Rare Swallow Doretti car found in a Devon barn

The car as it was discovered Image copyright Rendells Stonepark
Image caption The car was discovered in a barn in Bovey Tracey
The car has been removed from the barn Image copyright Rendells Stonepark
Image caption The car was designed chiefly for US west coast car buyers

A rare sports car built in the 1950s and found in a Devon barn will go under the hammer next month.

Only 276 Swallow Dorettis were made in the West Midlands and about 100 remain unaccounted for.

The car was designed chiefly for US car buyers, but this latest find was in Bovey Tracey.

It will be auctioned on 21 February with an estimate of about £11,000.

The Doretti, built by Swallow Coachbuilding in Walsall, was an attempt to attract car buyers on the west coast of America who liked Italian sounding sports car names.

'100 mph elegance'

But it was actually named after Dorothy Deen, who managed sales distribution in America.

Adverts boasted about its "100 mph elegance" and the car's acceleration of 0-60 mph in 12.3 seconds.

One even made an appearance in a Gregory Peck and Fred Astaire film called On the Beach.

Most of the cars made at the time were left-hand drive. However the one discovered in Devon is a right hand drive.

Rendells Stonepark, the auctioneer and valuer which discovered the car, said although it was built at some stage between 1954 and 1955, it carries a 1965 registration plate.

Its last MoT test is believed to have been 1976 in Hammersmith, west London.

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