This is “Flip” (AN5L 27223), a 1959 Leaf Green Bugeye set-up with front disk brakes, a 948 engine and a good four-speed original smoothcase transmission.
Flip is very clean and was repainted about four years ago. The car was rebuilt mechanically at that time after the new leaf green paint went on, with a strong 948 engine and new downdraft Weber carburetor, new gas tank, new clutch, new calipers, pads, hoses, brake hard lines, master cylinder, clutch kit, slave cylinder, gas tank and sending unit and tires. The car is also configured with a flip forward nose, for optimal engine access. Engine bay is nice and clean.
The interior is quite handsome, and was all redone. Workmanship is excellent on this new gray interior, which looks quite smart with the leaf green exterior. The wood steering wheel also adds a nice touch.
Flip has a super-secret flip-down locking hatch behind the license plate, which is a novel way to access the back of the boot. It’s kind of like a locking glove compartment, for very large gloves. Or like an escape hatch for very skinny people who need to clamber out the back should the car ever drive off a bridge into a river or lake and start to sink (nose down).
I met one fellow years ago who swore he slept in the trunk of his Bugeye with his finance. I suppose if you are into that sort of thing, this flap would function as a handy rear window, or a convenient way for people to bring you coffee in the morning.
Seriously, this set-up does give you a locking compartment/trunk in your Bugeye, which is of course missing on all other Mark 1 Sprites. If you want to leave your car at a car show with valuables on board, this is a nice way to secure the trunk of the car when you are not present. People have been customizing Bugeyes since day one, and this is just one more novel feature we have seen on the hundreds of Sprites that have passed through our building.
If it’s not your cup of tea, it’s pretty well hidden by the rear license plate when not in use as you can see above. The rear license plate hinges down to allow access to the lock for the rear hatch, when you want to use it.
Or you can ignore it and use the trunk (or not use the trunk) just like most Bugeye owners. Currently, the car has a removable partition in place behind the seats, and you can see the and front and back of that partition in the photos above.
This is a very nice driver with a lot of new parts. The car has no top but the top bow is nice and we can fit a top if you like. Sidecurtains are included, which will need restoration. The tonneau will work fine in sunny climate, but it’s a little tight if you live in a place with cooler temperatures. We can make you a new one if needed.
Flip is ready for fun! Give a call or email if you want to take this car home!