Would you like to own and drive one of those rare and coveted M model Healeys? Well here is a unique opportunity for the discerning collector/enthusiast that is conversant with and values early Healey history to own one of the even more exceptional models! It is a once in a lifetime opportunity to acquire a professionally restored example of a rare early Warwick modified competition Austin Healey. This car cannot be duplicated! It is car #93 and the last of the 1953 BN-1s manufactured. It is also one of the first to be modified for competition at the Healey works in Warwick most likely for an American airman that wanted to bring it home and race it. It has the many features you read about but never see. In addition to the competition modifications the car surprisingly has pre-production features such as a radiator with a crank hole and dual mounting holes for the steering box and the notorious door sills [now replaced] mentioned by Geoffrey Healey. As one of the earliest examples of a Warwick modified car it qualifies as a predecessor of the much admired “M” series cars that were not to come along until two years later and now demand premium prices. It is a highly desirable, early factory-built example of a competition Healey, documented by both a British Motor Industry Heritage Trust Certificate as well as the Austin Healey 100M Le Mans Registry. This is a matching-numbers car and photographic documentation of the matching body numbers found on the cockpit trim and bonnet are included in the photo array. In addition images of the hand engraved numbers on the carburetor bodies are included as well as the various number plates and many other items. The car retains its original matching-numbers engine, as verified by the BMIHT Certificate.
This nearly rust free car was purchased in 1995 and carefully disassembled and media blasted before being meticulously rebuilt from the ground up. This included professionally re-building the engine, transmission and o/d, brakes, suspension, instruments etc. All work was done with the intent of retaining originality whenever and wherever possible. Care was taken to not over restore it. This car is in excellent overall condition and has been enjoyed, not stored. It has been driven sparingly but regularly since completion with no issues and is ready to enjoy. I use ethanol free gas and Collector's Choice motor oil. All gauges were rebuilt by Nisonger except the gas gauge which has now decided to quit. A new sender did not help. Needed to go to Nisonger with the others I guess but an easy fix. The dash lights are ready to hook up to the new wiring harness; I just never got around to doing it because I never drove at night. It should be simple to do if you are supple enough to get under dash which I am not anymore.
This car currently has custom bodywork that demonstrates the beauty of the original Coker design and puts onlookers on notice that this is more than just another Healey. The current iteration incorporates the frontal aspect that was Mr. Healey's first choice for production and it is replicated here for the first time. During the early design stage we were fortunate in receiving gracious input from Gerry Coker, the original designer, to ensure we did it correctly. Images of some of Mr. Coker’s emails are included below.
The decision to re-body the car was made with the intent to incorporate as many historical correct features into the design as possible. This indicates to observers the unique niche the car rightly occupies mechanically in Healey history but would otherwise go un-noticed as they are naturally out of sight. The intent was that its distinctive appearance should emphasize the underlying uniqueness without compromising the Healey style that is so admired worldwide. All the resulting bodywork is to a very high standard. It was produced by an individual with fifty years of experience in his craft, many of those years in aircraft composite design and manufacturing. All the bodywork is hand laid utilizing woven glass cloth and appropriate mats and resins for superior strength. The primary design goal was to recreate the frontal aspect that was changed during the prototype build at Tickford. This car shows the design that Donald Healey originally approved for production and demonstrates what he intended the BN-1 to look like. It is the only example ever built to those specifications. Donald’s disapproval of the final familiar production design is well documented. We consider this car a fitting tribute to Gerry Coker’s unquestionably unique talents!
We chose to replicate the windshield configuration Dr. George Verrilli used in the1955 and 1956 Mille Miglia. It was deemed a historically allowable modification that allows one to drive with a lower windshield without goggles. Pictures of Dr. Verrilli’s car are included below. During the build stages careful evaluation was made of every aspect of the production design and various production anomalies were attended to that are too numerous to list all of them here but included items like the removal of all flanges and visible bolts or rivets and re-sizing of the wheel opening after the car was raised as much as possible. Finally a lightweight removable hardtop with enough headroom for a 6'2" driver was designed that matches the new windshield and complements the overall appearance of the car with a window outline that replicates a Gerry Coker design. All the bodywork is bolt on exchange pieces utilizing the original bolt holes.
The numbers matching unrestored bodywork and ancillary parts like the original bumpers, wire wheels, gear shift knob with o/d switch are available should the new owner want to safeguard the ability to restore the car to its as built condition should future market values dictate doing so, keeping in mind the rare historic status this car represents. No modifications were made to the original car so restoration should be straight forward if desired. For now as it is it is a great attention getter and makes a great show piece with many historical features to discuss with those interested in Healey history.
The car is readily available for inspection by appointment. It is located in Bellingham, Washington in the northwest corner of the USA about 90 minutes north of Seattle. The car can be shipped as soon as funds clear but depending on buyers’ choices the many additional items like the original un-restored bodywork, all the molds, nine in all which would be very valuable for making a replacement part if heaven forbid the need arises. Then there are the bumpers, top bows etc. If these are purchased they will all need to be crated for shipping depending on destination etc. This will take a bit of time but is not a big deal; the original bodywork goes into the molds which then protects them. Everything will probably fit in a 4’x4’x8’ crate. Just keep this in mind if you want everything to go at once. The buyer is responsible for arranging and paying for the crating and all shipping cost of the car and the parts.
I will assist if and when I can to facilitate matters. I am not a dealer just an individual who enjoys outstanding motorcars. Feel free to contact me with any questions. Thank you for your interest.