19th Oct, 2022 13:00

Imperial War Museum, Duxford

Lot 28

1930 Talbot AM90 Close-Coupled Drophead Coupe

Sold for £42,750

(including buyers premium)

Lot details

Registration No: GP 6096
Chassis No: 30000
MOT: Exempt

  • Genuine Speed Model being 1 of just 12 AM90 chassis bodied to this design by Offord and the sole known survivor
  • Extensive previous restoration work, much of which being completed by recognised marque specialists: Arthur Archer, Foppe d'Hane and Ian Polson
  • Large history file with invoices and correspondence dating back to the 1950s

"The 1930 Le Mans race is often remembered for the struggle in which one Mercedes defeated the Blower Bentleys but was itself vanquished by the 6½s, whereas the most telling, and also the most significant performance, historically, came from the brace of Talbot 90s which finished third and fourth, ahead of all but two Speed Sixes. Using a plain unsupercharged production engine of only 2¼ litres, with pushrod overhead valves, not overhead camshaft, and fitted with a single carburettor, they beat every Bentley below 6½ litres, together with the 38/250 Mercedes, Earl Howe's supercharged twin-cam Alfa Romeo and a 5-litre Stutz. Somewhat naturally they won the Indice de Performance. The great Charles Faroux called their performance stupefiant, and he was right. Not only were the two Talbots tremendously fast and reliable, they were practically silent as well, making no more fuss than a rolled umbrella" (D.B. Tubbs, `The Talbots 14/45 - 110' Profile Publications).”

Capitalising on the success of the Fox & Nicholl Team Cars at Le Mans, Talbot are understood to have built some 216 examples of the 90. Available with a choice of wheelbase lengths, the model was underpinned by a substantial ladder frame chassis featuring all-round leaf-sprung suspension and four-wheel drum brakes. Developing up to 93bhp, its advanced 2276cc straight-six OHV engine was allied to four-speed manual transmission (though, later versions could be had with a four-speed pre-selector gearbox). Potential buyers could choose from a range of factory bodystyles or employ the services of an independent coachbuilder. Regardless of the coachwork worn, most 90s were capable of the 90mph top speed that their name implied. An understandably popular choice with sporting motorists, the Talbot enjoyed continued competition success as a privateer entry at events such as the Irish GP, Ards TT and Brooklands thanks to the efforts of Bill Esplen ('GN 5872') and the Burt brothers ('GO 1568') etc.

A genuine AM90 Speed Model, 'GP 6096' is understood to be one of just twelve such chassis to be fitted with Close Coupled Drophead Coupe coachwork by Offord and indeed the sole known survivor (although, a very similar car which was built under sub-contract by Carlton still exists). According to its copy factory build record, chassis 30000 was erected on 1st January 1931 and as such is accepted by the Vintage Sports Car Club as being of Vintage manufacture (which in turn allows it to run with other pre-1931 machinery in VSCC events). The AM90 is accompanied by a very large and interesting history file which chronicles the last six decades of its life. Thought to have belonged to Mr D. English during the mid-1950s, other keepers have included Mr Williamson, Mr John Gray, Mr Brian Fidler, Mr Peter Theobald, Mr Peter Sutcliffe, Mr Gillie Andrew, Mr Tim Wadeson, Mr Michael Manning, Mr M. Jones and Mr J. Radgick.

Mr Gray was the Sunbeam Talbot Darracq Register's secretary and there is a photo on file of him showing none other than Georges Roesch over 'GP 6096' (the 90 engine was reputedly Roesch's favourite among all those he designed for Talbot). Mr Theobald took the Close Coupled Drophead Coupe to Rhodesia in 1968 and thereafter it relocated to South Africa. Mr Sutcliffe used the four-seater for a long distance rally during his brief tenure (1977-1978) and Mr Wadeson finally repatriated the AM90 to the UK in the early 2000s. Substantially improved during Mr M. Jones’s custodianship, chassis 30000 benefited from a thorough engine overhaul (reground crankshaft with shell bearings, Arrow rods, new pistons, new timing gears and new oil pump gears etc) plus the installation of a down draught carburettor, freeflow exhaust and new Dynastart bearings (the unit having been otherwise rejuvenated for a previous keeper) all of which was carried out by marque specialists Arthur Archer and Foppe d'Hane. Further boasting a 'New Zealand' cartridge oil filter conversion, solid state voltage regulator, correct complete new 'wet' radiator and halogen headlights, the Talbot was entrusted to marque specialist Ian Polson for a back axle refurbishment and new petrol tank. Foppe d'Hane restored the wooden body support frame as necessary before the coachwork was treated to a bare metal respray in Dark Blue. Re-upholstered in contrasting Light Blue, the interior is protected by a Black double duck hood.

A delightful and seemingly very well sorted motorcar, the Talbot has completed numerous STD Register Tours around the UK, Ireland and France etc over the past fifteen years. While, the Drophead Coupe’s most recent long distance outing saw it successfully finish the 26th Rally International du Pays de Fougeres from May 20th-23rd 2022. Indeed, the AM90 Speed Model is only coming to market because the vendor considers that he has too many cars to give them all the usage they deserve. Accompanying paperwork encompasses the aforementioned history file, bills substantiating the work undertaken and an original first edition handbook and spares list. 'GP 6096' is summed up as 'a very rare and usable car with wind-up windows and relaxed cruising ability'.

For more information, please contact:
John Markey
01428 607899


Auction: Imperial War Museum, Duxford, 19th Oct, 2022

An auction of classic & collector motorcars


Tuesday 18th October 2022 from 12pm to 6pm
Wednesday 19th October 2022 from 9am
Additional viewing for lots 200-254 on Thursday 20th October 2022 from 9am

To take part in the auction please click 'Register to Bid | Sign In' at the top of the page

Click To View Catalogue


View all lots in this sale

All successful bids must be paid in full by midday the day after the auction at the latest.

You can collect your new pride and joy from our venue until 1pm the day following the sale or our partners are on hand to help arrange safe transportation:


Do you have an item to sell?

If so, contact one of our friendly specialists for your free valuation by completing the form below and someone will get back to you as quickly as possible.

If you prefer to speak to humans, don't hesitate to call our office on +44 (0)1925 210035

Contact Us Today!



Drag and drop .jpg images here to upload, or click here to select images.

Dozens of ‘no-reserve’ classics head to auction
Recently restored Audi Quattro press car heads to auction
Classic motorcycle auction highlights buoyant market
Rare barn find stars in classic motorcycle auction
Highly original Jaguar SS100 flies away at Duxford sale
Modified classics add a twist to H&H’s next motorcycle sale
Century of motoring history represented at H&H auction
World’s biggest production pick-up truck roars to auction
Mercedes-Benz 500SL delivered new to Sir Stirling Moss heads to auction
Cars from the 1910s to the 2010s head to auction for Buxton sale
H&H’s motorcycle sales off to a flying start in 2024 with market-leading 88 percent sales rate
Goon, Goon, Gone: Unique Peter Sellers 1960 Bentley heads to auction
Eclectic 150-plus classic car auction helps round out H&H’s milestone 30th year celebrations
One of the UK’s best driving Aston Martin DB5s heads to auction
Mid-century sports car icons race to Buxton auction
Former front cover ‘star’ heads to auction
Classic British motorcycles shine as 230 lots head to the National Motorcycle Museum auction
Racing legend Patsy Burt's Jaguar XK120 speeds to Buxton auction
22-strong single owner classic motorcycle collection heads to auction
Norton's racing heritage set to ignite the auction stage
Rare Frazer-Nash BMW with rich racing history to be auctioned
“The Rolls-Royce” of the motorcycle world, heads to      auction
Martini inspired Porsche 911 ‘RSR’ Tribute to head under the hammer
Rare ‘Car on Two Wheels’ heads to auction for the first time in 30 years
More than 100 classics sold in H&H’s 30th anniversary sale
Stunning classics worth more than £9 million offered in 30th anniversary auction
Rare Aston Martin DB1 heads to anniversary auction from long-term ownership
Rare Bentleys to star in 30th celebration auction
H&H Classics 30th Anniversary Auction
H&H unveils details of its 30th anniversary celebrations
Classic car owners handed ULEZ lifeline
H&H Classics auction Hurricane X-75 Prototype to National Motorcycle Museum
Vintage and modern classics lead the way at latest H&H sale
H&H offers exceptional range of vehicles spanning 11 individual decades
Pavilion Gardens. Wednesday 26th July 2023
A whimsical blast from the past: Chitty Chitty Bang Bang recreation heads to auction
From Italy with love: auction showcasing the essence of Italian design and sprezzatura
250 Motorcycles & Vintage Scooters Set To Go Under The Hammer!
March of the Mods: Lambretta owned by Paul Weller heads to auction
Lawbreakers to law enforcers: historic scooters with infamous connections up for sale
Jaguar SS100 among £2¼  million worth of classics sold at the Imperial War Museum
British classics to shine at H&H Classics’ sale
Historic Guinness Collection heads to auction
Browse The Catalogue Now! 135 Classic & Performance Cars To Go Under The Hammer.
Robbie Savage’s Ferrari F430 to be sold at H&H Classics
RAC Rally winning ‘Jaguar’ to be sold at auction
Former MP’s Bentley and Facel Vega ‘garage find’ among £1.3m worth of classics hammered away by H&H
Pavilion Gardens, Buxton Auction Preview Video