Last Austin Healey ever made tipped to fetch 160K
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The Austin Healey is fondly remembered as one of the iconic British sports cars of the 1950s and 60s, and this is claimed to be the last properly made.
It's the final 'big' Austin Healey - disregarding the dinky Sprite models - to come off the firm's production line in Abingdon, Oxfordshire before it closed in 1968. And next month it could be yours.
It will be sold at the Practical Classics Classic Car and Restoration Show auction and is expected to be in high demand, estimated to achieve a fee of $123,000 to $160,000. But there are suggestions it might not be the final one…
The 3000 is undoubtedly the best known of the big Healeys.
This is a MK III version. Launched in 1964, it featured a more potent 150bhp 3.0-litre six-cylinder engine. And this version is unique- chassis number HBJ843025 was built on December 21 1967 just months before the factory closed down.
Originally registered to Donald Healey Motor Company in Warwick in 1967, it's had two owners since - the latter of which has held it since 1972 - and has covered just 57,000 miles in half a century.
It's been treated to a recent makeover, too. Just last year it had a full mechanical restoration and a bare-metal respray in Golden Beige Metallic.
Beautiful, it certainly is.
Richard Greenhalgh, classic car specialist at auction host Classic Car Auctions, said: 'This has got to be the most significant, 'road going' Big Healey on the market today and as such represents an amazing opportunity for classic car collectors.
'The car has great shut-lines, a deep shine and lots of detail."
It will go under the hammer on Sunday, April 2, at the NEC in Birmingham and will be sold with' lots of history, its Heritage Certificate and documentation confirming its status', according to CCA.
But there are questions raised about the authenticity of the car as the 'final Healey'. And that's because it was claimed that a further three cars were built after this.
CCA admitted that it was aware of the three cars assembled after this one - two later in December 1967 and another built from parts by apprentices in March 1968 just days before the production line halted.
However, this is claimed to be the last one built by the full workforce, while the production line was fully-operational.
The auction house said: 'This car (43025) was registered to the Donald Healey Motor Company and was, non-negotiably, the last Healey 3000 off the production line.'
So there you have it, the last of the bunch.
And if it matches what experts have predicted it will sell for, it will become one of the most expensive Austin Healeys ever sold.