Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Munich, Germany | November 25, 2023
The first BMW M3 was built on the company’s E30-generation chassis, and it was only offered as a two-door coupe (or a relatively rare convertible). BMW also used it as a springboard into DTM in Germany, and thus a few homologation models were developed.
There were two “Evolution” models introduced in the late 1980s that saw power increases. Then came 1990’s Sport Evolution model, which was the final – and top – model in the E30 M3 family. This one is titled as a 1992, which is probably when it was first registered. But all Sport Evos were built in a four-month span ending in March 1990. Just 600 were produced.
While the standard M3 (and first two Evos) had 2.3-liter engines, the Sport Evolution is powered by a 2.5-liter inline-four that made 235 horsepower. Sport Evos got a DTM-style rear wing and could’ve only been had in black or red. This one has an estimate of $195,000-$215,000. Click for more info here.
Offered by Mecum | Kissimmee, Florida | July 6-9, 2023
Autozam was a marque produced by Mazda that offered a half-dozen or so cars over its brief lifespan of 1989 through 1998. The most famous of which, and the only one that wasn’t really a re-badged Mazda or Suzuki, was this, the AZ-1.
Sure, Suzuki would go on to sell their own version later, but the AZ-1 gets all the glory here. This is a small car. Like very small. It has a mid-engine layout, with the turbocharged 657cc inline-three located behind the passenger compartment, which is accessed via gullwing doors. Output was about 63 horsepower.
Just 4,392 examples of the AZ-1 were produced between late 1992 and late 1994. These were only sold in Japan, but have become popular imports now that they’re legal to bring into the U.S. Click here for more info about this one.
Offered by Brightwells | Leominster, U.K. | March 27-April 1, 2021
TVR produced an “S” series of cars between 1986 and 1994. They were the transition between the wedge-shaped TVRs of the 1980s and the insanity of the 1990s. There were four “S” cars powered by V6s, and there was the V8S.
The S2, S3, and S4 all shared the same 168-horsepower, 2.9-liter Ford V6. The changes between the series were mostly cosmetic (or emissions-related), and the S3 was launched in 1990. It got a stiffer chassis than earlier cars as well as longer doors and an interior redesign.
Only 887 examples of the S3 were built through 1992, making it the most common of the S cars. But, uh, they are still not common at all. This is a cheap way into TVR ownership (though there is nothing saying that TVR ownership will remain cheap). The pre-sale estimate is just $8,700-$10,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Historics Auctioneers | Ascot, U.K. | September 26, 2020
Yes, please. While not every Alfa Romeo 75 sedan looks like a sexy, boxy, homologation special, this one checks a lot of… er, boxes. The 75 was produced between 1985 and 1992. It was only available as a rear-wheel-drive sedan, and there were quite a few different variants offered, including a super rare Turbo Evoluzione model.
The 1.8 Turbo is powered by a, well, turbocharged 1.8-liter inline-four. Output was rated at 153 horsepower. Historics says this is an Italian-market limited edition QV model. What that means is unclear with regards to factory equipment, but the car has been “restored” (I think they mean modified) with BBS wheels, and IMSA-style rear spoiler, and a pretty slick Recaro interior.
If it isn’t stock, whoever built it had great taste. It’s the best-looking 75 I’ve ever seen. And the estimated price seems to think many will agree. It is expected to sell for between $22,000-$30,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Bonhams | Chichester, U.K. | July 5, 2019
Williams was a star in F1 in the early 1990s. Part of that had to do with the fact that Adrian Newey was designing their cars. The Williams FW14 was for 1991 season and was updated to FW14B-spec for 1992. And it was a beast.
Team drivers Riccardo Patrese and Nigel Mansell managed to win the constructors championship while utilizing the six “B” chassis built for the season. This was the first car designed by Newey and it rocked. It’s probably the best car Williams has ever fielded.
Power is from a 3.5-liter V10 capable of 760 horsepower – at 14,500 rpm! Usually publicly-owned F1 cars have replacement engines, but this one is the real deal, carrying the motor Mansell used to win the opening round of the championship. The competition history for this chassis includes:
1992 South African Grand Prix – 1st (with Nigel Mansell)
1992 Mexican Grand Prix – 1st (with Mansell)
1992 Brazilian Grand Prix – 1st (with Mansell)
1992 Spanish Grand Prix – 1st (with Mansell)
1992 San Marino Grand Prix – 1st (with Mansell)
1992 Monaco Grand Prix – 2nd (with Mansell)
1992 Canadian Grand Prix – 23rd, DNF (with Mansell)
1992 British Grand Prix – 2nd (with Riccardo Patrese)
1992 German Grand Prix – 8th (with Patrese)
1992 Hungarian Grand Prix – 13th, DNF (with Patrese)
1992 Belgian Grand Prix – 3rd (with Patrese)
1992 Italian Grand Prix – 5th (with Patrese)
1992 Portuguese Grand Prix – 19th, DNF (with Patrese)
The car was then mostly destroyed in an airborne accident at Estoril when Patrese hit Gerhard Berger wheel-to-wheel at speed. Mansell went on to be World Champion later that year.
It’s obviously since been restored. Championship-winning F1 cars don’t trade hands publicly often, and Bonhams is mum on a reserve. Check back in a few weeks to see if it sold – and for how much. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Bonhams | Wormsley, U.K. | May 19, 2019
In 1989, Aston Martin was barely an automotive manufacturer. Their production had dwindled dramatically, and they debuted a new model that year: the Virage. And they managed to build just over 400 of those in 12 years.
The Virage Volante – Aston-speak for convertible – debuted in 1992. Featuring 2+2 seating, the car is powered by a 5.3-liter V8 making 330 horsepower. This variation of the convertible was only produced through 1996, and 233 of them were made. A longer-wheelbase V8 Volante supplanted the model and was produced in limited numbers through 2000.
This quite rare, 150-mph luxury droptop is from an exclusive era of Aston production and those classic lines. It can now be yours for between $91,000-$100,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Bonhams’ all-Aston sale.
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | London, U.K. | September 5, 2018
Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s
The Maserati Barchetta was a purpose-built race car from Maserati intended to compete in a one-make racing series, the Grantrofeo Monomarca Barchetta Maserati. They only built 17 of these and they went to well-heeled semi-professional drivers who competed against each other at tracks around Europe, but mostly in Italy. The series ran in 1992 and 1993 only.
All Barchettas are powered by a twin-turbo 2.0-liter V6 good for 315 horsepower. They’re very light, with fiberglass and carbon fiber bodies. The whole thing really wasn’t much of a success and Maserati wasn’t exactly flying high in 1992 to begin with.
They tried to make a road car variant, but only one prototype was built, although some of these are currently road-registered in Europe. The project sort of lived on briefly as the similar-looking De Tomaso Guara, but they had a slightly different body and engine. This particular chassis finished 4th in the first year of the Championship and you can read more here and see more from RM Sotheby’s in London here.
Benetton became a Formula One constructor for the 1986 season and their first car, the B186, was driven by Gerhard Berger and Teo Fabi. In 1991, Michael Schumacher joined the team and we’ve featured the very Benetton car he scored his first F1 podium with.
In 1989 the team switched to a new Ford power plant (their HB engine). It’s a 3.5-liter naturally-aspirated V-8. The B192 chassis (of which this is the first example) was introduced by the team for the fourth race of the season, the Spanish Grand Prix and it replaced the earlier B191B. The race history for this chassis includes:
1992 Spanish Grand Prix – 2nd (with Michael Schumacher)
And that’s it. After that, it was the team’s spare car for San Marino and Monaco. The car was never damaged and still retains a Ford HB race engine. It sports the correct as-raced Camel livery. This is a rare chance to acquire a Michael Schumacher-raced Formula One car (and the car he scored his first 2nd place finish in). Big money required (but I guess if you’re going race car shopping in Monaco you’re probably covered). Click here for more info and here for more from RM in Monaco.
Offered by Auctions America | Hilton Head, South Carolina | October 31, 2015
Photo – Auctions America
The Toyota Supra. Mazda RX-7. Mitsubishi 3000GT. And the Nissan 300ZX. These were the sportiest Japanese cars you could buy in the 1990s. But by the mid-to-late 90s, they were all gone. As the prices came down on used ones, high schoolers took over, modifying them beyond repair. This car is a glimmer of hope.
This generation of Nissan’s Z-car was built between 1989 and 2000 (although they ceased arriving on American shores after 1996). The engine is a 3.0-liter V6 making 222 horsepower. An even-sportier twin turbo model was also offered. This car does have the glass T-tops.
Because so many of these have been driven into the ground by young people desperate to get their hands on something fast, not many remain – especially this clean and in this condition. In fact, Supras and RX-7s are climbing in price and are hardly ever seen. This is the most common of the three but you never see one that really looks like its got its stuff together. It’s a low-mileage, one-owner car estimated to bring $25,000-$30,000. Hopefully it goes to a good home. Click here for more info and here for the rest of Auctions America’s lineup.
If you haven’t noticed, we tend to feature a fair amount of supercars around here. We especially like the low-volume ultra-rare kind you only find squirreled away in Europe somewhere – just like this Venturi 400 Trophy.
Venturi still exists, though their main focus today is more on electrifying existing vehicles today than on supercar production. There were two 400 models: the GT and the Trophy. While the GT was the rarer, road-going version, the 400 Trophy was actually built for a one-make racing series.
The Trophy cars were built between 1992 and 1994, with 73 being created. They are powered by a mid-mounted twin-turbo 3.0-liter V-6 making 400 horsepower. This particular car is fitted with a passenger seat and lacks any sort of decals that mark it as a racing car. This leads me to believe that it can probably be road-registered in Europe (Venturis were never sold in the States). At any rate, it won’t come cheap. But you can find out more here.