The Vauxhall 30–98 was manufactured by Vauxhall at Luton, Bedfordshire from 1913 to 1927.
In its day, its best-known configuration was the Vauxhall Velox (Latin for ‘swift’/‘fast’; derivation of ‘velocity’), a standard four-seater with open tourer body.
Vauxhall’s own description was the ‘Super-Excellent 30–98hp Vauxhall-Velox Sporting Car’, also known to enthusiasts by Vauxhall’s chassis codes, ‘E’ (4.5-litres side-valve), or ‘OE’ (4.25-litres overhead-valve), and its first car guaranteed by the manufacturer to achieve 100 mph.
H-8455 on display here is a Vauxhall 30-98 ‘E’-type with four cylinders, two-wheel brakes, and a ‘short scuttle’ (car number E251); it has had three owners from new.
Its first owner was an Argentinian horse-breeder who purchased it from Harrods in Buenos Aires at a time when Harrods were the agent for Vauxhall in South America. It was used by the family for many years, including local race events in its later life.
Featured in his book: Thrill of the Chase, Colin Crabbe repatriated it to the UK in 1994. After restoring it, he won a Vintage Sports-Car Club (VSCC) concours before immediately setting off on a series of worldwide rallies which included Russia — where it was driven by the Royal Automobile Club’s President H.R.H. Prince Michael of Kent — India and San Francisco..
The current owners, Jenny and Tony Lees, purchased the vehicle in 2006. Since then it has been used for every type of motoring activity, including family holidays abroad, VSCC racing, sprints, rallying, hill climbs and more. They describe it as a ‘fabulous car if somewhat patinated’.
It will celebrate its 100th birthday next year by being driven from Leicestershire to Stornoway.
2019 Winner of the Club Trophy at the Concours of Elegance at Hampton Court. Displayed courtesy of Jenny and Tony Lees from Monday 7 October to Sunday 13th October 2019.