<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001

This lot has been removed from the website, please contact customer services for more information

Lot 146
1935 Godsal Sports Tourer
Coachwork by Corsica

Sold
1935 Godsal Sports Tourer
Coachwork by Corsica

Chassis no. 001
Ford Flathead V8 Engine
Single Dual-throat Carburetor
Approximately 100bhp at 5,500rpm
4-Speed Pre-Selector Transmission
Sliding Pillar Front Suspension – Live Rear Axle
4-Wheel Drum Brakes

*The one and only Godsal Sports Tourer
*Sporting coachwork by Corsica
*Documented history
*Amelia Island Best in class award winner


THE GODSAL

Britain has always seemed to lend itself well to the cottage industry. Perhaps it is due to traditional British stiff upper lip persistence, or maybe it's the soggy weather that gives people plenty of time to dream, we'll never know. But storied companies like Morgan, Lotus, Lola, Allard and McLaren all got their start as a man, an idea and a shed.

For every success story, however, there are probably dozens who didn't make it past the initial idea or the first car. One such early hopeful in the cottage manufacturing scene was Charles Godsal; a name that even the most studied automotive anoraks may have never heard. Charles Godsal was the son of London barrister and prolific inventor, Herbert Godsal. Charles had clearly inherited his father's interest in engineering and inventing, and in 1935 he commissioned the construction of a sporting automobile of his own design. The Godsal was an interesting and stylish sports car, powered by a powerful Ford V8 engine which was backed by a preselect gearbox and riding on a proprietary chassis that featured Lancia-inspired sliding pillar front suspension and a heavy-duty rear axle sourced from Bentley.

The body was a sleek and sporty affair that was built by the famous Corsica coachworks, and the car was constructed by Research Engineers, Ltd, also of London. The prototype was exceptionally well built and sorted. Godsal was certainly talented and understood what it took to build an automobile. While it seemed like Godsal was doing everything the right way to ensure success however, his engineering expertise and production capabilities were redirected to producing aircraft for the war.

As Charles redirected his efforts to aviation, the car that bore his name was sold on to a friend. The Godsal then disappeared for some time, until it surfaced in the 1969 movie Mosquito Squadron, painted red with white stripes with air-raid tape over the headlamps and wearing incongruous cycle fenders up front and a crudely made bonnet sprouting outside exhausts.

In March of 1977, Thoroughbred & Classic Cars Magazine of the UK featured a story on this mysterious car, which picked up in 1972 when the car appeared in an advertisement among other sports cars for sale, described as a 1954 Ford V8 Special. Anthony Sidgwick of Cirencester was intrigued by this car and upon closer inspection found it to be far more advanced than a home-built special, so he took a chance and purchased it, limping it home on three of its eight cylinders. From there, curiosity took over and in-depth research began. Thankfully at that time, some of the people originally involved in the project as well as Godsal family members still had fuzzy memories of the car and were instrumental in piecing together its history and confirming its pre-war origins. Extensive searching led to Research Engineers, Ltd, who was still in business in 1972 and whose Managing Director vaguely recalled the car. Photos were found in the company archives that showed the car fresh from Corsica coachworks, this time wearing its original and stylish sweeping front wings, bonnet and Marchal headlamps. Using these photographs as reference, the car was restored by Ashton Keynes Vintage Restorations with new, original style front wings and bonnet.

Jerry Old of California, who had been working in Saudi Arabia for many years, was in London in June of 1977 on his way back to the States. He found himself at Paradise Garage, and was immediately struck by the fascinating one-off car. A deal was struck, and Mr. Old purchased the Godsal and had it shipped home to California. Old showed the car once or twice, and then put the car in storage. Upon retiring in 1993, he moved to Kansas City, MO, and brought the Godsal with him. It remained with Mr. Old in storage until 2016.

In the flesh, the one and only Godsal chassis 001 looks not unlike an early Aston Martin or Riley, with its low-slung stance and large, purposeful wheels. The Corsica coachwork features an attractive radiator shell, cut down cockpit and lovely ribs down the rear deck and wings. For what is in reality a one-off prototype, the construction and design was certainly very well resolved from the start. Extensive history of the car's origins as well as the fascinating life of Charles Godsal are available, and will be included in the sale along with a copy of the 1977 Thoroughbred and Classic Cars magazine featuring the car, and a DVD copy of the movie Mosquito Squadron.

In 2017 the car was acquired by the consignor who shared in Charles Godsals vision and dream for the car, and the decision was made to commission a complete nut-and-bolt, concours restoration with the intent of returning the Godsal to its original specification. The restoration was entrusted to Evan Ide, a Pebble Beach and Amelia Island award winning restorer. Evan and his team spent countless hours researching the car and studying archival documentation to ensure that the restoration left the car in its original, as created state. During the extensive 4-year project, Evan enlisted the help of friend and fellow restorer Wayne Carini. Wayne and his team were so enthralled with the project that they wound up dedicating an entire episode of Chasing Classic Cars to the car, its restoration, and journey. The restoration of the Godsal Sports Tourer left no question as to what a truly stunning automobile it is. The flowing lines of the Corsica coachwork creates a visual masterpiece with incredible details throughout; the car really must be seen in person to fully appreciate the aesthetics. Underneath the skin lies serious underpinnings that would be at home on any vintage circuit. The Lancia-inspired sliding pillar front suspension and a heavy-duty rear axle sourced from Bentley are paired with a powerful, period correct 8-cylinder engine mated to a race inspired pre-selector gearbox. The world class components ensure that the car would be at home on the race track as it is on the concours podium. In 2020 the Godsal was entered into the 2020 Amelia Island Concours D'elegance in the pre-war sports car class where it won best in class.

With an incredible story from its inception to current day, the Godsal Sports Tourer checks all of the boxes for a collector car. This 1 of 1, superbly engineered and incredibly beautiful car would be a welcomed entrant to the world's finest events and a standout in any collection.

Saleroom notices

  • Please note, the title will be in transit.
Contacts
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
<b>1935 Godsal Sports Tourer  </b><br />Chassis no. 001
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, click here for a free ONLINE AUCTION ESTIMATE or please contact:

West Coast
+1 (415) 391 4000

East Coast
+1 (212) 461 6514

[email protected]

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

Please Note the Buyer's Premium for this auction is as follows:

The final bid (hammer) price of each lot will be subject to a buyer's premium. For MOTOR VEHICLE property the premium is 12% on the first $250,000 of the bid price and 10% on any amount of the bid price exceeding $250,000. For AUTOMOBILIA and other non-motor vehicle property, the premium is 27.5% on the first $12,500 of the bid price, 25% on the amount above $12,500 up to and including $600,000, 20% on the amount above $600,000 up to and including $6,000,000, and 14.5% of any amount which exceeds $6,000,000.

Bonhams will not charge a Buyer's Premium on Benefit Lots 92 to 95.

Payment Notices

Payment for AUTOMOBILIA and BENEFIT Lots may be made by (a) cashier's check or money order, (b) personal check with approved credit drawn on a U.S. bank, (c) wire transfer or other immediate bank transfer, (d) cash payment up to $10,000, or (e) by credit card.

Payment for MOTORCAR purchases may be made in or by (a) cashier's check or money order, (b) personal check with approved credit drawn on a U.S. bank, (c) wire transfer or other immediate bank transfer. Please note that cash and credit card payments are not accepted for MOTORCAR lots.

Bonhams encourages contactless payment of invoices prior to collection.

Shipping Notices

For Automobilia shipments, please contact Client Services to receive a quote for post auction shipment, [email protected].

For information and estimates on domestic and international Motorcar transport as well as export licenses please contact the Motorcar Department at [email protected].

Special Car Dealer Notices

, number VI/1087220/1

App