1908 Sheffield-Simplex 45HP Model LA2 Tourer
Offered by Bonhams | Beaulieu, U.K. | September 2, 2017
Simplex was a popular word in the early days of the automobile. Famously, there was the Mercedes-Simplex, the Crane-Simplex, the plain-old Simplex and the American Simplex aka Amplex… among others. The Sheffield-Simplex was from, guess where, Sheffield, England. The company was founded in 1907 with financial backing from Earl Fitzwilliam, a man who made his fortune in coal. The last cars rolled off the line in 1920 and motorcycles continued on through 1927.
The first car produced in 1907 was the LA1 and the LA2 followed in 1908. It’s powered by a rather large 45 horsepower, 7.0-liter straight-six. When new, the LA2 was advertised as being sold without a gearbox, though it did actually have one. This is the only surviving Model LA2.
Re-imported into the U.K. from Australia in the 1970s, this example was thoroughly restored and has taken part in many rallies in the U.K. over the years. It is thought that the company only turned out about 1,500 cars in their 13 years of production (and most of those were built before WWI started). Only three are known to survive, with this being the oldest. It should bring between $190,000-$260,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Update: Not sold.