1963 Sunbeam Alpine Harrington Series C
One of only around 20 built and 12 remaining; three
owners, the current for 19 years; former concours winner; matching numbers;
well-known car in good condition throughout
Thomas Harrington Ltd was founded in Brighton in 1897 and
specialised in making coach bodies, going on to make armoured vehicles in
wartime and even coachbuilding a few cars for Rolls-Royce and Talbot.
In later years they became agents for the sale of Rootes
cars so it was natural that Sunbeam turned to Harrington when they wanted to
create a Coupe version of their Alpine Roadster in 1960. Each Harrington Alpine
was handmade to order and no two are exactly alike as customers could specify
their own interior trim and mechanical upgrades. Only around 384 were made in
total before production came to an end in 1964, around 250 of them to Le Mans
spec and around 20 to Series C spec, as here.
Built on an Alpine Series II body, the Series C cost over
50% more than a standard Alpine and had a glassfibre top with an opening rear
hatchback, a distinctive air vent in the roof and pronounced tail fins with a
range of trim and equipment options.
This particular Series C was based on a 1963 Alpine with a
Hartwell-tuned 1,592cc engine with twin Zenith carbs producing around 90bhp and
mated to a four-speed overdrive ‘box. The original buff logbook shows that XDB
25 was first registered to British Metal Crates Ltd of Stockport in February
1963 and had six further keepers, all in Cheshire, before it was acquired by
marque-expert Terry Gatley of Warrington who restored it in the early 1980s, our
vendor acquiring it from him in 2001.
Well-known to the Club and a regular on the show circuit,
it has scooped many awards over the years, winning its class at the Alpine
Owners Club concours in 1992, 1995, 1997 and 2005 and being runner-up in 2001. A
good file of invoices and photos show regular upkeep over the current 20-year
ownership including many new parts and periodic attention to the Carnival Red
bodywork. Electronic ignition has been fitted but the original parts also come
with the car. The file includes 28 old MOTs which chart the gradual accumulation
of mileage from 74,698 in 1989 to today’s total of 92,033 miles. In generally
good order throughout with a nice black leather interior, it has always been in
light regular use, starting promptly and running very nicely as we moved it
around for these photos.
The large history file also includes many old tax discs
and a wealth of technical literature relating to the model including period road
tests, an original Harrington sales brochure, original Alpine owner’s handbook,
Haynes Workshop Manual, historic photos of XDB 25, Club literature, various
trophies amassed over the years plus much else besides.
One of only 12 Series C models thought to survive, this
nicely preserved 'matching numbers' Harrington will be sure of a warm welcome at
any classic event. It could be a long time before you see another for sale so if
you have ever fancied one, bid vigorously now or kick yourself for your
For more information please contact James Dennison on
07970 309907 or email firstname.lastname@example.org