Specials & Sports Cars

Using Ford Sidevalve Components

Paramount Logo


Paramount Cars (Derbyshire) Ltd

Swadlincote, Derbyshire

Paramount Cars was founded as a garage business in 1948 by W. A. Hudson and S. Underwood, soon they started working on a special based on a Alvis 14 which they hoped to put into production. In 1949 they announced their car which, in profile was similar to later Paramounts but which had a low, wide, grill with vertical slats and came complete with every luxury, including a cocktail cabinet. The cost of Alvis engines would price them out of the market, so they substituted tuned twin carburettor, Ford Ten units. Two models were offered in 1950, both convertibles a two-seater at £632, and a four-seater at £637, although only and two-seater is thought to have been made. The Paramount had an underslung ladder frame chassis with independent front suspension by top wishbones and a low transverse leaf spring: a live rear axle on semi-elliptical springs; and Girling Hydro-mechanical brakes. The body was made from aluminium panels on an ash frame, which was secured using rubber washers to help deaden noise. Luggage space was generous and the boot was unhindered by a spare wheel which was located in a separate compartment underneath.

By September 1951, the company had made only 12 cars, and not all of those were complete. The assets were bought by the Meynell Motor Co. of Melbourne, Derbyshire. Meynell made changes to the radiator grille, squared off the top  of the doors and located twin 7 gallon fuel tanks in the wings. Meynell made only a further half dozen cars  (some of which were carried on from the first batch of twelve) before going under in 1952.

In 1953 production was taken over by a new company, Paramount Cars of Leighton Buzzard, an off-shoot of Camden Motors. By this time the price had risen to £887. In 1954 it added the 1508cc ohv Ford Consul engine, and it offered a hard top version but now  costing over £1000, well over the price of a Consul Convertible, it priced itself out of the market. The Leighton Buzzard operation over-reached itself and, by 1956 the company had 26 cars in stock, and no buyers.

Estimate of production is 72 cars.