If you happen to have an Austin Healey in need of some TLC, you might want to ship it over to the UK where Caton will revive the iconic sports car. Limited to only 25 hand-built conversions, the restomod is based on the 100/4 BN1 model sold between 1953 and 1955. The vehicles are being pampered by the same team responsible for the bodywork of Jaguar's D-Type and XKSS Continuation cars.
Power of the modern-day Austin Healey comes from a 3.0-liter four-cylinder engine producing 185 hp and 195 lb-ft (264 Nm) of torque. That might not sound like much by today's standards, but we should point out the car weighs only about 920 kilograms (2,028 pounds). It uses the original engine block, with everything else revamped and "refurbished to zero miles."
Austin Healey restomod by Caton
The engineers also install bigger carburetors, a full steel crank shaft, and high-compression pistons. In addition, the open-top British machine gets a side exhaust setup and aluminum front fenders. The engine delivers power to the wheels via a new five-speed manual transmission, thus replacing the original three-speed 'box with overdrive. By redesigning the transmission tunnel and removing the spare wheel, Caton has made it a more useable sports car.
In addition, the windscreen sits a bit higher now for added wind protection, but there's no top whatsoever. In addition, you also don't get heating or a radio, but at least the reconfigured pedal box improves the driving position.
Stopping power is provided by modern discs rather than the old-school drum brakes of the standard car. It rides on 72-spoke Borrani black alloy wheels with a period-correct design and retro-looking Michelin tires. Caton explains it took a whopping 2,000 hours to complete the first prototype as virtually everything has been revised. There are modern anti-roll bars and coil springs at the front, while the rear axle has retained the leaf springs.
The styling has been subjected to changes as the bumpers have been remodeled to lend the restomod a cleaner appearance. Those retro-looking headlights employ LED tech while all the seams and beading have been removed for a smoother look. Caton also got rid of the external boot hinges by switching to an internal setup with gas struts. To further clean up the design, the Austin Healey restomod has lost the trunk handle since accessing the cargo area is now done by using a modern key.
As you can imagine, these won't go for cheap. Caton is asking an eye-watering £474,000 (including the donor car), which works out to approximately $616,000 or €569,000 at current exchange rates. The reborn Austin Healey will celebrate its public debut at Salon Privé London scheduled to take place April 21-23.