This fabulous one off Talbot Lago T14 LS “Spéciale” is a very particular car in many ways. Among the 54 T14 LS built only a handful ( probably 7 ) were to “Spéciale” specifications, this included : Aluminium bonnets and doors, Borrani wheels, high lift camshaft, the all-synchromesh ZF gearbox and many other extras. This was a lighter car and more powerful with 140HP. The building sheet which is in the car’s file, reports the car to have been built for “Demonstration” purposes. Since more than 30 years it has been reported and known at the Talbot Club, it was used at some point by Louis Rosier for promotion to potential buyers though no document or picture that confirm this. However there is another aspect, making this T14 LS unique that intend to enforce the Rosier history, indeed the body was modified in period to look like the famous Rosier T26 GS Barchetta. To this effect, the front air intake is longer, the flashers were replaced by additional headlights and the rear lights & bumpers are also unique to this car. This work was most certainly performed by the bodywork shop “Pichon & Parat” established at Sens, which also bodied the Rosier T26 GS Carrera Panamerica Car. The complete history us known until 1993 when it was totally dismantled to be restored, though the condition showed a good and original example, which is confirm by the pictures. The body was separate from the chassis and restored from the bare metal by the famous French specialist François Cointreau, chassis and engine being rebuilt by a Talbot specialist. The work was finished in 1995 and the one off T14 LS Spéciale frequently participated to rallies in France and UK until 2001. The condition is extremely nice and shows the seriousness from the restoration work done, looking extremely fresh and flawless. The interior is mostly original and tells by itself the good use done to it during its 55 years of life. This one off Talbot is not to be compared with others T14 LS due to its outstanding specifications and history, unmistakably a great piece from the Talbot history.
Anthony Lago, a skilful Italian engineer born in Venezia purchased the make Talbot-Darracq in 1934 and renamed it as « Talbot Lago ». In 1936 he launched one of the most famous automobiles : the T150 C and SS. These were very modern cars with impressive performance and road holding, some car were used in competition, entered at Le Mans 24 hours and in Grand Prix. Figoni & Falashi elevated them to “Art Piece” designing on them the outstanding and dramatic “Goutte d’Eau” Coupe. In 1946 Lago launched a new model : the T26, a modern T150 with better brakes, chassis and engine. The 3 liter power plant was upgraded to 4,5liter and had now two camshafts. The T26GS under various bodies were extremely quick cars, the Record Berline being the quickest one in the world with 200HP. The T26 was a successful car allowing Talbot Lago to pursue its efforts in motor racing, with the T26GS which was declined in two configurations, either as a Formula car or as a Sport Car for endurance races. It was capable of 230 to 250 CV. They won three grand Prix in 1949 and the Le Mans 24 hours in 1950. During that race, Louis Rosier the legendary Talbot driver drove during 23h30 which is a record. In 1953 the glorious make launched a new model : the 4,5 Liter Lago Grand Sport designed by Carlo Delaisse, it was very nice and refined but a relatively big and heavy car, however capable of 200km/h with its 200 HP engine. Unfortunately it was too expensive and only 13 were built. Then the idea came to build a similar smaller car with a 2500cc engine. In 1954 at the Paris show he exhibited a sensational reduced version of the Grand Sport to 9/10 with a 4 Cylinders double cam engine which was named T14 LS . The shape was a little bit curvier and it is one of the nicest French car from the 50s. Remarkable to drive with only 120 HP and only 960 kg it easily reached 180km/h. Unfortunately this new model was again too expensive, Anthony Lago being very demanding for quality and materials, only a total 54 from these LS, before launching the “America” version fitted with the BMW V8 engine which only 12 were built before the make was sold to SIMCA in 1958.