Lot 263 - 1956 Austin Metropolitan Coupé
|Odometer reading||33,500 miles|
|Estimate||£15,000 - £18,000|
|Result||Sold - £12,000|
The reaction to the surview convinced the car designer Nash that there was a market for a new small car. Since no U.S. car factory had the tooling or experience to build cars of this size, it was decided to produce the car in Europe. The Austin Motor Company was at that time the largest car manufacturer outside the U.S. and was the obvious choice in view of their reputation for quality build and engineering. Following various design modifications, the first Metropolitans rolled off the Longbridge production line in October 1953 and went on sale in the U.S. in the spring of 1954. Early versions were fitted with the 1200cc Austin Somerset engines and are now easily recognisable by a ‘floating bar’ grille, and monotone body colours for body and roof. None of these early cars was released on the home market – the entire production until 1957 was for export only.
This fabulous example of this rare Austin is presented in blue and white with blue and white interior. It was sold originally to Germany as new, albeit in right hand drive. At some point in its life, the car moved to Switzerland to Fine Cars in Schöftland where it underwent a full 100 point restoration which was the subject of a multipage article in ‘Old Timer’ magazine. It was then sold by them to the current owner and is now registered in the UK with a V5C registration document. It does come with a copy of its German and Swiss documentation however. A car of this quality with the rare floor change gearbox is extremely hard to find and this exceptional example would grace any collection or just be a lot of fun to own and drive.
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.