Formerly the property of Richard Attwood,1957 Aston Martin DB2/4 MkII Saloon  Chassis no. AM300/1211 Engine no. VB6J/834/L1
Lot 380*
1957 Aston Martin DB2/4 MkII Saloon
Registration no. ULC 432 Chassis no. AM300/1211 Engine no. VB6J/834/L1
Sold for £70,940 (US$ 117,711) inc. premium
Lot Details
Formerly the property of Richard Attwood
1957 Aston Martin DB2/4 MkII Saloon
Registration no. ULC 432
Chassis no. AM300/1211
Engine no. VB6J/834/L1


  • The need to widen the appeal of the already-successful DB2 resulted in the launch in October 1953 of the 2+2 DB2/4. Extensive revisions to the car's rear end arrangements made room for two occasional seats and more luggage, the latter being accessed via a hatchback rear door, one of this now-common feature's earliest applications. In addition, a raised roofline, one-piece windscreen, larger bumpers and other detail styling changes differentiated the newcomer from its predecessor. Otherwise, the DB2/4 remained much the same as the DB2, employing the latter's rectangular-tube chassis, trailing arm independent front suspension and well-located live rear axle. The W O Bentley-designed, 2.6-litre, six-cylinder, twin-cam power unit came in tuned (125bhp) Vantage specification as standard for the 2/4. Despite this, the redesign's inevitable weight gain was not fully compensated for until the arrival of the 3-litre, 140bhp engine in 1954. The car's top speed was now 118mph, with 60mph reached in around 11 seconds. David Brown's acquisition of Tickford Ltd in 1953 led to bodywork for the revised MkII model, launched at the London Motor Show in October 1955, being manufactured by the Newport Pagnell coachbuilder. While mechanically very little different from its predecessor, the DB2/4 MkII was readily identifiable by its subtly altered lines, the most significant change being a ¾" increase in roof height that afforded greater headroom.

    Sold new in September 1957 via Brooklands of Bond Street to a Mr Bemrose, this DB2/4 MkII formerly belonged to Richard Attwood, the ex-Formula 1 driver and Le Mans winner. Born in 1940, Attwood began racing in 1960 driving a Triumph TR3 and was recruited by F1 team BRM following a succession of good results in Formula 2. Somehow, and despite his undoubted talent, the right drive never materialised in F1, and sports car racing became Richard's main priority. He struck up a fruitful relationship with David Piper, sharing the latter's Ferraris and securing a number of podium finishes in World Sportscar Championship events, and was instrumental in developing the Ford GT40. In 1969 he signed for the Porsche factory, usually being paired with fellow Brit Vic Elford, with whom he shared a 908 and then a 917. Driving a 917LH, the pair led for much of the 1969 Le Mans 24-Hour Race only to be forced into retirement by a gearbox failure with only two hours remaining.

    The crowning achievement of his career came in 1970 when, teamed with Hans Hermann in a works 917K, he won the coveted endurance classic at La Sarthe. The same driver pairing finished in second place the following year, again driving a Porsche 917 but this time for John Wyer, and following a win at the Zeltweg 1,000km Attwood retired from motor sport at the end of the 1971 season. He made a brief reappearance as part of the Aston Martin Nimrod project in 1984 and then retired from front line racing for good. Today, Richard remains actively involved in historic motor sports and is a frequent visitor to the Goodwood Festival of Speed and other prestigious events.

    Richard acquired this DB2/4 in March 1982, by which time it had already had some eight owners. Chassis number 'AM300/1211' is fitted with engine number 'VB6J/834/L/1', the 'L/1' suffix denoting that this is a special series unit equipped with larger valves and higher lift camshafts, developing 165bhp. The car was also equipped with a twin exhaust system.

    The current vendor purchased the DB2/4 when Richard offered it for sale at Bonhams' auction at Aston Martin Works Service in May 2008 (Lot 339). 'ULC 432' had not been run for 30-or-so years prior to sale in 2008 and since acquisition has been converted to left-hand drive and repainted. Sold strictly as viewed, the car comes with copy guarantee form, two old-style logbooks, old-style V5 registration document and two expired MoTs for the period 1975-1977.

    Should the vehicle remain in the EU, local import taxes of 5% will be applied to the hammer price.
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

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Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Wine, Coins & Medals and Motor Cars and Motorcycles:

Buyer's Premium Rates
25% on the first £50,000 of the Hammer Price
20% from £50,001 to £1,000,000 the Hammer Price
12% from £1,000,001 of the Hammer Price

VAT at the current rate of 20% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges excluding Artists Resale Right.

Collection Notices

All purchased lots must be cleared from the sale venue by 6pm on the day of the sale. All un-collected purchased lots shall then be removed to Bonhams storage facility at:
Unit 1 Sovereign Park, Coronation Road, Park Royal, London, NW10 7QP, and will be available for collection from 10am Tuesday 1 July 2014 by appointment only.

To arrange collection please contact the
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All lots will be charged £10+VAT uplift and storage at £1+VAT per day per lot.
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All lots marked with a ◊◊◊ will require specific shipping and storage arrangements, as they are either extremely large or heavy objects.

Shippers or Agents wishing to collect on behalf of the purchaser must provide written instruction from the client before Bonhams will release the lot(s).

All purchases are at buyers risk from the fall of the hammer.

Motor Cars
Vehicles must be collected from the sale venue on the evening of the day of the sale. After this cars are moved to local store where they need to be collected by 12 noon on Monday 30 June. (Please see Guide for Buyers in the printed and online catalogues).

Buyers should satisfy themselves that they have collected all relevant log books, documents and keys relating to their Lot(s) at time of collection. Otherwise Lots shall be
removed to storage at the Buyer's expense (see below)
. Lots are at the Buyer's risk from the fall of the hammer. It is strongly advisable that overseas purchasers and absentee bidders make arrangements regarding collection with Bonhams in advance of Sale.

Removal and Storage of Vehicles
All Lots not removed in accordance with the above will be transported by Polygon Transport to local store:
Polygon Transport
Unit 2H North Road
Marchwood Industrial Park
Normandy Way
Marchwood, Southampton
Hants SO40 4BL
02380 871 555
02380 862 111 fax

Vehicle Removal charges
£220 + VAT per vehicle

Vehicle Storage charges
First 14 days
£14 + VAT per motor car per day
£10 + VAT per motor car per day

Transport and Shipping
A representative of Polygon Transport, will be at the Sale and can arrange national and international transportation as agent for the Buyer or the Seller (as the case may be).

Polygon Transport
Unit 2H North Road
Marchwood Industrial Park
Normandy Way
Marchwood, Southampton
Hants SO40 4BL
02380 871 555
02380 862 111 fax

Vehicle Insurance
Hagerty International Limited
The Arch Barn
Pury Hill Farm
NN12 7TB
0844 824 1134

Payment Notices

Payment in advance: by cash, check with banker's card, credit card, bank draft or traveler's cheque.

Payment at collection: by credit or debit card.

Credit card charges: a surcharge of 2% is applicable when using Mastercard, Visa and overseas debit cards.

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Lot symbols
* Import low rate

VAT on imported items at a preferential rate of 5% on Hammer Price and the prevailing rate on Buyer's Premium.

  1. Sholto Gilbertson
    Specialist - Motor Cars
    101 New Bond Street
    London, United Kingdom W1S 1SR
    Work +44 20 7468 5809
    FaxFax: +44 20 7468 5802