Duesenberg J-119

1929 Duesenberg Model J Disappearing Top Convertible Coupe by Murphy

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Plymouth, Michigan | July 30, 2016

Photo - RM Sotheby's

Photo – RM Sotheby’s

This is one of the earliest Model J Duesenberg’s we’ve yet featured. The car that took the world by storm in late 1929 still gets people’s attention today. The Model J is undoubtedly one of America’s greatest automotive achievements.

This is a “Disappearing Top” Convertible Coupe, built by the Walter M. Murphy Company of Pasadena, California. They built 60 Convertible Coupes, with only 25 of those being of the Disappearing Top variety. As a Model J, it is powered by a 265 horsepower, 6.9-liter straight-eight engine.

This car was sold new with a Derham Sedan body attached to it. The original owner in Chicago sent it back to Duesenberg to have this body installed. This happened in 1934 and then it was resold. It has had many owners, but the current owner has had it for many years and used it often. In fact, he has driven this car round trip from Florida to Auburn, Indiana. The car’s second restoration was completed under his care and is being sold to benefit a liberal arts college. Read more about it here and see more from this sale here.

Isdera Imperator

1984 Isdera Imperator 108i

For sale at Julien Sumner Fine Motor Cars | Guildford, England

Photo - Julien Sumner Fine Motor Cars

Photo – Julien Sumner Fine Motor Cars

We’ve been waiting for years for an Isdera to hit the market and, finally, one has. Isdera is one of the most exclusive – and reclusive – automakers in the world. Currently based in Hildesheim, Germany, the company built its first car in 1969 – a replica Ford GT40 race car. In the late 1970s, company founder Eberhard Schulz helped engineer a Mercedes concept car called the CW 311.

Mercedes never actually produced the car, but Schulz was able to take control of the project and began producing it under the Isdera marque between 1984 and 1993. This particular car is the 17th Imperator built and the first to feature a 5.0-liter Mercedes-Benz V-8 engine putting out 330 horsepower. It has supercar looks (including gullwing doors) and even though there is a Mercedes emblem up front, it is an Isdera.

Only 30 Imperator 108is were built (17 of which are “Series I” cars, of which is is apparently the last). Top speed is 176 mph and this one has done it. It’s been driven and used, which is exactly what it was meant for. Isdera recommissioned the car recently and its ready to go. They never come up for sale, so if you want one, get it now. No price is listed, so click here for more info.

Sigma Tourer

1919 Sigma 10HP Tourer

Offered by Coys | Woodstock, U.K. | July 2, 2016

Photo - Sigma

Photo – Sigma

This European Tourer was built by the French firm of Sigma, which was around between 1913 and 1928. Their cars are not common today – just as they weren’t  all that common when they were built: only around 200 Sigmas were manufactured each year on average.

This is a 10 horsepower car and it is powered by a 1.6-liter straight-four engine made by Ballot. Ballot engines powered most Sigmas. This example has never been fully restored and it shows. While it looks decent from 10 feet away, the interior is spartan and the engine is dirty. It has spent quite a while in museums. That said, it is still nice.

You usually don’t see many 1919 model year European cars, as most economies were reeling from the first World War. So this car is likely one of the first passenger cars launched after the war ended. It’s quite French in its styling, with its solid steel wheels and narrow body. It should bring between $21,500-$25,800. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

McLaren M1B

1966 McLaren-Chevrolet M1B

Offered by Bonhams | Goodwood, U.K. | June 24, 2016

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

McLaren has been around since 1963, having entered their first Formula One race in 1966. Today, the company is primarily known for their Formula One team and exotic sports cars. But back in the 1960s and 70s, they built sports prototype race cars for the Can-Am series. Cars like this M1B.

The first Can-Am season was 1966 and McLaren offered customer versions of this car, available with V-8 engines from Ford, Oldsmobile, or Chevrolet. This car carries the latter. It was sold to an American (and in the U.S., these were marketed as the McLaren-Elva Mark 2 as Elva built McLaren’s Group 7 customer cars).

The 1966 season highlight for this car was a 5th place finish at Laguna Seca with Masten Gregory at the wheel (he ran it the rest of the season as well but had a string of bad luck). As an historic race car, it has been used extensively by its current owner and is ready to run. Only 28 were sold in the U.S. and this one should bring between $350,000-$410,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Bonhams.

International D2

1940 International D2 Pickup

Offered by Mecum | Harrisburg, Pennsylvania | July 21-23, 2016

Photo - Mecum

Photo – Mecum

This gorgeous Art Deco pickup truck hails from the days of International Harvester’s “passenger car” production. While they never actually built cars, they did offer light duty trucks – as opposed to their modern, exclusive focus on large commercial vehicles.

The International D1 series dates back to 1933. The updated, Art Deco D2 came about in 1937 and lasted through the first half of the 1940 model year. The D2 was the ½-ton truck and was available in two wheelbases. This is a short-wheelbase variant (as the LWB version was designated the D2H). It is powered by a 3.5-liter straight-six making 78 horsepower.

This example has been beautifully restored and features a wonderful color combination. It was an AACA award-winner in the late-1990s. While Ford and Chevrolet trucks from this era are ubiquitous, this will turn heads when people realize what it is. It will bring more than it’s original sticker of $620. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

May 2016 Auction Highlights, Pt. II

We’re back with more from May, but as has been the case recently, we backtrack, this time to March for results from Coys’ Spring Classics sale in London. A previously-featured Delin Voiturette sold for $93,610. The top sale was this 1984 Lamborghini Countach 5000 S for $368,200.

Photo - Coys

Photo – Coys

The one-off supercar, the Aspira F620, went for $126,110. Complete results can be found here. Moving on, we end up at Bonhams Aston Martin Works sale, where our featured Lagonda wagon failed to sell. What did sell, and for the most money, was this 1963 Aston Martin DB4 Series 5 Vantage Convertible for $1,470,701.

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Our other two feature cars both sold with the V600 Vantage bringing an impressive $654,859 and the Project Vantage Concept Car $127,825. Click here for full results.

Mecum’s annual trek to Indy had a lot of cars cross the block. None were sold for more than this 1967 Shelby Cobra 427 Roadster for $1,100,000.

Photo - Mecum

Photo – Mecum

The Stoddard-Dayton we featured didn’t sell – neither did the Devon GTX or a previously-featured Locomobile. The Corvette Z06 brought $210,000 and the Buick GS Convertible went for $185,000. Click here for more results.

On to Silverstone Auctions’ Classic Race Aarhus Auction where our featured Reo Royale failed to sell. The top sale was this this 2010 Mercedes-Benz 300SLR Recreation that brought about $363,500. Click here for more results.

Photo - Silverstone Auctions

Photo – Silverstone Auctions

And finally (into June), results from Historics at Brooklands’ June sale where this 1991 Ferrari Testarossa was the top sale at $226,140.

Photo - Historics at Brooklands

Photo – Historics at Brooklands

A previously-featured Victor Electric brought $54,145. Our other two feature cars both sold, with the Elva bringing $124,215 and the Lea-Francis $47,775. Click here for further results.


1952 HWM Formula 2 Tasman

Offered by Bonhams | Goodwood, U.K. | June 24, 2016

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Hersham and Walton Motors started building prototype racing cars in 1946. The company was founded by George Abecassis and John Heath and still exists today in the form of an Aston Martin dealership. In 1950 the duo turned to open-wheel single-seaters. They stopped building race cars after John Heath was killed in the 1956 Mille Miglia.

In 1951, HWM had built a handful of Formula 2 cars and developed them for the 1952 and 1953 seasons. Recall that in seasons such as 1952, all Formula One races were restricted to Formula Two cars, so despite its name, this was technically a Formula One championship entrant. No records survive, but it is thought that this was driver Lance Macklin’s 1952 and 1953 car. 1952 was a better season for Macklin, as he DNF’d every race in 1953.

1952 highlights include an eighth place finish at the Italian Grand Prix and Monza and a 9th at the French Grand Prix at Rouen. After 1953 HWM shifted focus back to sports cars and they sold this car to someone in New Zealand. The engine was upgraded to its current supercharged 2.0-liter straight-four unit upon arrival. It raced competitively in New Zealand for a few years and didn’t return to the U.K. until 1997. Prior to its current owner acquiring it in 2013, it was completely restored and is prepped for racing. It should bring between $230,000-$290,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

1924 Unic

1924 Unic Type L3

Offered by Osenat | Fontainebleau, France | June 19, 2016

Photo - Osenat

Photo – Osenat

Unic is a not-often seen French car that we’ve actually featured twice on our site, including this Taxi cab. The company started in 1905 when Georges Richard left Richard-Brasier. The new company was financed by Baron Henri de Rothschild and was based in Puteaux. Commercial vehicles followed passenger cars in 1922 and became the company’s focus after 1938. The marque lasted into the 1950s under Simca.

Unic turned to sleeve-valve engines for the 1920s (those made famous by various American Knight-branded automobiles). The Type L3 was built in the 1920s and was likely offered between 1924 and 1928. It is powered by a 2.0-liter straight-four rated in period at 11CV.

This very nice-looking Torpedo-bodied L3 has been restored over the years, with the most recent work having been completed last year. It’s big and nice and looks way more expensive than it is. You can get into this pre-war touring car for between $27,750-$33,500. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Bugatti Type 73C

1946 Bugatti Type 73C Monoposto

Offered by Bonhams | Goodwood, U.K. | June 24, 2016

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

The most collectible Bugattis were built prior to the outbreak of World War II. But some of the rarest Bugattis were produced after the war. Ettore Bugatti had been planning to produce a Type 73 road car and racing car once the war ended. But it never really made it past the prototype stage – mainly because Ettore died in 1947 (but also because of the economic climate in France right after WWII).

Bugatti managed to show a chassis/body Type 73 at the 1947 Paris Motor Show. Five chassis were built, only one of which was ever bodied by the factory. At least three engines were also built. Those engines were supercharged 1.5-liter straight-fours. When Ettore died, the cars were disassembled and put into storage.

A Belgian Bugatti dealer bought two of them, had them bodied, and sold them off. All five cars still exist, with this being #4. It was bought from the factory in the 1960s and the current owner got his hands on it in 1985. The engine is not original as it was damaged (but the original is supplied with the car). One other Type 73 is a “C” Grand Prix Monoposto. All of them are tiny, and this one could be eligible for historic events. It should bring between $390,000-$460,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Bonhams in Goodwood.

Amilcar Compound

1939 Amilcar Compound B38 Roadster

Offered by Osenat | Fontainebleau, France | June 19, 2016

Photo - Osenat

Photo – Osenat

Amilcar, Joseph Lamy and Emile Akar’s French car company, is most well-known for their light, sporting cars of the 1920s. They competed in a lot of different racing events over the years, including the Monte Carlo Rally and the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Amilcar faced financial trouble in the early 1930s and they had a new corporate overlord that they turned to for help: Hotchkiss. At the 1937 Paris Auto Show, they debuted a front-wheel drive car that would go on sale in 1938. Called the B38 (or the Compound), the cars were powered by a 1.2-liter straight-four making 34 horsepower. Most were two-door sedans, through a Roadster was offered (as were commercial variants).

In all, only 681 passenger versions were made, with the Roadster being much rarer than the sedan. Very few survive. This one has been in the same family for 50 years and has not seen much if any use in recent decades. The paint has been redone but it does need a little work to get it roadworthy. You will definitely have something almost no one else does with this car. It should bring between $13,000-$17,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.