1959 Austin-Healey Sprite Mk I "Frog Eye" (AN5) RoadsterSOLD

No Expense Spared Restoration to SCCA H-Production Specs. Go Vintage Racing for $22,000!

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Perhaps more so than any other English car of the era, the Austin Healey Bugeye Sprite evokes charming and charismatic memories of carefree college days and summer street races. While it was all that many of us could afford at the time, their light and nimble feel, and adorable body lines, keep us referring to the Bugeyes as `the best value in motoring memories!`

This example has been restored in a no expense spared fashion to Sports Car Club of America`s H-Production racing specifications. The car was held as part of an impressive collection on the West Coast. The owner anticipated racing the car in selected vintage venues, but despite doing huge amounts of further development, only actually raced the car once.

This example was acquired at great expense at the Monterey Auction in about 1997. The car had already been converted from street format and race prepared at that time. Over the subsequent months and years improvements were made, strictly adhering to SOVERN rules, to make the car more reliable and quicker.

Details of the initial conversion from street specifications are not known. During the current ownership period, a finned four speed gearbox case was sourced, correct for a Bugeye, and completely rebuilt with fresh syncros and bearings. A new radiator was sourced and modified for racing use. A new 948cc motor was build by Bryon Sandborn at VRM in Washington. Today, the motor and gearbox have just a handful of test laps on them, but no race weekends.

This charming Bugeye has excellent racecar cosmetics; with extremely high quality British Racing Green paint with minimal use marks, nicely upholstered seats and detailed interior with black crackle dash and new VDO gauges, beautifully painted under hood, firewall, and tidy engine bay. The car is accented with a Broklands screen for the driver, and white vinyl number balls.

Mechanically, the car looks to have been very well thought out, and professionally prepped and maintained. It starts easily, and sounds excellent. All the gauges appear to work, including the fuel gauge, which operates from the stock sender and tank. The clutch disengages with the appropriate travel and the gearbox feels well defined and crisp. The car sits on race wheels with older Dunlop race tires.

This car is immediately available for vintage racing at a mere fraction of its total build cost. Having been carefully developed within the most stringent vintage racing rules, this car should remain eligible for FIA papers, and could therefore be raced and fantastic venues throughout Europe and the United Kingdom. Whether in the US, or in Europe, this adorable and well built Bugeye Sprite will be a fantastic car for the vintage racer, particularly for a new driver, as it will handle well, be inexpensive to maintain, and should be accepted at most HMSA, CSRG, SCCA Vintage, General Racing, HRS, and VARA events. The original `street` parts do not accompany the car.

Reference Number 8984

as of 4/28/2007

Car 1959 Austin-Healey Sprite Mk I "Frog Eye" (AN5) Roadster
VIN AH5L/35393 
Exterior / Interior Color      British Racing Green /      Black 
Transmission Manual Shift 
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