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Lot 218: 1937 Alvis Speed 25 Open Tourer by Vanden Plas

Sports, Touring, Historic Road and Racing Cars, Coys (30 April 2006)

Following on from the famous 12/50 and front-wheel drive sports and racing cars of the 1920's, Alvis introduced the Speed Twenty in 1932, which was designed and built by Captain Smith-Clark in only three months - unbelievable nowadays. The engine was based on that fitted in the Silver Eagle, suitably modified. In 1934 independent front suspension by a single transverse leaf spring and wishbones was fitted, the first example of this on a British car, and it improved the road-holding and steering considerably. Another first for 1934 was the all-synchromesh 4-speed gearbox, no longer in unit with the engine as it had been previously.The Alvis 3 ½ litre was announced in October 1935 and formed the basis of the company's finest two cars, the Speed 25 and the 4.3 litre. The Speed 25's engine was a 3,571cc straight six unit which produced 106bhp at 3,800rpm, and included such advance features as ride control shock absorbers and servo-assisted brakes The first two people to road test the new car were Sir Malcolm Campbell and T H Wisdom, both of whom lavished praise upon it, Wisdom commenting, 'My opinion of the machine is that it is in the true traditions of the manufacturers, a firm with the successful history of motor racing, and builders of some of the fastest, and well engineered sports cars ever produced.' Even when fitted with a standard sports saloon body, it was capable of 95mph and 0-50 in 11 seconds, which put it in the same league as Bentley.The Speed 25 is generally acknowledged as one of the most versatile and successful of the pre-war British sports cars. This particular example has original Vanden Plas Touring coachwork, with fully folding hood and cutaway door line. A painstaking restoration taking many years has now been completed which has included the over haul of the entire chassis, engine rebuild, rewiring, re-chroming, repainting and re-trimming. Now completed, we are confident that this must be one of the prettiest Alvis' in the UK. The car is beautifully finished in two-tone Royal and Navy Blue with new grey hide interior, best grey carpets and black hood and weather equipment. With its more sophisticated suspension, larger engine and better gearbox than its predecessor the Speed 20, this open touring British sports car will offer any enthusiast a wealth of enjoyment and fun for the many rallies and events for which this motor car is eligible.Accompanying this motorcar are a wealth of photographs and detail of its meticulous restoration. Originally registered BUE 922, this number will need to be reapplied for with the assistance of the Alvis owners club. The owner is confident that this original number will be reassigned to this car upon application.

Lot Details
Auction Sports, Touring, Historic Road and Racing Cars
Coys, Donington Park Grand Prix Circuit
Lot Number218
Outcome SOLD
Hammer Price£50850
Hammer Price (inc premium)-
Condition rating
Registration numberTBA
Chassis number14379
Engine number
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors