Lightspeed Magenta

1966 Lightspeed Magenta Runabout

Offered by RM Auctions | Phoenix, Arizona | January 15-16, 2015

Photo - RM Auctions

Photo – RM Auctions

There are so many Mini-based cars that have been built since the 1960s. Seriously, a ton. But this is one that isn’t quite as familiar as say a Mini Marcos or Deep Sanderson. In fact, the Magenta pre-dates Lightspeed. Originally, the Magenta was built around an MG 1100.

But Lightspeed Panels bought the rights to the Magenta in 1972 and the branding changed. Most Magentas are based around Minis – this one is actually based around a 1966 Austin Mini 850, but has since been upgraded to a 1,275cc straight-four making 75 horsepower from a Cooper S. It’s probably also down some weight (because, you know, the roof is gone) – which will likely make it quicker than a Mini of similar vintage and specification.

It is thought that about 500 Magentas were sold into the early 1980s. It may be a kit car, but I bet it’s a head-turner. This one came to the U.S. in 2005 and had been restored in 2001. The end result of this car comes from one of four factory prototype kits. So it’s sort of a prototype. If you want to buy it, it will likely be one of the more affordable cars at RM’s auction in Arizona this year. Check out more here and see more from this sale here.

Update: Sold $16,500.

Burlington Arrow

1987 Burlington Arrow

Offered by Bonhams | Harrogate, U.K. | November 13, 2013

1987 Burlington Arrow

The Burlington Motor Company was founded in 1980 by Haydn Davis and they started by building a replica of the Morgan. Over the years they’ve offered almost exclusively kit cars. It’s weird that I’d feature a kit car on this site, but these are more interesting than any Cobra replica (because 1. so many Cobra replicas exist and 2. Burlington cars have names that don’t include “replica”).

The Arrow was new for the early-80s and it is patterned after the MG TC, though there are significant differences. Many of the chassis came from Triumphs, this particular car uses a Triumph Herald donor chassis and a 1.6-liter straight-four engine from a Ford Cortina. This car was not offered as a traditional kit, but rather as paper plans only. The purchaser had to create or buy everything separately.

About 6,000 sets of plans were sold and about 500 Arrows were constructed to completion. This one took two years (from 1985-1987) and because the cars use readily available parts, fixes are cheap and easy. This would be a fun little car for a tiny little price: it is expected to sell for between $6,500-$9,700. Click here for more info and here for the rest of this sale.

Update: Not sold.