19th Oct, 2022 13:00

Imperial War Museum, Duxford

Lot 110

1933 Daimler Fifteen Sportsman's Coupe
No Reserve

Sold for £7,875

(including buyers premium)

Lot details

Registration No: IOM Registered
Chassis No: 33784
MOT: Exempt

  • Supplied new to Australia and featuring coachwork by Martin & King Ltd. of Melbourne
  • Comprehensively restored over a thirteen-month period in 2001-2002
  • Repatriated in 2003 and in current ownership ever since
  • Accompanied by a history file including a copy of ‘The Automobile’ magazine with a feature on the Daimlers restoration
  • Offered at ‘No Reserve’ from the late Robert Riding’s Estate, the vast majority of which has been left to charity with the RNLI as the predominant beneficiary

Renowned for its large, luxury motorcars, Daimler had to cut its cloth to suit the times, and its answer to the Great Depression was the Fifteen. Launched in 1932, it was the first Daimler priced at less than £500 since the Great War and its name was derived from its tax rating of 15hp. The Fifteen's 1805cc six-cylinder engine was driven via the traditional fluid flywheel transmission and worm-drive rear axle, while other chassis features included a mechanical fuel pump, push-on handbrake and servo-assisted hydraulic brakes. Revamped with a 2.0-litre engine for 1935, the Fifteen remained in production until the end of 1936, by which time around 6,000 cars had been sold, making it the most successful Daimler to date.

Supplied new to Australia, chassis number 33784 was provided to coachbuilders Martin & King Ltd. of Melbourne who provided the ‘Sportman’s’ Fixed Head Coupe coachwork; which is distinguishable from Mulliner examples for having full-length doors. Fitted with the 1805cc six-cylinder engine allied to the four-speed pre-selection transmission, the Fifteen is finished in the attractive (and believed original) colour combination of Champagne and Claret two-tone paintwork with Brown leather interior upholstery. Discovered by the restorer at a deceased estate sale in 2001, the Fifteen displayed the remnants of a tax disc from 1963, indicating that was the last year of road use.

The engine, gearbox and mechanicals were overhauled, with many other parts restored and renewed including the distributor and brake cylinders. The bodywork was refitted to the already renovated chassis and the Daimler received full repainting, with paint matching from surviving paintwork on the panel insides. The interior was professionally re-trimmed, saving as much of the original leather as possible, with the roof and rear ‘trunk’ compartment re-covered before the car was re-wired throughout. Thirteen-months after purchase, the restoration was completed and elected to be featured in ‘The Automobile’ magazine (October 2002), with a copy of the article included in the history file.

Repatriated to the United Kingdom in 2003, the Daimler was purchased by Robert Furniss Riding, residing in his private collection ever since. Now offered at ‘No Reserve’ alongside the rest of the Estate, the vast majority of which has been left to charity with the RNLI as the predominant beneficiary. Additional mechanical improvement was provided more recently comprising an overhauled rear axle, reconditioned brakes, fuelling system renewal, an overhauled starter motor and flywheel refurbishment costing almost £2,000 in 2017. Accompanied by a documentation file which includes (but does not extend only to) a Daimler & Lanchester Owners Club dating letter; original Instruction book; technical literature and diagrams; photos from its time in Australia; shipping documents; a collection of invoices, large quantity of Isle of Man tax discs; a previous copy of a V5C; sundry paperwork and the Isle of Man registration document.

PLEASE NOTE: The IOM Registration Number shown in the images is being retained by the estate, another IOM Registration Number will be attributed by the time of the sale.

PLEASE NOTE: We have been advised that vehicles registered on, and imported from, the Isle of Man are not subject to Import Duty. Nor is a NOVA application required for their re-registration in the United Kingdom.

About the late Robert Furniss Riding:

Born in 1940, the only child of only children parents, Bob was educated at Stockport Grammar School then read natural sciences at Christ Church, Oxford. He joined William Deacon’s Bank, and had a stellar ascent through it and its subsequent iterations ending up as Group Treasurer of the Royal Bank of Scotland. He grasped the opportunity of early retirement in 1990 and moved to the Isle of Man where he had been left a house by an aunt. But Bob was far from being inactive, throwing himself into the local community and taking on the turnaround of a local private bank as its Executive Chairman.

Sailing had been a preoccupation during his time in the City, but on coming to the Isle of Man, Bob switched his energies and focus to collecting “quality cars” – principally the products of Cricklewood, Derby and Crewe, but with some maverick exceptions such as Maserati and Caterham. Daimlers and Lanchesters also featured, and he had to move to a large country house to find garaging for the ever-growing collection. His cars were regularly campaigned at rallies for the appropriate marque and were often deserved winners of various trophies. He also got involved in the relevant enthusiast clubs, usually ending up as Chairman – and his list of appointments included the Chairmanship of the Manx Classic Car Club and the Manx Motor Racing Club.

Bob was always a keen supporter of local charities, particularly maritime and those involving young people, and many will have cause to remember with gratitude his generosity and his apparently bottomless well of technical knowledge on “quality cars”, so freely shared. Bob left his Estate predominantly to Charity with the RNLI being the Residuary Beneficiary. Thus, in effect, the entire proceeds of the car collection sale will be received by the RNLI.

For more information, please contact:
Paul Cheetham
07538 667452


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:


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

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