1939 Lagonda V12 Drophead Coupe Pebble Beach winner
Location: United Kingdom
'A magic carpet ride' - Rolls-Royce's new slogan for their very modern, comfortable, smooth engined motor cars. But wind back the clock 81 years to 1939 and the slogan applies equally - if not more appropriately - to this fabulous, curvaceous, two-tone V12 Lagonda.
After Lagonda's financial troubles in the mid 1930's, this car was of great importance to re-launch the manufacturer. Alan Good had reorganised the company a few years prior and as magic had it, W.O Bentley was bored and wanting a change having spent 4 years at Rolls-Royce in control of Bentley
So Lagonda and W.O collaborated. What was created is magic.
The advanced chassis used and double-wishbone independent front suspension allows effortless comfort. Whilst a fabulous 4.5 litre V12 engine carries the beautifully crafted body designed by Frank Feeley - famed for post war 'DBs'. The engine so torquey, it has the ability to do walking speeds to over 100 mph in top gear, such is the mechanical marvel. We can't put it better than Road & Track did in 1978:
This is W.O Bentley's masterpiece... and that is saying something.
Driving through the streets of London over bridges, bumps, into parks and over the cobbles of a mews, she drives far more easily than even a car decades ahead. She slides into every gear effortlessly, she pulls with ease, eats any small imperfections on the road like butter and garners the right sort of attention! It was, and still is, a remarkable piece of engineering.
She has an astonishing history to her as one would expect. Having copies of the build sheets, names of all owners and the notable Michael Patrick Aitken MBE, who had owned her for over 15 years plus many many invoices and papers.
She was a Pebble Beach winner in 1997 after a full and fabulous restoration in America, where such specialists like a Violin restorer attended to the woodwork, and she is one of only 189 V12s. Stupendously maintained - with price no factor at all. A great history file and a car that will no doubt benefit any collection.
This could be contentious, but a step up from a Derby Bentley, we think