Posted on 22nd November 2018

90 years ago, this 1928 20HP Sunbeam successfully completed the Monte Carlo Rally

Motorsport followers essentially fall into two camps - racing and rallying - and the former tends to rule the roost in terms of familiarity. Except there is one rally that arguably transcends even the most famous motor race….and that is the infamous Monte Carlo Rally.

Many will be familiar with the crushing victories there by the Mini works team but far less known is the 1928 Sunbeam 20HP Rally Saloon that graced the entry of that year’s event, and which now comes to auction with Historics on November 24th.

Truly a one-off, the car was prepared by the Sunbeam works and a crew of three drove from their UK starting point of John O’Groats all the way down to the finish line in Monte Carlo.
Unlike the frantic dash of the latter-day ‘Monte’ this was an altogether more civilised and charming affair for crews.

Impressively, the Sunbeam completed the event in 15th position and in fine fettle, which prompted Sunbeam to offer this as a model for the public to buy.

But this unique and gracious touring car – presented at Historics’ auction on November 24th in magnificent condition as it was on the rally – will always be known as ‘Magnificent Monte’ thanks to its feat.

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