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Lot 345: Austin-Healey 948cc 'Frogeye' Sprite

Collectors' MotorCars, MotorCycles, Bonhams (16 November 2011)

Designed for the sporting motorist with a limited budget, the Abingdon-built Austin Healey Sprite adopted the very tuneable Austin A35 engine, gearbox and axles clothed with a smart, compact, two-seater, pressed steel body mounted on a platform sub-frame. The prominent bonnet-mounted headlamps soon earned the new sports car the 'frogeye' label. Fifty thousand or so of the Mark I cars were built in the first three years and the model was to continue in enhanced form until 1979, being built alongside the sister MG Midget from 1961 onwards. Stirling Moss and his sister Pat, amongst others, were to race Sprites effectively on the circuits. This car has been in the present ownership since 1971 and was previously owned from 1963 to 1971 by a Captain David Carr who served aboard the Cunard QE 2 liner. The car was last used in 1980 and the recorded mileage of 43,785 miles is known to be correct. In 1970 the car was re-plated underneath and later work completed during its laid up period has included fitting of new piston rings and a replacement flywheel. Condition of coachwork appears basically sound and the car is fitted with its original fibreglass bonnet  a period option. Upholstery is all original and fair but no carpets are fitted. The vendor notes that rewiring is required. This classic sports car comes with side screens and a new hood and tonneau cover. It comes also with its original oil filter and spare hub caps. It retains its original North Yorkshire registration number and is offered with Swansea documentation. The car is sold as viewed and in our opinion represents a straightforward and attractive restoration project.

Lot Details
Auction Collectors' MotorCars, MotorCycles
Bonhams, Yorkshire Event Centre, Harrogate, England
TypeCar
Lot Number345
Estimate£3000-£3500
Outcome SOLD
Hammer Price£3800
Hammer Price (inc premium)£4370
Year1961
Condition rating
Registration number101 APY
Mileage-
Chassis number5/47846
Engine number9C-U-H47754
Engine capacity (cc)948
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors2