1959 Austin-Healey Sprite for sale 101381551
1959 Austin-Healey Sprite
Call for Price
Advertisement

1959 Austin-Healey Sprite

Car for sale by Canepa in Scotts Valley, California 95066

Call for Price

Email Dealer

By using this service you accept the terms of Autotrader Specialty's Visitor Agreement.

Advertisement

Related Articles

Vintage Japanese Cars: Nissan's Online Heritage Collection

If you're a fan of vintage Japanese cars, be sure to check out Nissan's online heritage site. There are tons of vintage Nissan pics and specs going all the way back to the 1920s. Each featured car or truck has relevant specs and a little "detail" tab that gives some background on that specific car.

VW Kombi Van Seeing Resurgence in Popularity

The Volkswagen Kombi van reached iconic status, with even a school lunch box fashioned in its image. During those early years, the Volkswagen Microbus morphed into various forms. From a cargo carrier with no windows behind the driver's seat to a windowed passenger van with three rows of seats, the possibilities seemed endless.

Advertisement

Classic Car Overview

True time-capsule condition Original and unrestored 19,501 original miles A long-time member of the Canepa Motorsport Museum collection 948cc A-Series inline-4 engine, 4-speed manual transmission Known worldwide for their original open-top sports cars, Austin-Healey found success through the winning combination of fun driving dynamics and affordable entry into the sports car market. Their successful line of sports cars like the 100-6 and the Big Healey 3000 paved the way for their future models, including one of the most iconic: the Austin-Healey Sprite Bug Eye. Beginning production in 1958, the new Austin-Healey was a smaller and more precise sports car than its predecessors. Introduced to the world through a variety of racing wins (First-in-class at the 1959 Sebring 12-hours and First-in-class in the 1958 Alpine Rally), it immediately gained critical acclaim. With seating for just two passengers, its 948cc A-Series inline-4 engine, fantastic handling, a 4-speed manual transmission and enough headroom for anyone, it proved to be a welcome addition to the pool of sports cars available to Americans. A time-capsule car is often a phrase that is used when the automobile in question represents the best of the best in terms of original quality. These unrestored masterpieces are as close as you can get to going back in time, simply by seeing or sitting in one can begin to transport you back to the cars original time period. This Austin-Healey Spite wears the description time-capsule car proudly. Original and unrestored throughout, owned by only 3 people in its lifetime, and raced in period during the beginning of its history, this Austin-Healey is quite possibly one of the finest Sprite Mk 1 in existence. This Austin-Healey Sprite was manufactured towards the end of the 1958 production run, and was titled as a 1959. The original owner, J.P. Whitaker, purchased the car from John Dennison Foreign Cars in Davenport, Indiana. Whitaker, who was a graphic artist and 30 years old at the time, fabricated a tow bar and modified an AMCO rear nerf bar to mount tail lights and turn signals on. His trusty tow vehicle was a Plymouth Valiant station wagon, in the same colors as the Bugeye: white, with a blue stripe, and a red interior. Whitaker raced the car from 1959 to 1967, competing in a number of events at Road America. Many of those tech stickers still remain on the roll bar inside of the car, showing evidence of those races. He also competed at Wilmot Hills, Meadowdale, Lawrenceville, and other tracks to the east. Today the odometer reads 19,501 miles, and these are all original miles. J.P reported that more than half of those miles are from flat towing the car to various races during his ownership. As the Sprite sits today, it is one of the most original and unmolested Bugeyes in the world. It has never been restored, and other than what Mr. Whitaker described as a disagreement with an Oldsmobile in a parking lot , it was never in an accident on track. Its time-capsule condition is quite extraordinary as few street cars survive in this condition, let alone a race car. The top, tonneau cover, and side curtains are original and still have their original bags, as does the jack. It still has its original Lucas Headlights. Remarkably so, it also still retains its red ribbed door mats. The period racing modifications give this Sprite unique character, adding an immense amount to the cars history. The small race windscreen is an accessory wing vent from a T series. The muffler is from an Excelsior motorcycle, and the rear baffle would be removed for race days. The seatbelts are Army surplus, and the roll bar was constructed from well casing. Whitaker replaced the early riveted Bugeye rims with MKII welded rims in 1961. The car still rides on the Michelin X tires, circa 1963. A strap was used to prevent the passenger seat from flipping forward during races. Throughout all of his racing, Whitaker went through the engine twice as a preventative measure, and as a result never DNFd. Whitaker eventually sold his Sprite to a friend, before realizing that he couldnt actually fit in the car. The car was taken care of by multiple owners during its history, all of which treated the car with respect due to its current condition. Canepa acquired the Austin-Healey Sprite in 2011 and it became a staple of the Canepa Motorsports Museum. With its unique ownership history, outstanding originality, and its track-weekend mentality, the car was an excellent and fan-favorite addition to the collection of other motorsport legends. After close to a decade in the Canepa Motorsports Museum, it was right time to find another loving caretaker who would appreciate the car for exactly what it is. A time-capsule track-day Austin-Healey that is overflowing with character and charm, ready for its next owner to enjoy to Bugeyed Sprite.

Show More Show Less

Vehicle Specifications

  • VIN
    AN5L9010
  • Classic Car ID
    101381551
  • Stock Number
    4302
  • Category
    Import Classics
  • Body Style
    N/A
  • New/Used
    Used
  • Mileage
    19,501 miles
  • Engine
    948cc inline-4
  • Drivetrain
    N/A
  • Transmission
    4 Speed Manual
  • Exterior Color
    White
  • Custom Color
    N/A

Classic Car Buyer's Tools

Shipping & Transport

Immediately receive a quote to get your new classic car delivered right to your driveway from Autotrader’s trusted Classic Transport Partner ShipYourCarNow. Click Now!

Finance

Get THE LOWEST MONTHLY PAYMENTS! We are a nationwide collector car finance company with over a decade of experience serving our clients. Give us a call today at (800) 717-5180 Apply now

Appraisals & Inspections

For the latest and most reliable Classic and Collectible Car prices, values, production numbers and local car clubs, always trust NADAguides.com. Get more info

Insurance

Considering buying a new classic? Get a quote before you buy. Agreed value, lowest rates. Go with Grundy Insurance, www.Grundy.com or 888-647-8636 Get Quotes Now

Suspect Fraud? Report it
We use cookies and browser activity to improve your experience, personalize content and ads, and analyze how our sites are used. For more information on how we collect and use this information, please review our Privacy Policy. California consumers may exercise their CCPA rights here.