The Healey Silverstone is an open two-seater road / racing sports car, or in the USA roadster, that was made by Donald Healey Motor Company. The Silverstone had headlights behind the grille to make it more aerodynamic.

It was designed to be a dual purpose "race and ride" car. It also had a 104-horsepower 2.4-litre Riley inline-4 cylinder engine and four speed manual transmission.

Production

The Silverstone was made at a factory in Lower Cape, Warwick, England. They were hand-built and only 105 were produced. When in 1948 the British government doubled the purchase tax on (luxury) cars over £1000 (US$4000) from 33.33% to 66.66% , Healey realised there was a market for a lower cost car with high performance and decided to make a car which sold for under £1000. The result was the Healey Silverstone.

Production ended in September 1950 when it was replaced by the Nash-Healey which was developed to cater for the more lucrative US market.

Design

The Silverstone body was designed by Len Hodges and was mounted on the original Healey chassis drawn up in 1945 by Achille 'Sammy' Sampietro (who had worked at Alfa Romeo and Maserati before the war and latterly Humber during the conflict).

Hodges rounded the back of the car and pulled it out slightly from the sides, a slot was cut out of the rear to house the spare wheel and tyre which protruded out of the rear of the car and acted like a bumper.

The car was a two-seater with a very light body but very little luggage space. It weighed only 2,100 pounds, which made it suitable for motor-sports.

The original 1949 Silverstone (D-Type) cockpit was comparatively narrow and was cramped, whereas the later 1950 Silverstone (E-Type) was made wider and therefore more comfortable. Both versions were comparatively successful on the track.

Competition history

The Silverstone has won many competitions including the 1949 Alpine Rally or Coupe des Alpes where the car was driven by Donald Healey and Ian Appleyard.

Another win was in 1951 when Peter Riley and Bill Lamb won Belgium's Liège–Rome–Liège Rally and in 1951 Edgar Wadsworth and Cyril Corbishley again won the Coupe des Alpes.

Other notable placings included Peter Simpson's 6th place overall in the 1951 Isle of Man Manx Cup Races. The Silverstone had a top speed of 110 mph (177 km/h) and a 0-60 mph (97 km/h) time of 11 seconds.

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