Tank inventor's rare car to go up for auction

1904 Wilson-Pitcher up for auction
An extremely rare car - built by the man credited with inventing the first tank - is up for auction next month at Bonhams.

The 1904 Wilson-Pilcher, thought to be "the sole surviving example of its type", has an estimate of between £180,000 and £220,000 - having been in in the creator's family for more than a century.
Wilson himself was an noteworthy chap - a Cambridge graduate, his inventing efforts were originally focussed on developing an aero engine.

Tragically though, his business partner died in a flying accident before the plans reached completion, and so Wilson turned his attention elsewhere.

In fact, it was during the First World War that Wilson started to investigate the idea of "armoured fighting vehicles" - eventually collaborating with an agricultural engineer to create the very first British tank.

The car on the other hand, - a 12/16hp Wilson-Pitcher - was built in 1904, the product of Wilson's Newcastle-Upon-Tyne factory. Painted dark blue with a black leather interior, the car was originally used as a fire-tender - eventually being renovated in the late 1940s to the condition it's in now.

"This rare car, one of the earliest successes of one of the most important engineers and inventors this country has ever seen, is a fantastic addition to our annual veteran car sale," said Tim Schofield, Director of the Bonhams UK Motor Car department.

"We are expecting around 15 London to Brighton eligible cars for the sale, some of which are offered with entry to this year's Run – so collectors could buy on the Friday and take part in the event on the Sunday."
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