Car producer :
Type A 4 1/2 litre High Chassis Tourer by Corsica
This manufacturer was founded by Noel Macklin with Oliver Lyle of the sugar family providing finance. Assembly took place in Macklin's garage at his home at Fairmile Cottage on the main London to Portsmouth road in Cobham, Surrey. Macklin had previously tried car making with Eric-Campbell & Co Limited and his own Silver Hawk Motor Company Limited. The Invicta cars were designed to combine flexibility, the ability to accelerate from virtual standstill in top gear, with sporting performance. With the assistance of William (Willie) Watson, his mechanic from pre-World War I racing days, a prototype was built on a Bayliss-Thomas frame with Coventry Simplex engine in the stables of Macklin's house on the western side of Cobham.
Sporting success for Invicta often came via Violette Cordery, who was Noel Macklin's sister-in-law. She won the half mile sprint at the West Kent Motor Club meeting at Brooklands in 1925 driving a 2.7 litre. In March 1926 Cordery and a team of six drivers set multiple long distance records at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza in Italy. They covered 10,000 miles at 56.47 mph, and 15,000 miles at 55.76 mph. In July 1926 at the Autodrome de Linas-Montlhéry track, Paris, they covered 5000 miles at 70.7 mph, taking over 70 hours of day and night driving, supervised by the Royal Automobile Club. Cordery was twice awarded the Dewar Trophy, latterly in 1929 for driving 30,000 miles (48,000 km) in 30,000 minutes at Brooklands, averaging 61.57 mph. Sammy Davis had a spectacular accident in an S-type at Brooklands in 1931. Donald Healey in 1930 gained a class win in the Monte Carlo Rally, and, starting from Stavanger, won the event outright the following year with an S Type. Raymond Mays held the Brooklands Mountain Circuit Class Record in 1931 and 1932, and the outright Shelsley Walsh Sports Car Record in the latter year.
Between February and July 1927 Cordery drove an Invicta around the world, accompanied by a nurse, a mechanic, and an RAC observer. They covered 10,266 miles in five months at 24.6 mph, crossing Europe, Africa, India, Australia, the United States and Canada
Car production seems to have finished in 1935. Noel Macklin went on to found Railton who used the Cobham buildings to make their cars after Invicta moved to Chelsea in 1933. An attempted revival using Delage and Darracq components failed to get off the ground. Following the collapse of an attempted sale the court made an order for the compulsory winding up of Invicta Cars Limited on 3 May 1938.
The larger engine was used in the William Watson designed 1929 4½ litre NLC chassis available in short 9 feet 10 inches (3.00 m) or long 10 feet 6 inches (3.20 m) versions, but the less expensive A Type replaced the NLC in 1930.
This engine was to power the 'A' and 'S' type cars and few contemporary cars could match the Invicta 4½-litre cars for torque and outright performance. The High Chassis cars arguably offered greater touring comfort than their contemporary Low Chassis siblings.
The Series A Invicta first appeared in August 1930 and we understand that this car was first registered on 2nd January 1931, making it therefore of 1930 manufacture. Corsica Coachworks of Grimaldi Street, North London, were the favoured coachbuilder. Corsica never exhibited at Olympia and the operation never had more than twenty employees.
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