ORCHARD CLASSICS
orchardclassics.co.uk

1963 SUNBEAM HARRINGTON ALPINE SERIES 'C'. OVERDRIVE, RESTORED. VERY RARE CAR IN GREAT CONDITION. £26,995.


Thomas Harington Ltd was a coachbuilding firm founded in Brighton in 1897 and specialised in making coach bodies although they also made armoured vehicles in wartime and even bodied a few cars for Rolls-Royce, Bugatti and Talbot. They also became agents for the sale of Rootes cars so it was natural that Sunbeam turned to Harrington when they wanted to create a Coupe version of their Alpine Roadster in 1960. Each Harrington Alpine was handmade to order and no two are exactly alike as customers could specify their own interior trim and mechanical upgrades. Only around 350 Sunbeam Harrington's were made in total before production came to an end in 1964. Around 250 of them to Le Mans spec and only around 100 of the Harrington Alpine spec. Of those 100 only 20 Series C spec cars as here were built and only 12 are known to survive. Built on an Alpine Series II body  the Series C had a glassfibre top with an opening rear hatchback, a distinctive air vent in the roof and pronounced tail fins with a range of trim and equipment options. This particular car was built on an overdrive-equipped 1962 Alpine and was first registered as 2903 PJ in March 1963, the original buff log book calling it a C Type Alpine Fixed Head Coupe. Optional extras included competition seats; Britax safety belts; Webasto sunroof; arm rests; knee pads; veneered dash panel; heater and demister; electric clock; eggcrate front grille plus various other items all listed in the original factory build sheet on file. They are also all still present on the car today except for the Carlotti steering wheel which was missing and has been substituted for a wood rim wheel with a Harrington centre boss. The car is sporting LeMans badges on the front wings which is incorrect for this model but they have been on the car for about 40 years so will remain. 2903 PJ was a personal plate and by 1986 it had the registration number RVG 60. In 1989 DVLA issued the car with ACC 356A. A retired Sunbeam specialist with over 25 years’ experience of the marque, acquired the car as an unfinished restoration in 2013. At this point the car had been of the road for 15 years. He spent the next six years subjecting it to a total nut-and-bolt rebuild with many invoices and photos to document the work carried out. This included a full engine and overdrive gearbox rebuild; bare shell repaint in the original Carnival Red; all new brakes; new chrome; full retrim including headlining and Webasto sunroof plus numerous other job. The car has had only 6 owners in 58 years and the 78,000 miles showing on the mileometer appears to be correct and matches up with the mileages shown on the old MOT's. The bodywork had already been restored in 2003/04 and everything fits together very well with good gaps, doors that open and close well and nice straight panels all round. Since the restoration was completed the car has covered about 100 miles and drives very well but we do advise that it will need a period of running-in and to have all the nuts and bolts checked for tightness etc. Supplied with a good file of history and sundry useful spares, this expertly restored 'matching numbers' Harrington is one of only 12 Series C models thought to survive and will be sure of a warm welcome at any classic event. It could be a long time before you see another for sale.

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