The 1953 Sunbeam Alpine was not only a stunning example of classic British engineering, but also a testament to the love and dedication of its owner, Alex Wilson. The car is a two-seater sports roadster/drophead coupé that was produced by the Rootes Group from 1953 to 1955, and then again from 1959 to 1968. The original Alpine was launched in 1953 as the first vehicle from Sunbeam-Talbot to bear the Sunbeam name alone since Rootes Group bought Clément-Talbot, and later the moribund Sunbeam from its receiver in 1935.
Alex Wilson, an 80-year-old retired businessman and engineer from Uddingston, originally Donegal, has been a car enthusiast for his entire life. He owned his own construction and fabrication works, which manufactured machinery for quarries, for over 30 years. Alex's passion for cars never wavered, and when he acquired a commercial garage in 1987, he also inherited the neglected Sunbeam Alpine that had been sitting there for many years.
Together with his brother Robert and friend Michael, Alex embarked on a 36-year restoration journey of the Sunbeam Alpine. The process was slow due to work commitments, but the trio persevered. At times, the restoration came to a standstill, but over time, the car began to take shape and transform into the masterpiece it is today.
"It was a labour of love, but we enjoyed every minute of it," Alex said. "There were times when we thought we would never finish, but we never gave up."
"The car holds lots of great memories and I am very grateful that it has been named the car of the week at the Perthshire Classic Car Tour."
Alex's dedication and passion for cars are evident in the meticulous restoration of the Sunbeam Alpine. His story is a reminder that vintage cars are not just machines, but also works of art that require love and dedication to maintain their beauty and grace.