1953 Healey Abbott 2.4 Litre


  • Beautifully restored throughout
  • Original documentation including service records and buff logbook
  • Resprayed, re-chromed, retrimmed and rebuilt

The Appeal

Produced by the Donald Healey Motor Co. Ltd. in 1953, this Healey 2.4 litre is fitted with drophead coachwork by Abbott of Farnham. Only a few hundred of these Healeys were ever produced, and they featured a four-cylinder Riley twin-cam engine which could push them past 100 mph. This was a phenomenal achievement for a sportscar of the early 1950s. 
This particular Healey comes with fascinating original documentation, including the first owner’s handwritten maintenance logbook. He was evidently a fastidious gentleman, evidenced by the fact that he either checked or changed the car’s gearbox oil no less than 25 times during the car’s first ten years. There is also original type-written correspondence on file instructing the owner that he should be using Min Cream rather than Mansion Polish on the walnut dashboard.
More recently, the car has been restored to a very high standard, including a full respray, interior retrim and chrome plating. We’re told that the engine has been rebuilt, the wiring loom replaced and the suspension and steering systems overhauled. A few discreet electrical additions have also been made, including electronic ignition and electric power steering. 
In all, this is a very rare English sportscar with a fascinating early history, which has been expertly restored and subtly upgraded, without detracting from the car’s period charm. 

The History and Paperwork

  • First registered 19th September 1953
  • Sold new to a Commander in the Royal Navy, who had it exported
  • Reimported to the UK in 1955
  • Detailed handwritten service records from new until he sold the car in 1965
  • These include a record of the date and mileage of every time the gearbox oil was checked — every 1,000 miles 
  • Typewritten correspondence between the first owner and Abbott Ltd. regarding the correct polish to use on the woodwork
  • Original Instruction Book of the HEALEY 2.4 LITRE and ‘buff’ logbook
  • Restoration completed by the present owner
  • The speedometer has recently been refurbished and the odometer set to zero, but the total mileage is estimated by the vendor to be around 50,000 from new
  • Road Tax and MOT exempt 

The Interior

  • Retrimmed in high quality red leather
  • Seatbelts fitted
  • Walnut veneers in good condition
Swinging open the wide, rear-hinged door reveals a generous sized opening to allow easy entry and exit from the cabin. The red leather seat covers and door cards are said to have been completed with high quality hides and they remain in very good condition. There is a little creasing to the seat leather, but there don’t appear to be any scuffs or tears that we could see. 
Matching red carpets cover the floors, seat backs and boot. They are trimmed in matching red leather and appear to be clean and tidy. 
The driver is presented with a large, chrome-spoked steering wheel, with a marbled rim. A full set of Smiths gauges sit in the polished walnut dashboard, along with tactile octagonal Lucas pull switches for the lights and wipers. We’re told that the speedometer has been refurbished and some of the other gauges are new, and all are said to be working correctly. Additional controls can be found beneath the dashboard, such as the choke and screen washer. 
A modern radio sits behind a hinged walnut panel in the dashboard. This has Bluetooth, USB and aux connectivity, and there is a discreetly mounted microphone for handsfree calling. A 12V socket and USB charger has been fitted to a wooden panel underneath the dashboard and secured with brass screws. Evidently a lot of care and attention has been put into adding some useful electrical extras without spoiling the look of this fabulous ‘50s interior. 

The Exterior 

  • Fully resprayed
  • Much of the brightwork re-plated
  • Aluminium panels on an ash frame
Standing back ad admiring this Healey from any angle, we can’t fail but to be taken in by its flamboyant styling, with its sweeping wings and distinctive radiator grille. The body panels are aluminium on an ash frame, and appear to be in excellent condition, with the paint similarly well presented. There are, of course, a few small scratches and blemishes as we would expect to see on a car which has been driven, but these certainly don’t detract from the overall appeal. 
The black mohair hood raises and lowers as it should do, and provides excellent weather protection with the windows rolled up. It has a light tan lining, which brightens the interior nicely. 
We’re told that the brightwork has almost all been re-plated, and it certainly is able to take a deep shine when polished. The bumpers and overriders look very smart, and the three-piece grille is in similarly excellent condition. The headlamps feature tripod bulb holders and the lamp lenses throughout appear to be bright and clear. Flashing indicators have been fitted but the original semaphore trafficators are said to function correctly.
The colour-matched steel wheels are in good shape, and feature large chrome hubcaps and the original style wheel weights, a necessity on a car which could exceed 100 mph. The Vredstein tyres are said to be brand new.  
As can be seen in the accompanying photographs, the underneath of this Healey is particularly smart. There is no evidence of corrosion reported and the chassis components appear to be in excellent condition. 

The Mechanics 

  • 2,443cc Riley four-cylinder engine
  • Engine rebuilt with new pistons in the original sized bores
  • Brakes, steering and cooling system overhauled
Lifting the long bonnet reveals the polished aluminium camshaft covers of the 2.4-litre Riley twin-cam engine which powers this Healey to over 100 mph. The engine bay is clean and tidy, and there is still plenty of room to swing a spanner. One particularly sought-after feature is the original glass screen wash bottle, with brass screw cap. These are now very rare and desirable. 
The engine has reportedly been disassembled and examined before rebuilding with new pistons and timing chain. The bores were reported to be in excellent condition, so new pistons of the original size were fitted. 
The radiator has been re-cored and we’re told that the steering and braking systems have also been overhauled, including new kingpins, bushes, and brake pads front and rear. 
A new wiring loom was also fitted, manufactured by Autosparks, along with the previously mentioned discreet upgrades. Electronic ignition, voltage regulator and fuel pump have also been added, along with electric power steering, which makes the car much easier to handle at low speeds. 


A superbly well restored example of this rare British roadster. It comes with an interesting history file and has been returned to a fine state, ready to be used and enjoyed.

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This item is sold on an ‘As is Where is’ basis. The condition of this item is the opinion of the seller and may differ from your own opinion. Photos and listing descriptions are for guidance purposes only*.** Car & Classic do not warrant listing accuracy. Full inspection is recommended. Viewings are at the seller’s discretion. Buyer is responsible for delivery and collection of any item purchased.*

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Vehicle specification
  • Year 1953
  • Make Healey
  • Model Abbott
  • Colour Grey
  • Odometer 667 Miles
  • Engine size 2443
Auction Details
  • Seller Type Private
  • Town Grange Over Sands
  • Location Cumbria
  • Country United Kingdom
Bidding history
49 bids
  • Sl•••• £44,500 30/12/22
  • pa•••• £44,250 30/12/22
  • Sl•••• £44,000 30/12/22
  • pa•••• £43,750 30/12/22
  • Sl•••• £43,500 30/12/22
  • pa•••• £43,250 30/12/22
  • Sl•••• £43,000 30/12/22
  • pa•••• £42,750 30/12/22
  • Sl•••• £42,500 30/12/22
  • pa•••• £42,250 30/12/22
Message C&C Auction Team

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