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Churchill's car up for auction

After Churchill, the Daimler has been to the US, Germany, UK and was even owned by an Iranian Prince for a time.

The 1939 Daimler DB18 Drophead Coupe ace was used by the British Prime Minister during the 1944 and 1949 election campaigns and is expected to fetch up to $400,000 at auction at Brooklands on December 4.

Owing to World War II, only eight of the proposed 23 DB18 Drophead Coupe aces due for 1939 were built, with four completely destroyed during the Blitz, a fifth so badly damaged it was scrapped and the whereabouts of two unknown.  Chassis 49531 remains the only discovered surviving 1939 model.

After Churchill, the Daimler has been to the US, Germany, UK and was even owned by an Iranian Prince for a time.  German restorer E. Thiesen of Hamburg has spent $192,000 restoring the car with silver and black coachwork, three-position cabriolet hood, green leather seats, wooden dashboard and Jaeger instruments.

Rolling off the production line in the same year motor racing ceased at Brooklands, the DB18 was capable of a top speed of 122km/h and a 0-80km/h acceleration time of 17.9 seconds.

Although the DB18 has manual transmission, the car uses a four-speed Wilson Pre-selector gearbox in tandem with the Daimler Fluid Flywheel, allowing the driver to select the next available gear by hand before using the "change pedal" to shift gears.