24 July 2000
1951 DAIMLER DB18 SPECIAL SPORTS THREE-SEATER DROPHEAD COUPÉ COACHWORK BY BARKER
Registration No. OKJ 503
Chassis No. D59029
Engine No. 44267
Old English white dark blue leather interior
Engine: six cylinders in-line, push-rod overhead valve, 2.5 litre, twin carburettors, 85 bhp at 4200 rpm; Transmission: fluid flywheel with epicyclic preselector gearbox; Suspension: independent front by wishbones and torsion bars, live rear axle with half elliptic leaf springs; Brakes: four-wheel Girling hydro-mechanically operated drum. Right hand drive.
The Daimler Company could claim to be a founder member of the British Motor Industry. For half a century their lofty limousines were the preferred transport of successive Monarchs, silently gliding on official duties through the thoroughfares of the Capital. In the 1930s they charmed wealthy owner-drivers with a range of meticulously engineered, lovingly-finished fours and six cylinder vehicles, all sporting the convenience of semi-automatic gear-changing with Daimler's unique 'fluid-flywheel', allied to a preselector gearbox, all clad with stylish coachwork from leading houses. For 1948 the "Special Sports" variant was announced, given twin carburettors, a higher compression aluminium cylinder-head and revised valve timing. Power was raised to 85 bhp, rather more in some cases, which gave the accelerative DB18 a maximum beyond 80mph. Handling was rewarding, cornering power high. Coachbuilder Barker was taken over by Hooper in the 1930s and, like Daimler, was now a BSA group subsidiary. With their close-coupled three-seater drop-head coupe body, the type was more a luxury fast-tourer than an outright sports model, cossetting occupants with deep leather pleated seats, figured-walnut instrument panel and a full complement of clearly marked sports-type instruments. The Daimler abounded with detail to delight the keen owner: a hood with intermediate sedanca position, automatic chassis lubrication, Hooper's hallmark slender screen pillars. A rarity in its day - only 608 Special Sports were built - this is a Daimler to satisfy the most discerning owner.
This is a particularly good example of the rare 3-seater coachwork, the rear passenger being afforded extra leg-room by having the seat mounted transversally across the body width. This car provides another example of the superb in-house refurbishment by the collection, retaining the original upholstery and principal features in a sympathetic yet thorough restoration, and in this ownership since 1979. Newly MoT tested with current V5 documentation.
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No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 17.5% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.
Please note that there is a set of fitted luggage with this car.
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