1960 Austin healey Sprite Used
It’s the happiest car in the world! My Dad grew up with British cars, and I have been a hereditary fan since I was in single-digit age. I even learned to drive on my Dad’s 1974 TR6 in the early 80s as a teen. Having subsequently owned many MGs, Triumphs and Healeys myself over the years, I just can’t get enough. That being said, I forgot I’m aging, and may have bit off more than I can chew. I’ve just run out of gas on this one. Add a nagging old back injury and this poor baby will never get done. Instead, I’d love to find a nice TR250 (again – I had one back in the 90s) or something I can do some light tinkering on and enjoy. Anyway, this is a low reserve auction and the Bugeye Sprite will be sold, on or off eBay.
I bought this car recently from a gentleman in his 80s. He bought it in 1976 and enjoyed it on and off as a weekend car. One day in 1983, he came out to the garage to a puddle of brake fluid at the right front wheel. Assuming the wheel cylinder was shot, he bought a rebuild kit and pulled the drum off to install it. Once he got the wheel cylinder apart, he noticed it was too pitted to rebuild and decided it just needed a brand new replacement. He put the wheel back on and pushed the car into the corner of the garage, and that’s where it sat until I bought it in 2020. That’s right, this poor car sat untouched in a garage in the North Georgia foothills for 37 years. Wearing frame #AN5L-29972, the Sprite is estimated to be built in December 1959. The car was born Iris Blue with a black top and still carries its original 948cc engine (#9C-U-H 28723). See photos.
The engine is the correct numbers matching original. Engine numbers never match frame numbers, but they’re always close in sequence numbers. A real plus here as these two are close indeed. I got it started by filling the float bowls with gas. The engine sounded good and with a little more work should be ready to use. I’m unsure if it’s ever been gone through, but it’s not painted the right color, so I have to believe it has. The fuel system will need work. The lines are not plugged, and I have a new electric fuel pump included in the sale should you choose to go that way with it.
The transmission is the original smooth case 4 speed unit. Shifts fine through all the gears. Clutch condition is unknown as the hydraulics are down. Again, the car was running and driving when parked for the wheel cylinder and just sat covered in a garage for almost 40 years.
Average but expected condition for a 60 year old car. New battery, fresh oil and filter, new spark plugs, wires, cap, rotor, points, condenser, and new 12v coil installed. Included are a new 180 degree thermostat and gasket.
Information about 1960 Austin healey Sprite for sale on this page. See price and photos of the Sprite Austin healey
Heater and all other parts that belong here are present.
Needs a complete brake system overhaul but everything to do it comes with the car. Brand new replacement brake/clutch master cylinder, new front and rear wheel cylinders, new rubber hydraulic line, new front and rear brake shoes and springs/hardware, new drums for all four corners, etc. Suspension is all original and intact. Wheels are the original steel wheels with correct “AH” hubcaps. No spare wheel is included. Tires are at least 40 years old, hold air and need to be replaced.
The body panels are all in good condition. Overall, very clean and solid with some small filled spots here and there for dings, not rust. The rear deck has some filler in it that is cracked. Bottoms of both doors are excellent and rust free. No trunk bottom rust. Floors are very solid originals with no rust-through and only some surface rust in the footwells. See the pictures prior to the carpet install. The grille is in good condition. Headlight trim rings, bonnet badge, taillight lenses, license lamp lens and all rubber body gaskets and seals are brand new. New gold “Sprite” boot emblem and a replica English license plate that reads “HPY FROG” (happy frog.)
Brand new carpet kit not glued down - it’s just laid in the car for now, including in the trunk/boot area. All interior panels are brand new as well. Those not yet installed are included. Seat covers installed at least 40 years ago but are still soft and very presentable.
All original gauges look nice. Odometer shows 18K and has probably gone over. Wipers work and the arms and blades are brand new. Combination switch works as it should as does the ignition switch (with key!). Choke is non-operational - the cable needs to be replaced. Starter pull switch works.
Car looks great from 10 feet away. Was repainted in something close to Austin Healy Primrose Yellow about 40 years ago. It was an amateur paint job and is obvious when inspecting up close. There are imperfections, nicks, bubbles and some touched up paint chips here and there. Still, it polishes up nicely and shines well, and really does look good overall.
BOOT (TRUNK COMPARTMENT):
Good and solid – no rust. New carpet kit from a Mark II Sprite as the Bugeye had no carpet back there from the factory.
Very solid and straight. As an original Georgia car, there’s just surface rust as expected for a 60 year old car. Being in dry storage since 1983 has been kind to the car.
The factory manifold, and factory style exhaust pipe and muffler are on the car. When I had it running it sounded OK. There are some holes so it would need to be replaced at some point.
Original glass is all intact. Windshield is in good shape and there is a new frame to body seal and new pillar to body seals installed. Wiper arms and blades are correct stainless and are brand new. Side curtains are included but need to be restored.
It is estimated that the top that is on it was replaced sometime in the 70s. Since the car was only used on nice days and has been in storage since 1983, it is still very useable as it hasn’t seen any weather. No holes or tears, but the windows have yellowed badly. I hit one with some clear plastic polish by hand and it cleaned up a bit. See picture. Top frame is a good original and most mounting studs/fittings are in place.
An original registration and a properly executed State of Georgia T-7 Bill of Sale are included. GA is a non-title state for cars older than 1963, meaning transfers are done solely via bill of sale. They will not issue a title for a vehicle of this age. Please do your due diligence with titling requirements in your state.
FACTORY ID PLATES:
The Vehicle identification ID plate is intact and correct. The vehicle serial number is AN5L-29972 - correct matching numbers.
This car is at a point where you could easily finish what I started and have a nice driver for not a lot of money, or you could take it down and do a ground-up restoration without having to replace a bunch of metal. Either way it’s an awesome starting point for one of the most recognizable British roadsters in history!
NADA Classic Car values the 1960 Austin-Healey Mark I Bugeye Sprite at: High Retail - $49,000. Average Retail - $26,900. Low Retail - $8,500.
INSPECTION OF CAR:
It is recommended that you personally inspect the car or have a 3rd party inspect it for you. I can accommodate anyone to show them the car. I have sold many autos and motorcycles through eBay over the past almost 20 years with a solid 100 percent buyer satisfaction feedback.
Having shipped cars to all parts of the world over the years I can assist the buyer with transport or completely arrange it if necessary. The car rolls and steers easily but has no brakes and does not drive. UShip.com is a good resource. The car is safe in my garage and it can be picked up here.
PAYMENT & BIDDING:
Contact me prior to bidding if you have less than 5 feedbacks or your bid will be cancelled, and you will be barred from any of my auctions. A $1000 NON-refundable deposit via PayPal is due immediately after the auction closes. NO PayPal for the remaining balance and the balance is due within 3 days via wire transfer or express mail with a bank cashier’s check or cash. Payment is to be made in advance of the car leaving my property, and checks may take time to clear depending on the bank on which they’re drawn. This is an auction and you have plenty of time to inspect the car personally or have a 3rd party inspect it for you - inspections are welcome and encouraged. Winning the auction does not mean that you now have the privilege of coming to inspect the car to see if you like it. (or haggle on the price). When the auction is over, it is your car and payment is due at the close of the auction per these instructions.
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