Frua-Bodied A6G 2000 Spider

1951 Maserati A6G 2000 Spider by Frua

Offered by Bonhams | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 17, 2019

The Maserati A6 1500 went on sale in 1947 and was succeeded by the A6G 2000 (a different car from the A6G/2000, which Bonhams confuses in their catalog), which was produced in 1950 and 1951. It was a very limited run, and all of the cars were coachbuilt. Styling from different coachbuilders varied greatly.

This car is one of three carrying Frua Spider coachwork. It’s a very tight, attractive design, with a symmetrical front end highlighted by that third, central light. Power is from a 2.0-liter straight-six from a later edition of the A6 making about 110 horsepower.

Frua also built a single coupe version, while Pininfarina bodied nine fastbacks and Vignale one coupe. There were two others, and that’s it. Just 16 cars. This car made its way to California in the late-1950s where it remained until 2001 when it was shipped to Italy for restoration. The replacement A6G/2000 engine was fitted at this time.

Very rare and very pretty, this car should bring between $2,800,000-$3,400,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $2,755,000.

The First 275 GTB

1964 Ferrari 275 GTB Prototype

Offered by Gooding & Company | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 19, 2019

Photo – Gooding & Company

The Ferrari 250 series of cars went on sale in the early-1950s. Ferrari iterated on them for over a decade, but by 1964 they were pretty long-in-the-tooth. So when the 275 GTB was introduced, it was a revelation.

This was the first example they built, and it – like all of the other examples that followed – used technology brought about by Ferrari’s 275P Le Mans program. Power is from a 3.3-liter V-12 making 265 horsepower.

Ferrari kept the car through 1965, using it as a workhorse and revising it until they got it where they liked. Even the coachwork changed from its initial debut. It now wears a long-nose body style.

The car was entered by its first owner in the 1966 Monte Carlo Rally. Ferrari provided support, which is why this car is equipped with front rally lighting, three windshield wipers, and more. It’s had a string of known owners since and was acquired by the current collection in 1994.

It hasn’t been shown publicly in 25 years and is said to be in need of some serious service before use. Still, it should bring between $6,000,000-$8,000,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Gooding & Company.

Update: Not sold.

Fiat Frua Spider

1946 Fiat 1100C Spider by Frua

Offered by Bonhams | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 17, 2019

Photo – Bonhams

This car might not look all that radical today, but in 1946 it looked unlike just about anything else in the world. It was the first car styled by Pietro Frua as an independent designer, and the above photo doesn’t do it justice. Rear styling looks like a “modern” take on the boattail cars of the 1930s.

And speaking of the 1930s, this car is based on the Fiat 1100, which was introduced in 1937. Power is from a 1.1-liter straight-four making 52 horsepower. Not exactly otherworldly performance to match the looks.

The car debuted at Villa d’Este in 1947 and took home second place. Ownership history is known from new, and the car still carries its 1950 Italian registration. It was restored in 2016 and should bring between $605,000-$850,000 at auction next month. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $577,000.

Vector Avtech WX-3

1993 Vector Avtech WX-3 Prototype

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Phoenix, Arizona | January 17, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

If my schoolgirl-like giddiness for this car becomes too distracting in the text that follows, please just bear with me. I love Vectors. They are outrageous. The company traces its roots back to the 1970s when founder Gerald Wiegert showed his first prototype, the W2, in 1978. The W8 was their first production car in 1989.

The Avtech WX-3 debuted in 1992 and was to go into production with three engine options. This, the coupe version (just wait until next week), is finished in a beautiful shade of Brilliant Aquamarine, though it was originally silver.

Wiegert lost control of the company shortly after this car debuted and the new owners, while barred from using this design, more or less did anyway with the very similar-looking M12 that used Lamborghini engines. This car is powered by a twin-turbocharged 7.0-liter V8 putting out 1,000 horsepower.

This is the only car like it in the world, and Wiegert has never parted with it, until now. It’s so over-the-top in a wonderfully 90s kind of way. I just love these cars. The details are just so extreme, to wit: its shark-like appearance and the fact that the fuel cap looks like it was ripped right off of a Cessna. It is expected to bring between $450,000-$550,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $615,500.

Griffith 400

1965 TVR Griffith 400

Offered by Silverstone Auctions | Birmingham, U.K. | January 12, 2019

Photo – Silverstone Auctions

The Griffith is an unusual car. Partly because it has practically zero overhang front or rear, and partly because it has a confusing production history.

An American – Jack Griffith, to be exact – stuffed a Ford V8 into a TVR Grantura Mk 3 and then decided to open his own company to build the car. Just like an off-brand Cobra. The Griffith Motor Company of Plainview, New York, produced the car, using Ford engines and British-built bodies. Okay, less like an off-brand Cobra and more like an exact duplicate of Shelby’s entire business plan.

In the U.S., these cars were sold as the “Griffith 400” (there were other models as well). In the U.K., they were sold as TVR Griffith 400s. This is a right-hand-drive example, thus the TVR prefix. It is powered by a 4.7-liter V8 that was originally rated at 271 horsepower. It’s a rocket.

This car has been active on the historic race circuit and has FIA papers. Only about 300 Griffiths were built in total across all models. Less than 20 were the U.K. RHD TVR variants, making this car quite rare. It should bring between $150,000-$175,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

1902 Yale

1902 Yale Model A Detachable Rear-Entrance Tonneau

Offered by Gooding & Company | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 18, 2019

Photo – Gooding & Company

The Yale was a product of the Kirk Manufacturing Company, a bicycle manufacturer from Toledo, Ohio. It went on sale in the summer of 1902. The company produced two-cylinder cars through 1905, when a four-cylinder arrive just in time for the company to close. The reason they gave? They were “too busy” to make cars. Bankruptcy followed in 1906.

This Model A is from the first year of manufacture and is powered by a 3.2-liter flat-twin making 10 horsepower. Annual developments saw the power rating grow to 16 by 1905. The detachable rear-entrance tonneau was the only body style offered for the first two years.

Fun story, the original owner of this car lost it in a poker game to famed lawman Pat Garrett, who was killed a few years later. This car was used in his funeral procession and ultimately restored a few owners later in the 1950s (and again later on). It’s a rare early American automobile that should bring between $90,000-$120,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $105,280.

Ken Okuyama Kode 57

2016 Ken Okuyama Kode 57

For sale at TPE Ltd. | Tokyo, Japan

Photo TPE Ltd.

Here’s another over-the-top supercar from Ken Okuyama Design. It is said that production was supposed to have been undertaken, with a maximum of five examples to be produced. But it is unclear if any examples other than this were built.

The car is based around a Ferrari 599 GTB chassis, but the top has been lopped off in favor of a true roadster body style with rear-hinged batwing-style doors. The body is made of carbon fiber, and power is from a 6.0-liter V12 making 702 horsepower.

It will be interesting to see what cars like this do in the future. It’s like the modern-day equivalent of a 1930s coachbuilt special or a 1950s fiberglass one-off. It is for sale in Tokyo, and more info can be found about the car on Okuyama’s website.

Lesovsky Indy Roadster

1949 Lesovsky-Offenhauser

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Phoenix, Arizona | January 17-18, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Classic race cars take a special breed of person. They’re high-maintenance cars and you can’t exactly take them to the local cruise-in. And the older they are, the crazier they can be. Before big money moved in, there were a lot of people with a lot of different ideas building cars that ran within inches of each other. They were individuals, not spec cars. And because of that, old race cars are awesome.

This car was built by Lujie Lesovsky’s L.A. Lesovsky Race Car Engineering, an open-wheel race car constructor active from the late-1940s through the early-1960s. It’s a short-wheelbase car powered by a Meyer-Drake Offenhauser inline-four making 300 horsepower. 

The racing history for this chassis includes:

  • 1948 Indianapolis 500 – DNQ
  • 1949 Indianapolis 500 – 3rd, with George Connor
  • 1950 Indianapolis 500 – 8th, with George Connor
  • 1951 Indianapolis 500 – 30th, with George Connor
  • 1952 Indianapolis 500 – DNQ, with Bill Taylor
  • 1953 Indianapolis 500 – DNQ, with Bill Taylor
  • 1954 Indianapolis 500 – DNQ, with Bob Christie

Well there you have it – three Indy 500 starts with a podium finish. The car was also raced in period by Bill Holland and Len Sutton, the latter of which wrecked the car in a race in 1955. After that, it never raced competitively again. It was preserved and later restored to its “Blue Crown Special” livery.

This Offy-powered Lesovsky is one of very few such cars that survive today. They don’t change hands often, but when they do the prices make you take note. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $201,600.

Duesenberg J-348

1931 Duesenberg Model J Custom Berline by Judkins

Offered by Worldwide Auctioneers | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 16, 2019

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

Classic cars don’t always make for great drivers. They can be pretty, historical, or just fun to say you own, but not everyone takes them out and drives them. The great part – well one of many – about a Duesenberg Model J is that it has enough performance to keep pace with today’s traffic, though I suspect the brakes aren’t quite what you’re used to.

This Model J is a long-wheelbase example carrying its original Custom Berline sedan body by Judkins. The car has never been restored, just serviced as-needed to keep it roadworthy. The engine is a 265 horsepower, 6.9-liter straight-eight, and, strangely, the auction listing makes not one note of which engine this car carries. A little internet sleuthing reveals it is most likely J-348.

It was delivered new to the daughter of Billy Durant, and was purchased by the current owner in 2001. Being sold without reserve, it’s a great opportunity to acquire an all-original Model J… that you can still go out and enjoy. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $506,000.

675LT Spider

2016 McLaren 675LT Spider

Offered by Mecum | Kissimmee, Florida | January 12, 2019

Photo – Mecum

McLaren has built a lot of cars in the last five years, including a number of limited-edition specials. But most of them are still in production (or in some vague degree of production). The 675LT is not, however. It is done.

The 675LT was a special edition coupe built between 2015 and 2017. Based on the 650S, it received slightly elongated bodywork and styling tweaks, among other improvements. The Spider variant was available in 2016 and 2017 and shared the same 666 horsepower, twin-turbocharged 3.8-liter V8. Because of the folding hardtop, top speed is limited to just 203 mph.

Like the coupe, Only 500 examples of the Spider were built. This one is finished in vibrant Mantis Green and should bring between $275,000-$300,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Mecum.

Update: Not sold, high bid of $250,000.