500K Cabriolet B

1936 Mercedes-Benz 500K Cabriolet B by Sindelfingen

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 8, 2019

Photo – Artcurial

Of the three in-house cabriolets offered on Mercedes’ 500K chassis, the four-seater Cabriolet B is the most common, with 296 examples produced (between the 500K and 540K). Why is it then that this is the first 500K version I can remember coming up for sale? I mean there were more than double the number of these made compared to the Cabriolet A and Cabriolet C – and those are both better-looking cars.

The 500K was built between 1934 and 1936 and is powered by a supercharged 5.0-liter straight-eight capable of 160 horsepower. This particular car was one of the final 500Ks built and was actually equipped from the factory with the 540K’s 5.4-liter, 180 horsepower engine.

This car, which was once owned by Donald Healey, features a rebuilt engine with its original body and interior. It is one of 342 500K examples built and should bring between $675,000-$900,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Morgan Aero SuperSports

2015 Morgan Aero SuperSports

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Paris, France | February 6, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Morgans are weird cars. They’ve been pretty much producing the same models for more than half a century, so when they introduce something brand new, it’s kind of a big deal. In 2000, they introduced the Aero 8, a convertible that had kind of retro looks but actually looked pretty fresh compared to their other models.

In 2008, the AeroMax was introduced and it was the coupe version of the Aero 8 – and it had a boattail rear end which made it look even better. Then, in 2009, came the Aero SuperSports – the Targa version. It was produced through 2015.

Power is from a 4.8-liter BMW V8 making 362 horsepower. These are light cars, which makes them rocketships when you get on it. This car is essentially brand new and looks great in Lapis Blue. Easily my favorite Morgan, it should bring between $170,000-$225,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

8C 2900B Touring Berlinetta

1939 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Touring Berlinetta

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 8, 2019

Photo – Artcurial

Now here is something special. First, a quick recap of the Alfa 8C: it was introduced in 1931 in 2300 guise. 1933 brought the 2600, followed by the 2900 in 1935. There were also race cars sprinkled in there for good measure. The 2900B started production in 1937 and these were as grand as cars got before WWII. There are only 32 examples of the 2900B, and we featured the drop-top version of this car back in 2016.

Two wheelbases of the 2900B were offered: Corto (short) and Lungo (long). I believe this is a long-wheelbase car, but the auction catalog is frustratingly unclear on that point. Only five Berlinetta versions were built by Touring, and this is number two.

The engine is a supercharged 2.9-liter straight-eight making 180 horsepower. They were sporty in their day. No one is sure who owned the car first, but it was exported to the UK in 1939 and was purchased by the current owner in 1976. It has never been restored. The Lungo Spider sold for just under $20 million… the estimate on this car is $18,000,000-$25,000,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $18,997,883.

Serenissima Agena

1967 Serenissima Agena

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 8, 2019

Photo – Artcurial

Here is another car from Serenissima, though this one was not one of the original run of a handful of road and race cars. This is an unregistered prototype that was built by Giovanni Volpi, and it is unclear if the prototype was ever officially shown.

It features tubular subframes and a look similar to that of the Lamborghini Miura and DeTomaso Mangusta. Power is from a 3.5-liter twin-cam V8, and it was modified with a revised front end at some point including covered headlights instead of the original louvered units. Period photos also show the car fitted with a large rear spoiler which has since been removed.

The car was never used all that much, even when new. It is being sold in need of a recommissioning by Volpi himself and should bring between $450,000-$675,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $500,360.

January 2019 Auction Highlights

January means one thing: Scottsdale. And we’ll start there with Bonhams where the 1951 Maserati we featured was the top sale at $2,755,000. Most of the other really big money cars all missed the target, which might say something about the top of the market (but we’ll see as the other sales all wrap up). The other Frua-bodied car, the Fiat 1100C, sold for $577,000. We’ll award Most Interesting to this 1956 Lincoln Premiere Convertible – mostly because I really want one. I just don’t have the $50,400 it would’ve required to take this one home.

Photo – Bonhams

A previously-featured Abarth race car sold here for $16,800 – a long way from the $45k+ it brought at multiple previous auctions (weird, it has a different chassis number listed in this sale compared to previous sales, but has the exact same backstory). This car has changed hands multiple times in the last few years. Someone here either got a great deal, or the consignor finally unloaded an albatross at a loss (also, dibs on “Albatross at a Loss” as my next rap album name). Meanwhile, the Stevens-Duryea sold for $72,800. Click here for complete results.

Next up from Arizona is RM Sotheby’s, and there were a couple of cars that failed to meet their reserve, including a previously-featured Hispano-Suiza and the Ferrari 250 GT Coupe Speciale. But another Ferrari was top dog at this sale, specifically this 1985 Ferrari 288 GTO that sold for $3,360,000.

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The biggest money feature car we had was the Vector WX-3 at $615,500, with the WX-3R coming up right behind it at a cool $500,000. The Lesovsky-Offy brought $201,600, the Rolls-Royce State Landaulette $190,400, the Hooper Bentley $128,800, the Apollo 3500 GT $134,400, and the Lone Star Touring $44,800. Click here for complete results.

Barrett-Jackson’s catalog is so large that I don’t feel like scrolling through the entire thing trying to find highlights and the top sale. Their user interface leaves a little to be desired, so I’m just going to look through Saturday’s results and assume that the top sale was in their prime time lineup. What I found: the overall top sale was, as it usually is here, a charity lot. The first 2019 Ford GT Heritage Edition went for $2,500,000.

Photo – Barrett-Jackson

That crazy Mercedes-Benz G63 6×6 sold for $1,210,000, while the Paige Ardmore sold for $16,500 and the Ford Lightning Rod Concept $27,500. All of the results can be found here and you can scroll through them at your leisure if you have a spare five hours.

Next: Gooding & Company, where the 1902 Yale we featured brought $105,280, and the Ferrari 275 Prototype failed to sell. The biggest money was reserved for this 1963 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta for $7,595,000. Click here for more results.

Photo – Gooding & Company

Finally, we have Worldwide Auctioneers’ Scottsdale sale where this 1959 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster was the overall top sale at $990,000.

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

Our three Indiana-built feature cars all sold, with the two Duesenbergs falling in “good deal” range. The Duesenberg Tourster sold for $605,000, and the other Duesey brought $506,000. The Auburn Boattail rounds it all out at $291,500. Click here if you want more results from this sale.

1911 Rochet-Schneider

1911 Rochet-Schneider 12HP Torpedo 10 200

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 8, 2019

Photo – Artcurial

Rochet-Schneider was one of France’s oldest carmakers. Edouard Rochet’s bicycle company was joined by Theophile Schneider in 1894 and cars followed the next year. Into the 1920s they began to focus more on commercial vehicles and their last passenger car debuted in 1931. Berliet bought them out in 1932.

This example is powered by a 12 horsepower straight-four engine and wears a nicely-painted green Torpedo touring body. The story on this car is that its first owner was killed during WWI, and the car remained in the barn he had left it until the 1980s when it was rediscovered. The next owner took 10 years to track down the rightful inherited owners and finally bought it in the 1990s.

It was restored to the condition you see here, with the work wrapping in 2003. It is now being offered at no reserve with a pre-sale estimate of $40,000-$55,000. Find out more about it here and see more from this auction here.

Update: Sold $35,160.

Two Racing Cars from Artcurial

1958 Talbot-Lago T14 America Barquette

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 8, 2019

Photo – Artcurial

Fun fact: Talbot-Lago won Le Mans outright in 1950. Anthony Lago entered two sporty cars again in 1956 but didn’t pull off the victory. So he went back and tried to build some more road cars, though the company would ultimately be taken over in 1958.

A Talbot-designed inline-four was put into a new car called the T14 and it was not very good. So they turned to BMW, who supplied a 138 horsepower, 2.5-liter V8. The steering wheel was moved to the left side, for the first time in company history, as they were aiming to move these cars in North America. They even renamed the export model the America.

When the company was taken over by Simca in 1958, there were some unfinished T14s lying around. Former factory driver Georges Grignard scooped them up – along with some spare engines. With funding from a pair of French brothers, a short run of six Talbot Sports were finished much later on. This car is one of those and it was completed in the 1980s with a hand-crafted bare aluminum body in the style of those 1956 Le Mans-losing racers. It’s road-legal and pretty cool. It should sell for between $160,000-$205,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Not sold.


1954 Panhard X86 Dolomites by Pichon Parat

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 8, 2019

Photo – Artcurial

The Panhard Dyna was not an inherently sporty car. It was a front-wheel drive subcompact powered by a two-cylinder engine. It was very French. But the French love their racing, and the car you see here is proof that anything can become a pretty bad-ass looking race car.

This X86 is based on the Dyna 120 and was built as a Dolomites race car by coachbuilders Pichon and Parat. It was campaigned around France in period and was at one point damaged in an accident. The large front grille opening the car now wears is the result of crash repairs.

The engine was updated by a later owner to an 851cc flat-twin. It’s probably eligible for a bunch of historic events and should sell for between $115,000-$150,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $108,186.

1952 Dick Tricycle

1952 Dick Tricycle

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 8, 2019

Photo – Artcurial

Well, with some confidence I can truly say I never thought I’d type out the words “Dick Tricycle.” But alas, here we are. Dick was a French coachbuilder… and I can find no other information about them.

But apparently in 1952 they bodied this diminutive three-wheeler. Power is from a horizontal Ducati 175cc single-cylinder engine. The rear wheel is the driven wheel, and interior seating is a one-by-one arrangement with the passenger behind the driver.

This unique one-off was restored long ago and can now be yours for between $11,000-$17,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $12,171.

Ferrari SP30

2011 Ferrari SP30

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Paris, France | February 6, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

About five years ago, Ferrari embarked on a new program called their “special projects division” where they build exclusive cars for wealthy clients. I guess everyone wants to feel special. And buying a “normal” Ferrari isn’t special enough. And I guess they didn’t want Jim Glickenhaus to have all the fun rebodying their cars.

The Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano was Ferrari’s front-engined V-12 grand tourer that they built between 2007 and 2012. There were a couple of factory hot-rodded versions, namely the 599 GTO, 599XX, the HGTE (which was more of an options package), and the SA Aperta.

The SP30 is a one-off model built exclusively for a wealthy Indian oil baron. It’s based on the 599 GTO and has revised bodywork. There is no information in the catalog listing, but because it is based on the 599 GTO, I guess we are to assume it is powered by a 661 horsepower, 6.0-liter V12.

These one-off Ferraris are likely to continue to increase in value. And this one will not come cheap. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Serenissima Spyder

1966 Serenissima Spyder

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 8, 2019

Photo – Artcurial

Giovanni Volpi was a Venetian who operated a racing team called Scuderia Serenissima (La Serenissima was an Italian name used to describe the Most Serene Republic of Venice). Volpi’s team competed in F1 and some sports car stuff. He was closely aligned with Ferrari. Until…

Some ex-Ferrari people, namely Carlo Chiti and Giotto Bizzarrini, bolted from Ferrari and founded a company called ATS, which Volpi helped finance. Ferrari was not pleased and refused to sell Serenissima any 250 GTOs.

So what’s an enterprising Italian to do? In 1963, Volpi founded Automobili Serenissima to build his own cars. Supposedly, eight were built in total and only five survive. Well, Volpi is still alive and apparently is selling three of them at auction in a few weeks, including this car, which is chassis no. 5.

It appears that chassis no. 5 may have started life as a Serenissima Jungla – a closed coupe that was later turned into a spyder and shown in road car form. It’s powered by a 3.5-liter V8 and was turned into a racing car shortly after its introduction. It raced at the 1966 24 Hours of Le Mans with drivers Jean-Claude Sauer and Jean de Mortemart. A broken gearbox in the fifth hour led to the car’s retirement from the race.

The car is presented in as-raced condition and is not currently running. It is the only Serenissima car to race at Le Mans (they intended to race the Jungla GT but it did not appear). Even still, it should command between $1,500,000-$2,000,000. Click here for more from Artcurial.

Update: Sold $4,786,229.