Within the suburbs of Tours lies a plain-looking building that’s well known to lovers of automotive history.
Behind its anonymous façade you’ll find 3ADT, Dominique Tessier’s specialist workshop – and at the time of our visit a 1953 Delahaye 135 MS CL Spéciale is concealed within.
A few months earlier, a telephone call and a selection of emailed photographs had piqued our curiosity about this one-off Delahaye that, while it never really disappeared, had never had its remarkable story told – until now.
For that we must thank the diligence of historian Wilfrid Leroy-Prost, who trawled through the archives to gain a fuller understanding of a car whose history owes much to three automotive icons that made their mark on the industry during the 20th century: Delahaye, Facel Vega and Faget-Varnet.
The least well known of the trio, Faget-Varnet, was one of the many coachbuilders that were once scattered across France and grew out of a collaboration between Jean Faget and Henri Varnet.