1904 Wolseley 6hp Two-Seater Voiturette  Chassis no. 8369

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Lot 312
1904 Wolseley 6hp Two-Seater Voiturette

Sold for £ 69,000 (US$ 89,863) inc. premium
1904 Wolseley 6hp Two-Seater Voiturette
Registration no. AJ 334
Chassis no. 8369
*Delivered new to North Yorkshire
*Known ownership history
*New cylinder block (original with car)
*Brooklands Double 12 winner (2013)
*Full running order


  • Herbert Austin of the Wolseley Sheep Shearing Machine Co. designed the first Wolseley prototype in 1895 and an improved model in 1897, but it was not until 1899 that the first really successful model was produced, a 3 1/2hp four wheeler. It was such a model that participated in the Thousand Miles Trial of 1900, confirming Wolseley to be a serious player in the infant British motor industry. On that event Wolseley's entry was driven by their Chief Designer Herbert C. Austin, taking 1st Prize in Class B and winning the French Club Silver Medal. The 6hp Wolseley of 1904 was conventional in most respects, featuring a forward mounted, horizontal, single-cylinder engine with bore and stroke of 4 1/2 in x 5 in. Final drive was provided by central chain and its most popular guise was a two-seater configuration. Cooling was provided by distinctive gilled tubes wrapped around the bonnet – a Wolseley feature. One present day regular user of a 1904 6hp Wolseley sagely describes the model as "the Mini-Cooper of Brighton cars".

    This 6hp Wolseley was first registered to Reginald Falshaw of Weeton, Harrogate in June 1905. Mr Falshaw is shown in the 1901 census as an electrical engineer, and the car was entered in the records as a trade vehicle. After three years it went to E Sturdy, Clerk of Works at Harewood House, who last taxed it for the road in 1923.

    In 1946, the car re-emerged at a Leeds garage, which was then absorbed by Jaguar dealers, Appleyards. The latter was owned by Peter Appleyard of XK120 Coupe des Alpes fame, who kept the Wolseley as a 'workshop pet'. 'AJ 334' was also a regular at many Yorkshire traction engine rallies and veteran and vintage car events throughout the 1950s 60s and 70s, always being driven to and from such events by Appleyards' manager John Cassere until accidentally suffering frost damage.

    The car then went to VCC member Michael Sapsford, who carried out repairs before moving it on to fellow VCC members Roy Middleton and John Zimbler, from whom the current vendor bought it in 1991. During that time the Wolseley completed the London-Brighton run several times. The vendor's tenure has mainly involved VSCC events.

    Mechanically the car is described as in good condition throughout. The old frost-damaged alloy cylinder block was replaced in 2012 with a new casting to accept the original moving parts (the original block is included with the car). 'AJ 334' is fitted with Bowden-patent controls and has electric lights and indicators fitted for safety reasons but nevertheless easily removed.

    The car has appeared regularly in VSCC competitive events including against-the-clock driving tests where it excelled by virtue of brisk performance and agility, and has numerous class awards to its name. It has also participated in VSCC Light Car Section tours and navigation rallies, and has a 100% finishing record. 'AJ 334' took part in the Brooklands Double 12 meetings of 2013 and 2016, which involve the combination of driving tests and a concours. It won the latter in 2013 (Vauxhall's Prince Henry being runner up!) and in 2016 was runner up to an aero-engined Berliet special. On both occasions it was runner up in the driving tests – the vendor notes that the Brooklands test hill takes a long time to climb even with passenger assist!

    The private vendor advises us that the car is running well and reliably; indeed, he is confident enough to set out in it unaccompanied and unworried whatever the destination. Accompanying documentation includes a file relating to the engine rebuild, a VCC dating certificate plus the original 1921 logbook showing the date of manufacture as 1904, long before that date had any significance.

Saleroom notices

  • Please note, the V5C is to follow post sale.
1904 Wolseley 6hp Two-Seater Voiturette  Chassis no. 8369
1904 Wolseley 6hp Two-Seater Voiturette  Chassis no. 8369
1904 Wolseley 6hp Two-Seater Voiturette  Chassis no. 8369
1904 Wolseley 6hp Two-Seater Voiturette  Chassis no. 8369
1904 Wolseley 6hp Two-Seater Voiturette  Chassis no. 8369
1904 Wolseley 6hp Two-Seater Voiturette  Chassis no. 8369
1904 Wolseley 6hp Two-Seater Voiturette  Chassis no. 8369
1904 Wolseley 6hp Two-Seater Voiturette  Chassis no. 8369
1904 Wolseley 6hp Two-Seater Voiturette  Chassis no. 8369
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