1913 Isotta Indy Car

1913 Isotta Fraschini Tipo IM

Offered by Gooding & Company | Pebble Beach, California | August 16, 2019

Photo – Gooding & Company

We’re kind of saving the best for last for this year’s Monterey auctions. What we have here is an early Isotta Fraschini… with period Indianapolis 500 race history. Isotta was founded in 1900, and most of their surviving cars in private hands tend to be the big, beautiful ones from the late 1920s and early 1930s.

To see one this “early” – 13 years into their production – is pretty rare. The engine is a 135 horsepower, 7.2-liter inline-four. A monster. The Tipo IM was built specifically to compete at Indy at a time when many manufacturers were hoping for glory at the Brickyard for the promotional benefit that would surely follow. If only Indy still had that kind of manufacturer pull and aura of innovation. The racing history for this chassis includes:

  • 1913 Indianapolis 500 – 17th, DNF (with Teddy Tetzlaff)
  • 1914 Indianapolis 500 – 27th, DNF (with Ray Gilhooey)

Only six examples of the Tipo IM were built. This one DNF’d at Indy twice, first with a broken drive chain and again in 1914 after a blown tire resulting in a driver-ejecting spin and subsequent rollover. Gilhooey and his riding mechanic survived.

By 1917 it had been re-bodied in New York and sold to a private owner as a road car. It was restored by a later owner in the 1960s and was purchased by the consignor in 1995. Since then, the car has been restored again, this time to its 1914 Indy 500 specification. Many early 500 cars didn’t survive. This one has, and it’s wonderful. The pre-sale estimate is $3,000,000-$4,000,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $2,645,000.

Westcott Roadster

1913 Westcott Model 4-40 Roadster

Offered by Bonhams | Tupelo, Mississippi | April 27, 2019

Photo – Bonhams

Burton J. Westcott began building assembled cars (using parts from other manufacturers) in Richmond, Indiana in 1909. He moved the company to Springfield, Ohio in 1916 and continued to build cars through 1925.

The 1913 model range consisted of the four-cylinder Model 4-40 and six-cylinder Model 6-50. This 4-40 two-passenger roadster was one of two body styles offered on the model line, the other being a 4/5-passenger touring. The 5.2-liter inline-four was rated at 40 horsepower.

This car has known ownership history to new and was acquired for the Harrah collection in 1964. From there, it made its way to the current museum in 1986. Impressively, prior to 1953 when it was first put on museum display by its second owner, the car had only 4,900 original miles. Rare today, this Westcott should bring between $60,000-$80,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $67,200.

Five Old Convertibles from Bonhams

Five Old Cars from Bonhams

Offered by Bonhams | Paris, France | February 7, 2019


1908 Clement-Bayard AC4I Tourer

Photo – Bonhams

Bonhams has a great number of interesting, early cars in their Retromobile catalog this year. We’ll be featuring five of the most interesting pre-WWI tourers (okay four, and one landaulette). Clement-Bayard was founded by Adolphe Clement, whose career is worthy of its own post.

I usually picture smaller cars, or very early cars, when thinking of Clement-Bayard, but this car proves that they also built quite large, expensive tourers as well. This car is powered by a 2.4-liter straight-four. It is said to be original and unrestored, which is pretty impressive. It should sell for between $86,000-$110,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Not sold.


1911 Renault Type CC Torpedo

Photo – Bonhams

The Type CC was a mid-sized Renault built in 1911 and 1912. It is sometimes referred to as the 14CV and is powered by a 3.6-liter straight-four making 16 horsepower. I’ve seen one of these in person (or a model very similar) and they’re a little smaller than you might think. But they make great old car noises.

This one carries a body from Million-Guiet that has some nice details. Check out the shape of the lower part of the windshield, for instance. Good luck finding replacement glass. Partially-restored, this car should bring between $69,000-$100,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Not sold.


1912 Hupmobile Model 32 Tourer

Photo – Bonhams

In a sea of old French cars offered by Bonhams in Paris, here’s an American one. The Hupp Motor Car Company of Detroit built cars from 1909 through 1940. They didn’t make it to the other side of WWII, but their cars were well-known and respected for many years prior.

The Model 32 went on sale in 1912 and is powered by a 32 horsepower straight-four engine. Production continued through 1915. This one was exported to Ireland in 1990 and was restored there in 2009. It’s a perfect example of an early American touring car and should sell for between $17,000-$23,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $18,267.


1913 FN Type 2700 Tourer

Photo – Bonhams

Gotta love the lighting assistant standing to the side in the photo above (though I’d gladly take that job). FN was a Belgian company, and quite a few of them have been sold from this very collection. Here’s a smaller Model 2000 version, for example.

While that car may physically look larger, it has a smaller engine. The car you see here is powered by a 2.7-liter straight-four. The 2700 was introduced shortly before WWI broke out, and it is thought that only 16 examples were produced before the company’s focus shifted to the war. This one doesn’t wear its original body (it was used as a fire engine at one point) but should still bring between $29,000-$40,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $22,181.


1912 Berliet Type AM 15HP Brougham de Ville

Photo – Bonhams

And finally, we have a Berliet – another French car. Not a full convertible, this car is described as a Brougham de Ville, which means the owner got to ride in the covered section out back while the chauffeur sat up front, exposed to the elements.

This car is powered by a 15 horsepower straight-four engine and was acquired by the collection from which it is being sold in 1963. The body was fitted during this time but is pretty accurate to what a car would’ve looked like in 1912. This one should command between $52,000-$63,000. More can be found here, and more from this sale can be found here.

Update: Sold $43,058.

Four Cars From RM in Auburn

Four Cars From RM in Auburn

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Auburn, Indiana | August 30-September 2, 2018


1913 Maxwell Model 25 Touring

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Maxwell was founded in 1905 by Jonathan Dixon Maxwell and Benjamin Briscoe in Tarrytown, New York. It was the only surviving marque of Briscoe’s disastrous United States Motor Company conglomerate and would become known as Chrysler in 1925.

The Model 25 was actually sold in 1914 through 1924 but this car is apparently titled as a 1913. Power came from a 21 horsepower straight-four backed by a 3-speed manual transmission. This car is unrestored and would make a great driver. It should bring between $20,000-$30,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $13,200.


1914 White Model Thirty G.A.H. Touring

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The White Motor Company was around for 80 years, but only produced passenger cars for the first 18 of those. And the earliest examples were powered by steam before they focused on gasoline power (and ultimately diesel trucks).

White had a very strange model naming system going from about 1910 through 1916. Take for instance, this Model G.E.D. Touring. The 1914 model range consisted of the Model Thirty, the Model Forty, and Model Sixty. The Model Thirty was broken down as the G.A.F. Touring, Roadster, and Coupe. G.A.H. cars were actually built in 1916 so it’s hard telling why this is titled as a 1914. At any rate, it should bring between $45,000-$65,000 and you can read more here.

Update: Sold $29,700.


1919 Cole Aero Eight Sportster

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The Cole Motor Car Company was founded by Joseph Cole in Indianapolis in 1909. Their claim to fame was that they were one of the first companies to offer a V8 engine in their cars. It debuted in 1915 for the 1916 model year and would last through the end of Cole production in 1925.

1919 Coles were dubbed the Series 870 and featured a 39 horsepower version of the company’s V8. In 1920, the “Aero Eight” moniker was introduced and the $2,750 4-passenger Sportster would’ve featured an upgraded 80 horsepower version of the engine. If this is a true Sportster, it’s going to have the big engine. It should bring between $20,000-$30,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $28,600.


1920 Buick Model K Roadster

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Buick only offered six-cylinder cars between 1919 and 1921. 1919’s Model H would become 1920’s Model K. For 1921 Buick moved to the Series 21 and would continue with numerical sequencing through 1924.

A 4.0-liter straight-six created 27 horsepower in the Model K and this 2-door, 3-passenger Roadster was the cheapest model offered at $1,495. About 19,000 of them were made in 1920 and this one should bring between $15,000-$25,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $14,300.

Three Pre-War Cars from Bonhams

Three Pre-War Cars from Bonhams

Offered by Bonhams | Carmel, California | August 24, 2018


1934 BMW 315/1 Roadster

Photo – Bonhams

Mercedes-Benz (and more specifically, Daimler) have been around for a long time, and have been a major producer of automobiles for essentially that entire time. Not so with BMW. It seems like the only Pre-War Bimmers that are any sort of common are 327/8/9s. Have you ever seen a 315?

This model was introduced in 1934 to replace the four-cylinder 303. The base 315 was a two-door sedan, cabriolet, or tourer. The 315/1 was the sports car variant. Built between 1934 and 1937, it shared the sedan’s chassis but had a slightly tuned engine. The 1.5-liter straight-six made 40 horsepower in this form. But, this particular car actually has an 80 horsepower, 2.0-liter straight-six from the similar 319/1 Roadster. A swap was made at some point in the past.

Only 242 examples of the 315/1 Roadster were made – perhaps most people haven’t seen them. This car has been more or less dormant for 30 years, so some work is needed. Regardless, it should still command between $125,000-$175,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $134,400.


1915 Simplex Crane Model 5 Tourer

Photo – Bonhams

The Crane, Simplex, Crane-Simplex, and Simplex Crane is one confusing mess of marques. Henry Middlebrook Crane started his own car company in 1912 and it lasted through 1914. It was acquired by Simplex and in 1915 they merged the Crane line of cars into their own, as a separate model. From 1915 through the end of the company, the cars were branded as Simplexes and the model was the “Crane Model 5” which Crane introduced back in 1914. When Simplex went under, Henry Crane bought the remnants and sold the Crane-Simplex (as a marque) for about a year in 1922. CONFUSED YET?

What we have here is a Simplex Crane Model 5. It’s powered by a ridiculous 110 horsepower, 9.2-liter straight-six with a four-speed transmission. The two-seater sports tourer body is not original but is nice. Less than 500 Crane Model 5s were produced, making this quite rare today. It should bring between $175,000-$225,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Not sold.


1913 Mercedes 28/60HP Phaeton

Photo – Bonhams

Daimler built some pretty impressive Mercedes-branded automobiles in the pre-Benz years. The 1913 28/60 was a development of the 28/50, which was introduced in 1910. Production of the 28/60 would continue until 1920 and power comes from a 60 horsepower, 7.2-liter straight-four.

This car has been in the same family for the last 40 years and was restored in 2008. It’s been actively toured, a testament to the usability of early Mercedes cars, despite their sometimes immense size. It’s well-outfitted in period accessories and should bring between $800,000-$1,000,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Bonhams in Carmel.

Update: Not sold.

Pipe Cabriolet

1913 Pipe M22 All-Weather Cabriolet

Offered by Bonhams | Paris, France | February 8, 2018

Photo – Bonhams

Founded in Brussels in 1898, Compagnie Belge de Construction Automobile (which is the most generic company name you could have as an automaker in Belgium) was the product of two brothers: Alfred and Victor Goldschmidt. Rare and relatively unknown today, Pipe was one of Belgium’s largest auto manufacturers before WWI. Their factory was destroyed during the war and they didn’t attempt production again until 1921. But it wasn’t to be and their passenger cars disappeared after 1922.

This four-cylinder car, as all Pipe’s were in 1913, is of unknown displacement but it may be a 16/20 hp car, based on its remarkable similarity to another Pipe of the same vintage. It is thought that this is a 1913 model, as that is what the [presumably] original registration plate says.

And, because of that registration, it is thought that this car was delivered new in the U.K. – as Pipe did export a fair number of cars. It did spend some time under American ownership before coming back to the U.K. in the last 15 or so years. It’s thought to be mostly original but it has not run in some time. A rare example of the Belgian Pipe, this car should bring between $36,000-$48,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $39,728.

Vermorel Tourer

1913 Vermorel 12/16HP Model L Torpedo Tourer

Offered by Bonhams | Beaulieu, U.K. | September 2, 2017

Photo – Bonhams

The French Vermorel company (officially, Établissements V. Vermorel) traces its roots back to 1850, when it was founded as an engineering firm in Villefranche-sur-Saône, France. They built their first car in 1899, but series production didn’t being until 1908.

Production took off until the outbreak of World War One and resumed immediately upon the war’s conclusion. The last Vermorel passenger car rolled off the line 1930 and heavy trucks were built through 1932. The company soldiered on in other arenas until 1965.

This particular example was discovered in a barn in France in 1968. It had two owners until 1990 when the current owner bought it. It is likely powered by a 2.3-liter straight-four making 12/16 horsepower and the body is by Henri Gauthier & Cie. Vermorel is a rare marque these days and this is believed to be the only example in the U.K. It should sell for between $26,000-$39,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $25,681.

Car-Nation

1913 Car-Nation Model C Roadster

Offered by Bonhams | Greenwich, Connecticut | June 5, 2016

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Car-Nation. Get it? Carnation. Forrest Keeton found success with his Keeton automobile and so he launched a second brand: the Car-Nation Motorette Company. Both companies were purchased by Charles Schaeffer and merged into the American Voiturette Company. The Car-Nation marque only existed between 1912 and 1915.

It’s a cyclecar, and is powered by an 18 horsepower 2.2-liter straight-four. Three models were ever offered by the company and this is the Roadster. It was the least expensive at $495 – which was cheaper than a Model T.

This car was discovered in Maine in 1954 and restored. It spent a long time in a museum but is being offered from a private owner. Only two Car-Nation Model C Roadsters are known to exist and there can’t be that many Car-Nations out there in general. It should sell for between $35,000-$40,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $24,200.

1913 Mors

1913 Mors Type RX Torpedo

Offered by Osenat | Fontainebleau, France | March 20, 2016

Photo - Osenat

Photo – Osenat

Mors was a French automobile marque and one of the first major manufacturers, having been founded in 1895. Their first automobile race occurred in 1897 and they were one of France’s premier, early automobile companies.

Émile Mors expanded his company after the turn of the century, opening an American arm. But like a fair number of early automotive giants, the years took their toll and Mors was gone by 1925.

This Type RX Torpedo is a decent-sized touring car. It’s powered by a 12/15 horsepower four-cylinder engine. Mors are fairly rare today and this one looks pretty nice. It’s been with its current owner for almost 30 years and should sell for between $16,300-$21,700. Click here for more info and here for more from Osenat.

Update: Sold $28,135.

Bentley-owned DFP Sports

1913 DFP 10/12HP Special Sports by R Harrison & Son

Offered by Bonhams | Chichester, U.K. | March 20, 2016

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Doriot, Flandrin & Parant, based in Courbevoie, was a French automaker that was around between 1908 and 1926. From 1906 until 1908, the company was simply known as Doriot-Flandrin. When Jules-René Parant came on board and the company took off.

The 10/12 was produced between 1911 and 1914 and is powered by a 1.6-liter straight-four. It was the smallest car the company offered at the time. DFP exported some cars to the U.K. where the official importer was none other than brothers Horace and Walter Owen Bentley.

The Bentleys were responsible for finishing the cars – getting bodies made, etc. W.O. Bentley tuned some of them and entered them into competition events like hillclimbs and speed trials. This car was actually used by the Bentleys and was later purchased by a museum. The engine has been rebuilt and other bits restored. It is usable and is noted as being the “Oldest car in the world with a Bentley plate.” It’s sort of a part of Bentley history and you can read more about it here. It should sell for between $63,000-$91,000. Click here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $66,641.