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Vanguards

The Standard Vanguard is a car which was produced by the Standard Motor Company in Coventry from 1947 to 1963. The car was announced in July 1947 and was completely new with no resemblance to the previous models and was Standard's first post World War II car. It was also the first model to carry the new Standard badge which was a heavily-stylised representation of the wings of a Griffin.

In the wake of the Second World War many potential customers both in the UK and in English-speaking export markets had recently experienced several years of military or naval service, so a car name related to the British Navy carried a greater resonance than it would for later generations. The name of the Standard Vanguard recalled HMS Vanguard, the last of the British Navy's battleships, launched in 1944 amid much media attention: permission to use the name involved Standard in extensive negotiations with senior Royal Navy personnel.

The styling of the car resembled the pre-war Plymouth with a sloping 'beetle-back'. Russian media claimed that styling of this car had been in part influenced by Russian GAZ-M20 Pobeda, which had been in development from 1943 and went into production in 1946. In 1952 The Motor magazine stated that the Soviet Pobeda 'shows a certain exterior resemblance to the Standard Vanguard', disregarding the fact that the Pobeda had been launched a year before the Vanguard.

The same wet liner engine was used throughout the range until the advent of the Six model in 1960 and was an overhead valve unit of 85 mm (3.3 in) bore and 92 mm (3.6 in) stroke with single Solex downdraught carburettor. The compression ratio was 6.7:1 on early engines increasing to 7.0:1 on the Phase III and 8.0:1 on the Sportsman. Wet cylinder liners were fitted. The engine was very similar to the ones made by Standard for the Ferguson tractor that they were making in large numbers.

The transmission at first was by a three speed gearbox with synchromesh on all forward ratios.In Scandinavia Standard marketed the Standard Ten saloon as the Vanguard Junior.

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C J Noble - May 8, 2011

Does anyone have any information regarding the Vanguard 1950-1960's Classic Commercial Van Collection?

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