Author Topic: Southern Aircraft (Gatwick) Ltd - Swift 4 Wheel Bubble Car  (Read 22742 times)

David Dale

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Re: Southern Aircraft (Gatwick) Ltd - Swift 4 Wheel Bubble Car
« Reply #60 on: September 30, 2015, 09:55:49 PM »
Tonight I met John Coxon, who was the designer of the Swift bubble car.

He is 81 years old and a fascinating man to talk to.  He is also extremely clever and still working on designs and inventions.

Sadly the car no longer exists.  He thinks my father was responsible in rolling the steel to make the buck that the mould was made from.

The car was economical and had a top speed of 60 mph.

John Coxon was working on a rotary piston engine for the car, which might have been something special !!

He is looking out some other docs for me, so there could be further details to emerge  :)



Big Al

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Re: Southern Aircraft (Gatwick) Ltd - Swift 4 Wheel Bubble Car
« Reply #61 on: October 01, 2015, 08:40:27 AM »
What a shame. Still good to have met Mr Coxon.
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David Dale

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Re: Southern Aircraft (Gatwick) Ltd - Swift 4 Wheel Bubble Car
« Reply #62 on: October 01, 2015, 06:26:23 PM »
It is a shame, but it was also a bit of a pipedream to hope I would meet Mr Coxon and that happened  :)

The amazing thing, having moved to South Africa and then returned to the UK, Mr Coxon lives less than 17 miles from me.

I should add that there were two John Coxon's (father and son) at Southern Aircraft Gatwick who were both my father's boss.  I met the son and he was the the main man on the bubble car project.

If I get more information on this car I will share it here.

David Dale

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Re: Southern Aircraft (Gatwick) Ltd - Swift 4 Wheel Bubble Car
« Reply #63 on: November 04, 2019, 05:48:41 PM »
Hi everyone,

It has been a long time since I have been on this site and I thought I should provide a little update on the Swift.

The first is that it was known as the Southern Swift and not just Swift.  I found this out after buying a limited production book "History of Southern Aircraft (Gatwick) Limited" by Peter Amos & Brian Buss.

The book included two paragraphs and three photographs on the Southern Swift.  Two of the photos I have not seen before.  They would not scan well and it would breach copyright if I did so.

The following is in my own words, but based on the opinion of the book authors:-

The SAG Southern Swift was slightly larger in design and better suited to road traffic than not only the then current rival bubble cars offered by Heinkel and Messerschmitt in Germany, but also many from the UK including the Italian Issetta manufactured under licence by BMW in Brighton.  Despite the Southern Swift’s advantages to the opposition it did not attract any interest by established manufacturers to put it into production.

By 1962 SAG decided to stop marketing the Southern Swift and also cease trading.

Footnote:  I remember my father coming home from work and telling my mother he had been sacked.  She was giving me a bath in front of the fire in the kitchen.

Chris Thomas

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Re: Southern Aircraft (Gatwick) Ltd - Swift 4 Wheel Bubble Car
« Reply #64 on: November 06, 2019, 08:43:07 PM »
Dear David

Thank you for the update.

Chris Thomas
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