1963 Aston Martin Lagonda Rapide
|Odometer reading||91,254 miles|
|Estimate||£120,000 - £150,000|
- Number 53 of only 55 manufactured
- Restored to a good standard
- Matching numbers
Purchased by David Brown in 1947, Lagonda had all but disappeared by 1957 as DB4 production dominated the company’s activities. Aston Martin revived the famous Lagonda name in 1961 with a luxurious four-door sports saloon – the Rapide. It had been David Brown's intention that the Rapide should be the 'most mechanically advanced car available', offering effortless acceleration to 130mph. Beneath the Rapide's Superleggera aluminium coachwork (by Touring of Milan, the carrozzeria responsible for the Aston Martin DB4 sports car), it certainly lived up to its name with brisk acceleration, while dual circuit, servo assisted disc brakes restrained this excellent performance. Fittings to the traditional interior included electric windows, picnic tables to the rear, filler cap remote opener and a radio as standard. The Rapide's price when new was £5,000, some 25 percent higher than that of the Aston Martin DB4, which itself was not exactly a cheap vehicle. A mere 55 units, almost all of which were equipped with Borg Warner three-speed automatic transmission, were built before production ceased in 1964.
First registered on 19th December 1963 to Hawker Siddley Ltd, it is thought this was the company vehicle for Sir Arnold Hall who was Managing Director at the time. In 1974 the car was acquired by Nicholas Channing who kept the Lagonda for 10 years. The car then became the property of a Robert McNab who subsequently kept the car for 19 years using it sparingly before selling it to the current registered keeper in 2003. In 2004 Graham Whitehouse Autos were commissioned to get the car into a roadworthy condition. An invoice in the file confirms the brakes were overhauled, work was carried out on the suspension and a stainless-steel exhaust system fitted. At the same time a more modern four-speed automatic transmission was fitted replacing the old three speed gearbox, which significantly enhanced the driving experience. The car was then loaned to motoring journalist Martin Buckley who would write about the car regularly in Classic & Sportscar magazine. Some six years later and with the mileage at 90,650 the car was totally restored by Cotswold Classic Car Restorations of Cirencester. The restoration took three years and it was at this time the colour was changed from Agean Blue to Dubonnet Red. The engine was also fully rebuilt and the interior was sympathetically restored; the total cost of this restoration was in excess of £60,000. Photographic evidence is available in the history file. Moving on and more recently in 2016 respected Aston Martin specialist Desmond Smail carried out work on the brakes, suspension and steering, this invoice totalled £7,500. Graham Whitehouse Autos carried out a repair to the torque converter in November 2019 with the odometer reading 91,174 at the time, the invoice totalled £5,481.72. Presenting in good order throughout this Aston Martin Lagonda Rapide is number 53 from a production run of just 55 vehicles. Supplied with a UK V5C registration document and an MoT test certificate valid until 21st April 2022, this quintessentially British classic is a proper gentleman’s car and a must for any true motoring connoisseur.
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