Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Essen, Germany | March 26-27, 2020
NSU was a German car company founded in 1873 to produce knitting machines. They turned to motorcycles in 1901 and cars in 1905. Based in Neckarsulm, Germany, the company was acquired by Volkswagen in 1969 and merged into Auto Union. This was sort of the genesis of the current Audi brand.
I told you that to tell you this: in 1932, NSU’s first run at automobile manufacture failed, and their Heilbronn factory was sold to Fiat. Between 1929 and 1957, cars produced at this plant were called NSU-Fiats. In 1957, the Fiat-designed cars produced at this plant were sold under the Neckar brand. This lasted until 1971.
The Mistral was the Neckar-branded version of the Siata 1500 TS, which itself was a Michelotti-styled derivative of the Fiat 1500. Power is from a 1.5-liter inline-four that made 94 horsepower. Like its Siata twin, this is a rare car today. It’s now offered at no reserve. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Bonhams | Goodwood, U.K. | March 29, 2020
Just a few weeks ago we featured another model from the Marcos GT line of cars: the Marcos 1500GT. So what’s the difference? Well, for starters, the 1800GT was the first of the company’s GT cars. It was introduced in 1964 and was built for two years until the 1500GT took over.
The 1800GT was introduced with a plywood chassis and a 1.8-liter Volvo inline-four that originally made 96 horsepower. This car, converted to competition spec, has a rebuilt engine that is said to make 157 horsepower.
This car is historic racing eligible and is one of only 100 built. The pre-sale estimate here is $45,000-$58,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Russo & Steele | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 15-19, 2020
This was the high point of American Motors styling. The Marlin was introduced as a Rambler product in 1965, and for 1966 and 1967 it was sold under the AMC badge. 1965 and 1966 models were based on the Rambler Classic. It moved upmarket in ’67 to the larger Ambassador platform.
The Marlin featured a large greenhouse with a dramatic sloping fastback. Dodge unleashed a similar design in 1966 for the Charger. But Rambler did it first. Standard engine choices were a straight-six or a 287ci V8. This car is equipped with the optional 5.4-liter Ambassador V8, which was good for 250 horsepower.
In all, 10,327 examples of the ’65 Marlin were built. Production would drop off sharply in the following years. You can see more about this car here and more from this sale here.
Offered by Brightwells | Leominster, U.K. | November 27, 2019
The Scimitar was a line of two-door sports cars produced by Reliant (and later, Middlebridge) between 1964 and 1990. The original car was designed by David Ogle and is quite attractive when equipped with wire wheels as we see here.
The first cars were produced in 1964 and early 1965 and were powered by a 120 horsepower, 2.6-liter Ford inline-six. Top speed was 117 mph. Later cars used a V6, and only 296 examples of the straight-six-powered Scimitar were built.
This one was recently repainted and looks good. Later cars favored a shooting brake body style, but this is a true coupe. It should bring between $6,500-$7,750. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Bonhams | Chichester, U.K. | September 14, 2019
Can-Am’s debut season was 1966. But it wasn’t a surprise. Driver Jerry Hansen knew it was coming and got together with two engineers from GM to design and build a race car for him for the ’66 season.
Lee Dykstra (for whom the car appears to be named) and George Anderson designed this, the Wolverine. It has a tube spaceframe chassis and a small-block Chevrolet V8. An aluminum body was constructed, but over time the rear section has been replaced with fiberglass.
Hansen entered the car in the first Can-Am race, where he finished 20th. It also ran in SCCA events that year, but for 1967, Hansen upgraded to a McLaren. The Wolverine passed between a few other owners and was entered in Can-Am races through 1970.
They intended to build three of these, but only one was completed. The current owner bought the car in a series of boxes and had it completely rebuilt since 2010. It’s been at the Goodwood Revival and Monterey Motorsports Reunion. It should now sell for between $98,000-$110,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Monterey, California | August 15, 2019
There have been a few Aston Martin wagons – err, “shooting brakes” – over the years. They officially started with the DB5. The story is that company owner David Brown was annoyed that his hunting dog was destroying the front seats in his normal DB5, and he had nowhere to put his polo gear. I should’ve warned you that it was a very pretentious story.
The Shooting Brake versions of the DB5 share the same 282 horsepower, 4.0-liter inline-six as the coupes. But it has that extra bodywork and glass at the rear, courtesy of Radford, a British coachbuilder hired by Brown to build the bodies, as the Aston factory didn’t have the capacity to fill the special orders for these cars.
Only 12 examples of the DB5 Shooting Brake were built by the “factory” (i.e. by Radford). One for Brown, and 11 others for customers who saw Brown’s car and wanted their own. They are very hard to find today, and this example has been with three Swiss owners since new. It should bring between $1,000,000-$1,400,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Bonhams | Carmel, California | August 16, 2019
There were a lot of cooks in the kitchen when it came to getting this car built. And that’s probably a big part of the reason only an example or two were ever completed. Let’s start with the backstory: Carroll Shelby was killing it with his Cobras, including the legendary Daytona Coupes. But there were rumblings that McLaren was about to drop a huge 7.0-liter monster on the Cam-Am and USRRC circuits.
To hedge his bets while he waiting to find out if he would be taking over Ford’s GT40 program, Shelby teamed up with Alejandro de Tomaso to one-up McLaren before they got too far ahead. The car was engineered by de Tomaso and the body was designed by Peter Brock, who had also designed the Daytona Coupe. The body was then constructed by Fantuzzi in Italy.
Already featuring adjustable aerodynamics, Ol’ Shel wanted a lightweight powerplant. But it never got that far. Shelby got the GT40 gig and bolted from this project, and De Tomaso ended up showing the car at the 1965 Turin Auto Show as the “Ghia de Tomaso.”
Then it went into storage, staying put long after de Tomaso was gone. In 2004, the car’s body panels were discovered, and a very rough version of the car won awards at the 2005 Quail Motorsports Gathering. It was then restored and is now fitted with a 350 horsepower, 4.7-liter Gurney-Weslake V8. It’s expected to fetch between $2,000,000-$3,000,000 – which is a lot for a historic racing car with no racing heritage to speak of. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Aguttes | La Ferte-Vidame, France | July 21, 2019
The DS is one of a few extremely iconic models produced by Citroen since their founding in 1919. It was produced for 20 years – from 1955 through 1975. Many different models were available, including four-door sedans, Safari wagons, and a much rarer two-door convertible.
What the factory never produced was a two-door coupe. Henri Chapron was a French coachbuilder who was also responsible (and built for Citroen) the “factory” convertible variant of the DS. He also experimented with a few two-doors with fixed roofs for special customers and offered a couple of different variations. This is the “Concorde” coupe – one of just six built.
Based on the DS19, it is powered by an 83 horsepower, 1.9-liter inline-four. When new, this car cost almost three times the base price for a four-door DS19, which probably helps explain why only six were built. It should bring between $115,000-$170,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Ft. Lauderdale, Florida | March 29-30, 2019
1965 Goggomobil TS300 Cabriolet
The Goggomobil was built by Hans Glas GmbH between 1955 and 1969. There were a number of different models offered, with the TS coupe model available in TS250 or TS300 form.
They are powered by a 15 horsepower, 293cc 2-stroke twin. The cabriolet is very rare, with only seven examples produced. This former museum car carries a pre-sale estimate of $35,000-$45,000. Click here for more info.
Update: Sold $20,350.
1958 Biscuter 200-1 Furgoneta
The Biscuter was a microcar built by Autonacional of Spain. It is a descendant of Gabriel Voisin‘s post-war Biscooter French microcar. Different models were available, including the Pegasin sports car and this Furgoneta commercial van.
Power here is from a 197cc 2-stroke single-cylinder making a whopping nine horsepower. It’s wearing a wrap, which is an interesting thing to do to a classic car. Not many examples remain, and this one sports some pretty awesome wood work. It should bring between $20,000-$30,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Silverstone Auctions | Birmingham, U.K. | January 12, 2019
The Griffith is an unusual car. Partly because it has practically zero overhang front or rear, and partly because it has a confusing production history.
An American – Jack Griffith, to be exact – stuffed a Ford V8 into a TVR Grantura Mk 3 and then decided to open his own company to build the car. Just like an off-brand Cobra. The Griffith Motor Company of Plainview, New York, produced the car, using Ford engines and British-built bodies. Okay, less like an off-brand Cobra and more like an exact duplicate of Shelby’s entire business plan.
In the U.S., these cars were sold as the “Griffith 400” (there were other models as well). In the U.K., they were sold as TVR Griffith 400s. This is a right-hand-drive example, thus the TVR prefix. It is powered by a 4.7-liter V8 that was originally rated at 271 horsepower. It’s a rocket.
This car has been active on the historic race circuit and has FIA papers. Only about 300 Griffiths were built in total across all models. Less than 20 were the U.K. RHD TVR variants, making this car quite rare. It should bring between $150,000-$175,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.