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All cars pre 1940 except SS90 and SS100
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class a pre 1940Jaguar grew from humble beginnings with the partnership of William Lyons and William Walmsley building sidecars for motorcycles in Blackpool, England. They formed the Swallow Sidecar Company in 1922 which later evolved into a coach building company making Swallow cars from 1927 to 1932 using other companies’ chassis and becoming SS Cars Ltd in 1933.

The first cars with SS chassis were the SS1 and the SS2. Both had side-valve engines and running gear supplied by the Standard Motor Company, the SSI as a six-cylinder and the SS2 as a four. Over the next four years the factory produced more than 6000 cars all built with timber frames in a variety of body styles including two-door tourers, coupes, saloons, drophead coupes. Each year improvements were made to the chassis, running gear, brakes, interiors and cosmetic detail.

For the 1936 model the company revamped its body styles and produced its own overhead valve 1.5 and 2.5 litre engines. To mark the beginning of this new overhead valve era all subsequent SS cars had the model designation “Jaguar” added.

For 1938 SS Cars changed the old coach building methods to the use of bought in pressed metal body frames and panels. Also the 3.5-litre overhead valve engine was introduced so the model range for that year was four-door saloons in 1.5-litre, 2.5-litre and 3.5-litre forms and two-door drophead coupes in the same engine sizes. More than 5000 cars were made in 1939. No new models were introduced for 1939 and 1940 and the factory turned to manufacturing equipment to support the war effort.