Daimler Dart

1960 Daimler SP250

Offered by H&H Classics | Buxton, U.K. | April 26, 2023

Photo – H&H Classics

The SP250 was a British sports car from an unlikely source: Daimler, who up to this point had primarily made stodgy saloons and drophead coupes. After this point, they would be reduced to selling badge-engineered Jaguars. So it’s kind of amazing this car ever made it to production.

It debuted at the 1959 New York Motor Show as the “Dart” – which Chrysler obviously did not appreciate. So it was renamed the SP250 when production got under way shortly thereafter. Just 2,654 examples would be produced through 1964. We’ve featured one before – a prototype with a retractable hardtop.

The cars are powered by a very un-British engine: a 2.5-liter V8 designed in-house. Output was rated at 140 horsepower. This U.K.-market example was repainted about 15 years ago. It remains an interesting alternative to the Triumphs and MGs of the era. The estimate is $37,000-$42,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $35,801.

Daimler Dart Prototype

1960 Daimler SP250 AHC Retractable Hardtop Coupe

Offered by Bonhams | Goodwood, U.K. | September 10, 2016

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

The Daimler SP250 “Dart” was a sports car built by the British Daimler company between 1959 and 1964. It was a weird thing for Daimler to build, as they specialized in big sedans and limousines. Obviously, as this is a 1960, it is not one of the original SP250 prototypes. Instead, it is a one-off prototype car built by the Antony H Croucher Precision & Prototype Engineering Company to showcase their novel retractable hardtop system.

The car was also slightly enlarged – it features four seats and a larger trunk. The work was completed in 1963 and the car is still powered by the SP250’s 2.5-liter V-8 that puts out 140 horsepower. A hardtop was an available option on the SP250, but this car’s can disappear into the trunk. Amazingly, the hardtop can be raised or lowered while driving.

The car has recently been freshened and is operable – roof included. Originally orange, it was repainted this silver that looks great when wet. Only 2,654 Darts were produced in total and this is the only one with a retractable hardtop. It has been owned by the same family since it was built and should bring between $65,000-$92,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.