1903 Barré Tonneau

1903 Barré Twin-Cylinder Fout-Seat Tonneau by Labourdette

Offered by Bonhams | London, England | November 2, 2012

Gaston Barré, like many early automobile producers, started with a bicycle shop. He opened his in 1894 but by 1899 realized what the new wave was going to be and started constructing quadricycles. Later that year he received some backing from a wealthy local in Niort and moved to a larger facility. Automobile production started in 1900 and Barré quickly became one of the many French automobile companies that rallied a strong following and had a steady output of cars for a number of years.

What helped Barré become a fairly large regional manufacturer was that he came up with the idea of post-sale service. Barré would support his cars in private hands when they entered them in events. He expanded with a Parisian office and during the first World War he built military vehicles. After the war, the pre-war models remained with little changes and the company had to be reorganized in 1927 but it could never get past its out-of-date designs. Production stopped in 1930 and the firm was liquidated in 1933. About 2,500-3,000 Barré’s were produced over the years.

This twin-cylinder Barré has four-seat tonneau coachwork from Henri Labourdette of Paris. Barré’s are known for their dependability and build-quality and this car, at almost 110 years old, is no exception. It is expected to sell for between $190,000-$240,000. For more information click here. And for more from Bonhams in London, click here.

Update: Sold $214,000.

DB6 Shooting Brake

1967 Aston Martin DB6 Shooting Brake by FLM Panelcraft

Offered by RM Auctions | London, England | October 31, 2012

I suppose this is what James Bond drove to the supermarket. Or the hardware store. Or when he wanted to take his dogs out to the countryside… you get the idea. It’s what happens when you take one of the great GT cars of all time and make it super-functional.

This car was purchased new by famed racing driver Innes Ireland in 1967. Two years later, he took the car to FLM Panelcraft in London to have it converted to a shooting brake – aka: a two-door wagon. FLM Panelcraft also did the conversion on the other Aston Martin estate we’ve featured, the ’71 DBS Wagon. This is one of two (according to RM) DB6 Shooting Brakes built by FLM.

Everything under hood is the same, the 4.0-liter straight-six making 282 horsepower is unchanged. And it’s still a quick car – there is a quote from Ireland in the lot description (here) that says he had the car humming along at 120 mph with three passengers and their luggage. Functional indeed!

The car was restored by Aston Martin Works Service and this is the first time it has been seen since 1995. The sale price should range between $525,000-$600,000. For the rest of RM’s London lineup, click here.

Update: Not sold.

Maserati MC12

2005 Maserati MC12

Offered by RM Auctions | London, England | October 31, 2012

Give me this beautiful Italian beast any day over the Ferrari Enzo, the car upon which it is based. Okay, so the only things these two cars have in common, besides a corporate overlord, is their chassis and engine. The purpose of this car, unlike the Enzo, was to go racing – specifically in the FIA GT Championship, winning it in 2005. Although introduced in 2004, MC12s could still be seen on the circuit through 2010. They also competed in the FIA GT1 Champhionship, Italian GT and the American Le Mans Series.

The engine is a Ferrari-sourced 6.0-liter V12 making 620 horsepower. It’s slower than an Enzo, hitting 62 mph in 3.8 seconds on the way to its 205 mph top speed. The Ferrari has a higher top speed and also brakes better. But this car has style and soul. It’s sleeker, longer, taller and wider than the Enzo (and wider than just about everything else on the road) and somehow it has a lower coefficient of drag. It’s much, much prettier and the top is removable, which could prove useful should you try and use reverse – as there is no rear window. This is the only color combination in which they were offered from the factory.

As a homologation special (something we don’t see too much of nowadays), the MC12 was offered in limited numbers – only 50 road cars were built in total, 30 in 2004 and 25 in 2005. So it is very rare. They cost $800,000 when new and they have already appreciated in price. This one is expected to sell for between $1,000,000-$1,250,000. For more information, click here. And for more from RM in London, click here.

Update: Did not sell.

Here’s some video of a similar car:

1904 Wilson-Pilcher

1904 Wilson-Pilcher 12/16hp Four-Cylinder Four-Seat Phaeton

Offered by Bonhams | London, England | November 2, 2012

In 1898, Walter Wilson and his partner, Percy Pilcher, attempted to make an aero-engine and beat the Wright Brothers to powered flight. Unfortunately, Pilcher was killed in a gilding accident in 1899. So, in 1900, Wilson set up shop in Westminster, London to build automobiles bearing both his name and that of his late friend.

The car seen here is powered by a 2.7-liter four-cylinder making 12/16 horsepower. Wilson was a brilliant engineer who designed and built everything himself, inventing numerous things along the way. In 1903, the company was bought by Armstrong-Whitworth and moved to Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Production continued until 1907.

When the First World War broke out, Wilson joined the Royal Navy but eventually found himself working alongside William Tritton and developing the world’s first tank, receiving a sizable reward for doing so. In the late 1920s, he would invent the pre-selector gearbox which would be used on various vehicles from Armstrong-Siddeley cars to buses and railcars.

This particular car is the 52nd Wilson-Pilcher built after they moved to Newcastle. It is believed about 100-200 cars were built in total and this is thought to be the only survivor. It was retained by the factory from new and given to Walter Wilson’s son as a gift. He eventually passed it on to his son who loaned it out to museums – including The Tank Museum in Bovington. In 2006, the Rolls-Royce Heritage Trust volunteered to restore the car and now it is being offered for sale for the first time in history.

It is expected to sell for between $290,000-$350,000. For more information, click here. And for more from Bonhams in London, click here.

Update: Sold $325,000.

All-Cars Charly

1978 All-Cars Charly

Offered by Mecum | St. Charles, Illinois | October 26, 2012

I am ecstatic that this car exists in this condition and is being offered for sale. So many cars have been built over the years and their collectibility can fluctuate wildly from the time they are built. For some cars, people think they will never be collectible and they disappear from the earth. Other are used – as they should be – and then neglected. This one is all-original, complete, and unrestored. It looks as if it were vacuum-sealed off the end of the production line. It’s unusual – but it isn’t exotic and someone had to really love it to keep it this nice for this long. Thank you, whoever you are.

Autozodiaco was an Italian company that built dune buggies based on VW Beetles in the 1970s. At some point, they designed this strange-looking three-wheeled microcar and then sold the rights to All-Cars Srl of Pianoro, Italy. In production from 1974 through 1985, the Charly used a 49cc single-cylinder engine from Moto Morini. I’m not sure what the power rating was, but the transmission has 4-speeds so it may have a decent top end.

All-Cars built variations of the Charly for a number of years and it was sold as the “Snuggy” in some countries. The body is fiberglass and you don’t see them often – especially not in this incredible condition. The price won’t be extreme, but it should be a high-water mark for the model. I hope you like microcars, because the world’s foremost museum of microcars is going to be auctioned off by RM Auctions in February and we’ll be featuring as many as possible. You can read more about this car here and check out the rest of Mecum’s St. Charles lineup here.

Update: Sold $5,250.

Ogle SX1000

1963 Ogle SX1000 GT

Offered by RM Auctions | London, England | October 31, 2012

David Ogle formed Ogle Design in 1954, coming in contact with the automotive industry in 1959, where they designed cars like the Reliant Scimitar GTE, the Reliant Robin, and and the Bond Bug as well as a few motorcycles for BSA/Triumph. Of course, these things happened later in the company’s life. In the late 1950s, David Ogle decided to build a few cars himself, the most popular was this, the SX1000 GT.

Based on Mini mechanicals, the SX1000 GT used the Mini Van chassis and the 997cc four  – although this particular car (as did others) uses the 1275cc straight-four from the Mini Cooper S. Top speed is supposedly around 110 mph. Only 66 of these fiberglass cars were built before David Ogle was killed in a car crash in one of the cars in 1962. Production wound down until they ran out of parts to make more. This is car #63 of 66 and was personally registered to Ogle himself.

Restored eight years ago, this is thought to be the best of the 26 surviving SX1000s. Ogle Design still exists as Ogle Noor and these cars have a small but loyal following. It’s very rare and very cool. You can expect for it to sell for between $29,000-$35,000. For more information, click here. And for more from RM in London, click here.

Update: Sold $23,400.

1904 Richard-Brasier

1904 Richard-Brasier Four-Cylinder 16HP Side-Entrance Tonneau

Offered by Bonhams | London, England | November 2, 2012

No, the guy who started this company was not that full of himself that he thought his first and last names needed to be on the company letterhead. Richard Brasier was not a person – in fact, Richard-Brasier (that hyphen is important!) was actually founded by two people: Henri Brasier and Georges Richard. (Ironically, Georges Richard sold cars under the name “Georges Richard” before Brasier joined him, so yeah, maybe he was a little full of himself).

Henri Brasier left Mors in 1901 and cars were offered as Richard-Brasiers beginning in 1902. It was short-lived, however, as Georges Richard left the company in 1905 to found Unic. Beginning in 1905 the cars were known simply as “Brasier.” And here is an rare example of this very fleeting marque.

This model, from the last year of production before switching names, uses a 2.3-liter straight-four making 16 horsepower (rated by the factory at the time it was built). It’s a large car for such a small power rating, as the company offered models up to 40 horsepower as well. The history of this car is known from 1975, when it entered display at a Dutch museum. It is definitely a driver, having run London-to-Brighton every year since 2000 (with one exception).

This is a truly glorious automobile from the pioneering days of motoring and it would be worth any serious collector’s time to think carefully about acquiring it. It is expected to sell for between $350,000-$480,000. For more information, click here. And for more from Bonhams’ Veteran car sale, click here.

Update: Sold $358,000.

Ferrari 250 Tour de France

1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB Berlinetta ‘Tour de France’ by Scaglietti

Offered by RM Auctions | London, England | October 31, 2012

There are perhaps few cars that have had more variations of them built than the Ferrari 250. The backbone of the series is the Colombo V12 displacing 3.0 liters. Power output was model-specific, and this car puts out 247 horsepower, which is about mid-range for a Tour de France model (they ranged from 237-256 between the different series).

The 250 GT Tour de France came about after a special Pinin Farina-designed and Scaglietti-built special won the 1956 Tour de France road race that was held all over France. The designation was never official but was used to describe the cars by the factory. The design was put into production and a total of 79 were built between 1956 and 1959. They were built in four distinct series. This is a Series IV car, the 30th of the 36 built (Series IV are the most numerous). What sets it apart is the fact that it has but one vent behind each of the side windows as well as uncovered headlights (although some export models had the headlight covers fitted, making this even rarer).

Right from the get-go, this car was used for competition. It competed in hill climbs all over Italy in the hands of its first owner, reaching the podium in its class multiple times and winning a few as well. After only three years on the circuit, the car exchanged hands for the first time, and then hopped from here to there, spending years in some of the world’s great collections.

It has competed in the historic Mille Miglia and was restored by its current owner, who acquired it in 2002. While the ‘Tour de France’ 250 GT may not be a 250 GTO, their prices have risen steadily over the years and they remain one of the most collectible (and by that I mean “expensive”) variants of the 250 GT. Only serious Ferrari collectors need apply, as the pre-sale estimate is listed at $2,900,000-$3,850,000. For more information, click here. And for more from RM in London, click here.

Update: Sold $3,160,000.

RM 2012 Hershey Highlights

RM Auctions’ 2012 sale in Hershey, Pennsylvania had a bunch of really old, really cool cars for sale. We featured the cream of the crop (at least from our perspective) and most of those sold. The one-of-a-kind South Bend Surrey failed to sell. So did the Stanley Mountain Wagon and 1915 Peerless. The top sale went to the Barrelside Model J Duesenberg for $1,292,500. Our other featured Duesenberg, the Murphy Sport Sedan, was the second-biggest sale at $792,000. One of the interesting cars we didn’t get a chance to feature was this 1914 Jeffrey Four Five-Passenger Touring that sold for $40,700.

1914 Jeffrey Four Five-Passenger Touring

One big seller was a horse-drawn fire wagon. There were three of these at this sale, but this was far exceeded the other two, at $396,000. It’s an 1894 Silsby Fourth Size Horse-Drawn Steam Pumper. It was pretty decked out and everyone seemed happy when it sold.

1894 Silsby Fourth Size Horse-Drawn Steam Pumper

Other interesting sales included this 1912 Baker Electric Model W Runabout. There’s something about the tires on this thing that make it look like it’s ready to go tackle some trails somewhere. It sold for $85,250.

1912 Baker Electric Model W Runabout

Other alternative-propulsion vehicles included our featured 1900 Milwaukee Steam Runabout for $44,000. The 1906 Pope-Waverley Electric Runabout brought $60,500. And the 1906 Columbus Model 1000 Electric Stanhope sold for $52,250. This 1913 Simplex 38HP Five-Passenger Touring, while not electric or steam-powered, was still cool at $214,500.

As was this 1910 White Model G-A Five-Passenger Touring that sold for $66,000.

There was an interesting selection of American cars from the 1950s and 60s that included this very rare 1966 Studebaker Daytona Sport, which sold for only $10,450.

Kaiser and Frazer were also represented. This 1949 Kaiser Deluxe Convertible sold for $57,200.

1949 Kaiser Deluxe Convertible

And this 1950 Frazer Manhattan sedan brought $49,500.

This 1903 Ford Model A Rear-Entry Tonneau is the oldest known Ford in existence being  one of the first three cars built by the Ford Motor Company. It came from the John O’Quinn  collection and sold for $264,000.

1903 Ford Model A Rear-Entry Tonneau

As many old Fords as you see at auctions, you don’t see too many pre-1920 Chevrolets. This sale had one and its a great looking car. It’s a 1918 D-Series V-8 Touring car and it sold for $46,200.

1918 Chevrolet D-Series V8 Touring

Our featured 1918 Roamer Five-Passenger Touring car sold for $93,500. And the 1920 Premier Model 6-D sold for $63,250. This 1919 Renault Type EU Torpedo seemed especially cheap at $49,500.

1919 Renault Type EU Torpedo

Another car I found interesting was this 1910 Metz Two Runabout. It also sold for $49,500.

1910 Metz Two Runabout

Our other two feature cars were the 1902 Northern Runabout for $66,000 and the 1906 American Tourist Roi des Belges Touring for $110,000. For complete results, check out RM’s website, here.

Alloy 300SL Gullwing

1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Alloy Gullwing

Offered by RM Auctions | London, England | October 31, 2012

I’m beginning to think I’ve missed the heyday of custom ordering automobiles. No longer can you go to your local dealer and tick boxes for absurd options that included special engines or go-fast bits from race cars – or, insanely, the type of metal your car is made out of.

Most of Mercedes-Benz’s legendary 300SLs were steel-bodied cars, save for the aluminium hood, doors and trunk lid. Only 29 of them were “Alloy” bodied cars, that is, aluminium all the way around. The cost for this special option was very high and the weight savings around 175 lbs.

These cars were intended for privateer racing teams and were available beginning in 1955, the same year Mercedes-Benz withdrew from competitive motorsport. Other sporting changes made to the Alloy cars included suspension upgrades and those awesome Rudge knock-off wheels. There was also a “special” engine available (to all Gullwings, according to Mercedes) that used a competition camshaft, adding 15 horsepower. This car has that as well, so it’s 3.0-liter straight six makes 215 horsepower.

This is car #21 of the 29 built and its ownership history is known from new. An Alloy 300SL is the most desirable version of an already must-have classic (not counting any of the earlier racing versions). This one has no stories and would be a joy to own – and maybe even flog a little on the backroads. I just hope that the new owner is into that sort of thing, and not into storing this in a bunker somewhere, waiting for prices to rise so they can turn around and cash in. Gooding & Company sold one of these earlier this year for over $4 million. This should do likewise. You can read more here and check out more from RM in London here.

Update: Not sold.