Austin-Healey 3000 BJ8 MK III

After leaving Triumph, engineer and racer Donald Healey struck out on his own with the low-production specials that characterized British sports cars immediately after World War II. Meanwhile, Austin’s Leonard Lord, like all other British motor industry leaders, was seeking a new product to earn desperately needed export income. In 1952, Healey created the Hundred two-seater using his own chassis design, the Austin A90 engine and drivetrain and an envelope body designed by Gerry Coker. Lord saw it, a deal was quickly struck, and almost overnight it became known as the Austin-Healey.

About 16,000 four-cylinder Austin-Healeys were built over four years, followed by the six-cylinder 3000 model in 1959. Powered by an engine enlarged from 2,639 cc to 2,912 cc and equipped with front-disc brakes, the 3000 was an immediate success both commercially and in competition.

The final version of the Big Healey was the 3000 Mark III (BJ8), introduced in 1963 and built through 1967. With its dual two-inch SU carburetors, the well-developed 2,912-cc six-cylinder engine provided acceleration from rest to 60 mph in 9.8 seconds and top speeds exceeding 120 mph. Other improvements included a revised exhaust system and a standard vacuum brake booster. In addition, passengers enjoyed a more luxurious cockpit with a handsome wood-faced dashboard and a floor console, as well as the roll-up side windows of the prior BJ7.

This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in January of 2011 at the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa, Phoenix, Arizona.

150 bhp, 2,912 cc overhead valve inline six-cylinder engine, dual SU carburetors, four-speed manual gearbox with overdrive, independent front suspension with wishbones and coil springs, rigid rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, and hydraulic front disc, rear drum brakes. Wheelbase: 92"

Source: RM Auctions

Gallery: Austin-Healey 3000 BJ8 MK III