Lagonda 4.5-Litre LG45R Rapide
Tourer,2 doors, 2+2 seats
Well known and very competitive Lagonda LG45 Sports Tourer, Big Henry, rebodied in the 1940s and recently benefitting from a repaint and general fettling by Elliot Dale of South West Coachworks.
Manufactured in 1936, chassis no.12076, or Big Henry as it was to become known, started life as a drophead coupe. In 1939, now owned by an engineer, work commenced on a new all aluminium body heavily influenced by the recent successes of the Lagonda V12 Le Mans. Stored during the ensuing World War the new body and wings were completed in the late 1940s and remain on the car today.
During the current twelve years ownership the car has been steadily developed and improved in all respects by Densham Developments of Worcester, making it a very powerful, yet flexible machine.
Enhancements include the following:
The Sanction 4 engine has a Kiddy crank, acknowledged as the best.
Arrow rods, powermax pistons, big end shells, white metal mains in a new block (12522).
A new Sanction 3 head, stronger than the later Sanction 4.
New competition triplex timing chains, gears and crankshaft damper with special duralumin push-rods.
Standard twin carbs, and twin Scintilla magnetos.
An Alvis derived all synchro gearbox.
An all-new back axle, fitted by David Ayre, with the high ratio Le Mans ratio crown wheel and pinion.
Up-rated springs to competition standard which, combined with the very rare LMB developed competition front brake drums and linings, transform braking performance particularly on the track and in downhill Alpine sections.
The car runs perfectly with little oil or water consumption.
Big Henry is a well known and highly regarded car with an extensive competition history. The owners main interest has been long distance rallies where he has won outright several pre 1950 events, such as 1st in The London to Lisbon rally, Classic Malts and The Tatry Marathon, with many podium finishes against much more modern machinery such as on the Rallye des Alpes where he gained a Coupe des Alpes.
Latterly he developed a taste for the racetrack where, in the owners own words, the results have been more governed by the driver than the car! Nonetheless he came 2nd at Angouleme, was part of the winning Intermarque Team Prize in the 3 race series against Bentley and Aston Martin and managed fastest in class at the Cornbury sprint. The car really gets along with tremendous torque especially in 2nd and 3rd (100mph plus) gears. It has recently been with Elliot Dale at Southern Coachworks where a repaint has just been completed, together with a comprehensive service.
Documentation comprises a Swansea V5C, current FIVA and VSCC papers, substantial history file and recently renewed MoT certificate. Big Henry is acknowledged as being one of the fastest Meadows-engined Lagondas ever built and easily out-performs a Rapide.
1936 Lagonda LG45
2-Seat Sports Tourer
Registration no. DPK 506
Chassis no. 12076
Engine no. LG6/484/S4 12522
Information supplied by Bleasie