A RARE car which oozes elegance is tipped to sell for £1 million when it goes under the hammer in Dorchester.

The beautiful Aston Martin DB6 Vantage Volante, bought by the media mogul Sidney Bernstein, is one of only 29 ever made.

Surprisingly for its 50 years it only has 39,000 miles on the clock.

Dorset Echo:

Picture: Dukes/BNPS

The Pacific blue version expected to race away at Duke's Auctioneers was bought by Mr Bernstein for his wife Sandra in 1968.

She had already owned an Aston but wanted one with power steering.

The generous present was given in the same year Mr Bernstein was made a lord by Prime Minister Harold Wilson for his work in television, having founded Granada Television in 1954.

The production company, which today operates as ITV, went on to become one of the most successful in British history.

His incredible success enabled him to purchase the spectacular Aston, which has a four litre 300hp engine rocketing it to speeds of over 150mph.

Having remained in the Bernstein family for nearly 50 years, Sidney and Sandra's son David, who inherited the car, has decided to sell up.

Mr Bernstein, who lives in the west country, said: "Frankly, I don't drive it enough and I am not a car collector.

"Through the passage of time and the good fortune of inheriting the car from my mother I have found myself the owner of a unique piece of British motoring heritage.

"I realise that I am not the right person to cherish the car as it should be cherished.

"I am confident that someone will be attracted to the car who will appreciate it as much as I do and look after it better than I can."

He added: "This was my mother's second Aston Martin. Her first, a silver DB5 Volante, had no power steering and a manual hood, hence the purchase of this car a year or two later.

"It became very much a part of our family life and I remember a particularly exciting trip to Italy that began with a flight across from Lydd in Kent with the Aston in the hold of the aircraft."

Mr Bernstein has consigned the vehicle for sale through Duke's.

Guy Schwinge, of Duke's, said: "When I first saw the car emerge from the darkness of the garage my heart missed a beat.

"It is remarkable that this car has only done 39,000 miles in 50 years.

"Cars of this calibre are like hen's teeth. Serious collectors are happy to pay a premium for untouched cars which remain in original condition.

"We have already received serious enquiries from the United States, Switzerland, France and Asia."

Of the 140 DB6 Volantes built from 1966, a very small number with the higher performance Vantage engine left the factory, making them exceptionally sought-after among collectors.

The Aston will be sold in Dorchester on Friday, June 9.