Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Auburn, Indiana | September 3, 2021
In 1946, Sydney Allard’s company introduced two lines of cars, both of which would spawn follow-up models. Those would have been the J1 and K1. Following up the K1 in 1950 was the K2. It was produced through 1952.
This British roadster featured American power – a 5.4-liter Cadillac V8. It was as at home on the track as much as it was on the street, but the K models were more street cars than the J cars. This one was sold new out of New York City.
Only 119 K2s were built. And they are rarely seen. The pre-sale estimate here is $60,000-$70,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Brightwells | Leominster, U.K. | September 16, 2021
Jowett was founded in 1906 and made it through WWII. Unfortunately, a post-war boom for new cars in the U.K. saw Jowett’s body builder get bought out by Ford, leaving them without a source for car bodies. So they said “aw the hell with it” and closed up shop.
Despite its looks, the Jupiter was actually their large car, and it was offered between 1947 and 1953. The car is powered by a 1.5-liter flat-four mounted directly behind the grille in front of the radiator. It produced 52 horsepower in this car, which was enough to get it to 80 mph.
The weird engine location meant that this was a roomy six-seater car, and the DeLuxe trim added bigger bumpers, a fog light, leather seats, and a wooden dashboard. This four-owner example is one of 23,307 built and should sell for between $12,000-$15,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Mecum | Chicago, Illinois | October 21-23, 2021
Frazer had a short existence as a marque: just five years from 1947 through 1951. The brand was supposed to be an upmarket Kaiser, with prices just a few hundred dollars more than their Kaiser counterparts. Joseph Frazer left the company in 1949, and Kaiser Motors didn’t find the marque to be all that profitable, so it was shuttered after 1951. The final model year consisted of leftover bodies from the ’49 and ’50 model years.
As sort of homely and 1950s-American-generic as this car may look, it is actually spectacular. The Vagabond is one of the coolest American cars of the 1950s. Why? Well it isn’t the 115-horsepower 3.7-liter inline-six. It’s the fact that it is five-door hatchback, or utility sedan, as it was called.
Look at that. The Vagabond (Kaiser made one too) featured two rows of bench seating. The rear folded flat and was lined with wood slats on the rear to match the cargo area floor, which is accessed via a folding tailgate and an upper rear hatch. The left-rear door is blocked by the spare tire. Funky.
Only 2,951 Vagabonds were built by Frazer for 1951. And this one looks great. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by H&H Auctioneers | Duxford, U.K. | September 8, 2021
Daimler’s DB18 was introduced just prior to the start of WWII in 1939. Production obviously halted while the fighting raged, but Daimler popped it right back into production after the war. The car was sold as the “Consort” in export markets, where it proved very popular in India.
The DB18 was based on the pre-war New Fifteen model, but instead of that car’s 2.1-liter engine, the DB18 received a new 2.5-liter inline-six rated at 70 horsepower with a single Solex carburetor. Top speed in 1951 was 82 mph.
The first cars were all coachbuilt, but Daimler ended up selling a popular sedan that was bodied in-house. Only 608 Special Sport models were produced between 1946 and 1953, making this car pretty rare. It carries drophead coupe by by Barker as well as a pre-sale estimate of $48,000-$55,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Historics Auctioneers | Ascot, U.K. | May 15, 2021
Bandini Automobili was a small boutique automaker based in Forli, Italy, between 1946 and 1992. It was founded by Ilario Bandini and was not associated with Ferrari F1 driver Lorenzo Bandini. The company’s cars were produced mainly for racing, with their Siluros taking multiple SCCA championships in the 1950s.
Bandini cars were also seen at the Mille Miglia, Formula 3, world endurance races, and more. The 1100 was produced between 1947 and 1950, mainly with Motto-sourced sports car bodies. The 1.1-liter inline-four engine was sourced from Fiat and modified with a twin-cam head from Alfa Romeo. Horsepower was rated at 65.
This car carries an open-wheel-style body and was restored in 2017. Just 46 Bandinis are known to exist, and this one should fetch between $105,000-$130,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Auburn, Indiana | September 3-6, 2020
Moskvitch was a brand of automobile produced by the Soviet Union beginning in 1946. The first cars were actually built at a former Opel plant in East Germany. Production continued until the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, and afterward under a privately-owned company until 2002. Somehow, Volkswagen currently owns the brand name.
The cars were reliable and low-cost by Soviet standards, although they were not always easy to get. The 400 was based on the pre-war Opel Kadett and went on sale in December 1946. The “400” meant that the car was powered by a 23-horsepower 1.1-liter inline-four, and the “420” meant that it was a sedan.
Other body styles were offered, and the model was ultimately succeeded by the short-lived 401 in 1954. Between the 400 and 401, 247,439 examples were produced. I have no particular history on this car, as this post is being written well in advance of RM’s catalog going online. But, these are rarely seen in the U.S. (or even Western Europe), and this one is selling at no reserve. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Mecum | Kissimmee, Florida | August 27-29, 2020
The Statesman was a full-sized car offered by Nash for a short period of time. It wasn’t their only full-sized car, but it slotted in below the Ambassador in the Nash product line. Despite being on sale for only six years (1950-1956), it spawned two distinct generations.
This Statesman Custom Brougham was from the final year of the first generation. The Custom was the top of three trim levels, and was offered in three body styles: a two-door sedan, a four-door sedan, and a two-door Brougham. The latter had a distinct fastback style that is pretty awesome for 1951.
Two-door Broughams were the rarest of all 1951 Nash cars, regardless of what model and trim combo you picked. For instance, only 38 Statesman Custom examples were built. Thirty-eight. That’s it. Could you imagine a major car company today producing less than 50 examples of one of their models? It’s crazy.
Power is from a 3.0-liter inline-six that made 85 horsepower when new. This is a cool car from a once-great manufacturer. And I can’t imagine how rare it is today. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Update: Sold $19,800.
Update: Sold, Mecum, Indianapolis, October 2020, $27,500.
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Amelia Island, Florida | March 6-7, 2020
This car is listed in the auction catalog as a “Silnes-Offenhauser Tomshe.” It was apparently built by Fred Tomshe, but was entered in various races as a Silnes-Offenhauser with Tomshe/Bardahl listed as the entrant. The car was commissioned by gangster George “Babe” Tuffanelli, who was part of the Chicago Outfit.
Power is from a fuel-injected 4.4-liter Offenhauser inline-four. It was entered in the 1951 Indy 500 with driver Ray Knepper, who failed to qualify. It did compete at Milwaukee and Langhorne later that year.
It’s been used at historic events since 2010, including the Monterey Historics. The constructor confusion here could be easily explained by that the possibility that the Tomshe build was based on a Silnes car. Who knows… the people who were there are no longer here. The pre-sale estimate is $125,000-$150,000. Click here for more info and here for more from RM at Amelia.
Offered by Brightwells | Leominster, U.K. | March 4, 2020
The Fordson tractor brand was manufactured by various entities of the Ford Motor Company between 1917 and 1964. It was under Ford of Britain’s purview for the last few decades, and in that time, they built a 1/2-ton commercial vehicle called the E83W. It was available as a delivery van, a pickup, and other light-duty body styles.
The truck was available from 1938 through 1957 in the U.K. and was also offered under the Thames commercial brand. It retained its pre-war styling and 10 horsepower, 1.2-liter inline-four for the duration of production. Top speed was about 40 mph.
This tiny pickup has been restored and is now offered with a pre-sale estimate of $9,000-$12,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
1951 Ferrari 340 America Coupe Speciale by Vignale
Offered by Bonhams | Carmel, California | August 16, 2019
The 340 was the first in Ferrari’s line of America cars that sort of culminated in the ultra-rare 365 California. Produced between 1950 and 1952, the 340 was intended as a grand tourer, but, being Ferraris, that didn’t stop some from being pressed into racing duty. In 1951, a 340 America won the Mille Miglia.
Power is from a 4.1-liter V12 making 220 horsepower. The engine was actually derived from Ferrari’s Grand Prix motor. Only 23 examples of the 340 America were produced, with two of those actually being cars converted from earlier 275 S models. Eleven of them were bodied by Vignale.
Five of those 11 were coupes, including this one. At a cost of $25,000 when new, the car was kept around Southern California in its early years before being acquired by the current owning family in the late 1950s. It’s remarkably untouched after 60+ years, with chipping paint and great patina. If only all old Ferraris looked this authentic. No estimate is available, but you can read more here and see more from Bonhams here.