Chassis # LML/704
Engine # VB6E/50/1282
- One owner from January 1955 to May 2006
- Detailed history file with many expired MOT certificates from 1966 onwards
- Restored in 1988/90 and limited use since
- Acquired from the original owner at auction by Aston Martin Lagonda and displayed at the company’s headquarters in Gaydon, Warwickshire
- Retrimmed by Aston Martin Works in 2018
- Sold with a one-year Aston Martin warranty
Few cars are able to boast having been in single ownership for fifty-one years, but this beautiful and special Aston Martin DB2/4 is able to do so. After spotting the car in the showroom window of HR Owen on Mayfair's Berkeley Street in 1954, the gentleman successfully convinced himself that paying £2,621 for a sportscar was the sensible thing to do when an equivalent sum could purchase him a decent house. The distinctive registration number OXO 13 on the car was part of the appeal, or so he argued to himself.
After leaving the Feltham factory in May 1954 and being registered by HR Owen in August, the DB2/4 was registered to the gentleman in January 1955 and he would continue to use it on an almost daily basis for the next eighteen years. His first year of use would set the pattern for the years to follow, and a few months after collecting it from the Mayfair dealer, he and his new wife set off on their honeymoon for Italy from their home in Farnham, Surrey. Soon living in Cambridgeshire with their growing family, several tours of Europe followed as did trips to the Highlands of Scotland.
In early 1961 the car was taken to the relatively new Aston Martin Lagonda factory at Newport Pagnell for a thorough inspection, when it was found the engine required an overhaul. It is noted that as well as carrying out that important work the factory also repainted the car in a colour known as black pearl.
Over a decade later, after much enjoyment and with about 57,000 miles showing on the odometer the car required some expenditure, which due to the DB2/4 now being a rather old sportscar the cost of repairs exceeded what it was worth. With teenage children to support, the family finances were required elsewhere but rather than part with his cherished car and all the memories attached to it, he simply drove it into the garage in 1973 and closed the doors.
In 1984 it was decided to do something with the Aston Martin, and after putting some oil in the cylinders and fitting a new battery, the engine was started. However, it was almost another two years before it would leave the garage, and early in 1986 it was extracted from its resting place by a local mechanic and taken to his garage to get it operational. After freeing off and servicing the brakes and issuing a new MOT certificate, the car was driven home and pretty much remained in the garage again due to the owner’s embarrassment of its original (but not especially tatty) condition.
Soon afterwards, contact was made with his cousin who was an editor of a classic car magazine asking for his advice on what to do with the car. It seems a marque specialist near Royston in Hertfordshire was recommended and in early 1988 work started on the car to return it to its former glory.
During the restoration it was not possible to trace the formula for the original Sea Green paint so the closest possible colour was used. The interior was in reasonable condition allowing the original beige leather to just be cleaned and connollised, and along with refurbishing the wood and fitting new carpets, the gauges were overhauled during which the odometer was zeroed. Mechanical inspections showed the rear axle to be noisy so that was sent away for refurbishment, but otherwise the remainder of the running gear was in generally good order. All of the work was completed in the summer of 1990 and the car was promptly featured in the December edition of Popular Classics magazine.
The car was clearly used sparingly over the next few years and we can only imagine that the limited use and the owners advancing years resulted in him making what must have been the very difficult decision to sell the car. He decided to enter OXO into a marque auction held at Newport Pagnell in May 2006 and appropriately, the car was acquired by Aston Martin Lagonda due to its exceptional one-private-owner provenance.
Having formed part of the Aston Martin Lagonda Factory Heritage Collection since acquisition and displayed on The Street at the company’s Gaydon factory in Warwickshire, it was recently decided to allow a new owner to enjoy the car.
Sixty-five year old cars that have been enjoyed by one owner for the majority of their life are incredibly rare, and Aston Martin Works are delighted to be offering this special DB2/4 for sale. The history file is fascinating as it contains the original buff registration document, a large quantity of expired MOT certificates dating back to 1966, reports and invoices from Aston Martin Lagonda Limited and other companies, a copy of the factory Build Sheet, photographs of the car in Europe during its early years and also before and after its restoration, correspondence between the original owner and individuals and companies in which the history of the car is explained, copies of V5 and V5C registration documents, expired tax discs, invoices and correspondence relating to the restoration, copies of the 1990 Popular Classics magazine article and 2006 auction catalogue, and also a photograph of the owner and Dr Bez (the then Chairman of Aston Martin Lagonda) beside the car on the day it was sold by the long-term owner.
After a thorough mechanical inspection by Aston Martin Works, this wonderful DB2/4 is ready for a new owner to replicate those European and Alpine tours the car enjoyed so any years ago.
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