Lot 397 - 1954 Austin BN1 100/4 Roadster
|Chassis Number||BN1L 154897|
|Engine Number||1B 207399|
|Odometer reading||57,017 miles|
|Estimate||£29,000 - £36,000|
|Result||Sold - £31,000|
The Austin-Healey 100 is a sports car built between 1953 and 1956 by the British Motor Corporation. It was developed by Donald Healey to be produced in-house by Healey's small car company in Warwick and based on Austin A90 Atlantic mechanicals. Healey built a single 'Healey Hundred' for the 1952 London Motor Show, and the design impressed Leonard Lord, Managing Director of Austin so much that a deal was struck with Healey to build it in quantity at Austin's Longbridge factory. The '100' name came from Donald Healey, who selected the name from the car's ability to reach 100mph. Production Austin-Healey 100s were finished at Austin's Longbridge plant alongside the A90 and based on fully trimmed and painted body/chassis units produced by Jensen in West Bromwich, an arrangement the two companies previously had explored with the Austin A40 Sports. The first 100s, series 'BN1', were equipped with the same 90 bhp engines and manual transmission as the standard A90, but the transmission was modified to be a three-speed unit with overdrive on second and top. The 2660cc four cylinder engine featured a 3.4 inch bore and 4.4 inch stroke. Girling eleven inch drum brakes are fitted all round. Front suspension is independent using coil springs and at the rear is a rigid axle with semi elliptic leaf springs. The steering is by a cam and lever system. An Austin Healey 100/4 BN1 tested by The Motor magazine in 1953 had a top speed of 106 mph and could accelerate from 0-60 mph in 11.2 seconds. A fuel consumption of 22 ½ miles per imperial gallon was recorded.
This lefthand drive Healey was purchased by the vendor in the west coast of the United States from a major collection where it had been for some years and is believed to have done just 57,000 miles from new. Early 100/4 cars like this have alloy bonnets and boot lids as well as the alloy front and rear body aprons and are the lightest of the big Healeys having a power to weight ratio equal to the later 3000 models with better handling. Austin Healey BN1 cars typically used the A90 Atlantic four speed gearbox with first gear blanked off, unusually this car has a factory supplied fully operative first gear coupled with a taller differential ratio, with overdrive on third and fourth gears, and this provides a very flexible 6 speed gearbox. Car features telescopic front damper conversion kit, new fuel pump, new generator, spin on cartridge oil filter conversion, and cockpit mounted auxiliary power socket for satnav or rally systems. The car is supplied with a good quality hood, side screens and tonneau cover. Also the American registration documents, custom forms and proof that duty and taxes have been paid in the United Kingdom. These early BN1's are eligible for a host of classic events including the Mille Miglia. This is an opportunity to acquire a cared for and regularly used, largely original car that is ideal for local or international events.
Interested parties should satisfy themselves as to the description and condition of each lot prior to the sale. Accordingly, buyers are on notice that each vehicle is offered ‘as is/as seen’ subject to the Terms and Conditions for the auction. Buyers are advised to inspect the vehicle in person or use a professional to carry out this service. Historics will not entertain disputes over descriptions.