Caton Austin-Healey 100 Restomod improves on a beautiful original

UK-based Caton is launching an Austin-Healey 100 restomod, with a planned run of just 25 cars.

Caton’s Healey follows the beaten path of other restomods, adding modern features to a classic car without changing the design that made it iconic in the first place. The Healey Restomod features a redesigned grille, removed front bumpers and a new front fascia for a cleaner look. But it’s still recognizable as Healey.

The car also features redesigned aluminum front fenders with large integrated vents and a smoothed body that eliminates factory seams. In a press release, Caton said it’s made using a combination of modern and traditional methods. Some parts are hand formed on an English wheel, others on a CNC machine. In addition, each car spends two weeks in the paint shop.

Austin Healey 100 by Caton

Caton chose to base its restomod on the early BN1 4-cylinder Healey 100/4 because the company says it’s more easily upgradeable than the later inline-6 ​​versions. The 2.5 liter inline 4 is based on the original engine but features a lighter block, ported head, high compression pistons, larger carburettors and a more aggressive camshaft. The result is 185 hp – just over double the stock 90 hp – and 195 lb-ft of torque.

Caton replaces the standard 3-speed manual transmission with a modern 5-speed manual transmission. It also does away with the somewhat cumbersome, elongated shifter found in original cars, replacing a more conventional setup. And while a stock Healey 100 is a tight squeeze for tall drivers, a new pedal box and redesigned rear bodywork allow even 6-footers to get behind the wheel comfortably, Caton claims.

In the spirit of no-frills British sports cars, the Caton Healey lacks a roof, tonneau cover and heater. Caton also chose not to include a modern audio system, though it does pack a couple of USB ports into the dash for charging devices. The door panels are also modified to accommodate water bottles.

Austin Healey 100 by Caton

Austin Healey 100 by Caton

The Healey retains its unassisted steering and rear semi-elliptical leaf spring suspension with double wishbones and adjustable coil springs up front. The Restomod rolls on 72-spoke Borrani spoke wheels with modern Michelin tires.

Caton plans to pursue the Healey with other projects, and not just cars. Jewelry, watches, and other luxury items are also possible, according to the company’s website. Since the market is already crowded with exquisite restomods, having a backup plan is probably a good idea.

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