Lot 138 - 1927 Bean 18/50 HP Super Sports Open Tourer

Lot 138 - 1927 Bean 18/50 HP Super Sports Open Tourer

Lot 138 - 1927 Bean 18/50 HP Super Sports Open Tourer

Lot Number 138
Registration EU Registered
Chassis Number 53275
Engine Number 6266
Estimate £135,000 - £150,000
  • One of only a handful ever made
  • FIVA Documentation
  • Original body by Sandford and Morgan Australia
  • 3 Litre Meadows Engine

Established component suppliers to the British motor industry, the Staffordshire-based firm of Harper Sons & Bean had turned its Dudley and Tipton factories over to munitions production during the Great War. With hostilities at an end, the company sought to keep its plant and workforce occupied by turning to motor manufacturing, acquiring the rights to the pre-war Perry 11.9hp from Willys-Overland. The Perry was powered by a 1,796cc sidevalve four with fixed cylinder head, which drove via a cone clutch, separate three-speed gearbox and spiral bevel rear axle. Ambitious production targets were set but never achieved, and at the end of 1920 the company was wound up, re-emerging some twelve months later in reconstituted form. The Twelve was still the mainstay of production and would remain so until 1927. A 14hp model was added to the range in 1924 followed by Bean's first Six – the Meadows-engined 18/50hp – in 1926. That same year Harper Bean, as it had become known, was taken over by its steel suppliers, Hadfields of Sheffield, after which the cars were marketed as 'Hadfield-Bean'. Towards the decade's end Hadfields decided to concentrate on the production of commercial vehicles and the last passenger cars were made in 1929. Within a few years the commercials too had been dropped, although the Bean company would continue as a component supplier into the post-war era.

This ultra-rare 18 / 50 Super Sports open tourer, built in 1927 by Bean Cars Ltd. of Tripton, Dudley GB, was shipped in the same year to Australia in chassis form. Sandford & Morgan Ltd were entrusted to place chassis number 53275 with the light and sporty coachwork the car still wears today. It is powered by a 3 litre Meadows engine with similar specification to the UK Invicta and it was soon nicknamed “The Bentley Eater”. From 1986 to 1988, Vintage Motor & Engineering Company - VME - in Adelaide, Australia undertook a high class restoration returning it to the original condition in which it left the factory. The car later found its way back to Europe and soon competed successfully in classic rallies like the Ennstal Classic in Austria and the Transappenninica in Italy. This is probably the only surviving example of, reputedly, only four ever built and was in the tenure of the last owner for two decades. This historical open sports tourer comes with new German TÜV and the aforementioned FIVA paperwork.

 

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