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Lot 130 - 1951 Bentley Mark VI Drophead Sedanca by Abbott

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£136,200

Auction True Greats December 2016
Auction Date
Day of Auction

Lot Details

Lot Number 130
Reg. Number UK Registered
Chassis Number B118J0
Year 1951
Make Bentley
Model Mk VI

+44 208 614 7888

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Description

E.D. Abbott Ltd. was a British coachbuilding company based in Farnham, Surrey. Edward Dixon Abbott had been employed in the design department of the Wolseley car company and later he joined the coachbuilding company Page & Hunt, which had started operations in 1920. Abbott became their London Sales Manager and when Page & Hunt failed in 1929 he took over their Farnham works and formed a new company using his own name.

From 1931 Abbott took a stand each year at the London Motor Show. In 1934 Abbott got a major contract from Lagonda to provide all the bodies for the new small Rapier and work from Frazer-Nash for coachwork on imported BMW chassis.

After World War 2 the company restarted its coachbuilding activities building production runs of coupes for Sunbeam-Talbot and Healey, as well as some special bodies for Jowett, Bentley, Jaguar and Lanchester. Large orders came from Ford for estate car versions of their Consul and Zephyr models which kept the firm in business during the late 1950s and early 1960s.

The Bentley Mk. VI was Britain’s first postwar luxury car. The car was built with consummate attention to detail, and to the highest standards using traditionally British techniques. Included among these was the use of a separate frame so that customers seeking individual coachwork could buy chassis only and have them shipped to the coachbuilder of their choice to be fitted with a custom body.

Typically, these coachbuilders were British as well, with such famous companies as Abbott, H. J. Mulliner, Park Ward, James Young, Vanden Plas, Freestone & Webb, and Hooper. Abbott Ltd. created several different Drophead Coupe variations on the Mk VI-theme and as in true coachbuilding tradition, no two were exactly alike.

What we have on offer here today is one of the very rare Abbott bodied Drophead Sedanca coachwork bodied cars, built on the Bentley Mark VI Chassis.

Finished in Royal Blue with red leather upholstery, this car represents the highest level of luxury one could have expected in its time. Provided with a current MOT due to expire on the 20th September 2017, this car has recently undergone a thorough renovation which included a complete re-trim, lots of the brightwork being re-chromed and new woodwork costing in excess of £13,000. Additionally an engine overhaul costing in excess of £10,000 (invoices included in the history file). 

Some of the mechanical works completed on the car this year include inspecting and cleaning out the gearbox, align new clutch centre plate and tighten clutch, refit pump and gaskets, rebuild carburettors, fit servo, brake adjustments, replace hydraulic hoses, fit manual choke control, rebuild original petrol pumps and flush out and clean oil system. Much more detail can be found in the history file.

Also included in the cars history file are copies of the factory build sheet, numerous invoices dating back to the 1980s, several Rolls-Royce owners club meeting certificates in the ownership of Bud Ollie Spratlen, from Denver Colarado, numerous period photos of the car and the rare Original handbook stamped by renowned Bentley and Rolls-Royce distributors Jack Olding of Mayfair.


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