• Year of manufacture 
  • Chassis number 
    AN5 42499
  • Lot number 
  • Drive 
  • Condition 
  • Number of seats 
  • Location
  • Exterior colour 
  • Drivetrain 
  • Fuel type 


1960 Austin-Healey Sprite Mkl Roadster Project
Chassis no. AN5 42499

'The Sprite's only rivals were the Berkeley and the Lotus Seven. Only the Lotus could reach 50mph faster, neither was as quick on the straight in standard form, and neither could compete in finish, strength or comfort.' – Eric Dymock, 'The Sprites and Midgets'.

Having forged strong links with BMC in the process of developing the successful Austin-Healey 100, Donald Healey turned his attention to designing a smaller version intended to make sports car motoring affordable to a wider sector of the market. Raiding the BMC parts bin for suitable components, Healey used Austin's 948cc A-Series engine; the A30/35's front suspension and rear axle; the Morris Minor's steering rack; and an MG twin master cylinder.

Although its power train and running gear were entirely conventional, as well as thoroughly tried and tested, Healey's new baby was notable for its state-of-the-art unitary construction body/chassis. Christened 'Sprite', the new sports car entered production in March 1958 featuring a distinctive forward-hinging bonnet/wings topped by two fixed 'frog eye' headlamps, thus ensuring instant recognition and the now-familiar nickname. Despite a Spartan equipment level - even the front bumper was listed as an extra! - the 'Frog Eye' sold well, which was not really surprising as there was nothing competing with it either on price or performance.

This 'barn find' Sprite is offered for restoration and sold strictly as viewed. There are no documents with this Lot.

Bonhams 1793
101 New Bond Street
United Kingdom
Contact Person Kontaktperson
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Bonhams Collectors’ Car department