WA Tourer Car Profile

WA Tourer

WA Tourer

There were believed to be nine WA Charlesworth Tourers produced. Of the nine only one was exported. The remaining eight were supplied to the Glasgow Police. According to the Glasgow Corporation minutes of the 16th of December 1938, the Police Commitee approved the purchase of the eight tourers from the MG Dealer Messrs. H Prosser & Sons for the sum of £2,480 with the existing eight Police specification MG 10h.p. (TA) being taken in part exchange. The details for these 8 cars are listed at the end of this section.

The WA Tourer was offered for sale in the October 1938 WA Preliminary Sales Brochure for £450. When the first WA Tourer was produced is unknown, but the details of WA Tourer chassis number 275 show the production date of the engine and chassis as 16th December 1938. The one exported WA Tourer may have been built earlier but we have no way of being sure.

Although the WA chassis is some 3 ½ inches wider at the rear than the SA chassis, it is believed that the WA Tourers were fitted with some of the existing SA Tourer body tubs. To do this it was necessary to remove the WA chassis rear outriggers.

Brochure picture of WA Tourer

Brochure picture of WA Tourer

To quote from this brochure “The four-seater open Tourer, except for the scuttle unit is panelled in aluminium for lightness and a special ‘T’ sectioned centre pillar carrying the doors is interconnected with the chassis”. However when the sole surviving WA Tourer was restored the body was found to be of the normal steel construction – as used on the other SVW cars. A similar claim was made for the SA Tourer and was also not found to be true.

To support the sporty image the brochure also says “When folded the hood disappears into a recess in the back of the body, the windscreen can be folded flat on to the scuttle and the side screens with reinforced frames have extremely rigid mountings”.

When the full colour WA brochure was produced in June 1939, the Tourer was absent. The only mention being a small sub note stating “The tourer listed in the preliminary catalogue has been discontinued”. It is not known as to why the Tourer had such a short life and is now the rarest of MGs. The SA Tourer was also discontinued at the same time.

In its heyday Charlesworth’s output averaged about 20 cars (all makes) a week. Production flow was planned and systemised to a high degree. They preferred to build bodies in batches being assembled on bucks (carts) and jigs from pre-cut and machined framing members. The group of chassis were held in a storage facility until they were moved to the body-mounting department where the body was bolted on.

Charlesworth moved to aircraft work in 1940. After the war it tried to rebuild its coachwork business without success. Lea-Francis needed its own facilities and obtained them by buying out Charlesworth.

There is only one known surviving WA Tourer in the world, which is one of the police cars, and now is located in Switzerland

WA Tourer details

Chassis Number Engine number Date Produced Registration number Details
WA 0275 QPJG 527 16/12/1938 CGE 183 Last taxed 31/12/1958 by owner in Stafford, UK
WA 0277 QPJG 520 16/12/1938 CGE 184 Last taxed 30/6/1956 by owner in Coventry, UK
WA 0284 QPJG 539 21/12/1938 CGE 185 Last taxed 30/09/1955 by owner in Middlesex, UK and then officially scrapped 24/11/1956
WA 0293 QPJG 543 22/12/1938 CGE 186 Survives in Switzerland
WA 0294 QPJG 544 22/12/1938 CGE 187 Last taxed 24/3/1960 by owner in Yorkshire, UK and then officially scrapped 15/08/1962
WA 0322 QPJG 568 06/01/1939 CGE 188 Last taxed 31/07/1962 by owner in Swansea, UK and then officially scrapped 22/04/1963
WA 0346 QPJG 595 12/01/1939 CGE 189 Last taxed 31/12/1944 by Glasgow Police and then officially scrapped 31/12/1945
WA 0356 QPJG 596 13/01/1939 CGE 190 Last taxed 31/12/1957 by owner in Glasgow, UK

Gary Perry