Friday, 17 November 2017

Iconic TV car sells for a 'cushtie' amount!

This past weekend saw the NEC Classic Car Show take place, and, again, it was a raging success! Classic car fans and aficionados alike descended upon Birmingham to see the sights that this year's show had to offer. 

One of the highlights of the show, year-in and year-out, is the Silverstone Auctions' Classic Motor Show Sale. The auction sees a wide variety of items passing through, from motoring memorabilia to bikes, and watches to cars. Among this years lot an iconic piece of television history went under the hammer, and sold for an amount that its small-screen owners could have only dreamed of earning ...

I'm of course talking about Del Boy's 1968 Reliant Regal which starred in the highly popular BBC comedy 'Only Fools and Horses!' A star of the legendary series, the 1968 Reliant Regal van is easily one of the most recognisable and loved classic cars of the small screen, transporting Del Boy and Rodney on their many riotous adventures in the smash-hit comedy.

'BWC 94F' was used in the 2002 Christmas Special, 'If They Could See Us Now,' and also featured in the BBC DVD 'The Story of Only Fools and Horses' as well as in several issues of the fanzine "Hookie Street".

"Del Boy's Reliant Regal is one of the most distinctive cars of BBC comedy history! Only Fools and Horses has a fan base spanning several generations and is something of a British treasure, so to have the van from the series up for auction is a real treat which will no doubt draw the crowds, " explains Nick Whale, managing director of Silverstone Auctions.

Today the van appears exactly as it did on screen, complete with tiger print plush interior and 'Trotters Independent Trading Co' decals. Accessories including a 'Tax in Post' window notice, nodding tiger, roof rack with suitcase, set of furry dice, personalised rubber foot mats, and a set of blow-up plastic dolls. With a reconditioned engine, a full synchromesh gearbox, a remote control key start, a DVD player and cassette radio, and even a smoke machine which emits smoke from the exhaust.

"Disregarding its TV provenance, it's probably the most reliable example of this 'marque' that you will find and has even participated in the London to Brighton rally in 2001 and 2004," concludes Nick. 

With 71778 miles recorded, the van was supplied with its original owners handbook, an MOT until 9th June 2018, and letters in the history file from the BBC which confirm its authenticity. 

The Reliant Regal was part of Sunday's sale, and enthusiastic bidding pushed the price to an incredible £41625, drawing gasps and applause. An amazing amount of money, but worth it when you consider the car's history and relevance to pop culture.  

Although you may not be able to get your hands on this iconic car now, if you fancy restoring your own, then we have just the book for you! How to restore Reliant Regal offers a guide in how to find a suitable Reliant Regal for restoration. It then gives a fully illustrated step-by-step guide on how to dismantle the car, and fully restore the body, chassis, electrics and engine back to showroom condition! 

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