An unusual departure for a firm more noted for its stately limousines, the SP250 sports car was Daimler's final fling before its acquisition by Jaguar. Aimed at the North American market and launched in 1959, the SP250 employed a separate ladder-type chassis on which sat controversially styled glassfibre coachwork manufactured by Daimler themselves. Four-wheel disc brakes were an unusual feature at the time but unquestionably the car's biggest virtue was its magnificent 2.5-litre V8 engine. An outstandingly flexible unit, the smaller of Daimler's two Edward Turner designed V8s produced 140bhp, an output good enough to propel the SP250 to a top speed of 125mph. In keeping with the demands of its intended market, automatic transmission was available as an option. The model survived Jaguar's 1960 take-over, benefiting from its new owner's attention that resulted in the much-improved 'B' version. Introduced in April 1961, the SP250 'B' boasted a stiffer chassis and thicker glassfibre coachwork while its 'C' replacement, introduced in April 1963, differed only in detail. Sadly, the Jaguar E-Type's arrival meant the SP250's days were numbered and production ceased in 1964.
'4068 WK' is the best known SP250 in the world with 96 concours wins over the years. It has been featured in numerous classic car magazines and is included in Quentin Willson's 'Ultimate Classic Car Book'. Its most notable accolades include 'Best SP250' in the Daimler & Lanchester Owners' Club (numerous wins); Masterclass winner in the Daimler & Lanchester Owners Club (numerous occasions); 'Best in Show', Alexandra Palace Classic Car Show; 'Best Sports Car', Bromley Pageant; Autoglym/Popular Classics Magazine National Winner; Masterclass winner and 'Best in Show', Brighton & Hove Motor Club (several occasions); Autoglym 'Best in Show', Folkestone national event; plus numerous other 'Best in Show' awards: Knebworth, Shuttleworth, Blenheim Palace, Penshurst Place, Colchester, Luton Hoo and Braemar House.
Left-hand drive chassis number '101553' was a special order through Clark & Simpson of Sloane Square, London and was registered as '4068 WK' in January 1963 by the factory on behalf of its only former keeper. The car spent its first 2½ years in Roehampton, West London before being taken to the owner's house on the Algarve. After 26 years in Portugal it was purchased by the current vendor and brought back to the UK.
'4068 WK' has covered only 72,930 kilometres (45,316 miles) from new and was restored in 1992. The car retains its original registration and original Dunlop wire wheels, while the colour combination of silver paintwork, St James' Red leather trim and grey hood, tonneau cover and hood bag is exactly as it was when the car left the factory. Other noteworthy features include an unleaded fuel conversion, electronic ignition, a stainless steel exhaust system and an electric cooling fan with its own control switch. Offered with current road fund licence, MoT to January 2015 and V5 registration document, the car also comes with a complete set of original handbooks, an old-style buff logbook, the original warranty card and a complete Daimler tool roll.