Alfa RL Limousine

1924 Alfa Romeo RL Limousine de Ville by J. Farré

Offered by Bonhams | Paris, France | February 5, 2015

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

The RL was Alfa Romeo’s first new sporty model designed after World War I. It went on sale in 1922 and lasted through 1927. It was available in a number of different variants and could be had as a bare chassis so coachbuilders could add their own personal touch.

Not many of these were exported outside of Italy when new, but this is perhaps the only one that was shipped as a bare chassis to Spain, where it was bodied by J. Farré in Barcelona before meeting its owner in Mallorca in 1926. The engine is a 2.9-liter straight-six making 56 horsepower.

This car is in original (but superb) condition and is being offered for sale for the first time outside of Spain in its life. No, it’s not black either… it’s a very nice, deep maroonish-brown. It does run and operate as if it were new. It should bring between $160,000-$210,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

1901 Croizemarie

1901 Croizemarie Type AC Voiturette

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 6, 2015

Photo - Artcurial

Photo – Artcurial

Well this is an interesting one. It’s fairly rare – but not unheard of – that a car shows up in an auction and no one knows a thing about it. Croizemarie is one such company and their minuscule Type AC Voiturette is one such example.

It’s powered by a single-cylinder De Dion engine – the most popular engine in the automotive world in 1901. Many manufacturers used them and built some of their own parts. The catalog states that the body might be a few years newer than the engine/chassis combination.

This car entered the automotive world more recently in 1999 as an unrestored example that had been in the same family since 1921. A restoration was carried out in the last few years and the car runs, but hasn’t really been used. It’s unlikely another one of these exists and it should sell for between $71,000-$95,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Scottsdale 2015 Auction Highlights

January is a big month for auctions, so let’s get right into it: Bonhams in Scottsdale. The top sale there was this 1966 Ferrari 275 GTB/C for $9,405,000.

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Two of our feature cars didn’t sell, the Aston Martin DB5 and the Ferrari 250 Europa. Our featured Humber brought $148,500 and the Mazda Cosmo $110,000. Check out full results here.

Next up was Barrett-Jackson’s mega-sale where our featured 1966 Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake was the top sale, after it crossed the block for $5,115,000. The next two top sales were the GM Futurliner (which was actually sold for charity) for $4,000,000 and the Pontiac Bonneville Concept for $3,300,000. The Pininfarina X Sedan brought $330,000.

Since the top sale was one of our feature cars, we’ll go ahead and name this 1940 Cadillac Series 75 Towncar by Brunn as Most Interesting, among the seemingly infinite number of interesting cars offered this weekend. It was well-bought at $115,500.

Photo - Barrett-Jackson

Photo – Barrett-Jackson

Most of the cars at Barrett-Jackson are sold at no reserve, meaning the the highest prices takes it, no matter what. But once the “Salon Collection” of really nice classics rolled across the block, it became a parade of No Sales. Among them, our feature cars: 1953 NASCAR Corvette, a previously featured Duesenberg, the Chrysler ST Special, and the Lotus Turbine Indy Car.

The very interesting Packard Sightseeting Bus sold for $291,500. The Perana Z-One sold for $73,700 and the Caddy Northstart LMP brought $104,500. Check out full results here.

Next up is RM’s sale, which was technically in Phoenix. Their top sale was this 1964 Ferrari 250 LM by Scaglietti which was sold for $9,625,000.

Photo - RM Auctions

Photo – RM Auctions

Our three feature cars from this sale all sold, with the Miura SVJ bringing the biggest sum at $1,897,500. The Ghia L6.4 brought $412,500 and the Lightspeed Magenta sold for $16,500. Check out full results here.

The fourth auction of this rundown is Gooding & Company’s Scottsdale sale where – you guessed it – another Ferrari topped the sale. This time it’s a 1959 250 GT LWB California Spider for $7,700,000.

Photo - Gooding & Company

Photo – Gooding & Company

Our two feature cars both sold, with the DKW exceeding its estimate and selling for $132,000. The Ferrari 641 F1 car brought $990,000. See full results at Gooding’s website.

To round out our Scottsdale coverage, we have Russo & Steele and this 1957 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster as their top sale for $1,430,000.

Photo - Russo & Steele

Photo – Russo & Steele

Our feature car from this sale, the 1959 Echidna, brought an impressive $162,800. Click here for full results.

Isotta 8A SS

1930 Isotta Fraschini Tipo 8A SS Cabriolet by Castagna

Offered by Bonhams | Paris, France | February 5, 2015

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

There is no argument to be had: Isotta Fraschinis have the best grilles. That lightning bolt crossing it is so eye-catching it’s hard to believe it wasn’t copied all over the world. Isottas were some of the most prestigious cars on the market in 1930 – right there with Duesenberg Model Js and Rolls-Royces. In 1930, a coachbuilt Tipo 8A could cost you upwards of a stunning $20,000.

Isotta Fraschini marketed the world’s first straight-eight engined car in 1920. In 1924, that car was replaced by the Tipo 8A. It uses a 7.4-liter straight-eight engine. In SS trim, the engine put out nearly 150 horsepower.

The four-door cabriolet body work on this car was done by Castagna – a very popular coachbuilder for Isottas. It is believed that this car sat on the stand at the 1930 Milan Salon and from there it was believed sold to the son of William Randolph Hearst. It was restored by the current owner, who acquired the car in 2009, at a cost in excess of $800,000.

Only 950 Tipo 8As were built, with the SS being much rarer. And one with the history of this car will elevate it above all others. It is expected to sell for between $1,100,000-$1,500,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Bonhams in Paris.

1904 Fouillaron

1904 Fouillaron Type G 6HP Tonneau

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 6, 2015

Photo - Artcurial

Photo – Artcurial

If we close our eyes and are asked to picture certain types of cars, we all will likely picture similar things when told “coupe” or “pickup truck” or “convertible.” But there was a time in the early days of the automobile when there weren’t standard designs when it came to size and shape. As far as convertibles go, Gustave Fouillaron obviously had something different in mind when his Type G Tonneau was built in 1904.

Fouillaron was founded in 1899 and built cars through 1914. This Type G resembles more of a Conestoga wagon than it does any modern convertible. The way the top comes up is downright fascinating. At first glance, I thought it was a commercial vehicle. The Type G with the conventional rear axle was new for 1904. It uses a six horsepower De Dion single-cylinder engine.

This example was discovered in the 1960s. The catalog description does not mention a restoration in this car’s past and instead says it has been “kept in working order.” It has been in the family of the current owner since 1988 and is London-to-Brighton eligible. It will likely sell for between $83,000-$105,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Artcurial.

Grégoire Sport Cabriolet

1958 Grégoire Sport Cabriolet by Chapron

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 6, 2015

Photo - Artcurial

Photo – Artcurial

Jean-Albert Grégoire founded Tracta in France in 1926. They built some beautiful, rare, front-wheel drive luxury cars up through 1934. The company may have closed before the war, but Grégoire showed off this highly-styled Sport Cabriolet in 1955 with a body by French coachbuilder Chapron.

It is powered by 2.2-liter supercharged flat-four making 120 horsepower. The car is, like Grégoire’s Tractas before it, front-wheel drive. It’s a rare, attractive car with 1950s engineering and a coachbuilt body from an era past.

Less than 10 of these were built and this one was owned by the same family for the first 50 years. It should sell for between $120,000-$155,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Artcurial in Paris.

Alfa 6C Pescara

1937 Alfa Romeo 6C 2300 B Pescara Berlinetta by Pinin Farina

Offered by Bonhams | Paris, France | February 5, 2015

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

The Alfa Romeo 6C was new for 1925 and the 6C 2300 would be the fourth version of the model. It was introduced in 1934 at the Milan auto show and was the first version of the 6C with over two liters of engine capacity.

The engine is a 2.3-liter straight-six and in this trim it makes 95 horsepower with a top speed of 90 mph. The 2300B Pescara was built between 1934 and 1937, with 185 models produced in total (this includes non-B Pescaras as well).

This Pescara Berlinetta was bodied by Pinin Farina for the 1937 Milan show. It is thought that this body work is actually unique in its glorious Art Deco-ness. After the war, this car was used in hillclimbs before being butchered and converted into a pickup truck in 1954. Luckily, it was discovered in 1992 with a good portion of the original parts there – but the restoration, which began in 2002, required a reconstruction of the fastback section.

Today it looks wonderful. It’s a fine example of 1930s pre-war style by one of the world’s most famous design houses. It will likely sell for between $950,000-$1,700,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Lancia Belna

1934 Lancia Belna Eclipse by Pourtout

Offered by RM Auctions | Paris, France | February 4, 2015

Photo - RM Auctions

Photo – RM Auctions

The Lancia Belna was actually built at Lancia’s first non-Italian plant in France. They opened that factory in 1931. They began producing the Lancia Augusta there in 1934, but all French-built Augustas were called “Belna” (which, strangely, translates from Hungarian to “gut”).

French coachbuilder Marcel Pourtout got his hands on a few bare chassis Belnas and built a really lovely design. This “Eclipse” car features a retractable hardtop that was designed by automotive designer and French resistance fighter Georges Paulin. The Belna is powered by a 35 horsepower 1.2-liter V-4. And it has the best tires you could get on a car from the 1930s. I don’t know what it is about those chunky treads, but they just spell awesome.

Only about 3,000 Belnas were made before production stopped in 1938. Only about 500 of those left the French factory as bare chassis and only two Pourtout Eclipse Belnas are known to exist. This is the only assembled, road-worthy example. It’s gorgeous and can be yours for between $360,000-$450,000. Click here for more info and here for more from RM in Paris.

Excelsior Albert I

1927 Excelsior Albert I Court Cabriolet by Snutsel & Fils

Offered by Bonhams | Paris, France | February 5, 2015

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Arthus de Coninck established his company, the automaker Excelsior, in Brussels, Belgium in 1903. Car production began the following year and they began building very fine cars shortly thereafter. In fact, the Belgian ruling family were Excelsior customers for a number of years. But cars favored by royalty are hard to sell when the world economy turns, and the company sold out to Imperia in 1929 with the marque being retired in 1932.

The Albert I was one of the finest cars built in the era and the high point for Excelsior. It uses a 5.3-liter straight-six making 130 horsepower. The body is aluminium and was done by a local coachbulder in Brussels, Snutsel & Fils.

This example was ordered new by the Romanian ambassador to Great Britain but ended up going to South Africa instead where it spent a majority of its life up until 2004. The restoration began in Belgium in 2004 and was completed in 2013. What a fantastic opportunity to acquire a rare and incredible automobile. It can be yours for between $420,000-$480,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Bonhams in Paris.

STP Turbine Indy Car

1968 Lotus 56

Offered by Barrett-Jackson | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 17, 2015

Photo - Barrett-Jackson

Photo – Barrett-Jackson

In 1967, Andy Granatelli entered the turbine-powered STP-Paxton Turbocar in the Indianapolis 500. The car nearly won the race at the hands of Parnelli Jones but a transmission bearing failure with eight laps to go ruined those plans.

Team Lotus took note of this impressive performance and they designed the Lotus 56 around a modified version of the Pratt & Whitney ST6B used in the Turbocar. The STN 6/76 made 500 horsepower in the 56. This car also has four-wheel drive.

So it dominated qualifying, with Joe Leonard taking the pole in one of three 56s entered for the race (a fourth was built, but was destroyed in Mike Spence’s fatal crash in testing). This car was raced by Graham Hill in the ’68 500. He crashed in turn two on lap 110, resulting in a 19th place finish. None of the 56s finished the race, but Joe Leonard was leading with nine laps to go when his fuel pump broke.

This car was owned by Richard Petty for many years and it has been restored to working, race-day condition. For the past year, it’s been on display on at the Speedway Museum in Indy. It’s an awesome piece of machinery and Indianapolis 500 history. Click here for more info and here for the rest of Barrett-Jackson’s lineup.

Update: Not sold, high bid of $1,200,000.