AC Buckland

1953 AC Buckland

Offered by Historics at Brooklands | July 8, 2017

Photo – Historics at Brooklands

Auto Carriers Ltd., later known as AC Cars, started building vehicles in 1901. They’re still around, though they are mostly building Cobra replicas and random attempts at sports cars. The 1950s were their sweet years, introducing or selling five different models during the decade.

The first of these was the 2-Litre, a car AC introduced in 1947. It was available as a two-or-four-door sedan and they also built a few Drophead Coupes. And then there was this, the Buckland tourer. The 2-Litre had the highest production total of any four-wheeled AC vehicle by the time it was out of production in 1956.

They are powered by a 74 horsepower, 2.0-liter straight-six. Only 60 Buckland tourers were built and this car has period racing history. It raced at Silverstone, Brands Hatch, and was the first AC car to race at Goodwood. It’s been completely restored and retains its original chassis and body. This particular Buckland was a no-sale at Historics’ most recent sale, so we’ll see if they can find it a new home this time around with an estimate of $47,000-$55,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Abarth 1100 Ghia

1953 Abarth 1100 Sport by Ghia

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

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

In 1949, Carlo Abarth jumped off of the sinking ship that was Cisitalia to start his own business… utilizing the leftovers of Cisitalia. It started with sports cars and today is a trim level of sporty Fiats. Abarth only built cars in limited numbers and the 1100 you see here is a one-off.

There was a car called the Abarth 205 and they took a chassis from that car and fitted Fiat’s new 1100 engine to it. The car was sent to Ghia for this incredible Jet Age body, and voila! Originally, Fiat’s 1.1-liter straight-four made about 35 horsepower. Abarth no doubt increased that figure.

This Ghia masterpiece has all the right little details, not to mention a brilliant blue interior that will blow you away because you just don’t expect the vividness it provides. Exhibited initially by Ghia at the 1953 Turin Salon, this car was later shown at the 1954 New York Auto Show by its first owner, who re-christened it the “Vaughn SS Wildcat,” with V-8 underhood.

The car was rediscovered in 1982 and the current owner had it restored in 2015, correct Fiat engine re-installed. It’s an awesome – and remarkably small – 1950s Italian design. You’ll be the only one with anything like it. Click here for more info and here for more from RM Sotheby’s in Monterey.

Fiat 1100 by Allemano

1953 Fiat 1100 Cabriolet by Allemano

Offered by Gooding & Company | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 20, 2017

Photo – Gooding & Company

The Fiat 1100 was a model that was produced a number of different times, but the car you see here was part of the line that was available between 1953 and 1969 (though light commercial variants were built through 1971). The cars were offered in a few body styles from Fiat, namely a four-door sedan, wagon, and a two-door convertible.

When Fiat introduced the car at the 1953 Geneva Auto Show, it was just sedans. But later that year at the Turin motor show they had a few special versions on the show stand, such as a Michelotti-designed Coupe and Cabriolet, which were both built by Allemano. In all, Allemano is thought to have built two coupes and four convertibles and this is the convertible from the Turin show stand.

Power comes from a 50 horsepower, 1.1-liter straight-four. This car sports single-family ownership for 56 years and its current owner had it restored to its present glory. Only two Allemano-bodied 1100 Cabriolets are known to exist and they are very striking. This one should bring between $275,000-$325,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Gooding & Company.

Update: Not sold.

Alfa Romeo Sprint Supergioiello

1953 Alfa Romeo 1900C Sprint Supergioiello by Ghia

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Monaco | May 14, 2016

Photo - RM Sotheby's

Photo – RM Sotheby’s

This might look more like a coachbuilt classic than a rally car, but it turns out that it is both. The Alfa Romeo 1900C was the short wheelbase version of the 1900. The 1900 was built between 1950 and 1959 with the C having been introduced in 1951.

It is powered by a 1.9-liter straight-four making 100 horsepower. This car was bodied by Ghia and is one of 18 such examples built (and was apparently the final one). It was sold new in Spain and used extensively for rallying between 1954 and 1961. It actually ran in the 1955 Monte Carlo Rally with owner Gumersindo Garcia Fernandez at the wheel.

This car has spent most of its life in Spain and Portugal but was restored in Italy recently. It looks fantastic and the numbers on the door give away its racing past, even if those wire wheels don’t. It should sell for between $555,000-$660,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Siata 300 BC

1953 Siata 300 BC Barchetta by Bertone

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Amelia Island, Florida | March 12, 2016

Photo - RM Sotheby's

Photo – RM Sotheby’s

Giorgio Ambrosini’s Siata somehow survived until 1970, but it was the 1950s where they made their mark. The first cars were modified Fiats and their first homemade model was the 1951 300 BC Barchetta.

The car is very light (as you can see, the tires look like they were stolen off a bicycle) and it’s powered by a 51 horsepower 1.1-liter Fiat straight-four. Earlier cars had Crosley motors. This model was aimed at Americans who needed an agile SCCA weapon.

This is car #38 of 40 that were bodied by Bertone (another handful or two were also built, some with bodies by Motto). It’s been in the U.S. since new and was first road-registered in 1989, having been primarily used for competition up to that point. For most of its life, it was driven twice a year to keep it running. It’s been repainted and the interior redone, but otherwise it’s largely original. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $198,000.

Coachbuilt Classics at Rétromobile

Coachbuilt Classics at Rétromobile

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 5, 2016


1951 Salmson G72 Coupe by Saoutchik

Photo - Artcurial

Photo – Artcurial

Salmson, the French auto manufacturer, built cars up through 1957. They had a range of sedans and two-doors. This is a G72, a model introduced in 1950. Most G72s were sedans, but some of them were sent to coachbuilders for something a little more fancy. Power was supplied by a 2.3-liter straight-four.

This car was bodied by Saoutchik, the legendary French coachbuilder. It was repainted some 25 years ago but otherwise it is original. Only 254 of this series of the G72 were produced and this one carries a one-off body. It should bring between $175,000-$240,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $207,019


1953 Renault Frégate Ondine Cabriolet by Ghia

Photo - Artcurial

Photo – Artcurial

The Renault Frégate was Renault’s executive sedan that they built between 1951 and 1960. Estate wagons were available as well, under different names. Renault showed a convertible at the 1953 Paris Motor Show, but it never entered production. Later, three more examples were shown and two disappeared. It is believed this is the only survivor of those cars.

The body is actually made of some kind of polyester blend. We’re really not sure what that means, but the engine is likely a 2.0-liter straight-four. The restoration was completed in the 1990s and it is believed that this car was used by legendary French singer Edith Piaf in the 1950s. It is the only car like it and it should bring between $87,000-$110,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Artcurial.

Update: Sold $86,814.


1939 Graham-Paige Type 97 Supercharged Cabriolet by Pourtout

Photo - Artcurial

Photo – Artcurial

The Graham brothers of Dearborn, Michigan, began producing their own trucks in 1922 after years of modifying Fords. That company was bought by Dodge in 1925 and the brothers joined Dodge’s board. But when Chrysler took over Dodge in 1928, the Graham brand was soon phased out. Good thing the brothers bought the Paige-Detroit Motor Company in 1927.

So in 1928, the Graham-Paige marque was introduced. In 1938 they introduced a bold (and awesome) new style that they built in low quantities through 1941. After the war, the automotive portion of the company was acquired by Kaiser-Frazer (which never reintroduced the Graham-Paige automobile brand), but Graham-Paige, strangely, soldiered on as a real estate company into the 1960s before becoming the Madison Square Garden Corporation. Weird, huh?

Anyway, the Type 97 Supercharged was built in 1938 and 1939. It is powered by a supercharged 3.5-liter straight-six making 115 horsepower. This car left Graham-Paige as a coupe (they didn’t offer a convertible) and made its way to France to be bodied by Pourtout in Paris. It may be the only such car with this body. It has been restored and should sell for between $165,000-$215,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $186,985.

Update: Sold, RM Sotheby’s Amelia Island 2017, $770,000.


1949 Delahaye 135MS Coupe by Ghia

Photo - Artcurial

Photo – Artcurial

The Delahaye 135 was one of their best models. It lasted (in some form) between 1935 and 1954. The 135MS was the sportiest version – sometimes it was a race car, and sometimes it was a road car. It was the final Delahaye car available for purchase before the brand was phased out.

Bodies for the car varied widely. This car, with its covered wheels and sort of boxy design, was styled by Ghia in Turin. It’s beautiful. The engine is a 3.6-liter straight-six making 120 horsepower. It was built for the Shah of Iran who owned it until the late 1950s when it went back to Europe. Since then it spent time in the Blackhawk Collection and the John O’Quinn collection. The restoration was carried out sometime in the early 1990s. It’s a wonderful car and one of three Delahaye 135s styled by Ghia. It should sell for between $210,000-$285,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $180,307.


1951 Talbot-Lago T26 Grand Sport by Dubos

Photo - Artcurial

Photo – Artcurial

The Talbot-Lago T26 Record was a car introduced by Talbot-Lago in 1946. In late 1947, a Grand Sport version was introduced, which included a more powerful 4.5-liter straight-six making 190 horsepower (in this form). Grand Sport cars (that weren’t race cars) were all sent out to coachbuilders to have some of the best designs of the period attached to them.

This one went to Carrossier Louis Dubos near Paris for this elegant cabriolet that, while originally black, looks glorious in white. Never completely restored, mechanical bits have been redone as needed. This is one of three T26s bodied by Dubos and the only Grand Sport to wear one of their bodies. It should sell for between $260,000-$350,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $293,834.

Cadillac Series 62 Coupe by Ghia

1953 Cadillac Series 62 Coupe by Ghia

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Phoenix, Arizona | January 28-29, 2016

Photo - RM Sotheby's

Photo – RM Sotheby’s

When you think of 50s Cadillacs, you think big fins. But 1953 was a pre-fin year and everything was a little more restrained. The Series 62 was the entry-level Cadillac from 1952 through 1968 when it’s name was changed. The series was introduced in 1940.

In 1953, Ghia of Italy ordered two Cadillac Series 62 Convertible chassis and had them shipped to Italy. They applied this gorgeous, stylized black coupe body with gold accents all around. The engine is the standard 5.4-liter V-8 making 210 horsepower.

This car has slightly different styling than its sister car at the front and passed through the Blackhawk Collection more than 20 years ago before its current owners acquired it around the time of its restoration. As a 1950s American chassis with an Italian body – and it being one of two – it will be pricey. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $1,430,000.

8V Elaborata

1953 Fiat 8V Elaborata by Zagato

Offered by Bonhams | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 28, 2016

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

The Fiat 8V was a short-lived sports car from Fiat produced between 1952 and 1954. Of the 114 cars built, only about 40 had factory bodywork – the rest were all done by coachbuilders and this Zagato-styled “Elaborata” coupe is one of just five such cars built by the famous Italian coachbuilder.

The engine is a 2.0-liter V-8 making 110 horsepower (Fiat would’ve called the car the “V8” but Ford already had that trademarked). This car was sold new to someone in Milan and was then campaigned heavily throughout Europe through the late 1950s.

The car was most recently restored in 2011. Fiat 8Vs rarely trade hands (although we’ve featured a few of them) and when they do, it usually means big money. That will likely be the case here, as Bonhams has declined to publish an estimate. In any case, you can read more here and see more from this sale here.

Update: Not sold.

212 Inter by Vignale

1953 Ferrari 212 Inter Coupe by Vignale

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | New York, New York | December 10, 2015

Photo - RM Sotheby's

Photo – RM Sotheby’s

This is a very stylish car, but we probably don’t need to tell you that. It looks like something you’d see parked at Villa d’Este (Good news: just read the lot description and this car has not been shown there – so here’s your very hard-to-get ticket to that show).

The 212 Inter was one of Ferrari’s earliest road cars. Only 82 were built between 1951 and 1952 and only six of those were Vignale Coupes. This was the first. The car is powered by a 2.6-liter Colombo V-12 making 170 horsepower.

This car was shown by a Ferrari dealer at the 1954 San Remo Concours d’Elegance before being returned to Ferrari and shipped to Luigi Chinetti in the U.S. (who sold it to a guy in Milwaukee). He ruined the engine and swapped it out. Fast forward to 2009 when the car was owned by an Indiana man who had it restored – and the original engine was located and put back in the car. Now the car is just about perfect – including that beautiful color combination. It can now be yours. Click here for more info and here for more from RM.

Update: Not sold.

Victress Roadster

1953 Victress S1A Roadster

Offered by Mecum | Chicago, Illinois | October 8-10, 2015

Photo - Mecum

Photo – Mecum

The Victress Manufacturing Company was one of many fiberglass sports car builders that popped up in the 1950s – and many of these were based, like Victress, in California. Doc Boyce-Smith’s company offered four body styles, the S1A being the most popular. It is thought that Victress made about 200 bodies for the S1A. Most were assembled by people other than the factory.

Victress would later be taken over by fiberglass rival La Dawri. This early car is powered by a 3.9-liter Dodge V-8. This example has been well restored and looks great. If you’re looking for something unique and distinctly American, look no further than this piece of fiberglass history. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold, high bid of $150,000.