Docs: V5C; older V5; one old MOT; correspondence; restoration photos
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