Mazda Cosmo L10B

1970 Mazda Cosmo L10B Coupe

Offered by Bonhams | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 15, 2015

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Race cars notwithstanding, you’re looking at the most collectible Mazda ever built and one of the most lusted after Japanese sports cars of all time. Mazda didn’t build its first cars until 1960 but only a few years later in 1967 they would introduce the Cosmo, a true sports car.

What’s even cooler is that this is the genesis of Mazda’s long history of rotary power. All of the RX-series cars can trace back to this, which was the result of Mazda acquiring the rights of NSU’s Wankel powerplant. It’s a 982cc twin-rotor Wankel making 128 horsepower.

The Cosmo was called the 110S for export and the cars were never officially sold in the U.S. They were built in two series, the L10A being the first and the L10B (offered here) being the second – horsepower was the big difference. The Series II L10B were sold in higher numbers between 1968 and 1972 with 1,176 built. This car spent its entire life in Japan and had its mechanical bits sorted in 2011. It is being offered for the first time outside of its home country and will likely cost the new owner between $140,000-$180,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $110,000.

Chrysler ST Special by Ghia

1955 Chrysler ST Special by Ghia

Offered by Barrett-Jackson | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 10-18, 2015

Photo - Barrett-Jackson

Photo – Barrett-Jackson

Chrysler and Ghia teamed up quite a bit in the 1950s, developing concept car after concept car. They also collaborated on some production specials, like the ST seen here. Between 1952 and 1955, Ghia built a number of beautiful coupes on standard Chrysler frames. This one rests on a New Yorker chassis.

The engine is a 250 horsepower 5.4-liter V-8 and the car was sold new off of Ghia’s stand at the 1955 Turin Auto Show. I find differing production numbers everywhere I look, but the consistent thing is that the ST Special was the rarest of the Ghia Specials. As few as four may have been built (although that number could be as many as 40). This is, perhaps, the final one. And they’re all a bit different.

Finished in this nice copper color, this car was restored in 2012 from barn-find condition. Until then, it had spent most of its active life in France. And now it’s for sale publicly for the first time in a long time. Click here for more info and here for more from Barrett-Jackson.

S/N: N558768

Update: Not sold, high bid of $550,000.

Update: Not sold, Mecum Phoenix 2019, high bid of $450,000.

ZiL Limousine

1986 ZiL 115

Offered by Coys | Maastricht, Netherlands | January 10, 2015

Photo - Coys

Photo – Coys

Here we go. I love when private collections are divvied up and auctioned off. Especially when it’s some obscure collection full of interesting things. In this case, it is the Stasys Brundza Collection from Lithuania. That’s right, an Eastern European collection is going under a western hammer.

What we have here is a Soviet ZiL-115 armored limousine. We’ve featured a ZiL before, but it was a military vehicle. The factory is still around, building trucks and buses today, but they previously built big limousines (either under the ZiL or, earlier, ZiS, names). The 115 was new for 1972 and this example is one of the later ones (even if it only wears chassis #57).

The engine is a 7.7-liter V-8 making 300 horsepower. Because it was armor-plated and mine-resistant, top speed was limited to a still-impressive 119 mph. They were never offered for sale to the general public – you had to be a high-ranking military or government official. Some are still in use, but this is a rare chance to acquire one for between $100,000-$125,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $97,890.

250 Europa GT Alloy

1955 Ferrari 250 Europa GT Alloy by Pinin Farina

Offered by Bonhams | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 15, 2015

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

The Ferrari 250 is one of Ferraris most iconic models. The line was in production, with a number of different models, from 1953 through 1964. The Europa name was first used in 1953 on the 250 Europa. Confusingly, the 250 Europa GT would debut in 1954. It was the first road car to use Ferrari’s Colombo V-12.

That V-12 is of 3.0-liter capacity and makes 240 horsepower in this car. The difference between the Europa and Europa GT was slight, visually. The real change was the engine. The GT also had a slightly shorter wheelbase, less weight, a revised suspension and a higher top speed.

This car is one of only two Europa GTs that were bodied with Pinin Farina’s legendary design in lightweight aluminium alloy. It is a competition spec car, prepared by the Ferrari factory for the Mille Miglia – a race it would never end up entering (until the 1999 classic version, that is).

This is one of only 27 Pinin Farina-bodied Europa GTs and one of only two bodied in aluminium. And as it was originally built with competition in mind, it would make for a great car for historic tours. You can buy it for between $2,800,000-$3,400,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Update II: Sold, Bonhams Amelia Island 2017, $2,227,500.


1959 Echidna

Offered by Russo & Steele | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 14-18, 2015

Photo - Russo & Steele

Photo – Russo & Steele

Sports car racing in the United States in the 1950s saw the development of quite a number of one-off and limited-production specials. The Echidna was the brainchild of Ed Grierson, Bill Larson, and John Staver. The cars were built in Hibbing, Minnesota.

They were campaigned in SCCA C- and B-Modified and were powered by 5.6-liter Chevy V-8s making 360 horsepower. They were beasts on the track, competing against Ferraris, Maseratis, and Jaguars. An Echidna won the ’59 B-Modified Championship and they had a great racing record.

Only two or three Echidnas were built and they were popular and quick in their day, besting some of the best purpose-built racers that Europe had to offer. It’s perfect for vintage racing today. Click here for more info and here for the rest of Russo & Steele’s Scottsdale lineup.

Update: Sold $162,800.

DB5 Convertible

1964 Aston Martin DB5 Convertible

Offered by Bonhams | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 15, 2015

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Yes, this is an Aston Martin DB5 Convertible. “But aren’t Aston convertibles called ‘Volantes?'” Well yes, but not until 1965. So this is the last time they used “convertible.” The DB5 is, perhaps, the most iconic Aston Martin, as it was the Goldfinger car. So what happens when you take a beautiful, iconic car and cut the roof off? You make it even better.

They’re powered by a 282 horsepower 4.0-liter straight-six mated to the rear wheels with a five-speed manual. The gorgeous body is by Touring and this one spent most of its life in the U.K. until 2013 when it was imported into the U.S. The car was never restored but has been repainted (in 1995). It has 90,265 miles on it and shows very well.

Only 1,021 DB5s were built and of those, only 123 were convertibles, making this exceedingly rare. Everything is correct and it should sell for between $1,400,000-$1,700,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Bonhams in Arizona.

Update: Not sold.

Pininfarina X

1960 Pininfarina X Sedan

Offered by Barrett-Jackson | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 10-18, 2015

Photo - Barrett-Jackson

Photo – Barrett-Jackson

If you’re thinking “Wow, that’s a weird, winged three-wheeler,” you’re only half right. Because this thing had four wheels: one up front. two on the sides… and one more in the middle out back. The front wheel steers and the lone rear wheel is the only one the engine drives. The outboard wheels just ride along. Bizarre.

This concept car was displayed by Pinin Farina in 1960. It’s a four-door sedan and the rear looks like a 1950s/60s-contemporary American boat and the front is entirely unique. The engine is a Fiat 1.1-lilter straight-four making 43 horsepower. It’s probably not too quick with only 43 horsepower and that’s probably for the best as the handling really isn’t great. But it is very aerodynamic.

This car was listed for $3 million in the past five years so what it’ll bring is anybody’s guess. But it sure is interesting. Click here for more info and here for more from Barrett-Jackson in Scottsdale.

Update: Sold $330,000.

1904 Humber

1904 Humber 8.5HP Twin-Cylinder Two Seater

Offered by Bonhams | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 15, 2015

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Humber was a British marque whose roots trace back to a bicycle shop in the 1860s. Cars came about in 1898 and the company was absorbed into the Rootes Group in 1932. Chrysler eventually became the majority owner and the marque was phased out in 1979. Peugeot currently owns the name.

This car is powered by a 1.3-liter straight-twin making 8.5 horsepower. The original owner registered this car on the Isle of Wight – the 39th motorcar registered there. It has had two owners since 1950 and was restored in 2000.

It’s a nice old car in working order. It is eligible for the London-to-Brighton run and only a few examples of early Humbers are known. This one should sell for between $150,000-$200,000 – a long way from its $1,260 original cost. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $148,500.

Update II: Not sold, Bonhams Carmel 2017.

Update III: Not sold, Bonhams Philadelphia 2017.

Update IV: Sold, Bonhams London-to-Brighton 2017, $81,250.

December 2014 Auction Recap

This first sale we’re covering here is H&H’s Chateau Impney sale. The top sale was actually a tie between two cars: this 1927 Bentley 3-Litre Speed Model Tourer (below) and the 1972 Ferrari 365 GTC/4 (second below) sold for $331,968 each.

Photo -  H&H Auctions

Photo – H&H Auctions

Photo - H&H Auctions

Photo – H&H Auctions

Our featured 1911 Talbot Tourer sold for $88,583. Check out full results here. Next up, Bonhams in Oxford. Our featured Bristol 411 was withdrawn, but this 1912 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost Tourer was the top sale at $420,474.

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Our featured Albion Delivery Van sold for $55,919 and the Diatto brought $45,096. Click here for full results.

The top sale at Mecum’s Kansas City sale was this 2005 Ford GT for $290,000. Our featured Mauck MSV sold for $50,000. Click here for full results.

Photo - Mecum

Photo – Mecum

Mecum’s Austin, Texas, sale also saw a Ford GT be the top sale, in this case it was a 2006 model that sold for $310,000.

Photo - Mecum

Photo – Mecum

Our featured 427 Mercury Comet sold for $169,000. The three rare trucks we featured all sold as well with the Studebaker going for $72,000 while the Willys brought $40,000 and the Terraplane $45,000. Click here for full results.

Finally, our featured cars from Coys’ London sale. The March-Cosworth failed to sell but the Lancia brought $266,875. Click here for full results.

Miura SVJ

1971 Lamborghini Miura SVJ

Offered by RM Auctions | Phoenix, Arizona | January 15-16, 2015

Photo - RM Auctions

Photo – RM Auctions

The Lamborghini Miura was the most extreme car to come out of the 1960s. In a way, it sort of kicked off the whole supercar thing. It had insane styling and mind-bending performance. The Miura was built between 1966 and 1973 and the Jota was a special variant that appeared in 1970.

Bob Wallace, Lambo’s test driver, wanted the Miura to take on Ferrari and Porsche on the international circuit (something Lamborghini still really doesn’t do). Wallace had a single Jota prototype built. It had more power and was essentially a race car for the street – but it was destroyed in 1971.

Customers got wind of this all-conquering Miura variant and they wanted one. So Lamborghini would, for a price, upgrade your shiny new Miura to SVJ specification. For example, this car began life as a standard Miura P400 SV but was upgraded by 1974 to SVJ spec. The engine were slightly tuned – the 4.0-liter V-12 now made 385 horsepower.

Between five and seven of these factory conversions were done between 1971 and 1975 (with an additional one done in the 1980s). A handful of other cars have had less official conversions, all of them done in the aftermarket. The current owner acquired this example in 2010 after it had spent some time in Japan before being restored in the late 1980s. It can now be yours. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $1,897,500.