A 1963 Peel P50, the smallest car in the world, has sold for a near-record £111,000 at auction, the second-highest price ever paid for a P50.
Top Gear, in the Clarkson, May and Hammond days, had probably more influence on what was perceived as appealing and not appealing than just about any other before or since.
Back in 2008, Clarkson did a feature piece on Top Gear about a relatively forgotten car made on the Isle of Man – the Peel P50 – which is the smallest production car ever built.
Clarkson demonstrated its size by driving inside BBC Television Centre, down corridors, in the lift and to meetings, and even had it stolen by John Humphrys.
Such was the interest in the Peel P50 after Clarkson’s TG piece prices started to shoot up for the remaining 30 or so cars, and in 2012 Peel was back in business building the P50, with a few nods to modern regulations, at around £14k.
But despite the fact Peel P50s can be bought new, the desire to own an original 1960s model isn’t showing any sign of waning, and although a Peel P50 sold for £135k in 2016 another, a 1963 model in red (pictured above and thought to be the earliest Peel P50 produced) has just sold for a mad £111,000 at Car & Classic online auctions making it, by weight, three times more valuable than if it was made of solid silver.