1953 Sunbeam-Talbot Special Pick-up Rat Rod

Unique build featuring Jag running gear, Rover V8, air suspension, LPG 5-spd Type-9 'box and many custom features


Converted from an April 1953 Sunbeam-Talbot 90, MKIIA Saloon through 2018-2020 by our vendor into this unique V8 engined Rat-Rod, it has been used by to promote his business and enjoy on sunny evening blasts.

Completely stripped (with photos of the process on file), the front part of the original ‘donor’ Sunbeam-Talbot was kept and stripped to bare metal. Wheel arch extensions were hand formed and welded into the original wings to accommodate the wider track, featuring many Jaguar parts. At its heart is a reconditioned Rover V8 with a new camshaft, valves, seats and Stromberg carb’ and Facet fuel pump, mated via a new clutch to a recon’ Ford Type-9 gearbox.

It has a new radiator, fan and thermostat and all the brakes were upgraded to handle the considerable increase in pace. All new road springs with rear air suspension bellows and front air-shocks have also been fitted. It rides on Jaguar XJ6 alloy wheels with hand-applied paint giving the impression of time-worn patina so the truck looks every-bit the proper Rat-Rod it is. There are many clever details all over the truck, from the hand-cut Sunbeam logo in the rear tailgate to the hand-built timber tool-boxes and LPG gear with tank slung under the rear end behind the rear wheels.

In the cab, we find spent shotgun cartridges adorning the centre console, modern comfortable seats, metal registration plate detailing and hessian sacking head lining with an array of switches for air suspension, LPG switch-over and other vehicle functions dotted around the bespoke dash and interior.

Firing the truck up involves switching the ignition on and thumbing a starter button which results in a lovely V8 burble from the bespoke side pipe exhausts (both sides), and with a deep rumble the truck pulls away cleanly without fuss, but lots of aural drama.

On the rear deck we find a motorcycle ramp – ideal to carry away the classic bike you’ll likely buy in the sale to go with the truck perhaps?

The history file contains photographs of the build and a record of the main works done, including who supplied the parts and when along with the V5C and a separate box-file of invoices for the build, manual, instruction booklets and other build notes.

Entirely usable and driven to the sale, we expect it to excite many and confuse others, so get bidding and then get yourself and the truck down to Caffeine and Machines' excellent "Built, not bought" night near Stratford-on-Avon!!!

For more information contact - [email protected]

Reg No: SPL892
Chassis Number: LVL0399CV1492
Engine Size: 3500
Docs: V5C; invoices; photos of build; manual; instruction booklets; MOT exempt

Estimate: £5,000+

Lot 61

Lot ended

Wednesday 23/06/2021

Hammer Price (inc. buyers premium)

Auction details and terms
  • Put in your highest bid you would be prepared to go to.
  • Bidding at the last moment may leave you disappointed. Any earlier bid is always taken first, so doing this may only push someone else up and prevent you from becoming the highest bidder.
  • No bids can be placed once the time remaining ends, therefore do not delay.