1930 Bentley Speed Six Sportsman Coupe / HM2855 Chassis Information

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six photograph

1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six1930 Bentley Speed Six
Sportsman Coupe
Coachwork: Gurney Nutting
Chassis #: HM2855
Engine # HM2863
The first owner of this car was Bentley Chairman Woolf Barnato, and it is one of the most famous and unique vintage Bentleys in the world. For many years it was though to be the Blue Train Bentley that was used in a race between Barnato and the French train that ran between Cannes and London, but it is now accepted that another Barnato-owned Speed Six beat the train. The evocative design of this car is believed to have been sketched out by Barnato himself on the back of a napkin, and it was built by the Gurney Nutting Company. With its fastback, racy lines it really is the grandfather of the modern day GT.

The cars built by Walter Owen 'W.O.' Bentley were entered in the 24-hour Race at LeMans as proof of their durability. In 1924, a Bentley won for the first time and before manufacture ceased in 1931, when the firm entered receivership, Bentley automobiles had claimed four more victories. Joel Woolf 'Babe' Barnato, a South African mining heir, shored up the firm's finances. Barnato and a group of companions, known as 'The Bentley Boys', used Bentley's newly introduced Speed Six Model to attack LeMans with a vengeance.

The Speed Six models were produced from 1929 to 1930, with just 182 examples built during that time. The 402.4 cubic-inch 24-valve SOHC six-cylinder engines produced 180 horsepower. The tuned versions destined for LeMans generated around 200 horsepower.

Barnato had a likeable personality and was a ladies' man, who boasted at a party in Cannes in March of 1930 that his Speed Six was faster than the famed 'Blue Train' (Le Train Bleu) that ran between the Riviera and northern France. A bet of 100 pounds Sterling was place that Barnato and a friend in the H.J. Mulliner-bodied Speed Six salon could outpace the Blue train station. They began as the train left the Cannes station and raced over unfamiliar French Routes Nationales in the dark. When the duo reached the coast, they boarded a ferry and were parked in front of The Conservative Club in London just minutes before the Blue Train arrived in Calais. Barnato had won the bet, though he was later fined by indignant French authorities.

Barnato took delivery of this J. Gurney-Nutting and Company bodied, semi-streamlined Sportsman Coupe in May of 1930. It became known as the 'Blue Train Bentley,' though it was not believed to be the actual car that had raced the train. A commemorative painting of the coupe racing Le Train Bleu added to the confusion. Adding to the confusion, the late Diana Barnato Walker, Barnato's daughter, always insisted that the Gurney-Nutting coupe had been delivered earlier and that it was indeed the car with which her father had raced the Blue Train.

After being acquired by the current owner in 1999, Bentley expert Clare Hay discovered that this car could not be the actual race car as it was not yet completed. Historical records determined the car actually driven was Barnato's 1929 Bentley Speed Six HJ Mulliner Saloon.

Immortalized in a painting by Terence Cuneo, this coupe was depicted as the winning car when in fact Bentley Motors records clearly show that Gurney Nutting didn't finish its body, with its dramatic low rear-sloping roof, until ten weeks after the Blue Train run. Barnato actually drove another Speed Six, a rather more conservative H.J. Mulliner coupe bodied saloon. Regardless of the evidence, this Gurney Nutting coupe has become synonymous with the event. It is rightly regarded as one of the world's most important Vintage Bentleys.


No auction information available for this vehicle at this time.

2019 1
2018 1
2017 2
2016 1
2006 1
2003 1

YearAvg. SaleHigh Sale# of Sales
2019$874,000$874,0001
2018$1,457,500$1,457,5001
2017$1,925,000$3,410,0002
2016$522,500$522,5001
2006$605,000$605,0001
2003$308,244$308,2441

Recent Sales

(Data based on Model Year 1930 sales)
1930 Bentley Speed Six 'Le Mans Replica' Tourer
Chassis#: SB 2754
Sold for $874,000
  2019 Bonhams : Quail Lodge Auction
 
1930 Bentley Speed Six 'Le Mans Replica' Tourer
Chassis#: LR 2787
Sold for $1,457,500
  2018 Bonhams : Scottsdale
 
1930 Bentley 6½-Litre Speed Six Sportsman's Saloon by Corsica
Chassis#: HM2861
Sold for $3,410,000
  2017 RM Sothebys : Monterey
1930 Bentley Speed Six image  1930 Bentley Speed Six image  
1931 Bentley 'Blue Train' Special by Bob Petersen Engineering
Chassis#: 32TC
Sold for $440,000
  2017 RM Auctions : Amelia Island
1930 Bentley Speed Six image  1930 Bentley Speed Six image  
1930 Bentley 'Blue Train' Re-creation
Sold for $522,500
  2016 Auctions America : Fort Lauderdale
 
1930 Bentley Speed Six LeMans Tourer
Chassis#: HM2852
Sold for $605,000
  2006 Vintage Motor Cars in Arizona
 
1930 Bentley Speed Six 6 1/2 Litre Le Mans Replica
Chassis#: LR2777
Sold for $308,244
  2003 Bonhams - Goodwood Revival
 

Vehicles That Failed To Sell

1930 Bentley Speed Six's that have appeared at auction but did not sell.
VehicleChassisEventHigh BidEst. LowEst. High
1930 Bentley Speed Six Sports TourerFR26392019 Bonhams : Collectors Motorcars and Automobilia Auction $450,000$650,000
1930 Bentley 6½-Litre Speed Six Sportsmans Saloon by H.J. MullinerLR27782019 RM Sothebys : Monterey $2,600,000$3,200,000
1930 Bentley Blue Train RecreationB68HR2015 RM Sotheby's : Amelia Island $550,000$650,000
1930 BENTLEY SPEED SIX TOURERHM28652014 The Goodwood Festival of Speed Sale $680,000$780,000
1930 Bentley 6.5 Litre Le Mans Team Car EvocationKR26792013 H & H Auctions Chateau Impney   

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1930 Bentley Speed Six vehicle thumbnail image  1930 Bentley Speed Six vehicle thumbnail image  
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1930 Bentley Speed Six vehicle thumbnail image  1930 Bentley Speed Six vehicle thumbnail image  

Vehicle Profiles

Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Fixed Head Coupe
Coachbuilder: Gurney Nutting
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Sedanca deVille
Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Open Two Seater Boattail
Coachbuilder: Park Ward & Co.
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Drophead Coupe
Coachbuilder: Saoutchik
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Tourer
Coachbuilder: Vanden Plas
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Tourer
Coachbuilder: Vanden Plas
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Speed 6 Saloon
Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BA2592
Engine Num: BA2594
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Grafton Coupe
Coachbuilder: Freestone & Webb
Chassis Num: FR2630
Engine Num: FR2633
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Weymann Coupe
Coachbuilder: Gurney Nutting
Chassis Num: FR2640
Engine Num: FR2645
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Tourer
Coachbuilder: Vanden Plas
Chassis Num: FR2641
Engine Num: FR2644
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Tourer
Coachbuilder: Vanden Plas
Chassis Num: FR2642
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Speed 6 Open Two Seater Sports
Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: KF2387
Engine Num: KF2392
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Old Number One
Coachbuilder: Gurney Nutting
Chassis Num: LB2332
Engine Num: LB2336
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Tourer
Coachbuilder: Vanden Plas
Chassis Num: LB2342
Engine Num: LB2344
Chassis information for the Bentley 6½-Liter1929 Sedanca Coupe
Coachbuilder: Motor Bodies Ltd
Chassis Num: WT2271
Engine Num: SB2762
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Tourer
Coachbuilder: Hooper
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Tourer
Coachbuilder: Hooper
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Blue Train Tourer
Chassis Num: 32TC
Engine Num: A7280
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Blue Train Tourer
Chassis Num: B68HR
Engine Num: B34H-1396
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Sportsman Coupe
Coachbuilder: Gurney Nutting
Chassis Num: GC 3661
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Sportsman Coupe
Coachbuilder: Gurney Nutting
Chassis Num: HM2855
Engine Num: HM2863
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Open Roadster
Coachbuilder: Vanden Plas
Chassis Num: HM2856
Engine Num: HM2868
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Sportsmans Saloon
Coachbuilder: Corsica
Chassis Num: HM2861
Engine Num: LR2782
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Old Number 2 Tourer
Coachbuilder: Vanden Plas
Chassis Num: HM2868
Engine Num: HM2872
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Tourer
Coachbuilder: Vanden Plas
Chassis Num: HM2869
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Drophead Coupe
Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: LR2776
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Saloon
Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: LR2778
Engine Num: NH2748S
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Tourer
Coachbuilder: Hooper
Chassis Num: LR2799
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Tourer
Coachbuilder: Vanden Plas
Chassis Num: NH2730
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Sports Tourer
Coachbuilder: Gurney Nutting
Chassis Num: NH2740
Engine Num: KR2693
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Sports Saloon
Coachbuilder: Gurney Nutting
Chassis Num: NH2741
Chassis information for the Bentley Speed Six1930 Open Four Seater Sports
Coachbuilder: Vanden Plas
Chassis Num: SB2756


Vehicle information, history, and specifications from concept to production.

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