Facel Vega HK-500, 1961 (LAST BUILT)
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Updated: 28-May-2024 10:47

Facel Vega HK-500, 1961 (LAST BUILT) | For sale

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Facel Vega HK-500 (HK1 CG4), year 1961. Colour “Tudor Grey” metallic combined with a beige leather interior and beige carpet. This impressive Facel Vega is unique and historically important; it is the last built HK-500! This rare and very exclusive Facel Vega HK-500 has been completely restored to original factory specifications. The automobile was restored by Amicale Facel Holland (AFH) and meticulously finished by Facel Vega expert and AFH founder Hans Ruhé. No expense has been spared to bring the car to its original glory! This HK-500 is equipped with the original engine, gearbox, and drivetrain, and is finished in the original colours; “matching numbers & colours”! This unique Facel Vega HK-500 is in top condition! Below you will find all information about the history and the restoration, including a restoration photo report!

This Facel Vega is for sale at Amicale Facel Holland.
Contact Mr. Jaap van Oenen via info@amicalefacel.nl or by phone: +31 529 481 385.
Price: On request.

This Facel Vega is the last HK-500 built, the car left the factory in May 1961 and was delivered to an engineering firm in Paris. The history in France is unknown, but the car was shipped to the U.S.A. at some point in time and turned up at a local auction in October 2010. The HK-500 appeared to be in very original, untampered condition, but had been in storage for a long time. AFH bought the car from the buyer at that auction and brought the car to the Netherlands in 2011 and put it in storage.

In 2020, a start was made on the complete restoration and overhaul of the HK-500. After disassembly of body parts and the interior, the bodywork appeared to be in very good condition with little rust damage. No defect has been found in the car that could explain the long standstill before the auction. Body and chassis were separated at AFH in 2021, the body went through a bath to remove all paint, superficial rust, glue residue, tectyl, etc. The rust damage was then repaired, and the sills were replaced. The bodywork was then ‘post-blasted’ prior to a KTL coating treatment in an immersion bath. The body was then smoothened and painted in the original colour “Tudor Grey” metallic. The chassis and the suspension parts were sand-blasted, powder coated and completely rebuilt with new parts. The body was then put back on the chassis. At the beginning of 2022, the original windows (and a new windshield) were installed with new rubber seals and all restored and renewed trim parts were installed. A photo report of the restoration up to this stage can be seen HERE.

Restoration details

  • Engine:
    The original engine (383 Chrysler Wedge V8) was completely overhauled to original specifications
  • Carburettors:
    The original pair of ‘four barrel’ Carter AFB Carburettors was completely overhauled
  • Electricity:
    The original starter motor and alternator have been retained and were both fully overhauled; an electric fuel pump was installed; the car has received a completely new wiring loom; a ‘hazard warning’ system was installed; electronic ignition was fitted
  • Cooling:
    The mechanical fan on the water pump has been retained, but now fitted with a new “Silentflite” viscose coupling; a “Flow Kooler” water pump was installed; the radiator received a new cooling block; an additional electric fan with manual control was mounted in front of the radiator
  • Gearbox:
    The original “Pont à Mousson” four-speed manually operated gearbox was completely overhauled and rebuilt with a new (overhauled) clutch and pressure group
  • Final drive:
    The live axle and differential were completely overhauled, transmission ratio: 2.93
  • Exhaust system:
    Completely renewed in stainless steel and polished to a high gloss
  • Brake system:
    The original Dunlop disc brake system has been retained, but completely restored and overhauled with new parts. A new brake booster was installed
  • Controls:
    The original steering system without power assistance has been retained but has of course been overhauled and rebuilt with new parts. Adjustable electric power steering was installed under the dashboard
  • Standard equipment:
    The original electric power window controls have been retained and completely overhauled; the original HMV Radio has been retained with a new automatic antenna; the original leather of the interior was still nice and supple. The leather was reconditioned by the upholsterer and was finished in the original beige colour; The beige carpet and the head lining were renewed; the dashboard was re-wooded and finished with 11 layers of clear lacquer.
  • Further upgrades/options:
    We have kept the HK-500 as close to the original specifications as possible. We have overhauled the original heater with blower (so no air conditioning installed); we have fitted a suitable exterior mirror on the driver's door; for safety reasons 3-point (automatic) seat belts were mounted on the front seats; for better night vision H4 Halogen headlights were installed; the standard steel petrol tank was replaced by a stainless-steel tank.

This Facel Vega HK-500 is unique and of great historic interest because it is the last HK-500 built. Restored by Amicale Facel Holland and meticulously finished by AFH founder Hans Ruhé with an eye for factory originality. A unique Facel Vega HK-500 of which no other exists. As original as possible with “matching numbers & colours”. An excellent investment and a unique car in top condition for the (Facel Vega) collector/enthusiast!

The Facel Vega HK 500 was considered by Jean Daninos himself as the best Facel ever built. The HK 500 was, for a long time, the fastest fours seater production line automobile in the world with a top speed of an amazing 240 kilometers per hour (with manual gear shift). The Facel Vega HK 500 is an extremely luxurious car with a gorgeous finish and beautiful details. The interior is majestic with it’s mock walnut (in the French tradition) dashboard and beautifully chromed handles and switches. The leather upholstery is of an exceptionally high quality the comfort it offers reflects this. The car comes with all of the novelties which were common on the American market at the time. The robustly built automatic windows and the gear shift with it’s stylish buttons are extremely reliable and never fail. Chrome was used sparingly on the HK 500; the bumpers, mirrors and side strips are all constructed of stainless steel. The vehicle is built upon a welded steel chassis within which the strong 6.2 Litre Chrysler V8 is mounted. The undercarriage has independent wheel suspension with coil springs at the front and a live axle leaf spring suspension system at the rear. From 1960 onwards, the HK 500 was equipped with disc brakes all round.

Technical data

6.2 litre V8 engine
two Carter "four barrel" carburettors
capacity: 390 bhp. at 5400 rpm.
top speed: 150 mph. -240 km/h.
gearbox: 4-speed, manual
weight: 1880 kg.

Facel Vega history

The French company Facel (Forges et Ateliers de Construction due’s et Loir) was first established in 1938 as a manufacturer of stainless steel products for the aircraft industry. After the second world war Facel began constructing automobile bodies for Simca, Ford France and Panhard.
In those days, the company was under the leadership of Jean Daninos.
Jean Daninos had always dreamt of manufacturing his own design of super car; the "Grand Routier" or in other words, a luxurious, comfortable and practical 4-person sports car. 1954 saw this dream become a reality with the introduction of the first ever Facel automobile onto the market, the Facel Vega FV1, equipped with a powerful and trustworthy American V8 Chrysler motor.

The addition of the Chrysler motor meant that Facel was one of the first manufacturers to combine European styled body work with a big reliable American V8...
The Facel Vega's were expensive and highly exclusive but they sold well, particularly amongst film stars and the rich and famous. With the passage of time the newer models became increasingly more expensive as extra improvements and features were introduced. At the end of the 1950’s, Facel had a motor designed specifically for use in a smaller model, the Facellia.
Unfortunately, these motors had so many teething problems that the huge amount of warranty claims they caused led the company into serious financial difficulties. The last ever models of the Facel line were fitted with Volvo P1800 (Facel III) and Austin Healey 150 pk six cylinder motors ( Facel 6). In 1964 this proud automobile finally went out of production.
Facel Vegas are cherished by enthusiasts all over the world to this very day. This extremely unique class of vehicle can easily be placed alongside classic makes such as Rolls-Royce, Bentley en Lagonda. Even though Facel did not manufacture it’s own motors, it is safe to say that the vehicle commonly known as the "Grand Routiers" of automobiles is of absolute top class and continues to leave a deep and lasting impression.

© Marc Vorgers 

Seller: Amicale Facel Holland
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Phone: +31 (0)529 481 385
De Vesting 24
7722 GA Dalfsen