Ask me about car badges!

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - Your Letters -

I en­joyed read­ing about the back­ground of car badges in Jon Bent­ley’s col­umn ( CCW, 17 Feb). Like Fer­rari and Porsche to which he refers, there is in fact an­other car with a pranc­ing horse in its badge, namely the Swal­low Doretti (mine is pic­tured below with me and my sis­ter in it).

How­ever the Doretti horse is yel­low on a white back­ground. I am un­aware as to whether the badge has any rel­e­vance other than to make the car look Ital­ian, which of­ten causes some amuse­ment at events since when I am inevitably asked, ’Is it Ital­ian?’ My re­tort is in­vari­ably, ‘No, Wal­sall’.

Doret­tis were built af­ter the Swal­low side­car mar­que was sold by Jaguar to Hel­li­wells, the pre­de­ces­sor of the TI (Tube In­vest­ments) group, who trans­ferred pro­duc­tion to its fac­tory at Wal­sall Air­port.

The name Doretti is an Ital­ianised ver­sion of the first name of Dorothy Deen, daugh­ter of the Los An­ge­les Stan­dard Tri­umph dealer, who along with Sir John Black of the Stan­dard Mo­tor Com­pany (which pro­vided the Doretti’s me­chan­i­cal parts), and the TI Group, were the prime movers of the pro­ject to sell a lux­ury sports car to the USA.

My own Doretti never got any fur­ther than Le­ices­ter, where it was sold by the lo­cal Stan­dard­Tri­umph dealer, Browett’s.

Peter Lock­ley, Southam, War­wick­shire Great to see some­one fly­ing the flag for one of the UK’s most in­ter­est­ing – and over­looked – sports car mak­ers. Any other badge sto­ries out there? – Ed.

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