SELECTED BY THE SQUIRREL
Saturday 23rd November 2019
Mercedes Benz World
c1950s DUNSMORE BOAT-TAIL SPECIAL
|Odometer reading||68,522 miles|
JT (Bill) Hines was the man behind the Dunsmore Specials. He began a one-man business repairing crashed vehicles in 1959, in sheds behind his bungalow at Stretton-on-Dunsmore in Warwickshire. Having a part-time helper who was an expert welder and metal fabricator, Bill Hines decided the time had come to form Dunsmore Motor Traction, the kind of small enterprise Mrs Thatcher liked and built Dunsmore Specials for any customers who wanted them. He had already made himself a two-seater special, using the floor-pan and 2.3-litre engine from a Vauxhall VX-4/90, cantilever back springs and a fabricated body with wooden mudguard blades. The result was a charming two-seater very much in the pre-war sporting idiom but without pretending to be a copy of any particular make. As for cost, a complete Dunsmore Special, trimmed and ‘MoTd’, would come out at about £7,500.
This particular example is a Special built in the 1950s, we are told, and is bodied as a two-seater sports Tourer with a boattail rear end. It is currently fitted with a VX4/90, 2.3 litres, four-cylinder engine with twin Stromberg carburettors which, as one can imagine, provides exciting performance for a car which weighs so little. It sounds fantastic as the side outlet exhaust is via a fantail which gives it that evocative sound more at home at the Brooklands Circuit! The car has been given the birthplate or chassis plate of a Lagonda M45 Rapide Saloon and is also registered as such on the V5 documentation. This Special would be fun to use on the road as well as a vintage entry to any Hillclimb or Sprint event.
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