A Century of Cars: 37. Solido 1939 Delahaye 135M Figoni-Falaschi
Designed by young engineer Jean
François, the Delahaye 135 was produced from 1935 until 1954 in many
different body styles. A sporting tourer, it was also popular for
The Delahaye 135, also known as "Coupe des Alpes" after its success in the Alpine Rally, was first presented in 1935 and signified Delahaye's decision to build sportier cars than before. The 3.2-litre overhead valve straight-six with four-bearing crankshaft was derived from one of Delahaye's truck engines and was also used in the more sedate, longer wheelbase (3,160 mm/124 in) Delahaye 138. Power was 95 hp (71 kW) in twin carburetor form, but 110 hp (82 kW) were available in a version with three downdraught Solex carbs, offering a 148 km/h (92 mph) top speed. The 138 had a single carburetor and 76 hp (57 kW), and was available in a sportier 90 hp (67 kW) iteration.
The 135 featured independent, leaf-sprung front suspension, a live rear axle, and cable operated Bendix brakes. 17-inch spoked wheels were also standard. Transmission was either a partially synchronized four-speed manual or four-speed Cotal pre-selector transmission.