Auctions and Brokerage
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Seeing the potential in a small, economical car, automotive enthusiast and salesman Roy Evans acquired the American Austin Car Company, which had manufactured an American version of the British Austin 7 until filing for bankruptcy in 1934. Evans renamed the company and launched the American Bantam three years later. Surprisingly spry for its diminutive size, only 6,513 American Bantams were built in 11 body styles before production ceased in 1940, and few of this rare species exist today.
This simply gorgeous Roadster was one of 512 examples built for 1938. Restored to concours standard in 2015, this little runabout wears factory inspired two-tone paint, with red side panel inserts over maroon. Subtle chrome accents on the rear wheel covers and front bonnet panels highlight the simplistic styling created by renowned automobile designer Count Alexis de Sakhnoffsky. The interior is beautifully dressed in cream leather, and this example features a driver-operated spotlight and collectible Bantam hood ornament. The current owner purchased the Roadster in 2018 from a collector in Texas, and the automobile remains in excellent condition with approximately 100 miles registered since the restoration.
Having gained celebrity status over the years, the American Bantam is recognized as an eclectic and exotic addition to any collection that reveres American automotive innovation.