The complete picture.
Sometimes we receive the most beautiful classic cars that we have known about for years. Also in the case of this beautiful 1956 Austin Healey 100/4 BN2. The previous and first Dutch owner had the car imported from the USA as a restoration project. To be more precise from Chicago Illinois. Here the car had a good life because the basis to make something beautiful of it was perfect. The Healey was complete, a matching numbers engine (Heritage Certificate is present) and an intact body. We are talking about the year 2010.
Busy with daily work, not in a hurry, looking for parts that needed to be replaced, approaching the right professionals, and above all having conversations with them that it should not be a rush job, but that it should be a perfect end result. That’s how this job started. The owner, with two right hands and excellent technical knowledge, has outsourced the work for which he himself had no possibilities, such as the overhaul of the engine and gearbox, the sheet metal and the painting, to professionals who we all happen to know because they come from the region. . “We all know each other” so to speak, and then one automatically want to make the best possible job and all knowledge and craftsmanship are deployed.
In the end, the restoration took more than five years and the end result can be called sublime. Everything has been worked on down to the last bolt and the goal to keep everything as original as possible has certainly been achieved. Photos and invoices are of course present. The owner enjoyed it for a while, until his deteriorating health unfortunately forced him to find a buyer for it. Because he didn’t want any “nagging at the door”, we were asked to take over the Healey. And of course we wanted to, because we truly can say we are a great fan of this English roadster, and especially of the 100/4. In our opinion, this is the most balanced Healey. Based of course, on the 4-cylinder engine with no less than 2660 cc. A long-stroke engine that does not need to run at high revs to deliver enormous torque to, as is usual with the BN2 version, a wonderfully shifting 4-speed gearbox with overdrive. Driving on torque, and always having enough power available, is a real pleasure. The engine, equipped with the much sought-after so-called “Le Mans package”, delivers a reliable 111 hp and only has to move 940 kg of car weight. In theory already good numbers, and in practice it quickly becomes clear that it is a great score to be able to drive in a wonderful way. The Austin Healey “listens” well to the throttle and the driver always feels to be “in control” due to the excellent seating position, and the excellent drum brakes and steering.
And then the appearance of the 100/4… In other words, how can you put such a beautiful shape on paper with a few pencil marks. The only car with similar lines is the Jaguar C-Type. Such an iconic car. But only 35 units were built, so a Healey 100/4 is more likely to end up in your garage. Very recognizable and certainly not designed as a gimmick, but clearly made to reduce air resistance, is the ability to fold down the windscreen. A plus at the time, when the car was used a lot on the circuits. Incidentally, the flowing line of the car looks even better with the windscreen down. Driving the car with that windscreen position, you feel a lot of wind in your face, but it certainly looks great. For the real purist it is a real pleasure.
The picture should always be complete for us. In this case we have known the owner for years as one of our local entrepreneurs, during the restoration we were able to supply various parts for the car, the dismantling and assembly, sorting, guiding and partly the restoration itself, was perfectly carried out by the technical owner, the engine has been overhauled by a company with great experience with classic engines, the gearbox and overdrive have been overhauled by the best specialist in the Netherlands, and sheet metal and painting work has been done at a very high level by real specialists. But most important is that they are all real car people. Real enthusiasts who are not only skilled, but also have a heart for classics. They are all people who enjoy keeping cars like this Healey on the road in the best possible way. Cars that come from the workshop of these people are always good. And an owner who has literally devoted a part of his life to give this piece of British heritage a good future is of course of great value.
After arrival of this Austin Healey 100/4 BN2 “M” we have already made a few trips and it is a great pleasure doing that. We enjoyed the drive itself of course, but also looking at the car where the very dark green British Racing Green paint shows to be a great combination with the Old English White, and the beautiful black interior. How nice is it that a modern after-market wooden copy has not been chosen, but that the original steering wheel is still mounted. Nice and big and great to hold. The original, unrestored, but in excellent condition side screens are also still present. A beautiful soft top and handy tonneau cover are of course also part of the “anti-rain package”. It is worth mentioning that the car, in terms of condition and type, can usually count on a warm welcome when participating in events such as the famous Mille Miglia or GP Nuvolari. Let’s not make the story too long, because we could go on and on about this, only 1456 mile driven Healey. The bottom line is that if you are interested in an Austin Healey 100/4, you should definitely not skip this completely “like new” car. Real quality never denies itself, and this Healey has enough of that.
“Le Mans” Conversion (8 bhp extra by a upgraded camshaft and cold air box)
Bonnet with louvres
Leather bonnet strap
Engine: 4 cylinder inline engine
Carburetors: 2 x SU carburetor
Engine capacity: 2660 cc.
Power: 111 bhp. at 4500 rpm.
Topspeed: 180 km/h
Weight: 940 kg.
Transmission: 4 speed manual, with overdrive