Once gifted to Sir Winston Churchill as a 80th birthday present, the Series 1 Land Rover is set to be auctioned for an estimated £60,000 after spending the last 35 years in a shed. Rover gave the prime minister the classic car as a present back in November 1954, complete with registration number UKE 80.
This edition was quite special, however, featuring many non-standard traits made up just for Churchill, including an extra-wide passenger seat to help plonk his tooshie on; a fold-down arm rest; a leather-clad grab handle, and a footwell heater to keep the PM nice and toasty whilst he was chauffeured around. Who needs Pimp My Ride?
The Land Rover was inherited by his son-in-law after Churchill's death in 1965. It was then sold for £160 in 1973. The buyer Norman Mills had no idea how to get the Land Rover back home, and asked his neighbour Frank Quay for help. When the farmer took a look at the log book and saw that Sir Winston was the first owner, he realised that it was a pretty significant car and offered to buy it for twice the price.
Mr Quay shut the vehicle in his shed when the road tax expired back in 1977 and only brought it out occasionally for display. He tried to sell it back in 1999 for around £30,000 through an early internet Sotherby's auction, but was unsuccessful due to technical difficulties and no one really bidding. Mr Quay's son took on the Land Rover as a 40th birthday present, and is now selling it through Cambridge auctioneers Cheffins. The car is expected to reach between £50,000 and £60,000 when it goes up for auction in October. Any takers? [The Telegraph]
Image credit: Cheffins