Aston Martin driven by comedy legend Peter Sellers set to go for up to £2.6million at auction
An Aston Martin owned by comic legend Peter Sellers will fetch up to £2.6million when it goes under the hammer at auction next month.
International auction house Bonhams will auction the 1961 Aston Martin DB4GT, driven by the actor in The Wrong Arm of the Law, at the Goodwood Festival of Speed Sale next month.
One of the fastest Grand Tourers of its time, the car boasted a top speed of over 150 mph, thanks to a combination of its powerful 3.7-litre 302 hp engine, its triple Webers, its 12 plug head and its weight-saving magnesium alloy body panels, perspex rear windows and signature tapered headlamp caps.
A well-known car collector and enthusiast of luxury brands, Sellers was particularly fond of Aston Martins and bought the DB4GT in late 1961 or early 1962.
His vehicle was serviced at Aston Martin Feltham where he befriended the late Richard Williams, the future founder of the RS Williams restoration company of the same name.
An Aston Martin owned by comic legend Peter Sellers will fetch up to £2.6m when it goes under the hammer at auction next month
Sellers (pictured in ‘The Wrong Arm of the Law’), a noted car collector and luxury brand enthusiast, was particularly fond of Aston Martins and acquired the DB4GT in late 1961 or early 1962
The DB4GT coupe was put to the test as the getaway car of Sellers’ character Pearly Gates in the famous 1963 black and white film.
Notably, the car was in the high speed chase through Uxbridge Moor with a Wolseley 6/90 police car in hot pursuit.
The Aston was driven by Sellers for the ‘hero shots’ and most of the fast driving was done by Ken Rudd, Aston Martin dealer, who appeared in the film as an extra gang member.
His dealer, KN Rudd in Worthing, had taken delivery of a 41 DPX as a demonstrator, equipped with rare features including aluminum bezels around the headlamps, a single air intake for the oil cooler and two air intakes.
Most of the 75 production GTs had the rear seat replaced with a carpeted plank. However, Sellers’ car was one of only three with factory-fitted rear seats, used by actor Lionel Jefferies as Pearly’s accomplice in the on-screen escape, before the car and its passengers were stopped at Denham airfield.
It is understood that the original 3.7-litre engine was damaged during filming and was replaced at the Aston Martin factory, with a larger 4.0-litre block fitted in early 1963 and stamped as a 4.0-litre GT engine, according to Aston Martin data. – the only factory-fitted 4.0-litre DB4GT engine to date.
Meanwhile, another DB4 performed the famous flying jump from the movie over a bridge. Since the scenes were filmed out of order, 41 DPX was once again in the spotlight for the final scene.
The DB4GT coupe was put to the test as the getaway car of Sellers’ character Pearly Gates in the famous 1963 black and white film
The Aston was driven by Sellers for the ‘hero shots’ and most of the fast driving was done by Aston Martin dealer Ken Rudd, who appeared in the film as an extra gang member
Following its famous keeper, Sellers’ DB4GT was owned by several enthusiasts, including former Aston Martin Owners Club Chairman Gerry Keane, before being completely rebuilt.
Bodywork and chassis work was carried out by Bodylines and repainted in Goodwood Green by Spray Tec in 2002. The car has appeared in Aston Martin’s original press photos and has featured on the cover of several vintage car publications.
‘The DB4GT was bred to compete and achieved tremendous track success in both national and international competitions. It is arguably Aston Martin’s finest road car and one of the top models of the ultimate 1960s GT,” said Bonhams Cars Senior Collector Car Consultant James Knight.
‘This example is in great condition, has a wonderful provenance and is offered for sale by a dedicated Aston Martin enthusiast. It really has all the credentials to be one of the most coveted examples’.
The car will be auctioned at the Goodwood Festival of Speed Sale in Chichester, West Sussex, on Friday 14th July.
Bonhams says it will be offered at an estimate of £2.2 to £2.6 million.
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