Talbot


Talbot Picture

Classic Talbot Tyres

On the following pages, Longstone Classic Tyres give classic tyre fitment recommendations for Talbot cars.


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Vintage Talbot Tyres

Longstone Tyres can provide tyres for across the whole Talbot range, from the rallying Talbot Sunbeam Lotus to the smaller Talbot Samba.


Talbot Tyres

The following list are our recommendations for Talbots:


Talbot History

Clément-Talbot, later Sunbeam-Talbot, Limited, was established in 1903. The earliest vehicles were technical parts of French Clément-Bayard cars manufactured in London, but the French elements were quickly replaced with British parts. After the first year, the brand name was shortened to Talbot. A Darracq and Company (1905) Limited of London, with its factory in Suresnes, Paris, purchased the whole capital of Clément-Talbot in December 1919, and later purchased Sunbeam, renaming itself S. T. D. Motors Limited. Sunbeam, Talbot, and Darracq were represented by those initials. However, during the depths of the Great Depression, S T D Motors could not pay back its debts. Its subsidiaries were able to find purchasers, and S T D Motors ceased training in 1936.

Sunbeam Talbot 2-Litre Supreme Saloon
Sunbeam Talbot 2-Litre Supreme Saloon

Clément-Talbot was well-known for the craftsmanship of its goods, and the company was prosperous during the Great Depression. Rootes Group purchased Clément-Talbot and renamed it Sunbeam-Talbot. Sunbeam was left alone twenty years later. Suresnes items were marketed as Talbot-Darracq in 1920, but the term Darracq was omitted in 1922. When Talbots were sold to England, they were re branded Darracq or Talbot-Darracq. S T D Motors and Automobiles Talbot France faced an economic crash in late 1934, dragged down by the 1924 borrowing to finance for the Sunbeam racing campaign.

Clément-Talbot remained financially viable despite the financial collapse of its holding company, S T D Motors, by producing easily marketable products. Clément-Talbot was purchased by Rootes Securities and continued to produce and sell the same vehicle catalogue while covertly incorporating components from Hillman and Humber automobiles. As the authentic Talbot parts bins were depleted, a modified Hillman Aero Minx was added to the product lineup and assigned the Talbot brand name. In 1938, the Talbot Ten and its siblings were renamed Sunbeam-Talbot, and the name of the owner, Clément-Talbot Limited, was modified to fit.

Post-financial breakdown of S T D Motors and Paris' Automobiles Talbot, Suresnes' manager, Antonio Lago, negotiated for a corporate buyout of the French firm. In the postwar era of austerity, the French government imposed a punishing yearly tax on automobiles with engines greater than 2.6 litres, significantly limiting Talbot sales. Lago retained the Talbot business until the factory doors closed in 1958. Simca purchased the defunct Talbot nameplate. Chrysler Europe purchased Simca in 1970. When PSA Peugeot Citroen purchased Chrysler in 1978, it got the still-dormant Talbot nameplate. PSA Peugeot Citroen began using the Talbot mark on previously Simca and Chrysler cars.

1985 Talbot Samba
1985 Talbot Samba

With pressure increasing on Chrysler's main North American company, then-CEO Lee Iacocca made the decision to divest the faltering European businesses. PSA signed an agreement with Chrysler in August 1978 to purchase Chrysler Europe for a minimal $1. Although PSA assumed responsibility for Chrysler Europe's significant debts and liabilities, the move was strategic; acquiring Simca would eliminate a strong domestic rival in the French market while accessing the knowledge of small front-wheel-drive cars; while the old Rootes operations could increase their market share in the UK. On January 1, 1979, PSA legally took over the former Chrysler Europe. All ex-Chrysler vehicles registered in the United Kingdom after August 1, 1979, wore the Talbot badge. The Alpine, Solara, and Horizon were constructed at Talbot's ageing Ryton facility in Coventry.

The Chrysler (formerly Hillman) Avenger, the last automobile made by the Rootes company, was still in production as Talbot until the end of 1981; manufacturing of the Avenger-derived Talbot Sunbeam also terminated in 1981. From December 1981 till the present, the Talbot Samba, a three-door hatchback based on the Peugeot 104, was the entry-level vehicle in the Talbot line. Peugeot began production of the Talbot Tagora in 1981, a boxy four-door sedan marketed as a competitor to the Ford Granada and the Vauxhall Carlton/Opel Rekord. However, it was not well received in either the United Kingdom or France, and manufacturing halted in 1983 after just 19389 units were made.

Talbot Lago T26 Grand Sport
Talbot Lago T26 Grand Sport

In the United Kingdom, the Chrysler and Talbot marques sold approximately 120,000 vehicles in 1979, trailing only Ford and British Leyland. However, it soon began to fall, exacerbated by the early 1980s recession and a dearth of new models being introduced. However, following years of decline, PSA Peugeot Citroen began to reconsider its three-brand strategy in 1985. The Talbot Tagora model failed in the market; the Samba was virtually a decade-old design due to its Peugeot 104 ancestry, and the aged 1510/Alpine/Solara models coincided with both the Citroen BX and the upcoming Peugeot 405.

The decision was taken to rename the upcoming Horizon successor the Peugeot 309 rather than the Talbot Arizona. The desire to focus on the Peugeot brand won out, and the 309 became the first of many British-built Peugeot vehicles constructed at the Ryton facility. The Horizon was produced in Spain and Finland until 1987, signalling the end of the Talbot brand on passenger vehicles (the Samba having been terminated in May 1986), however, the Talbot Express panel van was produced until 1994, after which the whole Talbot brand was eliminated.


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