Facel Vega Facel II (1962)
The Facel II was the last of the ‘big’ Grand Tourers to roll out the Facel Vega factory in Paris and undoubtedly one of the most beautiful. Powered by a mighty 6,3-litre Chrysler V8 it was one of the fastest cars of its age and with a price tag of 73.500,- francs also one of the most expensive. With only 182 examples built, they were, and of course still are, a rare sight. JB Classic Cars has the great opportunity to offer a gorgeous dark blue Facel II from 1962, matching numbers and in very good driving condition with only 54.000 km.
The birth and end of the Facel II
It was in 1959 that Jean Daninos and his team began working on a replacement of the Facel HK500, that saw ever declining sales. Times had changed and the company, in bad shape after engine problems with the smaller Facellia, could do with a model that would bring in some very needed financial means. From this necessity came the car of which Daninos himself said ‘It was by far the best’. Although somewhat lighter, the basis of the mechanics of the Facel II didn’t change that much from the HK500. It was still built on a similar tubular frame with disc brakes all around, originally powered by the same Chrysler V8. The suspension was slightly modified, with also a new way of fitting the anti-roll bar.
The greatest difference from its predecessor was the design. Where the HK500 with its panoramic front window was very much a child of the fifties, the Facel II with its low roof and sleek body, is unquestionably a sixties car. It could match any of its competitors like the Maserati 3500 GT and Aston Martin DB4, in both beauty and performance. The new luxurious interior still kept its classic Facel charm, with its voluptuous leather seats, wood painted metal dashboard and beautiful dials. It seemed Daninos made his best car yet and production started in 1962. The car was loved by the press and the public alike, and soon the first cars were sold, among others to famous Beatle Ringo Starr. But the decline of the company seemed so irreversible, that even the Facel II could not save it. In 1964 Facel Vega went bankrupt, ending production of the Facel II.
A good drivers car
The car on offer, chassis number HK2-A-156, was the 57th Facel II produced. Originally in Silver Grey with a black interior and with the automatic gearbox and power steering, it was imported from France to Germany by Auto Becker in Düsseldorf in 1962. It was sold as a company car to the board of directors of an electrical company in Bamberg, Germany. Between ’64-’71 it fulfilled its role as company car for several other business in Germany until it sustained some damage and was sold. The next years the car was repaired to somewhat peculiar specifications, until the current owner rediscovered it in 1980. Being a great Facel Vega enthusiast and already owning several other Facel’s, he bought the car intending to restore it to its original glory.
In a period of over more than 25 years the car was partially restored, with its final repaint in 2018. During the restauration the owner allowed himself some adaptions to make driving this very beautiful car more reliable and safe. A hydraulic handbrake system was installed, because the automatic gearbox did not have a P-setting and the standard Facel handbrakes are notoriously faulty. The standard carburettor was replaced by an Edelbrock, including the intake manifold, and an alternator replaced the old dynamo. A split braking system and seat belts provided additional safety. After restoration the car was kept in very good condition and used during rally’s and Facel Vega concours. In 2019 the car was checked by the German TÜV, who classified it as ‘Zustand (Condition) 2’. The current owner, now being of age, offers the car for the next Facel Vega lover. Someone who will enjoy the amazing design, the luxurious style and the incredible power of one of the most beautiful cars from the sixties.
Chassis nr. HK2-A-156
Engine nr. P38 -7-12
TY 5 “Typhoon” engine (383 Cui / 6.3 Litre)
3-speed Torqueflite Automatic Gearbox
Price: € 299.000,-