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  •   Quentin Willson reacted to this post about 2 years ago
    Rapide response for Lagondas / #Lagonda-Rapide / #1961-Lagonda-Rapide / #1961 / #Lagonda / #Aston-Martin /

    If Astons are the thinking man’s Ferrari, are Lagondas the thinking man’s Aston?

    Have you seen what DB Astons are making? The relentless rise of DB4s, 5s and 6s seems unstoppable, and after a short pause for breathe in the middle of last year, values look to be pointing skyward again.

    DB6 MkIIs are heading for half a million quid and I’ve even heard of one bloke who’s so far poured a cool million into a DB4 restoration. The other day I sat next to a man at dinner who’s bought a project DB6 MkI automatic – needing absolutely everything – for £160k, who is prepared to blow another £200k making it mint. Blimey, there’s some serious loot being thrown at these cars right now.

    Yet the infinitely rarer Touring-styled four-door Rapide with its DB5 engine, #Superleggera construction, de Dion rear end and dual circuit servo-assisted discs is a huge bargain in comparison. Aston brokerage Byron International has a well-restored ’1963 auto for £150k and Dylan Miles has the ’1961 prototype, road test and motor show car that was David Brown’s personal transport for £245,000.

    Aston authority Desmond J Smail has one of the very last ’1963 Rapides made, with £70k of restoration bills, for £185k. Now, I know that the Rapide has always been seen as the DB5’s square sister, doesn’t have the same slippery lines, and that of the 55 cars made between 1961 and 1964, most were automatics. But in terms of rarity, bloodline and collectability, surely they’re platinum-plated. Are we missing something here?

    Roll up to any event in a Rapide and every eye will be yours while the usual DB Astons will look, well, predictable in comparison. Famous Rapide first owners included the Guinness, Rothschild and Cartier families and it was seen as terribly exotic with an original list of £4950 – which was £700 more than the DB5 – and David Brown lost money on every single one. Of those 55 cars, 48 still survive and they used to be staggeringly cheap. I remember seeing one in 2008 – a straight and running ’1963, but in need of recomissioning – sell online for just £25k. By 2014 they’d doubled and Silverstone Auctions sold another ’1963 at its Salon Prive sale – this one was mint and lovely – for £96,000. There was a brief rally in values in 2014/2015 when prices hit £150k, but they’ve since stalled. If like me you’re scratching your head at DB4, 5 and 6 values, maybe its time to go and look at a Rapide?

    VALUE 2010 £30k

    VALUE NOW £170k

    ‘Roll up to an event in a Rapide and the DB Astons will look predictable in comparison’
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  •   Richard Meaden reacted to this post about 4 years ago
    #Lagonda #Rapide
    Run by Martin Buckley
    Owned since #2004
    Total mileage 90,647
    Miles since May report two
    Latest costs £2000+
    Year #1963
    Colour Dubonnet Rosso
    Engine size 3,995 cc
    Chassis No. LR153/R
    Engine No. 400/153

    RAPIDE REBUILD NEARS CLIMAX

    The Lagonda restoration is now coming down to its final details. As reported last time, the electric windows have long been an issue and the two rear Piper motors had packed up altogether. Jonathan Wills at Cotswold Classic Car Restorations sent them off to a company that specialises in electric motors and had the windings and wiring renewed as well as the wiring to the relays sorted.

    These are now fitted back into the doors and raise and lower the glass at terrifying speed - you wouldn’t want to get your fingers or any other extremities caught.

    The chrome switches - which I believe are unique to the Rapide - have all been stripped and rebuilt and Jon has tidied, refurbished and blacked out all of the fittings and mechanisms inside the doors.

    He even replaced the chrome conduits that take the wiring inside the doors: you can buy them new from Aston Martin for about £100 each, including ‘ #Aston-Martin Tax’. Irritatingly, these fittings - modified slightly at each end - are quite obviously domestic shower hose available for a few pounds from Homebase! To make matters worse, two were even slightly rusty.
    I have a recurring fantasy about finding out where all the bits for this car were purloined from - #Ford Consul over riders, Imp rear lights, #Karmann #Ghia numberplate light et al - and starting a collection and then making my own #DB5 in kit form. I wonder how long it will be before somebody actually has a serious go at something like that.

    A new cable for the heater control has been fitted and the dashboard, with refinished wood veneer, is also almost in place. The steering wheel is being rubbed down for revarnishing. We are getting to the stage of firing up the engine, but two familiar problems have delayed that: the electronic ignition 1 had fitted two years ago has died and the double-headed SU fuel pump that lives under the Solex carbs is temperamental. As a result, Jon has wisely replaced it with an electronic type from Burlen Fuel Systems, thus doing away with the points inside. A replacement ignition system is on the way.

    Jobs that still need addressing include the brakes (which had nearly failed last time the Lagonda was in use), plus the wheeltrims and hubcaps. My personal view is that the centrelocks look so good that it is a shame to cover them up. Better to refinish the wheels in silver, which seems to be what most Rapide owners have done.

    Richard Stevens has decided that the Lagonda will be sold when it is finished - it is due to cross the block at Brightwells before you read this - which is a shame but I realise that I have probably had more fun out of it than anyone. Besides, now it’s so beautiful I would be afraid to use it or leave it anywhere - the days of taking the Rapide to my local Wait- rose on a shopping trip are over.

    THANKS TO
    Cotswold Classic Car Restorations: cccrestorations. co. uk
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  •   Richard Meaden reacted to this post about 4 years ago
    Lagonda Taraf / #2016 / #Aston-Martin / #Lagonda-Taraf / #Lagonda

    If you want to know how to induce fear, and probably a touch of loathing, into the heart of a magazine publisher, there are few better ways than to present him with a cover featuring a beige car of ‘challenging’ appearance. And yet, there’s always been something about Aston Martin’s ‘wedge’ Lagonda that has attracted the car enthusiast, and they’re suddenly becoming really hot property – so I’d like to think this month’s #Drive-My will be another best-seller, beige or not. We love it! Another reason that we chose this month to feature the Lagonda is that we finally got our hands on’s new Lagonda Taraf. To get the two cars together, and drive both, was fascinating; you can read about them starting on test-drive the ‘wedge’ and news for the Taraf.

    While we’re talking cover cars, you may remember the Baillon Collection Ferrari 250 GT California Spider that featured in Drive-My, first in its barnfind state a full year ago (where did the time go?) and then in the autumn, after it had been recommissioned to appear at the Pebble Beach concours.

    We asked at the time what you thought of its appearance, because the bodywork was still sporting the layer of dust that had accumulated while it sat unloved in France. We had plenty of responses, including a very comprehensive comparison between the curation of cars and historic buildings by building conservationist and broadcaster Kevin McCloud of Grand Designs fame. You can read his, and others’ opinions, from our site. My view, not that you’ve asked for it, is that the Ferrari was presented at Pebble Beach in an interim state, and that the dust was simply part of the theatre – and I rather enjoyed it for that.
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  •   Matt Zollo reacted to this post about 4 years ago
    Car #Lagonda-Rapide
    Year of manufacture #1964
    Recorded mileage 50,546
    Asking price £220,000
    Vendor Classic Mobilia, Milton Keynes, Bucks;

    WHEN IT WAS NEW
    Price £4950
    Max power 240bhp
    Max torque 265lb ft
    0-62mph 7.8 secs
    Top speed 130mph
    Mpg 18


    Of the 55 #Lagonda Rapides produced, there are thought to be 47 left, some being used as donors for DB4GT Zagatos while one was turned into a shooting brake.

    This #Rapide example, chassis 133 (33), has had few owners and apparently is genuine low-mileage. It spent time in the States before returning from Texas in #1989 and in the present ownership has been restored by Aston Service Hamburg. The structure is clean and rot-free, with commendably straight and sharp floors, sills and splash guards, with a sound stainlesssteel exhaust and decently treaded but older tall Avons on slightly chipped steel wheels – hubcaps are being sourced. The bumper chrome is okay and the doorhandles have been left original.

    The White Gold interior leather is from the factory and slightly worn in the front, but hardly used in the rear. The carpets are a bit grubby, but the dash veneer is fine, and the original radio works – complete with the illuminated ‘Lagonda’ script. Its door trims look more used than the seats and ideally need cleaning or a few repairs. We like the pleasingly patinated appearance, though it’s a tough call whether to leave or re-do it.

    The twin-cam straight-six has been rebuilt as a 4.2 unleadedcompatible unit wearing SU carbs instead of Solexes and there are twin brake servos plus a high-torque starter in the concours engine bay. Its oil is clean and to the top level, while the coolant is nicely pink.

    It starts readily on the key and provides a grand old barge ride with a surprising amount of go, plus snappy gearchanges, although it wants to change up early; kickdown drops it a ratio again but it’s not really in keeping with such a magic-carpet experience. The Rapide tracks straight, with nice, firm brakes and all of the electric windows work. Coolant temperature settles at about 70ºC, with oil pressure 40psi at warm tickover and anything up to 160psi with revs.

    The Lagonda is still German-registered, so #ClassicMobilia will arrange the UK paperwork and an MoT, if needed.

    SUMMARY

    EXTERIOR
    Repainted; shutlines spot-on.

    INTERIOR
    Good veneers; dirty carpets.

    MECHANICALS
    All rebuilt or overhauled, with a few sympathetic modifications.

    VALUE ★★★★★✩✩✩✩✩

    For + Original interior.
    Against - Original interior.

    SHOULD I BUY IT?

    A delightful old thing that drives superbly, but another Rapide has recently failed to sell twice at auction at £125-150k, making this price look very ambitious.
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