NDR - Vintage Bentley Specialist

The Lagonda V12 Le Mans

This Lagonda V12 Le Mans has been splendidly crafted by the best in the business, regardless of expense. If that isn't enough its owner wanted it to be suitable for touring and long journeys employing Historic Competition Services in Belgium to take it that little bit further.
So it goes every bit as well as it looks.
A bit of background for those who like it, if not just call us and come and see this stunning Lagonda.
Not a vintage Bentley of course, but following his departure from Rolls Royce, Mr. Bentley was employed as technical director for the Lagonda Motor Company in 1935.
He oversaw the development of the V12 engine - something of a theme here because in later years, his senior engineer from Cricklewood , Wally Hassan, did exactly the same for Jaguar.
It seems a general thread which runs through W.O. Bentley's life that he couldn't say no and was somewhat taken advantage of. Examples of this show through his career.
He never received full recognition for his work for the air ministry.
The 3 Litre Bentley was conceived as a sporting open car, but gradually as customers ordered their own closed - and frankly frequently awful -heavier coachwork he produced the 6 ½ Litre engine. E.R. Foden told him that he missed the four cylinder engine, thus bringing about the 4½ Litre. He fitted front wheel brakes to cars that didn't have them at no charge. He offered a five year warranty. He produced the Blower against his wishes and gave in to the demands of subsequent managing directors who passed through the doors of Bentley Motors. When Rolls Royce took over the old company they even took his trophies.
So when Alan Good, chairman of Lagonda, said that he wanted a car at Le Mans in 1939 and gave W.O. Bentley 6 months in which to do it, he simply got on and did it.
Amazingly well.
Two cars were produced, both of which did incredibly well, but the later events of 1939 stopped all further activity. Both of these cars were almost destroyed in a bombing at the Staines factory and survive in valuable collections having been rebuilt around the original chassis.
So what we have here is an original V12 Lagonda, delivered originally to the Bird (custard manufacturing) family in 1938. Having fallen into disrepair it was restored into this form 15 years ago by Lagonda specialist Mel Cranmer, with reference to the team cars.
Beautifully executed with the work carried out to exacting and exhausting standards this is an absolute show stopper with sharp handling, beautifully and correctly engineered chassis and that magnificent V12 engine.
It really is something completely different.