Lagonda M45 Rapide

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  Lot #168  (Sale Order: 68 of 194)  
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The Lagonda car company was founded in 1906 in Staines,Middlesex by the American Wilbur Gunn (1859-1920), who named itafter a river near his home town of Springfield, Ohio. Gunn hadstarted out building motorcycles in the garden of his house inStaines with some success including winning the 1905 London toEdinburgh Trial. In 1907, he launched his first car and in 1910 wonthe Moscow to St Petersburg Trial driving a 16/18bhp model. Havingestablished its reputation, Lagonda concentrated mainly on theproduction of light cars before reverting to sporting and luxurymodels in the mid-1920s with the introduction of the 14/60. Thisfour-cylinder, two-litre model was joined in 1929 by the firstLagonda six-cylinder engine,  the three-litre, but by themid-1930s, the Meadows-engined cars were seen as the way forward.Introduced at the 1933 Olympia Show and based on the preceding ZMthree-litre model, the M45 deployed Meadows' 4.5-litre, twin-plugsix-cylinder to good effect with saloons being capable of reaching90mph and tourers even hitting 'the ton' under favourableconditions! 'A short run on one of the first of the 4.5-litreLagonda models, with an open four-seater body, left a vividimpression not only of brilliant acceleration and sheerperformance, but of a car delightfully silent and easy running in away that can be achieved to its fullest extent only by abig-engined machine working well inside its limits,' reported TheAutocar in 1933. A team of three specially prepared short-chassiscars (effectively the soon-to-be-announced M45 Rapide) prepared byLagonda main agents, Fox & Nicholls, performed creditably atthe 1934 RAC Tourist Trophy at Ards and the following year, one ofthese TT cars driven by John Hindmarsh and Luis Fontes won the LeMans 24-Hour endurance classic outright. Endowed with such animpeccable pedigree, the Lagonda 4.5-litre quickly establisheditself as a favourite among the wealthy sporting motorists of itsday - World Land Speed Record holder, Sir Malcolm Campbell was oneof many high-profile M45 owners - and over 70 years on, this modeland the M45R Rapide in particular, remains a much sought afterclassic.The car offered here has been owned by two avid car collectorssince 1963. The previous owner kept this T7 bodied M45 Rapide withtwo other Lagondas in his collection and used them regularly. Hehad actually started to restore this particular car in the late1990s but unfortunately passed away before the final items could becompleted. The current owner was a close family friend who hadhelped with the disposal of the vehicle collection. Consequently,that left this car which he purchased in 2002. He then completedthe restoration which included completely rebuilding the engine andrenewing the leather interior. In recent years, he has used it onthe Irish Jubilee Rally and has taken it to the Le Mans Classicwith both trips trouble free other a couple of punctures. Thereliability of this car is such that, when it was consigned, theowner was planning to drive the car to Brooklands from South Wales.This M45 Rapide, with the original T7 touring body, is finished inblue with dark blue leather interior, black hood and side screens.It is supplied with a V5C registration document, a valid MoT testcertificate and a file with continuous history going back to 1952.In the history file there is an invoice for an engine overhaul,completed in 1962 at the cost of a small flat. Lagonda cars havealways upheld a reputation for effortless fast touring and thepride of ownership which fine detail work and distinguishedcoachbuilding can give. The 4.5-litre model retains thesecharacteristics but scores considerably over its forebears by itshigh power-to-weight ratio. This Lagonda M45 Rapide is an exciting,ready-to-go, very well sorted driver with astonishing power andequally capable handling.?

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This item is part of June 6th Specialist Classic and Sports Car Auction
 Saturday, Jun 6, 2015 | 10:00 AM  EUR (BST)
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Lagonda M45 Rapide
Lagonda M45 Rapide
Lot number: 168
Seller: Historics At Brooklands
Event: June 6th Specialist Classic and Sports Car Auction
Ends: Saturday, June 6 | 10:00 AM  EUR (BST)

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