Lot 244 - 1933 Austin London Taxi Landaulette
|Estimate||£25,000 - £32,000|
|Result||Sold - £31,360|
The iconic 'London Taxi' has been ferrying people around London for over 100 years. The name 'Taxi' was derived from the French word 'Hacquenée' meaning a' horse for hire'-hence the term Hackney cab. The car dealer Mann and Overton director Will Overton, who had been selling cabs in London since 1906, approached Herbert Austin about modifying the Austin 12/4 chassis so that it would comply with the London 'Conditions of Fitness' required for all Taxi' and a collaboration was agreed. Because the overall height of the Taxi was higher than the competition, it received the nick name 'High Lot' or 'Upright Grand' as this design gave the top hat customers plenty of headroom and was soon outselling the Bearmore and Morris-Commercials versions. Building on its success a new model the 'Low Loader' was introduced in 1934.
This outstanding Taxi was originally purchased by R.Thackray Ltd on 5th May 1933. Clearly a restoration has been carried out and she presents in lovely condition. It is fitted with a very rare fare-meter (circa 1910) together with a meter-lamp. A copy of the original tariff is displayed in the passenger area. The landaulette style body allows for the rear of the roof to be folded down in good weather giving a light and airy feel to the rear compartment. Supplied with a V5 registration document and an MoT test certificate valid until 24th August 2015, this interesting 'High Lot' Taxi is a true piece of London history. Rarely is such a vehicle offered to the market place, this is sure to attract attention from collectors and historians alike.