1939 Morris 8 Series E Tourer
Older restoration in very nice order; recent hoodbag and seat refurb; engine rebuild in 1997 with few miles since; from long-term ownership
In 1938, the Morris Eight Series III was re-launched as the Series E, now with radically altered front end styling more in tune with the glamorous Art Deco mood of the time. The car was longer, wider and heavier than its predecessor. However, gone was the rather staid and frumpy upright grille to be replaced by a swoopy chrome 'waterfall' instead, flanked by Lucas 'bug-eye' headlamps that gave the car a cheeky and appealing face. Gone too were the old-fashioned running boards.
The Series E still had the same separate chassis underneath, but the 918cc engine received a revised cylinder head that pushed power up to 29bhp and the crankshaft was counterbalanced and fitted with shell type bearings. The gearbox also gained another cog to allow a 50mph cruise in fourth, with synchromesh on second, third and top. Top speed was around 58mph.
Production continued throughout the war for military, essential civilian use and some export markets. Post-war, general production restarted in 1945 (these were just the saloon variants) and didn't finally come to an end until 1948 when the all-new Issigonis-designed Minor made its debut. The Morris 8 Series E became one of the most successful and popular light cars spanning the difficult years between the late 1930s and late 1940s, during which time a total of 120,434 examples were produced.
This 1939 Tourer came into the hands of the vendor’s father in 1995 from a gentleman in Liverpool. It was purchased to join a collection of two other Series E Tourers and as a consequence has seen regular but very light use over the years.
There are photos of its restoration prior to purchase, from the late ‘80s and early ‘90s we would guess from the look of the pictures. There are some invoices on file, including one from 1988 for the chromework.
This work included a respray and the work has stood the test of time well.
In 1997, while in the hands of its new owner, the engine was given an overhaul which included new crankshaft bearings supplied by Hereford Rebore. More recently, the front and rear seats were professionally repaired and a new hood bag made. We are advised that there are no sidescreens with the car, although the vendor would be happy to assist with patterns if the new owner of this car so desired. The underside remains good and solid, the vendor's father having modified the sills to keep the air flowing through to prevent long-term decay (as seen in the photos).
There is plenty of interesting paperwork, including a continuation buff logbook which shows it was in the Chester area in the 1950s. It also comes with a Petrol Ration Card which predates the buff logbook. From early 1945 until 1949 it was living in nearby Kington and was under the duristiction of the Welsh Region Ministry of Fuel and Supply.
Alongside the invoices we find multiple tax discs, the earliest dating from 1958 and numerous old MOTs dating back to 1967.
Driven some 20 miles to the sale, the vendor reports it cruised effortlessly along the local bypass at a steady 47mph and has run very sweetly and started instantly since its arrival onsite.
Ready to go and fun for all the family, this rare tourer Series E even comes with a fold flat screen for those hot weather days coming later in the year.
Documents: V5C; old style logbook; buff logbook; petrol ration log; MOTs back to 1968; multiple tax discs back to 1952; bills etc
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Reg No: DJ8574
Chassis Number: SE/E20027
Engine Size: 885
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