The Blue Car

Only one picture of this car is known to exist, but now available as a bespoke period car

Do we know what the car definitively is? No. However, it is very likely to have a Sunbeam Alpine base. Could it be a gullwing? Yes. Could it have a flip front? Yes. Is it smaller than Alpine size? Extremely unlikely as we will demonstrate.

Let’s deal with the last bit first. After years of researching this car the body parts and latterly a chassis had all been designed. The legalities of registration had been covered and proven possible to achieve.

The Blue Car is now available for purchase with a Ford 289 engine and bespoke aluminium composite, yes this is a period item, chassis. A latter day AC Cobra hardtop.

Specification is completely bespoke and to keep within the licencing rules you will be helping assemble the car.

The Blue Car Project came about from many long running threads on car websites. Over several years many answers came to nothing, and it appeared, and in fact to this day remains, a vehicle that nobody knows the answer as to the designer, owner and whether it still exists.

CAD Car took on the challenge and within a few weeks solved the car design in terms of size. The actual car we believe to be a Sunbeam Alpine based vehicle, but still there is no conclusive proof.

Getting to completion of the design involved reverse engineering parts parts, camera matching and moving between several computer programs with a high level of skill and knowledge and 3D scanning cars, car parts and areas of Oxford Street where it joins Vere Street.

Methodology used

Essentially it was a seemingly simple process of identifying where the picture was taken, when it was taken, what items could be identified within the scene, ascertaining the scale from all known items and then re-creating the known, or I should say assumed after analysis, parts and then re-creating the car. Once the car had been re-created possible donor cars were sought and then the design process was circled around again to see if the car we felt most likely to be correct, the Sunbeam Alpine, was a likely candidate.

Research techniques

Four major computer programs were employed. All were variations on a CAD theme. With parts of the vehicle and area of London identified, 3D laser scanning was undertaken to create reference material for use in the whole.
In addition to the tech side good old fashioned traditional research was employed. This involved researching picture sources, magazines, books, car clubs, regional Facebook groups, bus clubs, show programs of the period and much else.

The role of social media and car forums

It became apparent during the research phase that ideas we put forward were being shot down often in minutes by people posting who appeared to have done no research at all, let alone proper research. This situation echoed what we had experienced in the classic car world for a decade or more. However, this situation was interesting as the forum posts surrounding this car were extensive. Three thousand plus as I write this. Therefore, we analysed every post and put it into an Excel spreadsheet to ascertain an overall view of how good forums and social media were at solving this mystery. Spoiler alert. The answer is terrible with what we believe to be the most popular car forum and the one with the most posts on this subject having members that will be proven to be foolish and a strike rate of good research at an unbelievable, but true, low percentage.

The Blue car going up Vere Street. Sunbeam Alpine sound dubbed on.

Proof that at least one person in 1961 created a Sunbeam gullwing special. Is it the blue car? Impossible to put any probability on that conjecture.

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