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Wheeler Dealers tackles a Porsche with a problem

Wheeler Dealers tackles a Porsche

The 997 generation of Porsche 911 is revered by enthusiasts, but Wheeler Dealers Mike Brewer has found one in need of major attention. Over to Marc ‘Elvis’ Priestley to work his magic…

Some great Porsches have featured on Wheeler Dealers – a few 911s amongst them – but now the boys had got themselves another of these superb sports cars. It was probably the cheapest in the country, but there was a good reason for that… 

The 997-generation model is very popular amongst enthusiasts, but this 2007 example sounded like it was suffering from a major engine problem. So both Mike and Elvis headed off to take a look, and it didn’t take long for the master mechanic to diagnose that problem – scored cylinder bores. But with the rest of the car looking great and boasting an excellent history, it was worth a gamble at £15,000. 

Back at the workshop the first job facing Elvis was removing the engine and gearbox for a closer look, and with the spark plugs removed the use of a bore scope confirmed his fears.  A number of the cylinders were affected, so with the engine stripped down it was a trip to specialists, Hartech, to get the problem fixed for good. Watching the repair work was fascinating, the process one that involved machining the cylinder bores before the fitting of new aluminium-alloy wet liners with a special nickel-ceramic coating.

Another special modification to the engine block’s water jackets would prevent the problem returning, but the work hadn’t been cheap. The budget took a £3000 hit, but with Elvis taking the opportunity to renew the potentially troublesome IMS bearing, and replace the crankshaft’s main bearing shells, the awesome flat-six would be good for many thousands of miles. And with a few other parts replaced for good measure it was soon back in the car. 

In the meantime, Mike had been thinking about how the car should look and what he had in mind was the popular process of ‘back-dating’ where Porsches receive a few modifications so they resemble older, classic models. For a bit of inspiration he went to see Porsche guru, Neil Bainbridge, at BS Motorsport. 

 

There, he found plenty of thrilling cars and there was one in particular that caught his eye – an original example of the iconic 911 2.7RS. Choosing a gold colour scheme to complement the 997’s black paintwork, the budget was about to take another pounding as Mike went shopping for some ‘Carrera’ decals, replica Fuchs alloy wheels, and a glass-fibre engine lid that incorporated the famous ‘ducktail’ spoiler.   

It didn’t long for Elvis to fit the new parts, and it marked the end of the project. The Porsche looked fantastic, and with that engine problem fixed the mechanicals were now in the rudest of health. All that was left was to see how it went and sounded, and for that it was a trip to the Silverstone race circuit to join in with a track day organised by Porsche Club Great Britain. 

Wheeler Dealers tackles a Porsche

Naturally, it performed superbly and with plenty of enthusiasts in attendance surely Mike would have no trouble finding a buyer. There was plenty of interest, but then Dan came along and he loved the way it looked, and that meant he was quite happy to pay the full asking price of £26,000. 

It might have seemed like a brave purchase, but the Wheelers Dealers experts were never going to be put off by something like a broken engine. Their hard work was rewarded with a very tasty Porsche, a very tasty profit, and another great modern classic back on the road! 

Mike Brewer says: “These early water Porsches are more complicated than their air cooled predecessors, pop the deck lid on a 996 onwards and it’s bewildering how Stuttgart managed to package so much into a tiny space.  

“Buying any Porsche with an engine problem is a big risk. Porsches come with what’s known in Porsche circles as Porsche tax! Basically, the parts are and seem more expensive than other cars. So, the gamble of a 997 with a bore stroke issue is a monumental one.  

Lucky for me, I have Elvis. His skill set is amazing and without blinking he removes the engine from the 997. Having the courage to take a milling machine to an engine block is also a gamble but thanks to Hartec and Elvis’ know how we ended up with flat 6 lump mightier than before. As for the styling? Back-dating 911s is all the rage at the moment and I think I nailed the retro styling of our car. Epic build and a great result.” 

 

Marc ‘Elvis’ Priestley says:I’m a big Porsche fan anyway, so for Mike to bring me a 997 to work on was just great. The challenge, as it always is, was huge, but together I really feel like we got this one right.  

“Stripping the engine back and getting the block onto the machines at Hartech took me right back to my early years of engineering and the solution to the bore score problem is a strong one. With Mike’s styling the car looks brilliant and drives impeccably and so to get it out onto one of my favourite racetracks, the Silverstone GP circuit, was a dream come true.” 

Find more info: 
Discovery UK

Join the Club:
Porsche Club Great Britain
Porsche Enthusiasts Club


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Celebrating the Mercedes-Benz SL

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Fifty years have passed since the R107 generation of Mercedes-Benz SL was launched, two letters that represent some of the most desirable models that Mercedes has ever made.

Mercedes-Benz is a badge well worth celebrating, and we’re starting with one of the most desirable versions of all. Here’s a look at the Mercedes-Benz SL through five glorious decades…

W113 – 1963 to 1971 

Surely one of the prettiest cars ever made, it was designers Paul Bracq and Béla Barényi that were responsible for the model that became known as the ‘Pagoda’. That was due to the concave shape of the hardtop, but it was the car’s elegantly classy lines that made it such a hit. Borrowing its underpinnings from the 220SE saloon, the two-seater roadster arrived as the 230SL and not only did it look great but it was safe, too – Mercedes reckoned the rigid passenger cell and front/rear crumple zones were a sports car first. Updated to become the 250SL, the 280SL arrived in 1968 with a 168bhp straight-six engine meaning go to match the show. Almost 49,000 Pagodas would be built by the time production ended. 

Mercedes-Benz SL

R107 – 1971 to 1989 

Even half a century after its launch this SL is as desirable as ever, and it’s a model that has twice appeared in the Wheeler Dealers workshop. More than 237,000 would be made – with two thirds of production heading to the US – and it quickly became a star of TV and film, including being the wheels of choice for a certain Bobby Ewing. Launched as the 350SL with a 200bhp V8, the R107 was safe, solidly built and boasted the sort of understated style that kept it in production for an amazing eighteen years. Numerous improvements and more powerful engines arrived during that time – the 500SL proved especially popular – and when a car looks this good it’s easy to see why demand and values remain so high. 

R129 – 1989 to 2001 

Like its predecessor, designer Bruno Sacco was responsible for the stylish looks although this generation had taken on a more aerodynamic appearance. It was also impressively safe thanks to numerous electronic systems and a pop-up rollover bar, and there was lots more kit on offer from adaptive damping to xenon headlights. This generation soon attracted a lengthy waiting list, those patient buyers able to choose from a variety of straight-six and V8 engines (it would also become the first SL to offer a V6 engine) that blended smoothness with ample power. Speaking of which, the later SL73 AMG featured a 7.3-litre V12 making 518bhp and with a top speed approaching 200mph! And it was the R129 that saw the SL badge become a prefix in 1995, so SL500 for example.   

R230 – 2001 to 2011 

Launched at the Frankfurt Motor Show, there was a softer, more rounded look for this new SL and it was a model that offered far greater levels of tech. Also new was the folding metal ‘Vario’ roof which meant the end for the traditional offering of a folding soft top or a hard top. Once again there was a choice of V6 and V8 engines with no shortage of power as you progressed up the range; the twin-turbocharged V12 in the SL600 boasted 493bhp, while the same engine in the SL65 AMG was boosted to 604bhp. And the ultimate incarnation was the 250kg-lighter ‘Black Series’ model with a 6.0-litre V12 producing 660bhp and 1000Nm of torque; it sprinted to 60mph in 3.8 seconds and hit almost 200mph. 

R231 – 2011 to date 

If ever there was a starker contrast with the simplicity of the first model in our list, this is it.  Packed with sophisticated technology – from a panoramic glass roof that can be darkened at the touch of a button, to suspension with a ‘Curve Tilting’ function, and plenty more – this was also the biggest SL yet. A proper luxury cruiser, the adoption of an alloy spaceframe helped to keep weight in check and Mercedes had even incorporated bass speakers into the structure itself. You couldn’t really have imagined that in 1963! Audio advances aside, there’s still plenty of power on offer from the V6, bi-turbo V8, and V12 engines while a facelift for the 2017 model year introduced mild styling revisions and extra equipment.   

R232 – 2021 

Expected to arrive later this year, all we’ve seen of the newest generation SL so far are teaser shots of the car covered in camouflage. Still, what we do know is that it will be based on a composite aluminium structure weighing just 270kg, and that the folding metal roof will revert to a traditional soft top arrangement. We also know that four-wheel drive will feature for the first time on an SL, utilising the 4MATIC+ system used by other Mercedes models, whilst the engine range should comprise straight-six and twin-turbocharged V8s; the V12 is likely to be dropped. And we can also expect some form of electrification during the model’s lifecycle. Frankly, we can’t wait for this exciting new SL to arrive. 

For more info: 
Mercedes-benz.com

Join the Club:
Mercedes Benz Club


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Wheeler Dealers bags a brilliant Land Rover

Wheeler Dealers Land Rover

Wheeler Dealers loves a Land Rover but transforming this Series I also involved solving a mystery…

The Wheeler Dealers workshop has seen a variety of Land Rovers over the years – this would be the sixth – and previous ones had made a tidy profit, but would Mike Brewer and Marc ‘Elvis’ Priestley continue that great record? Well this rare Series I looked promising, but there was a mystery to unravel.

First though, Mike headed all the way to County Durham to meet restorer, Fred, and it had been worth the drive. The Landy looked terrific, and despite the noisy, agricultural driving experience and an asking price of £16,000, the Wheeler Dealer couldn’t have been happier and was quick to snap it up.

As for that mystery, it was registered as a 1963 model but that was too late for a real Series I; the Series II had arrived in 1958. But with some detective work the boys discovered that it was genuine; giveaways included the 86-inch chassis that Elvis carefully measured, and it was confirmed by a heritage certificate from Land Rover itself, which revealed that it had been made in 1954 and first used by the military.

Now that registration error had been identified it was on with the restoration, one that would involve making this special off-roader as authentic as possible. And with all of the bodywork removed one of the first jobs to tackle was replacing the rear axle which was actually from a Series II model.

Elvis headed off to specialists, Britpart, in Shropshire where a genuine item was waiting, and while there he could use their special tools to undertake a thorough overhaul. New brakes, wheel bearings and a coat of paint later and it was perfect.

That refurbished axle was the first part to be fitted to the chassis, but there was still lots of work to do and money to spend. Whilst visiting Land Rover’s Classic Division their historian (another Mike) had pointed out a few issues, the most expensive of which was the non-genuine bulkhead. A hefty £2500 was needed for a new one! The steering box wasn’t right either – it was a later recirculating ball item rather than the correct worm and nut system – but with costs spiralling that was left in place after some adjustment to remove excessive play. At least the replacement rear wheels weren’t too pricey…

And there was more, as the rear lights weren’t the right ones, the badges were wrong, and the indicators needed to be replaced with the correct semaphore type. The budget would have to take another hit, but if Mike and Elvis were going to do the job properly there was no option but to keep spending.

The brilliant Series I was coming together, though, and after a respray in Land Rover Grey, new period-correct seats and hood, and all the new exterior parts fitted the project was finished. Almost £10,000 had been spent getting it back to pristine, original condition but would all that time and money pay off?

It had been a cracking transformation, and a test drive at an old rocket testing facility confirmed that this charming 4×4 was one they could both be proud of. All that remained was for Mike to sell it for a handsome profit, and when it was sold to a good friend for £35,000, the Wheeler Dealers track record with Land Rovers was as solid as ever.

Mike Brewer said: “Uncovering the story of our Series 1 Land Rover was a great experience as it took me to the Land Rover Heritage Centre where Mike Bishop who is the curator got very excited about our car. Getting the original build documents meant that we could make our Landy like the day it rolled off the production line.

I really challenged Elvis on this one as although people say Land Rovers are easy to work on, there were lots of problems along the way. In the end we invested wisely and turned out a great vehicle which sold for a healthy sum and will now live happily on the island of Jersey rubbing shoulders with the rich and famous!”

Marc ‘Elvis’ Priestley said: “What a treat this was to work on such an iconic vehicle. Mike and I had to play investigators to find out the true history of the Landy, but what a story we uncovered.

The car wasn’t always easy to work with, but I loved pulling apart the old Series 1 rear axle that Mike tracked down using the ‘specialised’ field tools and bringing it back to the workshop. It turned out to be a beautiful Land Rover, that Mike and I were really proud of.”

Find more info:
Discovery UK

Join the Club
Land Rover Series One Club


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Fewer classic car auctions but just as much choice

Charterhouse classic car

Until recently classic car auctions went quiet in August but as buyers demand more sales that’s no longer the case. Now October’s the month for fewer sales, the quiet before a busy November and December run-up to Christmas.

October’s classic car auctions are concentrated on the beginning and the end of the month. They start with Charterhouse on the 5th and H&H on the 6th, bookended by Brightwells’ timed online sale ending on the 28th and SWVA’s live online sale on the 29th.

Charterhouse kicks things off at the Haynes International Motor Museum and will be looking to repeat the success of its last sale – its most successful to date.

It’s a truly mixed bag that includes the first Aston Martin DB7 sold to the public (as well as a 2000 DB7 Vantage). If buyers crave something more traditional, Charterhouse’s Noah’s Ark also has a pair of MGA 1500 Roadsters and a pair of performance Minis – a 1971 Cooper S recreation and a 1980 Clubman 1275GT.

Charterhouse classic car

Those two are joined by a 1978 Mini pick-up project (est: £2000-3000) that should offer plenty of time occupying one the clocks have changed. And it’s fitted with a set of Cosmic alloy wheels, which surely seals the deal.

The end-of-the-pier variety is extended with a needing-re-commissioning 1967 Jaguar MkX (no-reserve) and a 1973 Jensen Interceptor that’s estimated at £34,000-36,000 and had £20,000 spent on it in 2019. Those with penchant of late 1950s/early ‘60s British fins ‘n’ chrome might find those once showroom rivals the Mk2 Ford Zodiac and Vauxhall Cresta appealing: Charterhouse obliges with a 1960 Zodiac and a 1961 Cresta, estimated at £7000-9000 and £8000-10,000 respectively.

Charterhouse classic car

The next day (6 October) H&H heads to its traditional Buxton location with an interesting assembly of cars that goes from Austin 7s to 1990s Mercedes-Benzes. Likely to fire up interest is a 1984 Vauxhall Astra L 1300S in limited edition Celebrity guise. The no-reserve offering has covered 56,000 miles from new and looks the part. An ideal show car for events such as the Festival of the Unexceptional (Link: Internal).

Another fine candidate for that event is a 1976 Humber Sceptre, the Hillman Hunter for those who had a social-climbing ethos. It shows a ‘credible’ 54,000 miles and has had much recent improvement according to H&H. It’s a no-reserve offering.

But enough of such family-saloon fripperies, because even with winter not far off, the diehard enthusiast could still be looking for a sports car. And H&H clearly realises that droptop demand fails to diminish once the clocks change and the nights draw in.

H&H Classic Car

A 1937 Austin Seven Nippy – one owner from 1966 the auctioneer notes – is one of 800 made and has been restored in the past. It’s estimated at £18,000-22,000. If that’s a little too raw a 1954 MG TF 1250 (est: £20,000-25,000) isn’t quite so rudimentary. This car – a right-hand drive export model – was brought back in 1977 and saw extensive restoration in the 1980s.

Coming more up to date and offering a seriously heady mix of drop-top, pokey driving is a 1995 TVR Chimaera 4.0 (est: £10,000-12,000) that’s had just two previous owners and covered around 55,000 miles from new. Coming with plenty of history it has had a full engine and gearbox service.

H&H Classic Car

One of the sale’s highlights is a1966 Triumph 2000 saloon that is said, in H&H’s words, to be ‘understood to be the best in the country’. Restored bodily and mechanically to the tune of more than £30,000 the engine, brakes and suspension have been upgraded and overall, it is said to be excellent. It’s estimated at £14,000-18,000.

Heading South from the Peak District to the lushness of the England/Wales border, Brightwells timed online sale finishes on the 28th October.

Triumph TR4s are market favourites – always have been and probably always will be. Recently a few have been to auction and almost all sell, irrespective of their condition. That preamble has a purpose because Brightwells has gone one better than offering not just a TR4A, but a Dove GTR4 (est: £25,000-28,000). Some might not be familiar with the Dove, which in effect was a hatchback conversion carried out by South Coast coachbuilder Harrington. It’s an older restoration coming from long-term ownership, is said to be running and driving and is an ideal use-and-improve candidate.

Brightwells Classic car

A 1974 Rover 3500 (est: £7000-8000) offers another slice of Ye Olde Albion which is described as a very smart example that’s ready to enjoy. The white body with tan vinyl roof and alloy wheels adds some proper stance while the interior must surely have shocked Rover’s perceived professional middle class buyers: after all, orange – yes, orange – in a Rover? It’s just the ticket for anybody with a love of late-night Soho, dog-track-visiting and weekend runs to seaside chippies, with every bit as much status as a Series 2 XJ: now that IS saying something.

Slowing things down a little is a 1932 BSA three-wheeler (est: £6000-8000) that’s been restored but requires shaking down. While there’s a lot of emphasis on pre-war Morgan three-wheelers the BSA makes an interesting alternative. Basic it might be but that doesn’t prevent it from being fun and exhilarating to drive.

And talking of Morgans (and admittedly it’s difficult to resist a local radio-style link) Brightwells also has a 1960 Morgan (est: £45,000-50,000) that’s been prepared for long-distance international rallies: beneath the piano-hinged bonnet sits a JE Developments 4.2-litre V8 so getting anywhere quickly shouldn’t be a problem.

October finishes off down at Poole, SWVA holding its last 2021 classic sale on the 29th October. It’s an online sale with pre-sale viewing available by appointment. Repeatedly posting 90 percent plus sale rates, SWVA will be looking to repeat that and the mix of cars means that achievement looks set fair for its year-closer.

SWVA Classic Car

Lots include a 1975 Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow originally owned by Sir Freddie Laker that’s offered as a project as it has not been run for years. With numerous Shadow specialists re-commissioning might not be as arduous or expensive as might be initially thought, especially as it’s a no-reserve offering.

Slightly older (by three years) a 1972 Austin Mini 1000 showing 43,140 miles taps into the ever-increasing interest in BL-era Minis. Once the market only sought out BMC period cars with almost embarrassingly high prices stumped up for 1959 cars. The BL-era cars, once over-shadowed have been increasingly sought out and this one’s £3500-4500 estimate is fair. With one lady owner for 30 years (before which there was one other – her uncle) the vendor has carried out a fair amount of re-commissioning and it’s said to be running nicely.

Not far behind in the estimate stakes is a late (1961) Rover 100 that’s given a £2000-2500 estimate. The P4 is one of the classic scene’s evergreen models and they have consistently offered great value for money. To the classic cognescenti their mix of engineering integrity and driver involvement make them a better car than the staid lines suggest. This example has original seating, recent carpets and the wood was re-lacquered five years ago. Re-painted in 2011/2012 later work has included a de-coke, new rear crankshaft oil seal kit, new clutch and new silencer. At the estimate suggested it could be a great value buy.

And finally, a clash of 1960s sporting/grand touring cars. SWVA has conveniently put intending buyers’ minds in a quandary with a 1962 Jaguar E-type (substantial history, £52,500-55,000 estimate), a 1964 small-block Chevrolet Corvette convertible (restored with later work carried out, £37,000-39,000 estimate) and a 1967 Mercedes-Benz 250SL (restored, some paperwork, £51,000).

Some great lots up for grabs so it will be interesting to see what sort of prices they secure.

Find more info:
Charterhouse
H&H
Brightwells
SWVA


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Classic Car Auctions hammers away £1.4M worth of sales

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Coupe? Of course!

Classic Car Auctions hammers away £1.4M worth of sales

Classic car auctions

Classic Car Auctions’ September sale saw £1.4million worth of classics find new homes.

Classic Car Auctions’ Practical Classics Classic Car & Restoration Show Sale saw 130 Everyman Classics go under the hammer with some fantastic results along the way. The auction was a huge success with £1.4 million worth of cars sold with a sales rate of 69%.

Everyman Classics from across the decades went under the hammer including this stunning, freshly restored, 1970 Jaguar E-Type Series 2 4.2 Fixed Head Coupe. Factory finished in Pale Primrose with a smart black interior and an immaculate engine bay, this exceptional car sold in CCA’s sale above the top estimate for £63,048.

On the auction day Fords took centre stage and achieved some fantastic results including Lot 564, the 1979 Ford Escort Mk2 RS2000 Custom. This superb example is very highly sought-after and has been fastidiously restored to a Concours standard, resplendent in Signal Yellow, the car sold for £43,290.

classic car auctions

Lot 558, the 1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1 – “John Wick” Boss 429 Recreation sold with Classic Car Auctions for £66,600. This example was superbly restored with the intention of re-creating the Mustang Boss 429 from the series of John Wicks films. One last example of the Fords sold on the day was Lot 518, the 1976 Ford Transit Mk1 LWB Panel Van. This nicely restored example is a rare sight on today’s roads and previously formed part of a private collection where it was lightly used for the past 11 years – this sold for £10,212.

Gary Dunne, CCA’s Sales Manager commented “We would like to thank all of our vendors, buyers and under-bidders for supporting our recent auction. It was truly fantastic to see so many faces in the room, whilst also offering absentee bidding too. You can view all of the results from the day on our website.”

The catalogue included such a wide variety of different marques such as Toyota, Jaguar, Porsche, and many more with some having low mileage, exciting provenance, and low ownership. Lot 548, the 1985 Lamborghini Jalpa P350 3.5 V8  had recently been superbly refreshed with only 50,700km on the clock. This example was on offer from a private collection and sold fantastically for £77,700.

An unrepeatable example that was sold at the sale was Lot 522, the 2020 Toyota GR Supra 3.0 Pro. This is a fifth-generation 3-litre Supra in GR-Pro spec which has covered just 2,384 miles in the careful hands of its only owner. Finished in Downshift Blue with a black interior and was ordered in GR Supra Pro-spec which includes 19″ black and silver forged alloy wheels (5-double-spoke) sold on Saturday for £37,185.

Classic car auctions

Classic Car Auctions final sale of 2021 is taking place on Saturday 11th December at Stoneleigh Park. The UK classic car auction market leaders are now inviting early entries for this auction, and you can contact the expert team on 01926 690888 to discuss entering your car.

Find more info:
Classic Car Auctions


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Wheeler Dealers picks up a classic camper

Wheeler Dealers Bedford Dormobile

Few vehicles are as charming as a classic camper, and this 1963 Bedford CA Dormobile was ready to be transformed by the Wheeler Dealers.

We’ve already seen some terrific classics on the latest season of Wheeler Dealers, including last week’s feisty Italian coupe, but this time Mike Brewer and Marc ‘Elvis’ Priestley chose something a little slower. Oh yes, and it was a vehicle you could take a holiday in…

Quickly renamed ‘Colin the Camper’, Mike had fallen in love with this charming 1963Bedford Dormobile. Packed with character and lovely period features, it reminded him of his childhood, and at just £4500 it was a bit of a bargain. One – very slow – test drive later and the deal was done for the full asking price.

So what had that money bought them? Well, apart from the odd rust spot and some scruffy paintwork it was all remarkably sound, but it was clear there was still plenty of work to do before anyone would be heading off for their summer hols in it. And that work would start with improving the performance.

Much as Elvis loved the charming Bedford, that underpowered engine and unsuitable 3-speed gearbox had to go. A Ford Pinto motor seemed the best replacement, along with a more relaxing automatic transmission, so with the interior stripped out it was off to see a friend, Derek Drinkwater, who would be lending a hand.

The first problem was discovering there wasn’t much room in the engine bay, so with Mike having sourced the new motor and gearbox plenty more hours were spent trying to wrestle it into position. It was a very tight fit, but with a few parts temporarily removed it finally slotted into place. Mind you, it still took some clever work by Elvis to fabricate new engine mounts, as well as adapting the column gear shift and linkage to work with the new gearbox. We’ve never seen the master mechanic look so tired…

Meanwhile, Mike had got busy brushing up on his carpentry skills. The interior of the camper needed new cabinets, and after plenty of time spent measuring, cutting, and screwing things together he’d done a great job. He even treated himself with a trip down to Hampshire to see the Dormobile company and discover more about these brilliant vehicles. Bagging a replacement canopy for the roof and choosing a new colour scheme, it looked like the latest project was on the home straight.

Well, almost. Elvis still had to finish the mechanicals which included a replacement back axle and propeller shaft, along with work on the rear suspension, and then it was time for the paint shop. The transformation was almost complete, and all that was left was to fit Mike’s superb cabinets, fit the re-trimmed seats, and hang the new curtains. Around £5600 had been spent on all the work, but now with a camper to be proud of it had been worth every penny.

They certainly enjoyed the test drive, and the new engine and gearbox had made a huge difference to the driving experience. And after all the hard work, you couldn’t blame them for taking a break to cook up some sausages…

All that was left was to meet potential buyer, Martin, who loved what Mike and Elvis had done and was more than happy to pay the full asking price of £11,500. That was a tidy profit, but more importantly this wonderful vehicle was once again ready to give years of holiday fun

Mike Brewer says: “I’ve always been a massive fan of the Bedford CA having owned one for a decade, but the Dorma camper version is the one I’ve always wanted. When this pooped up I kept at the chance, to say I was happy with the purchase is an understatement!

“We all fell in love with Colin our camper. The problem was the amount of work that needed doing, a full floor to ceiling renovation and I decided on an engine and gearbox change too. Elvis worked through several nights with Derek getting Colin ready for sale to catch the end of summer. The results where incredible. Colin can cruise now with a new coat of paint happily at 70mph thanks to the 2.0 Pinto and auto box I found.

“Our most ambitious restoration to date and one I’m very proud of. Martin the buyer is local to me and has offered the car for the Lancaster Insurance Classic Motor Show at the NEC where Colin will be on display.”

Wheeler Dealers Bedford Dormobile

Marc ‘Elvis’ Priestley says: “What a challenge this was! I don’t think the show fully conveyed just how much work and how many hours Derek and I put into this… but I loved it. There was a lot of ‘making it up as we went along’ and sometime those creative solutions to problems really do get me going.

“The finished product, with Mike’s brilliant interior, was stunning and quite frankly, I’m a little bit jealous of Martin, the new owner.”

Find more info:
Discovery UK

Join the Club:
Retro Caravan Club
VBOA


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Ant Anstead’s Comet heads to NEC Classic sale

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Ant Anstead Comet

A unique sports car designed by Ant Anstead is to be auctioned in the Silverstone Auctions’ sale at the NEC Classic Motor Show this November.

Silverstone Auctions final sale of 2021 has a number of exceptional classic cars confirmed including this 2018 Dowsetts Comet designed by Ant Anstead.

Having covered only 2,500 miles, the Comet is built around a steel spaceframe chassis which is clothed in GRP reinforced with Kevlar to create a shell that is strong yet light and is looking unique with classic lines of sports racers from the fifties and early sixties without becoming a pastiche of any one model.

Ant Anstead Comet

Finished in Porsche Crayon Grey, the red quilted leather interior of this car reflects how thought about and special the car truly is. Full harnesses, white-faced dials, a Moto-Lita wheel, turned aluminium short-throw gear lever, satin-finished stainless details, and embossed leather – truly impressive.

This is a special opportunity to acquire a remarkable one-off designed car by Ant Anstead and his team at Dowsetts Classic Car Company. This is the new trading name of the company formerly known as Evanta; whose superbly built creations Silverstone Auctions has been privileged to sell in the past.

Ant Anstead Comet

Silverstone Auctions return to the Lancaster Insurance Classic Motor Show for the tenth year as the official auction partner for this iconic classic car show event. This long-standing partnership has seen the auction house achieve outstanding results year after year.

Gary Dunne Sales Controller for Silverstone Auctions added: “We are delighted to be back as the official auction partner for this event and what a truly delightful and special example to be offered. We are now encouraging early entries, so don’t miss your chance to submit your car next to this remarkable Comet.”

If you are interested in submitting your best of breed car, motorcycle or piece of automobilia, their team of experts can be contacted on 01926 691141or by email enquiries@silverstoneauctions.com.

Find more info:
Silverstone Auctions


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Mike Brewer previews Classic Car Auctions’ Sept Sale

Wheeler Dealer Mike Brewer previews some of the lots in the next Classic Car Auctions Sale which is being held this Saturday 25th September at Stoneleigh Park.

The lot list for Classic Car Auctions sale on Saturday 25th September is jam packed with a fantastic mix of marques to suit all pockets. Our own Mike Brewer gives his view on a few of the highlights including a no reserve summer cruiser, a rare hatchback and a modern classic.

Billed as The Practical Classics Classic Cars and Restoration Show Sale, as the show was postponed until 2022, there are 130 ‘everyman classics’ with a number of restored classics as well as those from long-term ownership. 

One of the stand-out entries is a truly fabulous 1986 Porsche 911 3.2 SSE Coupe which has been owned by the vendor for an incredible 32 years. The UK-supplied example is smartly presented in Black with a grey leather pinstripe cloth interior and has just over 70,000 miles on the clock – estimated at £70,000 – 80,000. 

Classic Car Auctions

Also offered from significantly long-term ownership is this 1987 Ford Sierra RS Cosworth, which has been with the vendor for the past 30 years. Classically finished in Diamond White with a grey cloth Recaro interior, it has been sympathetically upgraded with a full Scorpion stainless exhaust, a Stage 1 remap and upgraded turbo actuator with the work carried out by Brooklyn Ford’s RS Department. The 65,000 odometer reading is supported by a large history file and this modern classic is estimated at £50,000 – 60,000. 

Classic Car Auctions

Gary Dunne, CCA’s Sales Manager said: “We are delighted to welcome bidders into the auction hall here at Stoneleigh Park from Wednesday 22nd, through to the morning of the auction on the 25th. This is a fantastic opportunity to view and inspect any cars or interest as well as their all-important history files. We have put together another fantastic catalogue of cars and if you can’t join us in person, we are still offering online and telephone bidding – so you can bid from anywhere in the world.” 

A number of Jaguars will cross the block on Saturday, including this freshly restored 1970 Jaguar E-Type Series 2 4.2 Fixed Head Coupe. Factory finished in Pale Primrose; it has recently benefited from a photo-documented ground-up restoration. Estimated at £45,000 – 50,000, the standard of work is superb, with a smart black interior and an immaculate engine bay. 

Classic Car Auctions

This 1989 Jaguar XJ-S Convertible will be offered for sale from its sole owner from new; supplied new to them on 29th September 1989! Finished in Westminster Blue over Oatmeal leather, this much-loved car has had investment over the years, including work by marque specialists, Swallows. Estimated at £23,000 – 26,000, this car’s story was told in the Jaguar Enthusiasts Magazine in October 2018. 

Classic Car Auctions

There’s also several modern classics as well as a Ford Escort that has been decommissioned by Top Gear’s Richard Hammond and his new venture The Smallest Cog.

Bidding for this sale will be available in person, by phone, online or via commission and you can register to bid here. 

Find more info:
Classic Car Auctions


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No Time to Die ‘Baby’ James Bond car revealed

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James Bond car

Fancy owning a James Bond car? The Little Car Company, Aston Martin and EON Productions have collaborated to create a No Time To Die special edition of the Aston Martin DB5 Junior.

The Little Car Company, Aston Martin and EON Productions have revealed this unique James Bond car as a special edition for the much anticipated new movie.

Inspired by the 25th James Bond film, No Time To Die, released in cinemas from September 30, the film sees the return of the iconic Aston Martin DB5. This unique collaboration with The Little Car Company has created a gadget-laden collector’s item. The two-thirds scale version of the original comes with a fully electric powertrain.

The No Time To Die edition will pay homage to the rich shared history of the brands, with Silver Birch paintwork, Smiths instruments, individually numbered chassis plates and completed with Aston Martin badging. In true Bond style, this special edition boasts even greater power and range over the standard DB5 Vantage Junior, giving it a higher level of performance.

James Bond car

After extensive development and months of collaboration between the three companies, the car is a truly authentic homage to both the Aston Martin and 007 brands. The original Aston Martin DB5 was 3D-scanned for reference, allowing a completely accurate reproduction. Whilst some elements of the car have been replicated, such as the Smiths instruments on the dashboard, some elements have been reimagined for the modern era. The fuel gauge has been converted into a battery meter, while the oil temperature now monitors the motor temperature.

The No Time To Die Special Edition has been designed as a convertible, and not the fixed head coupe driven by 007. This is to offer seating for an adult and child side by side, allowing all generations of Bond fans to share the love of driving. With multiple driving modes and a range of up to 80 miles, aspiring secret agents should be able to escape any situation. There are also some secret ‘Easter Eggs’ hidden within the car for the lucky owners to find.

A quick-release steering wheel allows for a speedy entry and exit for the driver, and when they need to stop in a hurry, they can rely on both regenerative braking and high-performance Brembo disc brakes. Bilstein dampers and coilover springs make sure the suspension can handle the performance squeezed into this two-thirds scale marvel.

James Bond’s Aston Martin DB5 has become a much-loved character in its own right. No Bond car would be complete without Q style gadgets, and the Aston Martin DB5 Junior No Time To Die edition is no exception.

Chris Corbould OBE, the Oscar®-winning special effects supervisor, has worked on fifteen James Bond films since the early 1980s, and he consulted with The Little Car Company on the development of the car’s complex gadgets in miniature;

“When I saw the DB5 Junior in the flesh, I was amazed at how identical it is to the full-sized car – its stunning. It’s an amazing feat of engineering.”

James Bond car

All the gadgets, are operated by individual controls in a hidden switch panel in the passenger door. At the push of a button, the headlights drop to reveal a twin set of simulated Gatling guns, complete with imitation barrel blasts and flashes.

As witnessed in the No Time To Die trailer, the skid mode comes in handy when caught in a tight spot. The No Time To Die special edition has a unique digital number plate activated through the hidden control panel.

Just like the original car, this special edition can produce a smoke screen to aid a successful getaway. Ejected through the rear ‘exhaust’, the smoke has a supply tank which supplies an hour of safe smoke before it needs topping up.

James Bond car

Although the DB5 Junior is not road legal, as an authentic Aston Martin model, every owner will receive automatic membership of the respected Aston Martin Owners Club. In addition, all clients will receive complimentary membership of The Little Car Club, allowing them to take part in exclusive events where they, their children and their grandchildren can drive their DB5 Juniors on the most prestigious racetracks.

Bond fans worldwide are able to secure one of the limited-edition No Time To Die editions of the DB5 Junior by visiting 007junior.com. With only 125 cars being built, build slots are allocated on a first come, first-served basis, by placing a fully refundable deposit.

Pricing for the car has been set at £90,000, plus local taxes. Existing Aston Martin DB5 Junior clients will be given first refusal on upgrading to a No Time To Die edition, and remaining build slots will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.

Find more info:
The Little Car Company

Join the Club:
Aston Martin Owners Club


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Coupe? Of course!

Coupe Historics

Could there be a more grown-up car than a large, powerful fixed-head coupe? We have a look at few coming under the auctioneer’s hammer soon.

If one type of car defined a gentleman surely it would be the fixed-head coupe? Not, however, the more sporting-inclined types like Jaguar E-types and Ford Capris: instead think Lancia Gamma and Kappa coupes, Mercedes-Benz SECs and CLs, Jaguar XJ6/XJ12 Coupes or any V8 Bristol right up to the final Blenheim 3.

You see what we’re getting at: They’d be owned by the type of bloke who’d know how to tie his own bow tie. These aren’t out-and-out sports, cars, but they do offer a half-decent turn of speed and continent-crossing prowess. They have a coolness many dropheads lack, and as a case in point a Corniche fixed-head will always lay a royal flush down in front of its drophead sibling.

So what coupes are in up and coming sales? Historics’ 25 September sale has certainly come up with the goods when it comes to Mercedes-Benz coupes. A no-reserve 1992 300CE in dark metallic blue with grey leather is understated coupe coolness, and the eight-hole alloys add to its looks. It’s fitted with an electric sunroof too, so wind that back, drop the side windows and then wonder why anyone would ever want a convertible version.

Coupe Historics

Staying with the three-pointed star there’s also a 2007 CL500, which should prise open the wallets of modern classics lovers. C216 models are seldom seen in auctions and this is one that shouldn’t be missed, having had two former keepers and coming with a comprehensive main dealer and specialist service history.

When delivered it cost a whopping £92,096, of which a healthy £14,000 was spent on options including the ‘passion’ leather seating. It’s pillarless, it has a (glass) sunroof and it’s sensibly estimated at £12,000-17,000. And it’s rarer than a Bentley continental GT, which on reflection is hardly difficult…

Let’s not leave the Historics sale just yet because anyone who wanting an unusual modern classic in two-door pillarless guise is in for a further treat – a 2003 Renault Avantime Privilege. Historics has sold several examples of the delightfully left-field (some might say bonkers) Renault in recent sales and while it didn’t capture the essence of pre-war Delages and Delahayes as Renault might have hoped it was a great attempt by a volume car maker to do something different.

Coupe Historics

This range-topping Privilege (in ‘Limited Edition’ guise) runs the petrol V6 engine but in this case with a manual gearbox. Serviced by a Renault main dealer until 2017 and coming from long-term ownership it’s a superb latterday head-turner, but unlike the Benzes above, not one for the shy or retiring.

If the Avantime was (and still is) avant-garde, there’s something way more traditional down at SWVA’s October sale. And if you think the quirky Renault is big, its generous dimensions are eclipsed by those of a 1978 Cadillac Coupe de Ville – a car so big it’s surprising some states didn’t make it offence for a car to be that big but with just two doors.

But what generously-measured doors they are, entirely in keeping with a car popular with wealthy retired Florida residents and New York types probably involved in construction, and more than likely to be wafting up to the Catskill Mountains at the weekend.

Coupe Historics

SWVA’s 1978 Coupe de Ville is getting towards the end of the full-size boats: unashamedly large, with small tail fins that dated back to the cleaned-up mid-1960s models, they still weren’t out of place a decade and a half later. This metallic red/white vinyl roof example was imported in 1980 and had one owner until 2017, the Poole auctioneer says. Before being bought by the vendor it had covered 385 miles in 10 years and has recently had a full service, a new battery and undersealing.

Big, yes. Imposing, certainly. And just think – it can do everything a Corniche fixed-head or Camargue can, but at way less cost. And the Cadillac has a bigger V8…

Find more info:
Historics
SWVA


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