599 GTZ Zagato

2009 Ferrari 599 GTZ Nibbio Spyder Zagato

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Paris, France | February 13, 2021

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The 599 GTB Fiorano was Ferrari’s front-engine V12 grand tourer between 2007 and 2012. It spawned a few notable factory variants, including the HGTE (which was more of an add-on package), the XX (which was a track car), and the GTO (which was a road version of the XX). There was also the limited-edition drop-top, the SA Aperta.

Zagato, which had done similar things to the 599’s predecessors, the 575 and the 550, decided to do a limited run of modified 599s, dubbed the GTZ Nibbio (there were both coupes and spyders). Basically, they took a 599 GTB and re-sculpted the body to include their current weird design language, which consists of a rounded tail and two bulbous pointy bits on either side of the front grille. In this case, they also chopped off the roof.

The 6.0-liter V12 remains unchanged and is still rated at 612 horsepower. Only nine Nibbios were made, six of which were convertibles. Somehow this car was completed in 2020 and retains Zagato’s prototype serial number. You can read more about this car here and see more from RM here.

Update: Not sold.

Pilgrim Family Tourer

1980 Pilgrim Family Tourer

Offered by Brightwells | Leominster, U.K. | February 13-18, 2021

Photo – Brightwells

Pilgrim Fiberglass was founded in 1985 in Brighton, England, by Den Tanner and Bill Harling. The company is still around, having outlasted early models like this to become one of the most prolific Cobra kit car manufacturers in the world.

Their first two models were the Bulldog, which was introduced in 1985, and the Family Tourer, which went on sale in 1989. The Family Tourer was essentially a four-seat version of the Bulldog and largely shared its 1950s MG-inspired styling.

The basis for the car was actually the fifth-generation of the Ford Cortina. This is based on a 1980 model, hence the model year listed above, even though it was built in 1992. It’s powered by a 1.6-liter inline-four and features a steel backbone chassis. Only about 250 Family Tourers were built, and this one will sell at no reserve. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $4,398.

Nelson-LeMoon

1928 Nelson-LeMoon Stake Truck

Offered by Mecum | East Moline, Illinois | March 25, 2021

Photo – Mecum

A.R. LeMoon sold his first truck in 1910, and in 1913, the Nelson & LeMoon company of Chicago started selling vehicles under the Nelson-LeMoon name, which would last through 1927. At that time, Nelson was dropped again, and production wrapped up in 1939 (when Mr. LeMoon shifted to becoming a dealer for Federal trucks). In 29 years, the company produced approximately 3,000 trucks. Not a lot. And many of them remained in the greater Chicago area.

This truck is powered by a Waukesha inline-six and was purchased by the current owner in 1979. It was essentially a derelict at that time, but has been restored. It must be one of the nicest examples in existence. It’s now a stake bed truck, and the cab forward is pretty much how it would’ve looked when new.

It’s an interesting, all-American pre-war heavy commercial vehicle. And it’s from a marque most people have never heard of, let alone seen. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $20,350.

Renault Clio V6

2002 Renault Sport Clio V6 Phase 1

Offered by Silverstone Auctions | Online | March 5-6, 2021

Photo – Silverstone Auctions

In the 1980s, the French were doing some crazy stuff with their hatchbacks. Renault and Peugeot produced some monsters. Twenty years later, Renault decided to go crazy again and produced probably the coolest hot hatch of the 21st Century (yeah, I said it).

The second-generation Clio went on sale in 1998 and somehow lasted through 2012. It was available as a three- or five-door hatchback and a four-door sedan. Some of them actually looked okay for what they were, but they were all largely sad in the power and front-engined, front-wheel-drive departments.

In 2001, Renault designed a mid-engined, rear-wheel-drive version of the Clio (okay, it was a pretty different car, but shared the name and corporate face). It was based on the Clio V6 Trophy race car of 1999 and was powered by a 2.9-liter, 24-valve V6 located in the rear hatch area, like the Renault 5 Turbo.

This is a “Phase 1” example, meaning output was rated at 227 horsepower and that the car was actually assembled by Tom Walkinshaw Racing in Sweden. Later cars were built by Renault themselves and made more power. Top speed was 146 mph. Only 1,513 Phase 1 cars were built through 2003.

These cars will only appreciate with time, and once they are eligible for U.S. import, I expect them to be grabbed up and hard to get for a good price. Check out more about this RHD example here, and see more from Silverstone here.

Yenko Stinger

1966 Chevrolet Corvair Yenko Stinger Stage II

Offered by Mecum | Glendale, Arizona | March 18-20, 2021

Photo – Mecum

Cars with flat-six engines mounted out back are supposed to be very sporty, almost race cars. Or so I hear. So why was the Corvair labeled a danger, and why did Chevy never make sit sportier than the base model ever was?

Enter Don Yenko, who would become even more famous for modifying Camaros in the late 1960s. He started by hotting-up Corvairs into “Stinger” form. He wanted to make the Corvair SCCA eligible, but it didn’t really fall into a pre-existing category. So he modified an example to fit. But the SCCA required 100 production examples before that version would be race-eligible. So 100 1966 Yenko Stingers would end up being built. This is #50.

The changes from the base car varied from example to example. This car has a “Stage II” flat-six rated at 190 horsepower. It also has four carburetors, a limited-slip differential, a front spoiler, and a four-speed manual transmission. It’s a cool car and among the coolest of Corvairs. Read more about this one here and see more from Mecum here.

Update: Sold $82,500.

Mercedes-Benz 300D Adenauer

1961 Mercedes-Benz 300D Adenauer

Offered by Bonhams | Bicester, U.K. | March 20, 2021

Photo – Bonhams

This four-door Mercedes-Benz luxury car shares its three numerical digits with the legendary 300SL “Gullwing” sports car. But both cars share the “300” with Mercedes’ 1951-1957 W186 300 series, of which the 300D seen here was the successor.

Introduced in 1957, the 300D shared a version of the Gullwing’s fuel-injected 3.0-liter inline-six that, here, produced 178 horsepower (thus the “300” designation for “3 liters”, back when such things made logical sense). The 300D was available as a four-door sedan or a cabriolet. The cars were nicknamed “Adenauer” after Konrad Adenauer, who was the first Chancellor of West Germany and a fan of this series of cars.

Only 3,077 hand-built examples of the 300D sedan were built through 1962. This one isn’t a show winner, but it’s a driveable example of one of Germany’s greatest cars of the 1950s. It is expected to sell for between $68,000-$82,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $74,564.

Alfa Romeo Montreal

1972 Alfa Romeo Montreal

Offered by Mecum | Glendale, Arizona | March 18-20, 2021

Photo – Mecum

I’ve always considered this to be sort of Italy’s take on the muscle car. There have been plenty of cars with Italian designs and American V8s, but this is an entirely Italian car. It features a fastback body that was designed by Marcello Gandini at Bertone and combines that with a homegrown V8.

The fuel-injected 2.6-liter V8 was derived from the one used in the Tipo 33 race cars and put out 197 horsepower in road car form. The distinctive design features C-pillar vents, headlight shades, and Campagnolo wheels. Top speed was 139 mph.

Approximately 3,925 examples were produced between 1970 and 1977, and they were never officially exported to North America. The “Montreal” name actually comes from the prototype’s first showing at a World’s Fair in Montreal, Canada, in 1967. You can see more about this orange example here, and more lots from Mecum are available here.

Update: Sold $66,000.

8 Litre Bentley

1931 Bentley 8 Litre Pointed-Tail Two-Seater

Offered by Gooding & Company | Online | January 28-February 5, 2021

Photo – Gooding & Company

The 8-Litre was the best (and final) model produced by Bentley before being taken over by Rolls-Royce. Just 100 examples were produced between 1930 and 1932, and only 78 are known to still exist. And this is one of them.

It was originally fitted with a Weymann close-coupled saloon body, but that was removed and replaced in the early 1960s. The chassis was shortened at this time, and coachbuilders Hoffman & Burton were enlisted to build a sporting body. They came up with this striking pointed-tail two-seater.

Aside from the rarity, the powerplant is the big story here. As the model’s name suggests, the inline-six displaces eight liters and produced 220 horsepower. This one appears to have known history since new and carries an estimate of $550,000-$825,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Gooding & Co.

Update: Sold $861,215.

Gumpert Apollo

2008 Gumpert Apollo

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Paris, France | February 13, 2021

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Roland Gumpert previously worked for Audi Sport and founded his own company in Germany in 2004. The next year the company launched the Apollo supercar. Production would continue until Gumpert’s bankruptcy in 2013. In 2016, the remnants of the company were acquired by a business out of Hong Kong that also owns the rights to the De Tomaso brand. Apollo Automobil (the new company) can offer parts assistance for exiting Apollos and are working on their own new models.

The Apollo is powered by an Audi-sourced twin-turbocharged 4.2-liter V8 rated at 641 horsepower. This was the base model, and it would do 223 mph and 60 in 3.1 seconds. Two more-powerful variants were also offered. This particular car was used as a factory demonstrator and was sold new in Italy. At a 2013 track day at Monza, it experienced a rear-wheel hub failure and crashed into the pit wall. Unfortunately this coincided with Gumpert’s bankruptcy, so the car was unable to be repaired at that time.

But once Apollo Automobil sprang up, a complete overhaul (RM calls it a “restoration”) was performed, wrapping in 2017. This is the 20th Apollo built, although I have no idea how many were built in total (it’s at least 40). You can see more about this one here, and more from RM here.

Update: Not sold.

Bowler CSP V8

2016 Bowler CSP V8 Prototype

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Paris, France | February 13, 2021

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Bowler Manufacturing was founded by Andrew Bowler in 1985. Their bread and butter were modifying Land Rovers, and they did so to such a degree that the trucks would be badged as their own thing, not just a “modified Defender.”

They offered a few models based on the Land Rover Defender, including the Wildcat and the Bulldog, the latter of which featured two doors in what looks like a four-door setup along with a pickup bed. The truck pictured above was first assembled as a Bulldog. It features Bowler’s Cross Sector Platform (CSP) chassis that does away with the old-school Defender chassis.

It was later re-worked by the factory as a new prototype, replacing the Bulldog’s 3.0-liter V6 with a supercharged Jaguar 5.0-liter V8 rated at 542 horsepower. These are described as “off-road racing vehicles” which pretty much sums it up.

Andrew Bowler died unexpectedly in 2016, and Jaguar Land Rover purchased the company in late 2019. This truck is one of a few offered at this sale from the collection of the former Bowler Motors director. It is selling at no reserve. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $145,770