1953 Riley RME 1.5

Vendor supplied images


  • Original and unrestored example
  • Comes with a very substantial history file
  • Includes boxes of spares, manuals, and Riley Club magazines
  • Recently had top-end overhaul and runs nicely

The Appeal

The Riley RME 1.5 was introduced in 1952, as an evolution of the RMA. In many ways, it was reassuringly familiar, while the larger rear window, improved rear axle ratio and the improved hydraulic brakes all set it apart. Sadly, the car wasn't long for the world - it was really more of a stop-gap - and production lasted only three years.

Happy, that's made the RME all the more desirable today. It could be said that the Riley RMs have seen quite the rebirth in recent years, their quintessential mid-century aesthetics and capable performance making them ideal classic event cars. 

This 1953 vehicle has been with the current owner for many years and comes with a wealth of history, including old MOTs, invoices, Riley Club magazines, and various manuals. The duo-tone paintwork is a perfect match for that mid-century styling, and the interior has been very nicely kept, with only light signs of age-commensurate wear. With plenty of work completed and the car carrying a fabulous patina, we're sure this RME will attract plenty of admiration.

IMG_20200405_161540 Tony Buick.jpg 7.59 MB

History and Paperwork

  • Registered in 1953
  • Listed as 6 registered keepers by DVLA, but 3 were from one family
  • Masses of paperwork, old MOTs, and invoices
  • Riley club magazines, owner's manual, service manual, etc.
  • Used lightly with some wedding hire
  • Original and unrestored
  • Boxes of spares, manuals, and history
  • Currently indicates 07,271 miles on a five-figure odometer
  • The vendor notes that this isn't a reliable indication as the odometer is intermittent 

The Condition

  • Bodywork looks in very good order with only minor blemishes
  • Body panels are straight and the door shuts are precise
  • Paintwork is shiny and polishes up well with a nice overall patina
  • The two-tone paintwork beautifully matches the car
  • Discreet, modern indicators have been installed
  • Chrome work presents well
  • Wheels are in good condition and shod in a fine set of tyres
  • Underside appears in smart condition for its age
  • Interior is original and a delightful bit of 50s' design
  • Some wear is notable on the front seats where the leather has become dry in the past
  • Carpets are past their best in the front, as to be expected for their years
  • Headlining is in good age-commensurate condition
  • Door cards are in good order
  • Dashboard's veneer presents well with very evocative instruments
  • Other than the odometer's intermittent fault and the clock, everything is working as it should

The Mechanics

  • 1,500cc straight-four powerplant
  • Manual transmission with 4 gears
  • All grease points are regularly serviced
  • Recent head work included removing the hot water transfer pipes which are prone to cause overheating and leaks
  • Stainless exhaust system
  • Additional electric radiator fan, otherwise original
  • Radiator muff for cold days
  • Recently had top-end overhaul and is reportedly running nicely
  • Some issues recently with the starter motor but this will be replaced
  • The vendor reports it's very pleasant to drive and quite responsive for its era
  • All gears, brakes, etc. reportedly work as they should
  • The vendor notes it handles well and manages fine with modern traffic 
This sale is subject to the Car & Classic Terms and Conditions. By bidding and/or making an offer, you also agree to the following: 
The seller is registered as a private seller which means consumer rights stemming from EU consumer protection law do not come into effect. However, you are still covered by Car & Classic’s own Terms and Conditions.. 
We request that a non-refundable fee  be paid if you are the lucky winning bidder at auction or if your offer is accepted Please refer to our helpful FAQs and T&Cs for specific rates. 
This vehicle is “Sold As Seen”, on an “As Is Where Is’ basis and without warranty. Photos and descriptions are solely for guidance purposes and it's customary to carry out a full inspection of the vehicle prior to purchase for your own peace of mind. 
✓ VAT is included in the buyer's deposit. VAT may or may not be included in the final bid or offer price, as specified in the listing. 
We want a smooth transaction just as much as you do and as such we run all UK-registered cars and motorbikes for sale on Car & Classic through an online HPI check to verify that they show no insurance database markers for damage or theft, and have no finance owing, allowing you to bid with confidence. 
✓ We also check whether vehicles are recorded as being written off as part of an insurance total loss claim at the time an advert is placed on Car & Classic and we helpfully provide write-off category labels (Cat C/D/S/N) for your assistance. However, the presence or absence of a label does not guarantee the vehicle’s status and it is always worthwhile carrying out your own  full vehicle history check before making an offer on a vehicle. 
✓ Buyers are responsible for vehicle collection 
or delivery. Importing vehicles may result in additional customs duties and import taxes so it’s worth checking beforehand.. If requested, we may refer you to a third-party shipping company who can help. For more details and to speak to the team, email [email protected] 

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Auction Details
  • Year 1953
  • Make Riley
  • Model Rme
  • Colour Multicolour
  • Mileage 7,271 Miles
  • Engine size 1500
  • Seller Type Private
  • Town Bodmin
  • County Cornwall
  • Country United Kingdom
  • Auction ends
Bidding history
2 Bids
  • kevin-w•••• £3,000 19/07/24
  • pedro-n•••• £250 19/07/24

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