This charming veteran was sold new in England and was first registered BW 33 in Oxfordshire in 1900. It is thought to be the oldest of its type extant yet remarkably for its age carries its original coachwork by Carrosserie A. Vedrine.E.Beugnot as well as all the major mechanical components including chassis, engine, transmission and axles. It was purchased as a highly complete restoration project in 1964 by the previous owner’s father and restored by him ready to take part in the 1965 London to Brighton Run. Clearly he was a skilled engineer as the car has survived the test of time very well and has been first to arrive at Madeira Drive (The finish in Brighton) on more than one occaission. Not only has this little gem taken part in over 40 London to Brighton Runs but in 1968 it completed the VCC London to Edinburgh Rally and in 1970 went to Australia where it completed a 1000 mile rally between Sydney and Melbourne!
In 2012 the car was purchased from a Bonhams auction of Veteran Cars on behalf of one of a client and just two days later took part in the 2012 London to Brighton run – Click here here to read the story. Thornley Kelham is now responsible for maintaining the Darracq and assisting the client on events.
Since the car did not finish the 2012 Run, Thornley Kelham were asked to rebuild the mighty one cylinder engine and carry out some detail improvements including minor trim work. We were also lucky enough to be loaned an amazingly original example of the same model as reference – hence the opening shot above. And ‘our’ car completed the Run successfully in 2013!