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  1. 1956 Austin-Healey 100 M 'Le Mans'

  2. 1956 Austin-Healey 100 M 'Le Mans'

  3. 1956 Austin-Healey 100 M 'Le Mans'

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Lot Number
23

1956 Austin-Healey 100 M 'Le Mans'
2017 Scottsdale Auction

ESTIMATE: $190,000 - $240,000
CHASSIS NO: BN2-L/232274
• One of only 640 factory-built examples of the legendary 100M
• Known and respected - listed in the Austin Healey 100M Registry
• Regarded as the finest available at auction; exceedingly well presented
• Austin Healey 100M Le Mans Registry and BMIHT Certificates
• Featured subject of a video report on the USA Today website

Engine No: 1B/232274-M
Body No: 5819/13212

2,660 cc inline four-cylinder engine, twin SU H6 side-draft carburetors, 110 HP (Est.) at 4,500 rpm, four-speed manual gearbox with overdrive, independent front coil-spring suspension, live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes; wheelbase: 90”


Inspired by a BMC-sponsored competition for an all-new sports car using Austin mechanical components, Donald Healey presented his “Hundred” roadster at the 1952 London Motor Show, where it captivated BMC’s Leonard Lord. Soon renamed “Austin-Healey 100,” production began during early 1953. In the meantime, Donald Healey commissioned a small batch of pre-production cars for motor shows and high-profile races. Mildly prepared and retaining stock bumpers and windscreens, two of the Austin-Healeys finished the 24 Hours of Le Mans 12th and 14th Overall in 1953 – endowing the car with a competition pedigree from the start.

Healey’s four 1953 Le Mans “special test cars” predated the all-out 100S competition cars. They also influenced the 640 BN2-based 100M “Le Mans” models produced 1955-1956. A cut-down windscreen and louvered bonnet secured by a Le Mans-regulation leather strap visually distinguished these factory-produced cars. Upgrades included a high-lift camshaft, larger 1 ¾-inch SU carburetors, high-compression pistons, free-flowing intake, cold air intake box, and special ignition distributor. Output of the 2.6-litre ‘four’ rose to 110 horsepower and the lightweight chassis delivered sharp handling with enlarged anti-roll bars.

According to its corresponding Austin-Healey 100M “Le Mans” Registry and British Motor Industry Heritage Trust (BMIHT) Certificates, this factory-built 100M is a left-hand drive North American Export model built on May 9, 1956 sold new in Los Angeles. Factory equipment included a heater, laminated windscreen, and competition-type louvered bonnet characteristic of the 100M. Already rare as one of just 640 factory-built 100Ms, it is one of just 191 known examples documented by the 100M Registry.

This 100M was acquired during 2010 by a prominent and extremely selective collector from the Pacific Northwest who is an Austin-Healey marque specialist, a member of the Austin-Healey Club of America (AHCA) National Concours Committee, and an AHCA Concours Judge. A total body-off-frame restoration, completed to stringent AHCA Gold Concours judging standards, was expertly performed by Lynn Martin at Forever Healeys in Post Falls, Idaho and completed in 2013. Confirmation of its excellence came quickly at the 2013 Austin-Healey Club USA Rendezvous at Lake Tahoe, where this 100M was judged Gold, the highest award possible in Austin-Healey Club circles. It was also the featured subject of a USA Today video. At the 41st edition of the Forest Grove Concours d’Elegance in July 2014, the 100M won both 1st in Class and the Senior Judges’ Award from noted automotive journalist Ken Gross, who declared “this is the car I’d like to take home.” Further accolades include invitation to Quail Lodge in 2014 and during 2016, a win at Coeur d’Alene, Idaho and Best Early Healey at the BritBull XX All British Show in Spokane, Washington.

A complete, matching numbers example, this stellar 100M further retains the factory-issued numbers on the boot and bonnet, plus correct carburetors and distributor. Other highlights include a concours-approved Mike Lempert steering wheel, a very rare and valuable original ribbed and scripted valve cover, correct original airbox, and proper 140-mph speedometer specific to the 100M. Handsomely finished in period-correct Florida Green and Old English White two-tone paint, the Healey is accessorized with a racy full tonneau cover, complete with a correct “Lightning” zipper. Other highlights include a ported and polished cylinder head and a Denis Welch stainless-steel Derrington exhaust. Driven sparingly and well-sorted since completion, this 100M remains concours-worthy and spectacular. Accompanied by a book depicting the complete restoration, a complete tool roll and dated jack including the hard-to-obtain handle for concours use, a “knock-off” hammer, and an original owner’s manual, this stellar 100M is one of only two known Austin-Healey Club Gold Concours cars to come to auction.

1956 Austin-Healey 100 M 'Le Mans'
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