1964 Amphicar 770 Convertible
Lot 306
1964 Amphicar Model 770 Convertible Chassis no. 100251 Engine no. 499
Sold for US$ 59,400 inc. premium
Lot Details
1964 Amphicar Model 770 Convertible
Chassis no. 100251
Engine no. 499
1,147cc OHV inline four-cylinder engine
Single Solex downdraft carburetor
43bhp at 4,750rpm
Four-speed all-synchromesh manual transmission plus single speed with reverse water transmission
Four-wheel independent suspension
Four-wheel waterproof hydraulic drum brakes

-Thoroughly and correctly restored
-Sea and land tested
-Nicely detailed inside and out

The Amphicar

Hans Trippel's experiments with amphibious vehicles began in the 1930s, bearing fruit in wartime in the form of the Volkswagen based Schwimmwagen, more than 14,000 of which saw service with the German Army in WWII. Trippel revived the concept post-war with the Amphicar (originally called the Eurocar). Necessarily of unitary construction, the cabriolet-style Amphicar was powered by a 70cu in (1,147cc) four-cylinder Triumph Herald engine mounted in the rear and driving the rear wheels. A special transmission drove the two propellers that afforded a maximum cruising speed on water of around 6 knots (7mph), the top speed on land being around 70mph. No special steering gear was required for use on water, the car being steered in the normal way. The design certainly worked, as demonstrated by a well-publicized stunt that saw an Amphicar successfully cross the English Channel from France to England in 1962. Nevertheless, and despite the attractions of its dual capability, the Amphicar was not a commercial success. In what should have been its biggest market - the USA - the Amphicar was handicapped by the many difficulties involved in trying to comply with smog and safety regulations. Demand for what was essentially a novelty vehicle never remotely approached the 20,000 units projected annually, only 3,000-or-so being constructed before production ceased in 1968.

The Motorcar Offered

Finished in Lagoon Blue with a matching Lagoon Blue and White vinyl interior, this Amphicar is believed to have traveled only 3,600 miles since it left the factory. In the mid-2000s it was the subject of a complete and thorough restoration in by its then California owner. Following its completion, the car headed East and was subsequently acquired by the current vendor in 2010.

While Amphicars are known for being oddities that are more often seen on the road than in the water, this example is sure to delight on land and sea. A recent video of the car achieving its jaw dropping trick of driving into a lake and successfully motoring away is a testament to the boat-car's nautical capabilities. An inspection reveals none of the rust that so often plagues Amphicars. Nicely detailed inside an out, a recent mechanical service has been performed to make doubly sure that you'll be able to wow your friend's at the next party at the lake.

Complete with an owner's manual—a mandatory read prior to operation—and a paddle in case the gas tank runs low, there is certainly no better way to ensure you'll never have to look for parking at the beach again.

Saleroom notices

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    Bonhams
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