Hear the name Donald Healey and you may think of rally racing and motor cars. But did you know that speed enthusiast Donald Healey also launched a range of boats?
Miss Healey is a fabulous example of one of a range of fast boats developed by Donald Healey, a Cornishman born in Perranporth, who became a rally and racing driver and designer of the sports cars bearing his name. During the 1950s Healey became convinced that there was a future in the manufacture of high performance, competitively priced and attractive boats. The result was the formation of Healey Marine Ltd. and the launching of an entirely new range of craft to cater for a fast developing market around the world, with more than 1,200 being built over a period of eight years.
The Healey Sports Boat 75, from the drawing board of Cornwall based designer Geoffrey Lord, was built in the late 1950s. It is constructed with a fibreglass hull and teak wooden decking. There are two cockpit areas, each capable of holding up to three passengers. The instruments, mounted in the centre of the dashboard consist of an oil pressure gauge, tachometer and water temperature gauge. The ignition switch, ignition warning light, horn button and a navigation light switch complete the controls available to the driver. The engine is a four-cylinder, twin-carburettor Austin Healey 1600cc engine developing 80hp at 5,600 RPM.
Healey Marine still exists today, run by David Healey, Donald’s grandson – and the motorboats are still a nod to the original Austin-Healey design.
Miss Healey can be found in the Museum’s foyer.