Daimler DS420 Colour and trim


  logo (1.7kB)

This web page is about the luxury in the cars: woodwork, the interior trimming and the exterior body paint colours.

Ciba Geigy Tech Note '81 Ciba Geigy Tech Note '81 Ciba Geigy Tech Note '81   

This article was published as a "Tech Note" by Ciba-Geigy, manufacturers of the wood glues used in Jaguar's wood mill department. The publication dates from 1981, which is shortly after the limo production was transferred to Coventry.

Most parts on the photos are easily identified as limo woodwork.

early DS420 wood - 2 early DS420 wood - 1

For the restoration of one of my own (1971) limos I took out all its woodwork. These pictures (click to enlarge) give an overview of the many (34!) different pieces. In summer 1972 the interior was redesigned to eliminate almost half this amount. More information about this cost-cutting operation is on the "Model changes during production" page.

Next we have various colour & trim charts that were published for the DS420 limousine. All except one were meant as additions to sales brochures, and resemble the style of the brochure they came with. However, the colour & trim chart was probably updated more frequent than the corresponding brochure. Therefore, and also because there are so many years missing in the list below, the collection shown here is probably not very complete.

Right: primer paint dip at the Vandenplas works in Kingsbury (click to enlarge).
This is press photo 202092, but it is also known as 282905.

Showing colour & trim charts is a tricky thing to do:

  • A colour printed on paper never has an exact match with the same colour on a car body. The texts on the colour charts indeed warn for this effect, and say that they should not be used for paint matching. Producing the sample colour fans that you see in a paint shop is much more elaborate and expensive than the little marketing flyers shown here were worth.
  • Some of these charts are 30 to 50 years old, and the colours have definitely aged and thus changed over time. This is true both for the charts and for the cars.
  • I do not have a professionally colour-calibrated scanner.
  • Unless you are active in the printing&publishing business, you probably don't have a professionally colour-calibrated monitor.

Every single one of the above points introduces some form of deviation from the "real" colour as it was on the car (when new), and you are looking at the cumulation of all four effects. The reason that the charts are shown is therefore much more for curiosity, and to show how the different choices and possibilities evolved during the life time of the DS420.

  primer paint bath
Bonnet Sanding at VandenPlas   Bonnet Sanding at VandenPlas  

The two pictures to the left were also taken at the VandenPlas works in Kingsbury. One of them shows a landaulette body, so this must have been in 1973. These photos are contributed from the archive of the VandenPlas Owners' Club.

The photo below is from Jaguar in Coventry, early 1981. It was part of a press release where Jaguar presented the "group assembly" system for the limousine production. See these magazine articles.

Paint Dip

It must be noted that these charts speak about leather and cloth. It is carefully avoided to admit that most of a "leather" interior was actually made of vinyl. E.g. in my 1972 limo all door panels are made of vinyl. The large bench in the passenger compartment is mostly leather, as are the occasional seats. But on the driver's bench only the striped panels (i.e. the parts that actually touch the back and the bottom of the driver) are made of leather. Where a Rolls at that time "consumed" over half a dozen hides, the DS420 did with only one. However, the colour matching between the leather and the vinyl is perfect. The back of the material shows a very clear distinction, but if only the front is accessible, sensing the difference in temperature with your tongue is a good discriminator.

The much used "West of England" wool cloth was made by H.E. Box and Co, of Weymouth (formerly of Bristol), and can still be bought from Boyriven in Weyhill, Andover (Hamps).

For new carpet, you might check the website of BAS International. Especially their "Heritage Carpet" line is really close to the original carpets in my 1971 limo.

Both BAS International, and Woolies are the addresses to go for fasteners, trimming material, etc. For your nuts and bolts in UNF thread, and more ironmonger stuff, try Namrick. For lambswool over rugs, check the website of Easirider Company (the "lambswool" rugs sold by Daimler were imitation, Easirider lambswool is real).

Most colour chart illustrations shown here below may be viewed in larger size by clicking.

Colour&trim chart Colour&trim chart
Colour & trim options list These colour & trim charts were included with the colourful brochures of 1969. Click for a larger view. The charts have no publication number. The back (identical on both versions) lists the optional accessories that were available in this early stage. Later, this listing of options moved to the sales brochures, and finally to the price lists shown elsewhere on this site.
Quite soon after the above colour & trim chart, the design was changed to match the brochure more closely. You may notice how the curly writing of the word Limousine became the same as on the front page of the brochure. The three different printings shown here (October 1970, May 1972, April 1973; the dates are mentioned on the text page), illustrate how the update frequency of the chart was higher than the reprinting frequency of the brochure. The front page, which did not change, is only shown here once.
The October 1970 chart has publication No. 5M 9/70, the May 1972 chart has publication No. 17/3(43638) 572/5M DCC, and the April 1973 chart has No. 17/3(84679) 10m ADA51.
Colour & trim front cover Click for large view   Colour & trim Oct 70   Colour & trim Oct 70
Colour & trim May 72   Colour & trim May 72                                      Colour & trim Apr 73   Colour & trim Apr 73
This colour & trim chart is the only chart published as an independent piece of sales literature. It is a combined publication for Jaguar and Daimler models, which is quite rare by itself.
It has publication number 3379, but no publication date. From the similarity of the publication number with the number on a 1979 sales brochure, I estimate that this chart was published in 1979 also.
  Colour & trim ~1979 Click for large view (81.7kB)
Colour & trim ~1979

This item came up for sale on eBay. I had never seen one before, and have never seen one afterwards. Unfortunately, I could not obtain it, so the only photos I have are from the eBay auction page.

Seller described this item as: size approx. 12.5"x8" (32x21cm), containing 11 exterior colour samples, 7 interior leather samples and 8 interior cloth samples.

The photo shows a car with rubber block bumpers and rectangular air inlets. It also shows the steel wheel rims without chrome wheel rings. So this item is from somewhere between 1982 and 1987.

  interior samples map, front
interior samples map, front
  interior samples map, leather
interior samples map, leather
Colour & trim

This chart came with the 1987 sales brochure. It is printed single sided, and if you compare it with the brochure it is much less glossy.
Publication number: JAG 87/52

  Colour & trim  1987; Click for large view (58.5kB)
Colour & trim 1988 Click for large view   Colour & trim 1988
  The last chart in the collection came with the 1988 sales brochure. The chart has the same cover printing as the brochure. This chart has publication number JAG 88/53.
It was also used in combination with the later (JAG89/L1, 1989) sales brochure.
Colour & trim 1988   Colour & trim1988 Click for large view

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