Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire 346
From 1953 to 1958
|Production||1953–1958 7,697 made|
|Body style||FR layout 4-door saloon limousine|
|Engine||3,435 cc Straight-6|
|Wheelbase||114 in (2,896 mm) 133 inches (3,378 mm) (limousine)|
|Length||193 in (4,902 mm) 212 in (5,385 mm) (limousine)|
|Width||72 in (1,829 mm)|
|Height||63 in (1,600 mm)|
The 346 was the first of the Sapphires introduced late in 1952 for sale in 1953 and continuing until 1958. The six-cylinder 3,435 cc engine had hemi-spherical combustion chambers and could have optional twin Stromberg carburettors (£25 extra) which increased the output from 125 to 150 bhp (93 to 112 kW) giving a top speed in excess of 100 mph (161 km/h). The front suspension was independent coil springs with a rigid axle and leaf springs at the rear. The Girling hydraulic brakes used 11 in (279 mm) drums all round.
The body was available as a four- or six-light (two or three windows on each side) at the same cost and with either a bench or individual front seats. The seats were finished in leather, with the dashboard and door-cappings in walnut veneer. A heater was standard.
It was introduced with the choice of a Wilson electrically-controlled finger-tip four-speed pre-selector gearbox as a £30 option, or four-speed synchromesh gearbox. It became available with automatic transmission (Rolls Royce four-speed) with the introduction of the Mark II in 1954.
A long-wheelbase model was launched in 1955 as a limousine version which had the pre-selector gearbox as standard, however, there was an optional four-speed manual column-change gearbox available.
1958 Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire 346 limousine
Models for export to the U.S. were always delivered with twin caburettors.
A saloon with the optional twin-carburettors and synchromesh transmission tested by the British magazine The Motor in 1953 had a top speed of 100.1 mph (161.1 km/h) and could accelerate from 0–60 mph (97 km/h) in 13.0 seconds. A fuel consumption of 18.7 miles per imperial gallon (15.1 L/100 km; 15.6 mpg-US) was recorded. The test car cost £1,757 including taxes.
7,697 were produced.