Lot 17
1966 Sunbeam Tiger MKI Roadster


Selling on Wednesday


• Carroll Shelby’s famous V-8-powered British roadster
• A former California car upgraded to provide peak performance
• Sunbeam Tiger Owner’s Association Certificate of Authenticity
• Features attractive and seldom seen Shelby American alloy wheels

260 cid Ford OHV V-8 engine, 164 HP, four-speed manual transmission, wishbone front suspension with coil springs and anti-roll bars, solid rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, and servo-assisted Girling front disc and rear drum brakes; wheelbase: 86”

There is no doubt among enthusiasts that the Shelby Cobra has gone down in the history books as a prime example Ford’s power at its best. In 1964, that same V-8 powerplant was slipped into a lightweight British roadster, and thus the Sunbeam Tiger was born. At the time, British automaker Sunbeam was producing a delightfully designed slab-sided roadster that offered significantly more comfort that other British sportscars of the era. The Alpine, as it was known, was quite stylish but it lacked the performance to match its sleek, attractive look.

Fitting these Alpine roadsters with a small block Ford V-8, a four-speed transmission, rack-and-pinion steering, and stiffened springs resulted in a transformation from mundane to extraordinary. With a 0 to 60 mph performance in 7.8 seconds and a top speed of 124 mph, these cars produced figures that no sporting professional would ever think to complain about. Just like the Shelby Cobra, the Sunbeam Tiger lived up to its name even when being test driven by GT40 racer Ken Miles. Between 1964 and 1967, just a few more than 5,000 Tigers were produced. At that point, Chrysler purchased Sunbeam’s parent company, finding themselves in the awkward position of offering a Ford-powered model. Since there were no Chrysler engines that would fit in the car, a Mopar Tiger was unfortunately not to be and as a result, the Tiger was discontinued.

The Tiger MKI shown here is notable as an early model, with minimal trim and featured a single chrome body strip. Painted in beautiful dark blue with black interior, its level of detail is impressive. It is equipped with the original 260 cubic-inch engine with upgrades including Petronix ignition, a four-barrel, LAT alloy Tiger valve covers, a larger aluminum radiator, a longer more ergonomic Mustang shifter handle and hi-flow water pump. Other new and rebuilt items include the convertible top, brake booster, master cylinder, clutch cylinder, slave cylinder, shocks, rack and pinion, and the exhaust system. It is a former California car equipped with the attractive and seldom seen Shelby American alloy wheels. The trunk is clean, and still contains its original spare wheel and jack. Often referred to as 'The Baby Cobra', the Sunbeam Tiger is a true performance car that is enjoyable to own and drive on a daily basis.