Lot 290 - 1948 Plymouth Special Deluxe Convertible
|Estimate||£28,000 - £34,000|
|Result||Sold - £32,480|
As memories of rationing during the war started to disappear, car makers were finally starting to catch up with the demand for almost anything new. Even in its third year as basically the same model, the enthusiasm from the buying public in the post-war boom era was stronger than ever. The Special Deluxe was the top-of-the-line Plymouth, and this 1948 convertible coupe was the second most expensive model aside from the woody wagon. All around the country in industry, housing and other economic growth sectors there were plenty of customers for top-shelf models such as this Special Deluxe convertible. About the biggest change with the 1948 models was the switch from 16- to 15-inch wheels and tires. For the era, Plymouth's styling was right in line with the rest of the competition, and sales proved it. Priced at $1,857 in base form, a total of 15,295 examples were produced that year.
This Plymouth is an original righthand drive South African (1946 build date) Special De Luxe convertible model, bought approximately 20 years ago by a friend of the vendor, he used the car for five years whereupon it was stood up for a period of time. Purchased eight years ago now, it underwent a comprehensive nut and bolt rebuild. It was totally dismantled and found to be a very good structural condition with panels in near-perfect condition. As a result, much of the body-work was able to be re-used and is original to the car. The only areas requiring fabrication were both door-step areas. The bodyshell and panels were then prepared and painted inside and out. After six months, the job was complete and bolted together, all chrome and stainless steel was sent to London Chroming for refreshing, it was then sent to Mark Webster in order to have every part of the interior freshly remade in aged leather from an Italian tannery. The original roof frame was dismantled and reconditioned to work freely and a new soft-top was manufactured by Mark Webster. The interior trim and hood alone is estimated to cost in excess of £16,000 with the total cost of the rebuild in the excess of £60,000.
All the mechanical re-build work was undertaken by specialists, Lenham Motor Company and Classic & Hotrod Engineering. It is thought that, as far as can be researched, this is the only righthand drive car of its type in the UK and, as of summer 2014, the only righthand drive car for sale anywhere in the world. Beautifully presented and super-rare, certainly an investment in anyone's book.