The Swallow motor scooter was made and sold by the Swallow Coachbuilding
Co of Walsall, Staffordshire, from November 1946 until September 1951.
1947 Already well known for its sidecars, the firm introduced the Gadabout.
It was fairly basic and lacked performance. This was due to the combination
of its weight and the use of the small Villiers 9D pre-war engine.
1949 The Mark II model was introduced, it had rubber in torsion front suspension
and the foot-change Villiers10D
engine with fan-cooling. Both Gadabout models had been available
with a Swallow box sidecar, named the Gadabout Commercial.
1951 Some later Mark II models were given the Villiers6E
197cc engine becoming the Gadabout Commercial Major Mark III The
arrival of the sleek and stylish Italian makes brought production to a
Note: The firm continued with its production of sidecars and then
concentrated on the SwallowDoretti sports car.
The company name came from Swallow Coachbuilding Co. (1935) Ltd. which
was sold in 1945 by Jaguar formerly S. S. Cars Ltd. to the Helliwell Group
which was taken over in 1946 by the British conglomerate Tube
The first and only model produced by Swallow under TI ownership was the
Doretti which had a tubular Reynold 531 Cromolly chassis with a body made
of a steel inner skin and aluminium outer. Most cars were supplied with
overdrive and they were capable of 100mph. 276 cars were made including
a single fixed head coupe version. The car was designed by in-house engineer
Frank Rainbow, and produced in the TI factory at the The Airport, Walsall,
Production stopped in 1955 when the parent company TI changed policy. Pressure
from the British motor industry, most notably Jaguar itself, lead to the
cease of production of the Doretti. It is thought that the Directors of
TI were convinced that continued production of the Doretti sports car placed
TI in direct competition with their customers for raw materials creating
a serious conflict of interest.