Lot 180 - 1959 Austin-Healey 'Frog Eye' Sprite
|Estimate||£14,000 - £18,000|
|Result||Sold - £25,200|
The Austin-Healey Sprite was announced to the press in Monte Carlo on 20th May 1958, just before the Monaco Grand Prix. It was intended to be a low-cost model that 'a chap could keep in his bike shed' and yet be the successor to the sporting versions of the pre-war Austin Seven. The little Sprite quickly became affectionately known as the 'Frog Eye' in the UK and the 'Bug Eye' in the US as its headlights were prominently mounted on top of the bonnet, inboard of the front wings. There were no exterior door handles; the driver and passenger were required to reach inside to open the door. There was also no boot lid and access to the spare wheel and luggage compartment was achieved by tilting the seat-backs forward and reaching under the rear deck.
This beautiful 1959 Mk. I 'Frog Eye' Sprite has been the subject to a complete ground-up restoration to the highest of standards within the last few years. Imported and registered in the UK in 1987, this excellent Sprite is finished in red with red piping complementing the black leather interior. The vehicle is supplied with a V5C registration document and a full set of weather equipment, making it an ideal fun car for the summer that is also appreciating in value.
Interested parties should satisfy themselves as to the description and condition of each lot prior to the sale. Buyers are advised to inspect the car in person or use a professional to carry out this service.