1938 HRG Airline Coupe

The Coupe was sold at the Gooding & Co. Auction at Amelia Island in March of 2013. Read what Rick Carey of Sports Car Digest had to say about the car and its restoration – Lot # 58 1938 H.R.G. 1500 Airline Coupe, Body by A. Crofts; S/N WT68; White/Green leather; Estimate $160,000 -$200,000; Recent restoration, 1 condition; Hammered Sold at $230,000 plus commission of 10.00% – Final Price $253,000. Trafficators, Notek fog light, Lucas Biflex headlights, Silver painted wire wheels, sliding sunroof, enclosed rear spare. A one-off body for Major Halford (the “H” in HRG) with an MG Airline passenger compartment and custom nose by A. Crofts. Powered by a 1.5-liter Triumph Gloria engine and gearbox. Acquired in 1964 by the consignor and beautifully and freshly restored with excellent cosmetics and meticulous attention to details. The shocking pastel green frame color is original, as is the white exterior. Road & Track Award winner at Amelia Island and Most Distinguished Design Award at the Glenmoor Gathering in 2012, among others. This is an impressive and attractive automobile, so pretty and aggressively proportioned that it might have been designed by Jaguar’s William Lyons. Since it is one-of-one its price there must be accepted as the market value for it, even 15% over Gooding’s high estimate.

The 1938 H.R.G. Coupe was one of our favorite projects. HRG Engineering was an English car builder. Between 1935 and 1956 the company produced 241 vehicles. All were roadsters except one……the 1938 HRG Coupe. The coupe was the brainchild of Maj. Ted Halford (the H in HRG) and was produced as a prototype. It is the only HRG to be powered by a Triumph engine. The frame was constructed from chassis of the Halford-Cross Rotary Special race car which was widened to accept the coupe body and rechristened as Chassis #WT-68. The rear section of the car was a second series of the distinctive MG Airline coupe manufactured by Carbodies (now known as London Taxi). The fenders and bonnet were unique to the HRG and were formed by the Crofts Coachbuilding firm which also handled the body assembly. The car was debuted at the famed Brooklands Race Track in England in 1938. When Halford left the company, the remaining partners scrapped the project but the little coupe survived. It was purchased by its current owner in 1965, disassembled and brought to the U.S. (still in pieces) in 1985. The car has undergone a long and extensive restoration to bring it to the level you see today. As ONE of ONE vehicle, it is a unique and historic piece of British automotive history.

July 24th, 2010 marked a major milestone for the HRG Coupe as it drove onto the grounds of the Schenley Park Golf Course to take part in “British Car Day” at the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix moving under its own power for the first time in over 45 years.

JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2013 – The HRG Coupe was featured in both the January and February Issues of HEMMINGS SPORTS AND EXOTIC CARS magazine!

On March 11th, 2012, the HRG participated in the 17th annual Amelia Island Concours ‘d Elegance and was awards the Road and Track Editors Choice Award as the car they would most like to drive. We are extremely happy for owners Bob and Sylvia Affleck and very proud of the awards and attention the little car continues to receive.

May 11th and 12th 2012 saw the car back at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to take part in the “Celebration of Automobiles” where it was chosen 2nd in Class as well as being named a Road & Track Magazine “Top 5 Pick”.

June of 2012 brought the HRG to The Elegance at Hershey in Hershey, PA where we were honored as the Best British Enclosed Car. The show is in its second year and the setting at the Hotel Hershey is outstanding. We hope to be back soon with another car.

In July of 2012, we stuck closer to home and participated in Concours at the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix.

August 17th – 19th 2012 had us running in the 60 mile Pebble Beach Tour d’ Elegance and on display at the 18th fairway as part of the Pebble Beach Concours d’ Elegance. It was a tremendous honor to be asked to participate in the premier automotive event in the country. Seeing the car pull into Carmel By The Sea on the Tour was a thrill and being on display alongside the finest motorcars in the world was over the top fun….we want to do it again.

September and October 2012 saw the car participating in the Glenmoor Gathering of Significant Automobiles where it won the award for Most Distinguished Design and The Louisville Concours d’ Elegance wherein was chosen Second in Class.

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