1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165

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Lot 490
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe
Registration no. LK 6256 Chassis no. 12165

Sold for £ 36,800 (US$ 49,638) inc. premium
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe
Registration no. LK 6256
Chassis no. 12165
*Rare model from premier make
*One of 3,274 15hp models made
*Five owners from new
*Present family ownership for 30 years

Footnotes

  • Best known for its highly successful WWI aero engines, the precision engineering firm of D Napier & Son of Lambeth was first established in 1808. Headed by Montague Napier, the company turned to automobile manufacture at the turn of the 19th Century, swiftly forging a formidable reputation thanks to the racing and record breaking exploits of its sole distributor, S F Edge. The company manufactured a diverse range of engine types before introducing the world's first commercially successful six in 1904 and moving into the luxury car market. Outclassed by Rolls-Royce's Silver Ghost, Napier's larger models faded away after 1911, to be replaced by more modest offerings.

    Developed from an earlier 15hp model launched in 1907 as a more affordable foil to the huge sixes that had established Napier's reputation, the four-cylinder 15hp introduced at Olympia in 1910 was the company's most successful model. 'A sturdy car without frills,' it cost £350 in chassis form, to which Napier's own four-seater bodywork added an extra £80 (plus an extra £7 for the windscreen). The 15hp Colonial model was produced especially for those countries where rough roads prevailed, featuring raised suspension, larger wheels and an engine installed 'back to front' so that the large flywheel was protected by the front axle. As the flywheel rotated in the opposite direction to other Napiers, it was dubbed the 'anti-clockwise' model.

    The Napier offered here is a unique example of an Edwardian motor car in its original condition, having had only five owners in its 100 years of history. Except for the occasional puncture, it never 'failed to proceed'. Seating is three inside and two in the uncovered dickey at the rear. The four-cylinder 15hp engine has three forward gears plus reverse. A self starter was fitted by Napier in the late 1920s. The car has brakes on the rear wheels only, and a transmission brake operated by pedal. Top speed is around 50mph.

    The original owner in 1913 was a Harley Street doctor, who was followed in 1921 by Mr A V Campbell-Lambert. Mr Campbell-Lambert drove the Napier until he was 90 years old, taking it on numerous continental holidays in the 1920s and 1930s. These included trips to France, Belgium, Switzerland, and Vienna, Austria where it acquired the 'Potsum Pass' dashboard plaque. Back home in England, the car was driven every day around his farm in Suffolk.

    Upon Mr Campbell-Lambert's death in 1964, his grandson inherited the Napier, joining the Veteran Car Club a year later. He took it on numerous rallies, including Manchester-Blackpool and Hull-Scarborough, before selling the car in 1985. For the last 30 years, 'LK 6256' has been owned by the same family. During this time it has been actively rallied both at home and abroad, and has always proved reliable. An electric fuel pump, electric starter, and a Zenith carburettor are sensible provisions.

    Finished in blue/black with blue leather interior, this charming 'Brass Era' motor car is offered with a VCC Certificate of Dating, current MoT, and a V5 registration document.
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1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
1913 Napier 15HP Doctors Coupe  Chassis no. 12165
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