Offered by Mecum | Davenport, Iowa | November 7, 2019
Early Ford trucks were based on the Model T. They usually had a dually rear axle and some other changes, but the relation to the T was pretty obvious. They were even called the TT. The vehicle you see here was the first Ford heavy-duty truck. It’s a two-ton chassis, and it was built under the Fordson brand.
Fordson was a brand of tractors marketed by the Ford Motor Company between 1917 and 1964. The name also appeared on some light commercial vehicles in the U.K. The truck is powered by a Fordson tractor engine and transmission. The way it is packaged makes it looks like it completely lacks an engine, with the radiator mounted behind the front axle.
This was the only example of the Fordson two-ton truck that was actually delivered to a customer. It eventually made its way to the Harrah Collection and has been privately owned since 1983. Mecum has been making a big deal of it, which is the star of the show at this sale. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Mecum | Chicago, Illinois | October 24-26, 2019
Autocar has been a player in the heavy truck industry since 1908, and during some of that time, they were building passenger cars. Meanwhile, the Auto-Car Equipment Company was founded in 1904 in Buffalo, New York. When Autocar (of Pennsylvania) got into the truck business in ’08, Auto-Car, of Buffalo, whose sole business was trucks, changed their name to Buffalo.
And in 1910, they reformed again as the Atterbury Motor Car Company. By 1911 they were offering four different capacities of trucks, with the 5-ton example being the largest. This particular truck features a large pickup-style body and is powered by an inline-four engine.
Atterbury introduced new models in 1931, which they continued to produce through 1935 when they closed down. The company never really got huge, selling just 141 trucks in 1929, many to Canada. This one carries a pre-sale estimate of $40,000-$50,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Historics at Brooklands | Weybridge, U.K. | May 18, 2019
Fire trucks are not an uncommon collector’s item. But even old historical parade-worthy examples like this still only manage prices in the four-digit or low-five-digit range. I think it’s very odd, but I guess they have a relatively low usability factor.
The Maxim Motor Company was founded in Middleboro, Massachusetts in 1914 by Carlton Maxim. He was a firefighter, and his initial goal was to build a fire engine for his department. Well that blossomed into a company that was purchased by Seagrave in 1963. They built their last fire truck in 1989.
This pre-war example appears to be powered by a straight-six engine. It carries a Connecticut livery and was recently used in the filming of the live-action version of Dumbo. It is expected to bring between $12,000-$16,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | St. Louis, Missouri | May 4-5, 2019
Henry Leland‘s Lincoln Model L went on sale in 1921 and would remain in production until 1930. By then Ford had taken over and things went in a different direction. But for a solid decade, Leland’s well-engineered cars were a viable alternative to the Packards and Cadillacs of the era.
The 5.9-liter L-head V8 made 90 horsepower, and quite a few bodies could be had – either from the factory or from a number of coachbuilders. Enter Walter M. Murphy who built this so-called “Gothic Phaeton” for a millionaire rancher in San Diego. The body is aluminum and features brass and nickel trim. Some interior surfaces are gold-plated. It has immense and wonderful detail, including folding seats that turn into a bed.
That pointed two-piece windshield along with the weathered trunk out back and water-stained convertible top add to a somewhat menacing, old world appearance completely worthy of its “Gothic” name. It’s probably the most fantastic Model L I’ve come across and is expected to bring between $100,000-$150,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
1926 Hispano-Suiza H6B Cabriolet Le Dandy by Chapron
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Amelia Island, Florida | March 8-9, 2019
Hispano-Suiza was a Spanish/Swiss company that set up a French arm in 1911, which became their main factory in 1914. And in 1923, the French part sort of became its own company altogether, which is why this car is listed under “France” in our cars by country list.
The H6 went on sale in 1919 and was usurped by the H6B in 1922. More powerful than its predecessor, the H6B gets moved along by a 135 horsepower, 6.6-liter straight-six. It was a popular model and remained in production alongside the even-better H6C for a few years.
The Henri Chapron-built body currently on this car was added five years after it was originally sold, replacing whatever the original body was. The car has been stateside since the 50s, and has been winning awards at major shows for the last 15 years. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 8, 2019
1929 Voisin C16 Berline by Ottin
The C16 was a model produced by Voisin between 1929 and 1932. However this car left the factory, the current body was added by Ottin of Lyon in 1932 and it’s a four-door sedan. The style is somewhat sedate by Voisin standards, but then again the wildest designs always came from in-house.
This car is powered by a 5.8-liter sleeve-valve straight-six and it was expensive when new, costing three times as much as the 2.3-liter variant. That said, this is the only known 5.8-liter C16 known to exist. It is listed as the “flagship” of the collection from which it is being sold – a family that has owned a handful of Voisin cars since new. Fun fact, this car (as are the others we’ll feature from this collection) are listed as national French monuments and as such, are unable to leave the country. This one should bring between $100,000-$150,000. Click here for more info.
Update: Sold $128,471.
1928 Voisin C11 Cabriolet by Simon Pralavorio
The C11 was Voisin’s best selling-model and was offered between 1926 and 1929. What is neat about this particular car is that it is a two-door convertible with a rumble seat. So many Voisins received sedan or streamlined coachwork that it’s almost weird to see a “sporty” looking variant.
Power is from a 2.3-liter sleeve-valve straight-six, and this car is said to be heavily optioned with mechanical equipment from the factory. The body is a one-off from Lyon-based Simon Pralavorio. It should bring between $105,000-$150,000. Click here for more info.
Update: Not sold.
1926 Voisin C3L Berline by Simon Pralavorio
The C3L, which is different from the C3C (though I’m not exactly sure how), was offered by Voisin between 1922 and 1928. It is described by the auction catalog as the “car used by Presidents” which I guess means these were quite stately in their day.
They are powered by a 4.0-liter sleeve-valve straight-six and were capable of speeds over 75 mph. This car was also bodied by Palavorio and is said to have been the family’s favorite of all of their Voisin cars. It has a chauffeur’s compartment and an all-original interior. The price should be in the neighborhood of $80,000-$115,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale, including more Voisins.
Offered by Mecum | Chicago, Illinois | October 25-27, 2018
Photo – Mecum
Eddie Rickenbacker really had little to do with this brand of car, other than lending his name and image. In fact, the people behind it were also behind earlier failures such as E-M-F, Everitt, the Flanders 20, and so on. The trio of Barney Everitt, William Metzger, and Walter Flanders took one financial beating after another and always came back for more.
Rickenbacker was famous for being the first non-luxury car to offer four-wheel brakes. That may seem insane, but cars in general have always been a development-in-process since day one. The first Rickenbackers went on sale in 1922 and this 1926 model features a 3.9-liter, 60 horsepower straight-six engine, and a 3-speed transmission.
Eddie Rickenbacker resigned from the company the year this example was built and the company closed in 1927. It is estimated that 5,400 cars were made in 1926 alone, split between six and eight-cylinder models. This Coach Brougham would’ve cost $1,895 in 1926, but you’ll have to check back to see what it brings in 2018. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Bonhams | Paris, France | February 8, 2018
Photo – Bonhams
Based in Liège, Imperia automobiles were first introduced in 1906. The company would grow throughout the 1910s and into the 20s, acquiring Metallurgique, Nagant, and Excelsior along the way. In 1934 they merged with Minerva but the merger disbanded in 1939. Imperial built a few cars after the war but the marque was gone by 1949.
The most interesting thing about Imperia (I think) was that their factory in Belgium contained a test track along the roof (which you can still see on Google Earth). The car you see here has a fabric roof and it powered by four-cylinder engine that probably displaces 1.1 liters, which would mean it makes 27 horsepower.
Imperias aren’t all that common today and this one has been owned by the consignor for the past 12 years. It’s a small, light, and affordable Belgian classic. It should bring between $24,000-$36,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Mecum | Indianapolis, Indiana | May 20, 2017
Photo – Mecum
Ransom E. Olds’ second company, REO, went out of business in 1975 after 30 years of producing nothing but trucks. Those trucks were a mainstay of the business since 1910 and have, whether you know it or not, kept the brand famous ever since. The Reo Speedwagon was a series of exceptional trucks that kept the business going for decades.
This Model F is powered by a straight-six that runs the rear wheels through a 3-speed transmission. It rides on 12 spoke wooden wheels with metal rims. There’s brass and chrome spotted throughout and it’s bodied as a transport bus. We love old commercial vehicles because they’ve survived against all odds – this one is no different. If it was used as a bus in the 1920s, it was probably abused and someone took the time to save it.
This is one of just 12 Speedwagons built in 1926. It’s been restored and is stated to be “wonderful for parades,” which is probably true because what else are you going to use it for? Mecum sold this bus in 2015 for $80,000 against an estimate of $75,000-$125,000 prior to any road testing. Now it is apparently running and is estimated to bring between $75,000-$100,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Osenat | Lyon, France | November 8, 2015
Photo – Osenat
Marius Berliet began selling cars in 1900 and his company’s range quickly expanded. In the 1920s, they were building cheap versions of the Dodge in France and it ran the company into the ground. Somehow, they emerged from bankruptcy in 1929 (of all years) and survived the 1930s, ceasing passenger car production in 1939. After the war, they continued to build commercial vehicles up through 1978, when new owner Renault phased out the marque.
The Type VI was offered in a couple of body styles, including this slab-sided torpedo. The engine is a 1.2-liter straight-four making seven to 10 horsepower. The model was new for 1924.
This car was acquired by its present owner in 1977 and stored. He restored it in the early 2000s. It’s got four new tires and is ready to run and should sell for between $12,000-$14,500. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.