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2009 Invicta S1 : Classic Cars

The Invicta Company's origins go back to the year 1924 when Noel Macklin and Oliver Lyle, both of whom already had motor industry experience, got together to create a car combining American levels of flexibility and performance with European quality and roadholding. Like the contemporary Bentley, the Invicta was designed by men with a personal background of competition motoring and both were produced to an exemplary standard. Price was only a secondary consideration, a factor that contributed largely to both firms' failure to weather the Depression years of the early 1930s. Like Bentley, Invicta struggled against rising costs and falling sales, the final car leaving the factory, appropriately enough, on Friday the 13th of October 1933, though a handful of cars was assembled at the company' service depot in Flood Street, Chelsea between 1934 and 1936. In all, its is estimated that by then approximately 1,000-or-so Invictas of all types had been produced. There was a half-hearted attempt to revive the marque post-war, which foundered in 1950 after a handful of ultra-expensive Black Prince models had been made.

The latest chapter of the Invicta story began in 1980 when Mike Bristow acquired the rights to the brand and began manufacturing 'continuation' versions of the marque's most sought-after model: the 4½-Litre 'Low Chassis' S-Type. He also had plans for a thoroughly modern Invicta, which made its pubic debut at the British International Motor Show in October 2002. This was the 'S1', a low-slung coupé designed by Chris Marsh, a man with a wealth of experience in specialist car design and endurance racing. Produced in collaboration with Leigh Adams of Automotive Design & Prototyping Ltd, the S1 incorporated only proven components from high-volume production cars in the interests of reduced costs and enhanced reliability. Accordingly, a Ford Mustang V8 engine and gearbox were chosen and the drive train installed in an immensely strong tubular steel chassis equipped with racing-type wishbone suspension and AP ventilated disc brakes. The carbon-fibre body was bonded to the chassis, contributing to the exemplary car's torsional stiffness, while a concealed integral roll cage kept the occupants safe in the event of an inversion.

As one would expect from a car with a list price (depending on final specification) of around £150,000, the Invicta was exceptionally well equipped, boasting a leather trimmed interior, power steering, heated front/rear screens, air conditioning, electric windows, satellite navigation and central locking at standard. There were plenty of options too. The factory claimed a top speed of 180mph and a 0-60mph time of 5 seconds. Despite possessing more than adequate performance, the Invicta S1 simply could not compete on price, being even more expensive than an Aston Martin DB7 Vantage and more than double the cost of a Jaguar XKR. The company went into receivership in April 2012, joining a lengthy list of failed niche marque revivals.

Manufactured in 2009, this rare modern British supercar currently forms part of the vendor's private collection of important Invicta motor cars in Germany. Offered with Swansea V5C document, it has covered circa 15-16,000 miles from new and is presented in commensurately good condition.

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Sources : 2009 Invicta S1 Photo | 2009 Invicta S1 Article


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