Lotus 34

1964 Lotus Type 34

Offered by Bonhams | Carmel, California | August 18, 2017

Photo – Bonhams

Lotus was far from the first European car company to try and conquer the Indianapolis 500, after all Peugeot won the third running. But there are few car companies that really left as an indelible a mark at the Speedway quite like Lotus did. They brought the rear-engined revolution. They were the rear-engined revolution. The 1964 Type 34 was their second “Champ Car” made specifically for American ovals.

The Type 34 was an evolution of Colin Chapman’s original Indy entrant, the Type 29. Lotus teamed with Ford for power and this car features by a 495 horsepower 4.2-liter V-8. It has a two-speed manual transmission. It’s racing heritage includes practice for the ’64 500 and the following:

  • 1964 Milwaukee Mile – DNF (with A.J. Foyt)
  • 1964 Trenton 200 – 1st (with Parnelli Jones)
  • 1965 Phoenix 150 – DNF (with Foyt)
  • 1965 Trenton 100 – DNF (with Foyt)
  • 1965 Indianapolis 500 – Pole, 15th, DNF (with Foyt)
  • 1965 Milwaukee Mile – DNF (with Foyt)
  • 1965 Langhorne 150 – DNF (with Foyt)
  • 1965 Trenton 150 – 1st (with Foyt)
  • 1965 Indianapolis Raceway Park – 4th (with Foyt)
  • 1965 Langhorne 125 – 2nd (with Foyt)
  • 1965 Atlanta 250 – DNF (with Foyt)
  • 1965 Trenton 200 – 1st (with Foyt)
  • 1965 Phoenix 200 – 1st (with Foyt)
  • 1966 Trenton 200 – 3rd (with Foyt)

That’s quite the history, even if the transmission gave out on the car seemingly more often than not. But it was quick in its day with who else but A.J. Foyt at the wheel. Foyt kept the car until 1992 when the current owner acquired it. The restoration is fresh, having been completed earlier this year.

All four of A.J.’s 500-winning cars are owned by the Speedway Museum. This pole-winning car (which set a lap record at Indy) is referred to as one of the most significant Foyt cars in private hands by the catalog. It is the winningest Indy Lotus and one of only two Type 34s in existence – the other at the IMS Museum. Get it while it’s hot – but it won’t come cheap. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Maseratis in Monterey

Maseratis in Monterey


1959 Maserati 3500 GT Spyder by Frua

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

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

We did this a few years ago when there was an abundance of Maseratis on offer during the Pebble Beach auction weekend. It turns out there’s quite a few nice examples being offered this year as well. And there’s nowhere near enough time to feature them all.

This is a 3500 GT, a model produced between 1957 and 1964. It was the company’s first successful GT road car and, really, the first successful production car that Maserati launched. It’s powered by a 3.5-liter straight-six making 217 horsepower with the three Weber carburetors as configured in this car. Introduced as a coupe, coachbuilder Frua designed a single convertible to show the company that a Spyder was a good idea.

As good looking as it is, Maserati chose Vignale’s design instead and that car become the series production 3500 Spyder. That makes this a one-off – and one of only five 3500 GT chassis bodied by Frua. The current restoration was freshened in 2000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $605,000.


1956 Maserati A6G/54 Berlinetta by Zagato

Offered by Gooding & Company | Pebble Beach, California | August 18, 2017

Photo – Gooding & Company

This car looks loud… like a muffler-less, high-revving car with a heavy clutch. Sort of like a race car with a road car body. Which is kind of what it is. Maserati’s A6G/54 was a road car based on the A6GCS race car and was available between 1954 and 1956. The’re powered by a 160 horsepower, 2.0-liter straight-six.

The aggressive body here is by Zagato, one of only 21 of this model bodied by the coachbuilder. Of those 21, they are broken down by three different variations on this body style. And they were only built in ’55 and ’56. This example was raced in its day and restored recently with it debuting at the 2014 Villa d’Este. It’s rare and should bring between $4,000,000-$5,000,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Gooding & Company.

Update: Sold $4,400,000.


1968 Maserati Mistral 4000 Spyder by Frua

Offered by Bonhams | Carmel, California | August 18, 2017

Photo – Bonhams

The Mistral was a 2-door Maserati GT car that was built between 1963 and 1970. It replaced the 3500 GT and was replaced by the Ghibli. It’s the perfect 1960s Maserati tourer, a competitor to the likes of the Aston Martin DB6.

Pietro Frua designed the Coupe and the Spyder variants. The Spyders were much rarer, with only 120 built to the Coupe’s 828. There were also three engine choices offered and we’ve already featured a Mistral Spyder with the smallest engine. But the car you see here has the largest: a 4.0-liter straight-six making 265 horsepower. Only 37 of the Spyders were the 4000 model, making it the rarest version of the Mistral.

Restored to as-new condition (with the addition of a second fuel pump), this car has covered 7,000 miles since completion. It is expected to bring between $750,000-$900,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.


1964 Maserati 5000 GT Coupe by Michelotti

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

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The 5000 GT was an extremely rare Maserati offered in Coupe-only form between 1959 and 1964. It wasn’t even a car the company planned on building: the Shah of Persia liked the 3500 GT but requested Maserati build him one with a modified version of the engine from the 450S race car. So Maserati capitulated, stuffing a 4.9-liter V-8 engine making 325 horsepower under the hood.

Each car was specially built by leading coachbuilders of the day. Designer Giovanni Michelotti built this example for famed American sportsman Briggs Cunningham. Cunningham requested a 5000 GT that resembled the 450S and the result was something that resembled no other 5000 GT (nor any other Maserati). It almost looks like a custom Ferrari of the era.

The restoration dates to the early-1990s. It’s pretty special, and as a one-off version of a production car that only ever saw 33 examples built, it should bring big bucks. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $1,017,500.


2007 Maserati MC12 Corsa

Offered by Mecum | Monterey, California | August 16-19, 2017

Photo – Mecum

The MC12 is the coolest Maserati of the last 25 years – easily. The car was designed around the underpinnings of the Ferrari Enzo. But unlike Ferrari, who doesn’t take their halo cars to the track, Maserati’s entire aim with this project was to return to the FIA GT Championship. Production of road cars began in 2004 and they had to homologate 50 of them to go racing, which they did by the end of 2005.

And racing they went. And it was pretty a successful endeavor – or successful enough that some customers demanded their own track version. So after the 50 road cars were built, Maserati constructed 12 “MC12 Corsa” examples that were track-only versions of their supercar. It’s powered by a 6.0-liter V-12 making 745 horsepower – pretty much the same powerplant from the factory-backed MC12 GT1 race car. These cost nearly $1.5 million when new. We’ll see what it brings in a couple of days. Click here for more info and here for more from Mecum.

Update: Not sold, high bid of $1,700,000.

Alvis TE 21

1964 Alvis TE 21 Drophead Coupe by Park Ward

Offered by Historics at Brooklands | May 20, 2017

Photo – Historics at Brooklands

The TE 21 was the penultimate Alvis motorcar ever built. Introduced in 1963, the TE 21 would be offered as a coupe or convertible (er, Drophead Coupe) through 1966. Production on the next model, the TF 21, would wind up in 1967 and Alvis pretty much just became a defense contractor after that.

The TE 21 is powered by a 3.0-liter straight-six making 130 horsepower. These luxurious two-doors were sporty as well, with a top speed of about 110 mph. The body was based on a design by Graber of Switzerland but was massaged and built by Mulliner Park Ward of London. It’s a very attractive car.

This early example was ordered off the 1964 London Motor Show stand and was used regularly through 1975 when it was parked. Rediscovered in 2008 by its current owner, this car was extensively restored and shows beautifully. Showing just over 40,000 miles, this is one of just 352 TE 21s built – and less than 100 of those were drop tops. It should bring between $93,000-$105,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $203,761.

Ferrari Nembo Spyder

1964 Ferrari 330 GT Nembo Spyder

Offered by H&H Classics | Duxford, U.K. | March 29, 2017

Photo – H&H Classics

There are four “Nembo” Ferrari Spyders (though one might be a coupe) and Nembo refers to two men: Giorgio Neri, Luciano Bonacini, Italians based in Modena with their own car shop. In the 1960s they started doing one-off Ferraris and it is thought that one of their early 250 GT-based Nembo Spyders was the basis for the design of the 275 NART Spyder, which this car sort of resembles.

The first three Nembo Spyders were all unique. This car, the fourth and final, wasn’t commissioned until the 1980s. A British collector wanted it made and the car was to be based around a 1964 330 GT 2+2. That means under the hood lies a 4.0-liter V-12 that makes 300 horsepower.

The wheelbase was also shortened at the time of construction, giving it a racier look than the four-seater 330 GT would’ve had. It is noted that all four of the Nembo Spyders (of which, this is the only one with a 4.0-liter V-12 and the only one in RHD) are ineligible for Ferrari Classiche certification because they are all technically re-bodied cars. It’s obviously very rare and quite attractive. It will be interesting to see what it brings at auction, but it is being sold at no reserve and the proceeds will benefit an air ambulance service. You can read more about it here and see more cars from H&H Classics here.

Update: Sold $744,015.

Porsche 901 Cabriolet

1964 Porsche 901 Cabriolet Prototype by Karmann

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Paris, France | February 8, 2017

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Porsches are hot right now. Like really, really hot – especially anything that is air-cooled. The first generation of the 911 went on sale in 1964 and the prices for this generation have gone through the roof. Let’s also remember that Porsche originally wanted to call the 911 the 901, but Peugeot objected on copyright grounds, so they added a “1.” But Porsche had already built 82 cars with “901” badging and some of them are still out there.

The first true 911 Cabriolet didn’t go one sale until 1982, so this car is extraordinarily special in that regard. Sure, there was the Targa that showed up in 1966, but it had that pesky rear window and roll-over hoop. This is the only drop-top 911 from this era – and what makes it even better is that it is from the prototype line of 901 cars. It is the second-earliest 901 Prototype known to exist and most of the 13 Prototype Coupes were destroyed back in the day.

The engine is a 130 horsepower, 2.0-liter flat-six and the convertible work was carried out by Karmann, a longtime Volkswagen collaborator. Porsche parted ways with this car in 1967, selling it to a German racing driver who wanted to save it. An American collector acquired it directly from him in 2001 and rebuilt the engine, making the car roadworthy. But the body and interior are all-original. The current British owner is selling the car at auction – the first time it has ever been available for public sale. If you thought Porsche prices were high already, wait for the hammer price on this one. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $692,337.

Five Rare Mopars

Five Rare Mopars

Offered by Mecum | Kissimmee, Florida | January 6-15, 2017


1962 Dodge Dart 330 Max Wedge

Photo – Mecum

The second-generation of the Dodge Dart was downsized from a full-size car to a mid-size car. This generation was only built for 1962 before moving to a compact platform in 1963. Three trim levels were available: the base Dart, the mid-trim Dart 330, and the top-trim Dart 440.

1962 also happened to be the year that Chrysler released an engine dubbed the Max Wedge – a 6.8-liter V-8 making 410 horsepower. It was designed to make their cars monsters at the drag strip and in the early 1960s, American automakers were perfectly happy to build low-volume versions of their high-volume family cars to dominate the ¼-mile.

This two-door sedan – likely the only body style you could get this engine – has been fully restored and is an authentic Max Wedge car. Production numbers are hard to come by, but about 25,500 ’62 Dart 330s were built (total of all five body styles) and there were approximately 13,500 Two-Door Sedans built across all Dart trim levels. The closest estimate I have to the number of Max Wedge Darts is 210. This one should bring between $85,000-$110,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.


1963 Dodge 330 Max Wedge

Photo – Mecum

The “330” was a trim line introduced by Dodge in 1962 and in 1963, they separated it off and it became its own model. Between 1963 and 1964 it was a full size Dodge before it was replaced by the Dodge 880 for 1965.

1963 was a good year for the Max Wedge as it was virtually unbeatable at the drag strip. The 7.0-liter V-8 put out 425 horsepower and was geared to go a quarter of mile at a time. This example has been beautifully restored and it is one of about 64,100 330s built in 1963. Of those, only 162 were fitted with this engine and this one should bring between $90,000-$120,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Mecum.

Update: Sold $70,000.


1963 Dodge Polara 500 Max Wedge

Photo – Mecum

The Dodge Polara was a full-size Dodge and the second generation of the car was built between 1962 and 1964. For 1963, the Polara was available in two trim levels, the base Polara and the performance model dubbed the “500.” The Polara was essentially the same as the ’63 Dodge 440 except that it had backup lights. The 500 trim level added a base V-8, bucket seats and more interior niceties.

So what we have here is a 7.0-liter, 425 horsepower V-8 shoehorned into a well-appointed luxury two-door sedan. It was built as a customer order and never raced. It shows 36,000 miles and is one of about 39,800 Polaras produced in 1963. Of those, about 7,300 were Polara 500s and only five of those have the Max Wedge engine. This rarity will bring between $85,000-$115,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.


1964 Dodge 440 Max Wedge Lightweight

Photo – Mecum

The 440 was a trim-line on the 1962 Dodge Dart and for 1963 and 1964 it became its own full-size Dodge. Five body styles were offered and this two-door hardtop coupe will actually seat six. It was a step up from the Dodge 330 but a step below the Dodge Polara.

The engine is a 425 horsepower, 7.0-liter Max Wedge V-8 and it’s also a factory Lightweight. It’s had unnecessary weight stripped out and lightweight panels added where appropriate. Coupled with the big engine, this was a drag strip beast. It’s one of only 10 such cars built and should bring between $200,000-$250,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold, high bid of $140,000.


1964 Plymouth Belvedere Max Wedge Lightweight

Photo – Mecum

The fifth generation Plymouth Belvedere was built between 1962 and 1964. For this generation the car got smaller and slotted in between the Savoy and the Fury. Offered in five body styles, this two-door hardtop could be had with a slew of engine choices.

But this example has a 7.0-liter Max Wedge V-8 making 425 horsepower. It was the final year for the Max Wedge engine before the “Hemi” made its debut. It’s a factory lightweight, so it has aluminium body panels in places. Fully restored to its correct color, this is one of just 14 Max Wedge Lightweights produced for the 1964 Belvedere. In all, 16,334 hardtop Belvederes were made in 1964. This one should bring between $125,000-$150,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Mecum.

Update: Sold $140,000.

Morgan Plus 4 Plus

1964 Morgan Plus 4 Plus

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | London, U.K. | September 7, 2016

Photo - RM Sotheby's

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Morgan is a car company steeped in tradition – all their cars are assembled by hand and even today, in the 21st Century, they sell cars with an ash frame. Many of their cars sport styling that was introduced in the 1960s and they even sell a three-wheeler that’s just an updated version of a car that dates back 100 years.

So in 1963 when Morgan introduced the Plus 4 Plus at the Earls Court Motor Show, the technologically advanced car was met with a predictably cool reception and the company went back to focusing on their bread and butter. This car has a fiberglass body – a long way from ash frames. The striking closed coupe body has a greenhouse that is large enough for two human heads, but not much more. The engine is a 2.1-liter straight-four making 105 horsepower.

Restored in 2007, this example has spent most of its life on the West Coast of the U.S. and Canada where it had a string of only five owners. This is the fifth Plus 4 Plus built out of a production run of only 26 cars. It is among the rarest cars Morgan has ever built and one of the most instantly recognizable. It should bring between $156,000-$182,500. Click here for more info and here for the full RM Sotheby’s London catalogue.

Update: Sold $172,592.

Cheetah GT

1964 Cheetah GT Coupe

Offered by Bonhams | Monterey, California | August 19, 2016

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Shortly after the sporty Corvette went on sale, tuners got their hands on it and began modifying it for racing. Bill Thomas was one of those tuners and he began his career in 1956. GM was impressed and paid him to help with the Corvair and Chevy II.

Thomas also opened Bill Thomas Race Cars in 1960 in Southern California. When Ford partnered with Shelby, General Motors felt a little left out and went to Thomas to see what could be done about it. Thing was, GM had a ban on factory racing so they had to support the program covertly.

So Bill Thomas and Don Edmunds designed the Cheetah. Chevrolet supplied the 400+ horsepower 5.5-liter V-8 and a bunch of other parts. The first two cars were bodied in aluminium by California Metal Shaping. After GM gave the thumbs up, the rest of the cars were fiberglass, done by Contemporary Fiberglass. GM wanted 100 cars to homologate it for FIA competition but they cancelled their support after only 11 cars were made between 1963 and 1965.

This is the fourth fiberglass Cheetah built. It was one of three purchased by Alan Green Chevrolet in Seattle and the only one of those to see action on the track, competing in the SCCA. A subsequent owner converted it for street use, which included stamping his own serial number on the chassis and replacing the body. In 2012, the original body was put back on the car.

There were extra chassis and bodies completed, but only 11 actual cars were ever built, turn-key, by the factory. These are legendary American performance machines that are much rarer than Shelby’s counterpart (and also like the Cobra, originals are way outnumbered by replicas). They rarely change hands and this fully restored example should bring between $300,000-$500,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Sabra GT

1964 Sabra GT Coupe

Offered by Bonhams | Amelia Island, Florida | March 10, 2016

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Autocars Co. Ltd. was an Israeli automobile manufacturer – Israel’s first – that set up shop in Haifa in the 1950s. They built a couple of different models, but the most remembered is the Sabra.

The Sabra GT’s design is actually by the kit car maker Ashley. British company Reliant built the fiberglass bodies, and, in fact, built the first run of Sabras in house (and then copied the car as the Reliant Sabre). This car is powered by a 1.7-liter straight-four making 61 horsepower.

Sabras were very popular in Belgium – a quarter of them were sold new there. Some were exported to the U.S. and they were available as a coupe or convertible. Production lasted from 1964 through 1968. At least 100 Sabras still exist, but you never see them. This one should bring between $80,000-$100,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $93,500.

Sunbeam Tiger Race Car

1964 Sunbeam Tiger Le Mans Coupe

Offered by Bonhams | London, U.K. | December 6, 2015

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

We’ve featured a Sunbeam Tiger before. That car was a road car – a true cousin to the Shelby Cobra. It’s a simple formula: take a nimble British Roadster and shove a big American V-8 under the hood. But this Tiger is a little different.

For starters, it isn’t a roadster. It’s a fastback and it’s one of only three such Tigers built by the Rootes Group. All three were competition specials – prototypes whose sole purpose was the 1964 24 Hours of Le Mans. The body was the work of Brian Lister – no slouch at building competition cars. The engine is a 4.2-liter V-8 from Shelby making 275 horsepower.

This car was the prototype. Once it was deemed competitive in testing, two further cars were built that were sent to Le Mans. This car only saw competition once it was sold and used in privateer hands. It’s passed through a number of hands and has recently competed in the Le Mans Classic and other historic events. It’s the rarest Sunbeam Tiger you’re likely to find and it should bring between $460,000 and $610,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.