The German T-Bird

1960 Auto Union 1000 SP

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Auburn, Indiana | August 29, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Four of Germany’s auto manufacturers joined forces in 1932 to form Auto Union. They were Audi, DKW, Horch, and Wanderer. Auto Union racing cars were some of the best of the 1930s, and after WWII, what was left of Auto Union‘s West German holdings began producing cars under the new brand. The DKW brand was still active as well.

Auto Union would eventually be purchased by Volkswagen and merged with NSU. The current Audi brand carries the torch for the history of the four original brands. For a while in the 1950s, Daimler-Benz owned the company, and it was during their reign that the Auto Union 1000 was built (1958-1963). It was a sedan that was essentially a re-badged DKW.

But between 1958 and 1965, they built a version called the 1000 SP. The styling was lifted almost intact from the contemporary Ford Thunderbird, but the cars were powered by an 896cc inline-three good for about 54 horsepower. This example is gorgeous and is very T-Bird-esque, but slightly more exotic.

Only 5,004 coupe versions were built and they’re rarely seen in the U.S. This one was restored in 2009 and should bring between $30,000-$40,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $23,650.