Bristol 401

1950 Bristol 401

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | April 8, 2018

Photo – Artcurial

When WWII ended, it left some companies wondering what they were going to do – especially those who were focused 100% on wartime production like the Bristol Aeroplane Company was. But if you’ve mastered production of vehicles (be it airplanes or trucks), cars are a logical next road to go down. And that’s just the path Bristol took.

Their first car was the 400 and this 401 two-door sedan was their second automobile. The first Bristols were sort of based on BMW models, which is probably why this thing looks a lot like a BMW 327. The 401 was available from 1948 through 1953 and a convertible variant, the 402, was built in 1949 and 1950 only. Only 611 examples of the 401 were built.

The aluminium body is by Touring and the engine is from the BMW 328. It’s a 2.0-liter straight-six making 85 horsepower. Bristol is still out there, barely, as one of the most exclusive car companies on the planet. To get your hands on this one will run you between $50,000-$75,000. Click here for more info and here for the rest of Artcurial’s lineup.

Update: Sold $38,167.

Two Single-Seaters at Rétromobile

Two Single-Seaters at Rétromobile


1952 Gordini Type 16

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 9, 2018

Photo – Artcurial

Amédée Gordini started working on cars in the 1930s. He built his first single-seaters right after WWII and now the Gordini brand is owned by Renault. As a team, Gordini competed in Formula One between 1950 and 1956. This is their 1952 racer… or at least that’s when it debuted.

The Type 16 was developed as a Formula 2 car for the 1952 season, which was what the regulations were for the World Driver’s Championship that year. It’s powered by a 2.0-liter straight-six and it was the third example built, debuting at the 1952 French Grand Prix. This car’s lengthy race history includes:

  • 1952 French Grand Prix (Reims, F2) – 1st (with Jean Behra)
  • 1952 French Grand Prix (Rouen, F1) – 7th (with Behra)
  • 1952 Italian Grand Prix – DNF (with Maurice Trintignant)
  • 1953 Argentinian Grand Prix – DNF (with Carlos Menditeguy)
  • 1953 Dutch Grand Prix – DNF (with Harry Schell)
  • 1953 Belgian Grand Prix – DNF (with Behra)
  • 1953 French Grand Prix – DNF (with Trintignant)
  • 1953 British Grand Prix – DNF (with Trintignant)
  • 1953 German Grand Prix – DNF (with Trintignant)
  • 1953 Swiss Grand Prix – DNF (with Trintignant)
  • 1953 Italian Grand Prix – 5th (with Trintignant)
  • 1954 Argentinian Grand Prix – DQ (with Behra)
  • 1954 Belgian Grand Prix – DNF (with Behra)
  • 1954 French Grand Prix – 6th (with Behra)
  • 1954 British Grand Prix – DNF (with Clemar Bucci)
  • 1954 German Grand Prix – DNF (with Paul Frère)
  • 1954 Swiss Grand Prix – DNF (with Bucci)
  • 1954 Italian Grand Prix – DNF (with Bucci)
  • 1954 Spanish Grand Prix – DNF (with Jacques Pollet)
  • 1955 Argentinian Grand Prix – DNF (with Pablo Birger)

Wow. That’s a lot of F1 races for one chassis over four different seasons (with some pretty big names from the era as well). The car was not necessarily competitive at the end of its career as F1 advances at a pretty breakneck pace, but it was still out there, grinding laps. The car was acquired in the 1970s by Christian Huet, who wrote the book on Gordini. The car was offered to him by Gordini himself before passing away.

It’s well-documented and currently has a different engine installed, although a 2.0-liter F2 engine does come with it. Apparently, Gordini only built 33 single-seater cars and 14 of those are in the Schlumpf hoard. This one should bring between $1,100,000-$1,700,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.


1950 AGS Panhard Monomill

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Paris, France | February 7, 2018

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Here’s a strange, one-off single-seater. Called the Atelier Guérin Special, or AGS, this car was built by Pierre Guérin in Grenoble, France. It’s based around a Panhard car of the era and, quite unusually for an open-wheel race car, features front-wheel drive.

It’s powered by an 850cc Panhard twin. Apparently it was raced in period, but it isn’t really known where, though it did compete in some hillclimb events in Italy more recently and that’s probably where its specialty lies.

It finally left its hometown in 1990 and its then-new owner kept the car for 20 years. A few others have enjoyed it since then and now it’s on the open market. It’s a unique, period-correct time attack car waiting for a new owner to take it to the track. It should bring between $30,000-$40,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $39,452.

Ferrari 195 Inter Coupe

1950 Ferrari 195 Inter Coupe by Touring

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Maranello, Italy | September 9, 2017

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Ferrari’s 195 Inter was the road-going version of the 195 S race car and was one of Ferrari’s first road cars. We’ve featured a Ghia bodied example before, but this car carries a two-door coupe body by Touring – one of three 195 Inters bodied by that particular Carrozzeria.

The 195 Inter is powered by a 2.3-liter V-12 making 130 horsepower. This is actually the first chassis of this model constructed and it was shown at the 1951 Turin Motor Show by its first owner. It found its way to the U.S. in 1959.

First restored in 2007, it debuted at the 2008 Pebble Beach Concours. Only 25 examples of the 195 Inter were built, making them extremely rare today. It may not be the sportiest Ferrari road car, but it helped launch the firm as the world’s premier GT manufacturer. It should sell for between $1,300,000-$1,750,000. Click here for more info and here for the rest of RM’s all-Ferrari lineup.

Update: Sold $1,078,636.

L’Uovo

1950 Ferrari 166 MM/212 Export by Fontana

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Monterey, California | August 18-19, 2017

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

This early Ferrari is certainly a unique design. Check out how short that windshield is. Driving it has to feel as if you are just strapping yourself to an engine and hanging on for dear life. It sort of has a proto-pontoon fender look to it, but it all curves inward at the passenger compartment before the bobbed rear end. It’s aggressive, racy, and screams “competition Ferrari.”

This car was purchased new by the Marzotto brothers in Italy in 1950. It has serious competition history in period, including:

  • 1950 Targa Florio – DNF (with Umberto Marzotto)
  • 1950 Mille Miglia – DNF (with Umberto Marzotto and Franco Cristaldi)
  • 1951 Mille Miglia – DNF (with Giannino Marzotto and Marco Crosara)
  • 1952 Mille Miglia – DNF (with Guido Mancini and Adriano Ercolani)

Okay, so maybe it wasn’t super successful in it’s day, but it still ran at the biggest races in the world. After the 1950 racing season the car was rebuilt by Carrozzeria Fontana, with the body you see here having been constructed at that time. Dubbed “L’uovo,” or the egg, it was designed to be aerodynamic and light.

After the 1952 season, the original 166 MM engine was replaced by an engine from Ferrari’s newer 212 Export model, which would mean that it carries a 2.6-liter V-12, which makes 175 horsepower (though this is unclear from the catalog description). In 1953 the car made it’s way into Californian ownership. In 1986, an Italian buyer brought the car home from the U.S. and had it restored. Displayed infrequently, the car has competed in the modern Mille Miglia a few times in the last 20 years.

This one-off, big money Ferrari will go under the hammer next month. For more information, check out RM Sotheby’s site here and see more from this sale here.

Update: Sold $4,500,000.

Ferrari 166 MM

1950 Ferrari 166 MM Barchetta by Touring

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Amelia Island, Florida | March 11, 2017

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

You’re looking at one of the earliest Ferraris. The 166 MM was one of the first Ferrari models – produced after only the 125 S, 159 S, 166 S, and the 166 Inter. The “MM” stood for “Mille Miglia”, the famous Italian road race that Ferrari won (actually finished 1-2) in 1949 with cars similar to this.

The cars are powered by a 2.0-liter V-12 making 140 horsepower. The Barchetta body is by Touring and, of Touring’s 25 Barchettas, this is #23. Only 32 166 MMs were built in total. One of the first owners of this car was a racing driver. And he took it racing. The competition history for this chassis includes:

  • 1951 Mille Miglia – 6th in class (with Eugenio Castelotti and Giuseppe Rota)
  • 1953 Mille Miglia – DNF (with Ambrogio Arosio and Italo Di Giuseppe)

In early 1954, the car was already owned by someone else and racing hard in the United States. It’s been a respected car in the collector community pretty much since, winning awards at Pebble Beach as early as 1979. It’s Ferrari Classiche certified and retains all of its major original components. A Ferrari 166 is a hard to come by, but must-have for any serious collector. This is a great example and it’s expected to bring between $8,000,000-$10,000,000. Click here for more info and here for the rest of RM Sotheby’s lineup.

Update: Not sold.

Fiat Giannini 750 Sport

1950 Fiat Giannini 750 Sport by Lotti

Offered by Bonhams | Paris, France | February 9, 2017

Photo – Bonhams

The Giannini brothers opened a garage in 1885 and started servicing Itala cars in 1922. Shortly thereafter they got involved with racing which led them to a profitable business (that an offshoot of still exists today) wrenching on Fiats.

In the 1940s, the Giannini brothers were building some really solid engines. In fact, they set world speed records in a Fiat Topolino using their know-how. The car you see here was actually built by the Benedetti brothers of Florence and was bodied by Carrozzeria Lotti of the same town. The car was originally based around a Fiat 1100, but later the engine was swapped for a Giannini 750cc straight-four.

This car has period race history, including:

  • 1952 Mille Miglia – 125th (with Carlo Chiti and a co-driver named Cioni)

The current owner has had this car since the early 1990s. It’s certainly one of a kind and even its name had to be created in order to tell what it is. It’s been completely restored and is likely eligible for historic events. It should bring between $270,000-$320,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Delahaye 148 Saoutchik

1950 Delahaye 148L Coach by Saoutchik

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 11, 2017

Photo – Artcurial

The Delahaye 148 was a long-wheelbase version of the 135M. It wasn’t as sporty, but that doesn’t mean they still didn’t garner incredibly crafted bodies from France’s finest coachbuilders. Because it is a derivative of the 135M, the 148 is powered by a 3.5-liter straight-six. Power depended on the number of carburetors and this is likely a 115 horsepower car.

Saoutchik built some of the most exotic bodies for old cars and this windswept two-door fastback fits right in with what they’re known for – in fact, it was shown on their stand at the 1950 Paris Motor Show. The current owner has had it since 1970 and while he kept it in running order, he drove it sparingly. It shows just less than 19,000 original miles. It’s all-original and should bring between $750,000-$1,050,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Not sold.

Five Coachbuilt Delahayes

Five Coachbuilt Delahayes

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 11, 2017


1936 Delahaye 135 Competition Court Cabriolet by Figoni et Falaschi

Photo – Artcurial

The Delahaye 135 was the first model in a series of cars that would be built from 1935 through 1954 (with some time off for the War, of course). The 135 would be offered in a few different forms, but the Competition Court was the top-of-the-line model. The engine in this car is a 3.8-liter straight-six, which is not original to this car (it would’ve had a 3.5-liter unit when new).

It rides on a Competition chassis (which was sort of discovered by its most recent owner when the car was restored). It originally featured a Faux-Cabriolet by Figoni et Falaschi, but it was converted to a full cabriolet by the same guy who swapped the engine – but the design stays true to the original. This is one of six 135 Competition Court cars that originally sported a Figoni coupe body (here’s another). It’s a beautiful car with a good story (like how it was hidden from the Nazis) and it should bring between $1,275,000-$1,900,000. Click here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.


1938 Delahaye 135M Coupe Sport by Chapron

Photo – Artcurial

The 135M was built on both sides of World War II and it was basically a standard 135 with a better engine. In this case, that engine is a 3.5-liter straight-six, which, depending on carburetor setup, put out 90, 105, or 115 horsepower. This car is a 115 horsepower variant. This example was one of two ordered new from Chapron by a man from Algeria and its early history is not known.

It reappeared in Luxembourg sometime before 1986 and passed between owners before being liquidated as part of Evert Louwman’s purchase of the Rosso Bianco collection. Presented as an all-original car with “refreshed paintwork,” this car should sell in the neighborhood of $425,000-$635,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Not sold.


1939 Delahaye 135MS Cabriolet by Figoni et Falaschi

Photo – Artcurial

If you didn’t guess it, the Delahaye 135MS was a step up from the 135M. In this case the engine is a 3.6-liter straight-six putting out 160 horsepower. This numbers matching car (body, engine, chassis) was bodied by Figoni & Falaschi in the a highly desirable cabriolet style.

It was originally ordered and owned by a famous French singer and stayed in her family until the late 1940s. The body was modified around 1950 when it was used in a film. Fortunately, the current owner (who has had the car since 2012) restored the car to its original glory, winning two awards at Pebble Beach as a result. This beauty should bring between $1,275,000-$1,700,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Not sold.


1950 Delahaye 148L Coach by Saoutchik

Photo – Artcurial

The Delahaye 148 was a long-wheelbase version of the 135M. It wasn’t as sporty, but that doesn’t mean they still didn’t garner incredibly crafted bodies from France’s finest coachbuilders. Because it is a derivative of the 135M, the 148 is powered by a 3.5-liter straight-six. Power depended on the number of carburetors and this is likely a 115 horsepower car.

Saoutchik built some of the most exotic bodies for old cars and this windswept two-door fastback fits right in with what they’re known for – in fact, it was shown on their stand at the 1950 Paris Motor Show. The current owner has had it since 1970 and while he kept it in running order, he drove it sparingly. It shows just less than 19,000 original miles. It’s all-original and should bring between $750,000-$1,050,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Not sold.


1951 Delahaye 135M Gascogne Coach by Dubos

Photo – Artcurial

With the 135M spanning both sides of the second World War, you see designs that vary pretty wildly between early and late cars – especially since each of them were bodied by a professional coachbuilder. In this case, it is Carrossier Louis Dubos of Neuilly-sur-Seine, France. It’s powered by a 3.6-liter straight-six.

Remarkably, this car has been owned by the same family since 1959. The restoration dates to the latter half of the 1990s, and has been driven only a few times since 2000, thus will require a thorough inspection before being declared roadworthy. The other four Delahayes we featured are all quite pricey, but this attractive and usable example will likely sell for between $75,000-$105,000. Click here for more info and here for the rest of Artcurial’s auction lineup.

Update: Sold $126,297.

Frazer Nash Le Mans Replica

1950 Frazer Nash Le Mans Replica

Offered by Bonhams | Goodwood, U.K. | September 10, 2016

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

I feel like every time we feature one of Archibald Frazer-Nash’s spectacular automobiles, we have to have the conversation about the word “replica.” In this case, replica refers to a production vehicle modeled after an actual race car the company built. In this case, Frazer Nash built a car for the 1949 24 Hours of Le Mans. Because it was successful, they built a run of similar cars for customers.

This example, with known ownership history from new, was first sold in the U.K. in 1950. It is powered by a 2.0-liter straight-six from Bristol making 125 horsepower. One owner has had this car for over four decades. At one point in time, it was owned and raced by famed driver Roy Salvadori.

This was the 20th of 34 built. Frazer Nash only built about 85 cars after WWII, with this model being the most popular. With pre-war production included, Frazer Nash output was only about 400 cars. Not a large amount. But they are among the best of the breed – true sports cars. This example – which is all original – should bring between $760,000-$840,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $785,031.

Lea-Francis 2.5-Litre Sports

1950 Lea-Francis 2½-Litre Westland Sports

Offered by Historics at Brooklands | June 11, 2016

Photo - Historics at Brooklands

Photo – Historics at Brooklands

Lea-Francis was founded by Richard Lea and Graham Francis in 1895. As did many, the pair began by building bicycles and cars came in 1903. Strangely for a company that began by building bicycles, motorcycle production started after cars did. An independent their entire existence, the company folded in 1960.

The 2½-Litre was introduced in 1949 and was built in very small quantities through 1953. In fact, only 77 were built in total. The engine is a 2.5-liter straight-four rated at 120 horsepower. This is the sportiest car Lea-Francis built after the war.

Kind of resembling a Jaguar XK120, this Westland-bodied Lea-Francis is among the most collectible cars that the company built. Coupling with the decent looks and low production numbers, this example with a six-year-old restoration is expected to bring between $50,000-$60,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $47,775.