Offered by Bonhams | Paris, France | March 3, 2021
It’s always weird when manufacturers adorn cars with different branding based on where they are sold. The NSX is an Acura product in North America. But pretty much everywhere else in the world, it’s a Honda. And this Honda NSX is from the middle of the first generation. It was delivered new to France, so it’s left-hand drive, but it’s also 25 years old. That means you can bring it to the U.S.
The first-gen NSX is an appreciating classic. It’s one of the last wonderfully analog cars. In 1995, the NSX was still two years away from a displacement increase and a power bump, and the 3.0-liter V6 in this car was rated at 270 horsepower.
There are more desirable and interesting colors, but you can’t really go wrong with red on a two-door, mid-engine sports car. This 15,000-mile example should sell for between $67,000-$91,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Mecum | Indianapolis, Indiana | July 10-18, 2020
The F512 M was the final version of Ferrari’s iconic Testarossa, which was actually first introduced for the 1984 model year. It is one of the most mass-produced Ferraris, and, at the time, it was the second-most-produced Ferrari after the 308 series.
In 1991, the original Testarossa was replaced by the 512 TR, which is among my favorite Ferrari road cars. In 1994, that car was supplanted by the F512 M, which was still powered by a 4.9-liter flat-12, capable here of 440 horsepower. The styling changes are the biggest giveaway. The pop-up headlights were gone, and the car was stuck with these ugly wheels.
Only 501 examples were produced, making it the rarest of the three Testarossa derivatives by some margin. Only 75 were built for the U.S. market. You can read more about this one here, and see more from Mecum here.
Ferrari’s 1994 World Championship car was the 412 T1, so naturally, 1995’s car was the 412 T2. The Scuderia retained their driver lineup of Jean Alesi and Gerhard Berger, but they also prepared for the future and let their 1997 driver, Michael Schumacher, test this very car prior to him taking a race seat with the team.
This car’s 3.0-liter V12 was the last 12-cylinder powerplant to win an F1 race. Ferrari was the only team still running a V12 during this season, while others ran V10s and V8s. Too bad we can’t have such variety in the sport today.
This was the second 412 T2 chassis built, and its competition history includes:
1995 Brazilian Grand Prix – 5th (with Jean Alesi)
1995 Argentine Grand Prix – 2nd (with Alesi)
1995 San Marino Grand Prix – 2nd (with Alesi)
The car was later tested by Schumacher at Fiorano and Estoril, and it was sold into private hands directly from team leader Jean Todt. To be able to say you own the “first Ferrari F1 car driven by Michael Schumacher” would be a pretty cool thing to be able to brag about. And now you can. Check out more about the car here.
Offered by Worldwide Auctioneers | Riyadh, Saudi Arabia | November 23, 2019
The Ferrari 456 was Ferrari’s sensible four-seater that was produced between 1992 and 2003. They have aged well, and I quite like them. What Ferrari did not do was produce a convertible. Yet here we are.
Convertibles, wagons, sedans, and targas were all produced off of the 456 by aftermarket manufacturers. In this case, the R. Straman Company of California produced approximately three drop-top versions of the car. This one is believed to have been owned by Mike Tyson.
It is powered by a 556 horsepower, supercharged 5.5-liter V12. That supercharger is not stock. It’s the perfect car for some rich dude in the Middle East, which is where this is being offered by Worldwide Auctioneers. You can read more about it here and see more from this sale here.
Offered by Mecum | Monterey, California | August 15-17, 2019
1997 G-Force-Oldsmobile GF01
We’re starting here with Arie Luyendyk’s 1997 Indy 500-winning car. I have an unpopular opinion (influenced heavily by nostalgia) that the 1996-1998 Indy 500s were the greatest. I was up there for Fan Fest (or whatever it was called) as a kid and fell in love this era of open wheel cars. Between Arie and Buddy Lazier, I’m not sure who had a more profound impact on my love for the 500.
G-Force was founded in 1991 by Chip Ganassi and Ken Anderson, and they began building cars for the Indy Racing League in 1997. The car above was the very first GF01 constructed. And it was a beast. Powered by a 4.0-liter Oldsmobile Aurora V8, this GF01 took pole and the win at Indy in 1997 (other GF01s swept the podium). The competition history for this ex-Treadway Racing chassis includes:
1997 Indianapolis 500 – 1st (with Luyendyk)
1997 Texas 500 – 1st (with Luyendyk)
1998 Las Vegas 500 – 1st (with Luyendyk)
1999 Las Vegas 500 – 1st (with Sam Schmidt)
The car was restored by Treadway Racing in its ’97 500 racing livery and is just missing onboard telemetry and an ECU to make it functional. Indy 500-winning cars don’t change hands often, which makes this pretty special. Oh, by the way, the second-place car from ’97 is also offered at this sale. Click here for more info.
Update: Sold $440,000.
1995 Lola-Menard T95/00
In 1995, the Indy 500 was still part of the CART season. We’ve actually featured another Lola T95/00 with Indy history, but it was Cosworth-powered. This car is “Menard”-powered, which mostly means it features a turbocharged 3.6-liter Buick V6 built by-and-for Team Menard.
This Menard-entry in 1996 ended up winning the pole with Scott Brayton behind the wheel. Unfortunately, he was killed testing a back-up car in practice a few days after securing pole. Menard pulled Danny Ongais out of a nine-year retirement to run the car. He was 53-years-old on race day. This car’s competition history includes:
1996 Indianapolis 500 – 7th (with Danny Ongais)
Both of Brayton’s pole-winning cars (1995 and 1996) are being offered at this sale. I chose this one because of its amazing Glidden/Menards livery (and Campbell Hausfeld, a company local to me)… although the other Quaker State/Menards car is quite attractive (and a photo of a similar-liveried car hung on my bedroom wall as a kid). Click here for more info.
Update: Not sold, high bid of $150,000.
Here’s something a little older. Fred Gerhardt’s Fresno, California-built open-wheelers were all over the USAC circuit in the late 1960s. They were a competitive chassis that ran many races between about 1965 and 1971. Somehow, it is said that Gerhardt only built 11 examples. I think the “in 1967” part of that sentence was missing from the catalog.
This example is powered by a rear-mounted Ford 4.2-liter DOHC V8. It was purchased new by Walter Weir, who entered the car in the ’67 500 for F1 driver Lorenzo Bandini, who died at Monaco a few weeks before Indy. Thus, the competition history for this car includes:
1967 Indianapolis 500 – 28th, DNF (with Al Miller)
1968 Indianapolis 500 – DNQ, (driver unknown)
1969 Indianapolis 500 – DNQ, (driver unknown)
1971 Indianapolis 500 – DNQ, (with Bill Puterbaugh)
It has had several owners since and has been restored. It’s eligible for historic events and can now be yours! Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Silverstone Auctions | Enstone, U.K. | May 11, 2019
This is the fourth different Jaguar XJ220 we’ve featured – and the first, plain Jane road car. It’s listed as a 1995 model, though the last XJ220 rolled off the assembly line in May 1994. So that’s believable enough. Silverstone Auctions has another XJ220 in this same sale that is titled as a 1997 – with no explanation given. Which is weird.
At 212 mph, the XJ220 was the fastest production car in the world at the time of its introduction. Power is from a 542 horsepower, twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6. It features an aluminum chassis and body as well as a well-appointed interior.
Celebrities lined up to buy them when they were new, but they gained a reputation for disappointment over time, and I’m not sure why. Maybe the V6 wasn’t exotic enough. The prices sort of bottomed out and never took back off again like the McLaren F1 and Ferrari F50. This one is expected to bring between $420,000-$485,000 – a relative supercar bargain.
This car is finished in Le Mans Blue and was brought to the UK in 2015 out of a collection in Malaysia. Supercar collections in Southeast Asia are always interesting, and you have to wonder what kind of stories this car could tell. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Bonhams | Carmel, California | August 18, 2017
Photo – Bonhams
We’ll remind you that Bonhams holds the all-time Monterey Peninsula auction record (which is also the all-time auction record) for cars. This year they are giving it their all to bring in the most money on a single car – battling Gooding & Company who have a high-estimate-$16 million Porsche 917K. This car is the only other car (currently listed) that has a chance to beat that. Bonhams isn’t publicizing an estimate, but two years ago RM sold this F1 for over $13 million.
So what is it? It’s a McLaren F1 – the holy grail of supercars. The first car was delivered in 1992 – 25 years ago, which qualifies a ’92 for historic plates. The best part is this car still holds its own against every modern supercar, including McLaren’s own P1. And it does it with the basics. It’s simply the greatest.
Designed by Gordon Murray and Peter Stevens, the F1 was built by the newly-founded road car division of the McLaren Formula One Team. It’s a three seater – the driver is in the middle – and it has bufferfly doors. All modern supercars are either turbocharged, supercharged, or fitted with some crazy electric hybrid system to boost power. The F1 does it old school: it is powered by a naturally aspirated 6.1-liter BMW V-12 that makes 627 horsepower. For years after its introduction it was the fastest production car in the world with a top speed of 240 mph. It remains the fastest naturally aspirated car in the world.
There were different versions of the F1, including LM, GTR, and racecars. In total, 106 cars were built, 64 of which were road cars. This 1995 model was the first to be imported into the U.S. The F1 wasn’t quite road legal in base form, so a company called Ameritech swapped out some parts to make it fully federalized for U.S. road use. Only seven such cars were converted.
This chassis (#044) is all-original and is still in the possession of its first owner. McLaren F1s do not change hands often and they have gone way up in value in the last 10 years (I remember when they were selling for $700,000 in the late 1990s). A price of $10+ million is not out of the question for one of the greatest road cars ever built. This is an opportunity to acquire one of the best F1s in existence. You can read more here and see more from this sale here.
Offered by Mecum | Kissimmee, Florida | January 6-15, 2017
1993 Ford Mustang SVT Cobra R
Photo – Mecum
The first Mustang Cobra was produced by Ford’s Special Vehicle Team (SVT) in 1993. It was mostly a power upgrade and other mechanical bits that made the car faster. The early Cobras looked similar to the GT, and in 1993 they also built a very limited edition Cobra R, the “R” standing for “race.”
The engine was a 5.0-liter V-8 making 235 horsepower, same as in the standard Cobra. Top speed was 140 mph. But this had a laundry list of other items that made the car lighter, faster, and more robust. Only 107 of these were built, making it quite rare in Mustangland. This one has 1,400 original miles and the original window sticker. Click here for more info.
Update: Not sold, high bid of $60,000.
1995 Ford Mustang SVT Cobra R
Photo – Mecum
The fourth generation Mustang went on sale for the 1994 model year. The second-generation Cobra was built for 1994 and 1995 and they looked meaner than the standard GT. The Cobra R was again produced, this time for 1995 only and 250 would be made (and you had to have a valid racing license to buy one).
The engine is a 5.8-liter V-8 making an even 300 horsepower. The idea here was to essentially homologate the car for use in endurance racing. But with that bulging hood and lowered stance, this thing looks destined for the drag strip. The as-new price was $37,599 in 1995 making it, easily, the most expensive Mustang built to that point. This example has 1,900 original miles and you can find out more about it here.
Update: Sold $35,000.
2000 Ford Mustang SVT Cobra R
Photo – Mecum
Unlike the previous Cobra Rs, the 2000 (and most recent example) was more of a departure, styling-wise, from the standard Mustang. This version had an aggressive body kit featuring a lip spoiler and a borderline-ridiculous rear wing. It even has side exhaust – when’s the last time you saw that on a production car costing less than 60 grand?
The powerplant beneath the hood here is a 385 horsepower, 5.4-liter V-8. Top speed was an impressive 177 mph and it was meant to be more of a track car than it was probably ever used for. Only 300 were made and when they came out, sporting something like an $55,000 MSRP, there was a dealership here in town that had three of them. I seem to recall them going for about $85,000 a pop. You can find out more about this 1,600 mile example here and see more from Mecum here.
Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 5, 2016
Photo – Artcurial
The Bugatti EB110 was the Italian Bugatti – built during the 1990s supercar craze by Romano Artioli in Modena. It was a serious supercar, too: with a 3.5-liter quad-turbocharged V-12 making 611 horsepower and capable of 216 mph, it backed up its looks with performance.
But what Bugatti didn’t do in these years, was go racing. In fact, most of the supercar manufacturers of the 1990s didn’t take these wild things racing. It was left mostly in the hands of privateers. Enter Gildo Pallanca Pastor, a wealthy Monegasque businessman who loved to race. His Monaco Racing Team got permission from Bugatti to take the EB110 sports car racing.
They got the car approved and entered it in the IMSA Championship in the U.S. The driver lineup was Gildo Pastor and Patrick Tambay. They entered five races and then set their sights on Le Mans. However, by the time Le Mans rolled around in ’95, Bugatti was bankrupt – luckily Pastor had the money to keep going. Tambay had a wreck in qualifying and, being a privateer with one car and limited spares, they weren’t able to get the car repaired in time for the race. “Did not start” is what the record book reads.
This car is road-registered in Monaco and is in fabulous condition. There was one other EB110 that ran at Le Mans in ’94, but that’s it as far as EB110 race cars are concerned. This one should bring between $875,000-$1,300,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | London, U.K. | September 7, 2015
Photo – RM Sotheby’s
This is one of the best super cars ever. It has the looks, it has the name, and it certainly has the speed. Romano Artioli’s Bugatti took shape in 1991 when production of the EB110 started in Italy. The original, “base” EB110 GT lacked the rear wing, as far as styling cues go. But the real difference was the power unit.
The Super Sport packs a punch with its quad-turbocharged 3.5-liter V-12 making 610 horsepower (a 50 horsepower bump over the GT). This put it right there with the McLaren F1 in terms of 1990s horsepower superiority. Top speed is an insane 216 mph. It can hit 60 in 3.2 seconds – which is still impressive 20 years later.
But the best thing has to be the looks. It just screams “super car” with proper scissor doors and bright yellow paint. It’s all around classic super car design. Bugatti would go broke in 1995 after just 33 EB110 SSs had been built – for a total count of 139 EB110s.
This is one of the last built and has had two owners since new, with the first being in Japan. RM seems to always find at least one fantastic super car for their London sale and it’s not going to get much better than this. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.