19th Jun, 2024 13:00

Imperial War Museum | Duxford, Cambridgeshire

Lot 47

1934 Austin Heavy 12/4 Landaulette Hire car

Sold for £12,938

(including buyers premium)

Lot details

Registration No: AYT 778
Chassis No: BS11376623
MOT: Exempt

  • Offered from long term ownership
  • Coach-built by Strachans (Coachbuilders) Ltd in Acton, London
  • Subject to an extensive restoration in current ownership
  • Used in the 1990s ITV drama ‘Poirot’

Produced in 1934 and first registered on 3rd September 1934, this Austin 12/4 ‘Heavy’ Hire Car Landaulette was coach-built by Strachans (Coachbuilders) Ltd in Acton, London,. It is believed to have been one of two Landaulette’s Strachans built with a London ‘low-loader’ ('LL') cab chassis. A London coach company ordered two, chassis 76623, with Body BS113, is believed to be one of the two, acquired with the purpose of chauffeuring dignitaries around London. It carries the London registration ‘AYT 778’. Around this time, well-known taxi-cab dealer Mann & Overton had also been using modified Austin Hire Car chassis’ and catalogued three similar bodies, for taxi-cab use, by Strachan, Vincent or Jones. The Landaulette is very similar to the taxi low-loader, however, it possesses 4 doors and is coach-built to a much higher specification.

Finished in Red with Black, ‘AYT 778’ retains a Landaulette mohair hood, with a re-trimmed interior, with the customary, leather in the front cabin and Bedford cord in the rear. Inside, there’s a chauffeur/passenger division. There are occasional seats in the rear compartment and will carry its driver and 5 passengers. We are advised ‘AYT 778’ was the subject of an extensive body-off restoration in the late 1990s and took 7 to 8 years and included the overhaul of the engine and mechanicals at this time, along with bodywork and paintwork and the woodwork refurbished. There is a collection of restoration photographs available, reflecting the process of the work that has been carried out, that was evidently completed to a high standard. The history of ‘AYT 778’ includes use in the 1990s ITV drama ‘Poirot’, when it was painted Black, and it is also believed to have resided in Switzerland for a time. It is being offered with a continuation logbook, a collection of invoices and the current V5C.

For more information, please contact:
James McWilliam
07943 584760


Auction: Imperial War Museum | Duxford, Cambridgeshire, 19th Jun, 2024

An auction of classic, collector and performance motorcars held at the iconic and visually stunning Imperial War Museum, Duxford. Venue Details 

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