Desirable Facels for sale

I’ve never wanted this site to become an extension of what might be included in a ‘for sale’ section, but there are a couple of significant cars coming up at auction in the next few months which should be of interest, one an Excellence, the other a Facel 11.

The first is a left hand drive Facel Vega Excellence which has been almost fully restored and which I have described before. This is EX1 B080, originally exported to the USA where it spent its first 40 years but was then brought into this country and where it has been the subject of a long and very detailed restoration which has still to be finished.

John Brown has done the restoration work in Littlehampton, Sussex and everything he has done has been recorded and photographed. He usually works on Merlyn racing cars but has spent a long time on this Excellence and he knows it back to front, and has vowed to give any future buyer the full benefit of his extensive experience with the car. He knows exactly what has to be done and will do all he can to assist any future buyer and restorer.

This car was built and delivered in 1959, one of 145 EX1 series car built. It has been registered 378XVD and it is fitted with a 5.9 Chrysler engine, mated to the A 488 automatic three speed Torqueflite transmission.

It came to the UK in the late nineties in need of restoration and the vendor purchased it in the early 2000s, already the owner of two other Facel Vegas. Restoration began then with considerable input from members of the Facel Vega Owners Club and Facel restoration experts in Holland.

It is  presented in stunning deep blue with new opulent cream leather trim, and has been described as ‘in the final leg of the restoration’. John Brown has undertaken a full body-off restoration and the quality of the workmanship is outstanding. As mentioned, the restoration work has been carefully catalogued, photographed and detailed throughout, evidence of which can be found in four box files of history along with a list of items that are required for the finish of the car.

The works required to complete the car include wiring and the final fit only. It starts and runs with the gearbox selecting correctly when requeed. Finishing this project should be a short process with parts that are yet to be ordered readily available. John Brown has  provided a list for these and details of the correct suppliers.

A quick scan through the invoices gives the impression that, thus far, the restoration costs have exceeded £300,000.  This is testimony to the quality and time taken on this gorgeous example. Thankfully for a fraction of that cost the car can be a finished by a new owner. The estimate is £110,000 – £130,000. The car is due to be auctioned by Historics Auctioneers at Brooklands on July 13.

The other car coming up for sale is a right hand drive Facel 11 from the estate of Barry Burnett, an extensive car collector who also owned an HK500. This car is chassis number B104, registered 705CUT and it was a 1962 London Motor Show car. According to club historian Richard Stevens, this car hung aroundconcessionaires  HWM for some time  before eventually being sold to Sir Derick Wheeler in May 1963.

It is one of four manual RHD Facel 11s and making it that much rarer, the club says it is only the second car to have the 6.7 litre Chrysler engine.  Sir Derick couldn’t get on with torch red exterior and black interior so he had it sprayed in dark metallic grey. He also had owned an HK500. On his death, the car passed to his nephew and then in 1967 to someone whom Stevens describes as a ‘charming old tinkering engineer’ who intended to improve its headlights.

It sat on blocks for many years, partially dismantled in North London. It was sold again  around 1990 and restored by Romance of Rust in the nineties. It was then sold to Burnett and was slightly damaged by a fire. His daughter, Claire,  while selling off many of her father’s other cars hung on to this one and but has now decided to sell it. We believe it is coming up for auction at Bonhams sale at the Goodwood Revival in September with an estimate of £200,000-£300,000.

This is a highly valuable and desirable car with a rare specification; Facel 11s fetch good money and the spec of this car makes it one of the best.




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