Donald Healey is one of the great characters of the British motor industry. Following his time as an RAF pilot in WWI he went on to own a successful garage business eventually made a name for himself as an accomplished rally driver and beginning in 1945 became a manufacturer of high quality expensive automobiles that appealed to a very select and eccentric group of motoring enthusiasts. Donald Healeys Riley-powered cars such as the Silverstone and Elliot were among the fastest of the era. As supplies of the Riley engine dwindled Donald Healey went in search of a new partner; one that could far exceed his previous production numbers. After a brief foray with Nash in America he made a bold move; building a prototype using common Austin A90 mechanicals and showing it at the London Motor Show in 1952. Healeys goal was to impress the top brass at Austin enough to land a partnership. Luckily his gamble paid off and a deal was struck to assemble the new Healey 100 at the famed Longbridge assembly plant alongside the Austin A90.Mr. Healey was a savvy promoter and knew the value of motorsport in selling his cars. In response to demand a factory high-performance option on the 2nd generation 100 was made available for serious sporting buyers. The 100M of 1955 appealed to buyers who wanted to use their new Healeys in the burgeoning sports car racing scene particularly in the USA. Based on the BN2-series the 100M was a very comprehensive performance package which included reinforced front suspension larger S.U. carburetors air box intake new 8.1:1 high compression pistons and a revised cam. The body got a louvered hood to expel heat and a leather bonnet strap for safety at speed. Initially the 100M was available through the factory only and 640 were built at Longbridge. Additionally customers could order the 100M performance parts as the Le Mans Engine Modification Kit through BMC dealers and have them retrofit to existing cars or fitted prior to delivery.Our featured 1956 Austin Healey 100M is one of those genuine and highly desirable factory-built examples documented by both a British Motor Industry Heritage Trust Certificate as well as a 100M Le Mans Registry Certificate. It is a factory original left-hand drive car built on the 11th of January 1956 with original equipment listed as a heater laminated windscreen and louvered bonnet in addition to the Le Mans performance parts. It has had just four owners from new with the early history showing it was originally delivered to John McCormick of California who along with his wife Margee raced the car in SCCA events in California primarily at Palm Springs and Hourglass Field. A stack of California registration cards show he retained his beloved Healey through the 1970s and into the 1980s. In 1987 Margee McCormick sold the complete and highly original car to Gary Westwood of San Diego. Mr. Westwood rebuilt the drivetrain before selling the car on to Bill Lamping in the early 1990s. Mr. Lamping was then president of the Austin Healey Owners Club and eventually restored the car to the meticulously high standard it presents today.Since the restoration it has been carefully enjoyed on the road by the previous owners yet remains in beautiful condition. It presents in the original colors per the Heritage Certificate; a delightful two-tone combination of Florida Green over Old English White. Panel fit is as-good or better-than factory and the paint quality excellent with deep gloss and very few flaws to speak of. We are particularly fond of the purposeful painted wire wheels with blackwall radial tires. The louvered bonnet leather strap and classic Lucas driving lamps also give the car a bit of a rally-ready feel.The interior was restored to original specification per the Heritage Certificate with basic black upholstery on the seats and door cards as well as black carpets and canvas top. In the classic British Roadster tradition equipment is minimal with basic pull straps for the doors and no radio; just the essential tools for high-speed driving. The correct original steering wheel remains as does the correct original instrumentation.The robust and characterful 2.6 liter inline four cylinder engine produced over 110hp in M specification which paired with the light weight chassis could chase down a Jaguar XK140 in the right conditions. BN2 cars benefitted from an additional cog in the gearbox over the BN1 and this example is fitted with the factory overdrive which operates on 3rd and 4th gears. Under bonnet detailing is very good with the documented original engine presented in correct colors and topped with a proper polished alloy Austin Healey rocker cover. Some signs of use are apparent on the manifolds and accessories but it remains very presentable and true to original. A stainless exhaust system provides an intoxicating rasp and the car runs well having been thoroughly enjoyed by the most recent owner. The quality of the photo-documented restoration extends to the undercarriage which does exhibit a few signs of road use but again presents extremely well. Chassis legs are straight and wiring fittings and components are factory correct.Given the fact that many 100s were retrofitted with LeMans kits and replicas are a commonly built it is important to differentiate the 640 factory built 100Ms from the rest. This is a true 100M documented with British Motor Industry Heritage Trust certification inspection and certification by the 100M Registry and restored to factory specifications by a marque expert. It is ready to be enjoyed to the fullest on rallies shows or simply carving your favorite country lanes savoring the enormous character of this iconic British sports car.
This 1956 Austin Healey 100M was listed for sale on 11-30-17 12:13:42. The vehicle color is green and VIN is
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