50-year-old 'fast pursuit' police coupe for sale

Last updated 07:10 24/05/2013

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Dubai police may have a fleet of supercars but the British were on patrol in sports cars over 50 years ago.

One of these cars, a Triumph TR4 convertible, that began service with the Southend-on-Sea County Borough Constabulary as a new car in 1962, will go auction in the UK next month.

Sporting registration plate 4100 HJ, the vehicle is a rare and exceptional example, having been restored to its original police specification by the owner who bought it in 1991.

The original car, which could reach a top speed in excess of 160kmh, was supplied with a specification including Pye radio, Winkworth bell, air horns, windscreen mounted hand operated lamp, front and rear police signs and a rear stop sign.

So detailed was the recent restoration, that where special equipment was missing, items were sourced with the assistance of members of Police Car UK.

4100 HJ has undoubtedly seen some action as recollections from retired Superintendent Bill Burles of Southend-on-Sea Constabulary suggest. Having allocated it the task of ''fast pursuit car'' he recalls that it went out on two shifts a day, seven days a week, clocking up approximately 1000 miles a week.  Officers invariably drove the car with the top down and always wore their helmets with chin straps in place.

Since its restoration, this rare and beautiful police car has been maintained to the highest standards and is sold with a history file containing some interesting documentation including a copy of Advanced Driving Explained by Inspector WH Jobson, price one shilling and sixpence, with a picture of 4100 HJ on the cover.    

Testament to the scarcity value of the police TR4 is that Vanguard Models have produced 1500 limited ‘Special Edition' models based on this actual car with the number plate 4100 HJ, one of which comes with the car.

With its unique history and exemplary condition, Historics expects strong interest from enthusiasts and collectors alike, with the car anticipated to achieve a price in the region of £35,000 - £40,000.

The Triumph TR4 police car is one of over 100 fine classic motor cars and  100 classic motorcycles that will be presented for sale by Historics at Brooklands on Saturday June 1, 2013.

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